The UPA is an alliance of highly-respected international pathways to UK degrees which are designed, managed and delivered directly by UPA member universities. The UPA has been established by high-ranking UK universities and is intended to provide effective mechanisms for information exchange and communication.
A message from the Chair of the UPA - Anne Lawrence






Collaboration is a priority for the current global climate we find ourselves in. The UPA is a network of universities with their own international foundation provision who join together to share best practice for the benefit of their students, staff and institutions and to work together on specific projects.
As we transition into the post-pandemic world, we are reviewing our vision and objectives.

Our aim is to contribute significantly to the wider community as well as ourselves as we support the transition of international students to UK university education.

Since it’s launch, the UPA has grown significantly in the number of members it represents and the number of students who have benefitted from the exchange of good practice between our institutions.

Some of our achievements include:
•       conferences for staff and students

•       opportunities for Continuing Professional Development 

•       research into student experience 

•       quality assurance activity

•       stakeholder engagement

•       national and international representation

•       student support

•       developing admissions practices and exchange of students at degree level

If you would like to explore ways of collaborating with us, do get in touch.


Recent governmental changes, affecting higher education in the UK, and other developments in the international education sector have clarified the need for a strategic alliance representing international pathway programmes which are designed, owned and delivered by UK universities.

Our mission is to serve our students and stakeholders through championing the high-quality features of international pathways which are designed, owned and delivered by our member institutions.

Key values
  • Our member institutions share an ethos to prioritise excellence in our academic provision and the support of students, parents, schools, embassies and other sponsors. 

  • UPA member institutions exchange information and good practice so that our programmes and support mechanisms can benefit more broadly from the experience of our respective universities.

  • The institutions which comprise the UPA  strive to continually develop and enhance the academic experience that is offered to all our international stakeholders. 

A tradition of excellence

The members of the UPA are high-ranking UK universities who have a long track record of directly delivering top-quality academic degree and pathway programmes to international and UK students.  Since 1974, we have been offering pathways that prepare international students for UK degrees in all subject areas.  Throughout this period, our individual institutions have shared the same vision and goals in the delivery of our university-led, in-house provision.  Our foundation, pathway, and pre-sessional courses have evolved over time in order to meet the changing needs of our students (and may even have changed names), but with a consistent commitment to building the foundations for success. 

Our shared experience adds up to over 45 years of nurturing international academic excellence.

© 2020, University Pathway Alliance