Courses - The University of Auckland

UoA Foundation Studies

Foundation Courses

40 Points

English for Academic Purposes

Develops language skills such as reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Builds academic vocabulary and correct use of grammar, making it easy to understand other subjects. Note-taking, critical thinking, research, and essay writing are covered. This course covers the language skills that will help students understand academic texts at university.

20 Points


Accounting is the practice of communicating financial information in order to make effective decisions. This course focuses on how to record business transactions for a company, prepare and analyse the financial statements for a company. Management decision making, breakeven analysis, cash budgeting and spreadsheets are also covered.

20 Points

Art History

Discusses the analysis and interpretation of works of art within their cultural and historical context. Artists such as, Donatello, Masaccio, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael (Renaissance) are studied. The modern period includes Cezanne, Picasso, Braque (Cubism) and Mondrian. A New Zealand artist, Colin McCahon will also be studied. Encourages students to make connections to other artists. Develops skills in critical analysis, writing, presentation and independent research.

20 Points


Biology is the study of living things, their environments and their evolution. Understanding of how living cells coordinate biochemical reactions, giving rise to what is called “life”. By exploring biotechnology, students will discover how cellular and molecular biology are applied to practical human purposes. The wide diversity of living things on Earth: ecosystems, plants and animals, genetics and evolution over time will be studied. Provides opportunities for research, discuss, present and write critically about current biology issues.

20 Points


Chemistry is the branch of science concerned with the substances of which matter is composed, the investigation of their properties and reactions, and the use of such reactions to form new substances. Theory is complemented by experiments in which students develop practical skills, such as the use of common laboratory equipment, powers of observation and the ability to communicate results and conclusions.

20 Points


Strong focus on graphic and communication design. Considers graphic design theory and explores communication design solutions by producing a brand identity for an individually chosen project. Students will learn how to design a logo and poster, producing imagery, develop an understanding of building a design brand, interpret and read design works and learn how to use Photoshop.

20 Points


Economics is the study of scarcity; of how society chooses to use scarce resources to satisfy its unlimited wants. Explores what motivates consumers and producers and how the market works, and how markets react to change. Increases students’ understanding of what makes up an economy, how it works and why is this is important for the individual and others. Uses economic theory to analyse real-life situations. Challenges students to think like an economist and practice decision-making.

20 Points

Mathematics with Calculus

Calculus is a branch of mathematics that provides an understanding of the changes between values that are related by a function. Students will learn how to manipulate mathematical equations, read trigonometric functions, differentiate to get functions that show rates of change, and integrate to obtain formulas that describe things that are not visible. Logical thinking and reasoning, algorithmic processes and problem- solving will also be studied.

Restriction: CTFOUND 18F

20 Points

Mathematics with Modelling

Modelling is a branch of mathematics where mathematical representations of the surrounding world are created in order to increase knowledge and to predict the future. Students will learn how to manipulate mathematical equations, read trigonometric functions, create formulas for real-life situations and maximise profits and minimise costs. Logical thinking and reasoning, algorithmic processes and problem-solving will be covered.

Restriction: CTFOUND 17F

20 Points


Geography is the study of the Earth as the home of humankind. Geographical skills such as mapping, graphing and interpretation of data will be covered. Topics include tourism development as a cultural process, tectonic processes, global development. A contemporary geographic issue will be studied.

20 Points


Photography is the study of the camera, its capabilities and the ideas, theory and aesthetics around the photographic image as a piece of art. Students will be introduced to the history of photography, how the camera works, camera techniques, and the language of composition. Students will study contemporary photographers.

20 Points


Physics provides explanations for why natural and manmade phenomena occur. Topics covered: translational motion, forces, momentum, rotational motion, simple harmonic motion, mechanical and electromagnetic waves, direct current electricity, capacitance, electromagnetism and alternating current theory. Different types of experimental techniques and the appropriate situations in which they should be used. Students will be shown how to develop a logical approach to problem-solving and experimental design.

20 Points


Statistics is about collecting and analysing data from a small group to make intelligent and accurate conclusions about a larger group. The Problem, Plan, Data, Analysis, and Conclusion (PPDAC) cycle of inquiry will be used. Statistical knowledge aids in the proper methods to collect data, employ the correct analyses and effectively present the results. Key skills covered: gathering and displaying data, using statistical formulas and writing academic conclusions