Difference between Pathway Program and Sandwich Courses


Meridean Overseas

Updated On 03 June 2024 & Read Time 11 minutes


Are you eager to embark on an international academic journey but unsure which course to choose—pathway programs or sandwich courses? This blog will familiarise you with both course types and address most of your queries regarding pathway programs and sandwich courses to help you make an informed decision.


In recent years, 35,438 applications from international students have been submitted for the pathway courses. Similarly, a surge is witnessed in the application of sandwich courses across the globe.


In this blog, we have curated information about the difference between Pathway Programs and Sandwich Courses and other essential information. So, let’s read the blog and know the details.

Difference between a Pathway Program and a Sandwich Course

The pathway programs are also known as foundation courses provided by international universities. The pathway program has gained worldwide recognition, particularly among Indian students. On the other hand, a sandwich course is a degree the Universities provides, including a year-long work placement provision. During a placement, you must work in an industry linked to your education and gain real-world knowledge of your subject area.




Let's discuss both courses in detail.


What is a Pathway Program?

To put it simply, Pathway programs are preparatory courses that are carefully chosen to assist Indian students in gaining the information, skills, and qualifications necessary to complete a UG or PG program. These courses typically last a year.


Usually known as foundation courses, these help students understand the curriculum by reinforcing their general awareness of English and other related ideas before the start of specific programs. Sometimes, even after demonstrating their English language skills through entry examinations, students encounter challenges finishing an overseas program. As a result, many foreign colleges and institutions only provide this program to Indian students.


Have you set your mind to studying UK or any other study abroad destination? Let's turn your study abroad dreams into reality today!" Register Now!

Talk to our Counsellors


What is a Sandwich Course?

In a sandwich course, the academic study period is separated by nine months to a year of industry work for the student pursuing a degree. Due to this structure, sandwich courses are lengthier than full-time courses. Long-term benefits, however, come from them since students get useful work experience and have greater job prospects after finishing the course.


A sandwich course is a four or five-year program that includes a year-long placement along with an undergraduate or graduate degree. Although they go by several names, sandwich courses are a widely accepted educational format that was first introduced in 1950.

Universities Offering Pathway Courses and Sandwich Programs

 In this section, we have covered some universities offering pathway courses and sandwich programs.


Universities offering Pathway Program

Several universities across the globe have foundation courses that you may be interested in taking. The following is a list of colleges in UK that provide introductory courses to assist you in beginning your academic career and preparing for the UG programs:


Universities Offering Sandwich Courses

Some universities around the world provide sandwich courses; below is the list of such universities:

Fulfil your study abroad dreams with Meridean Overseas

Embark and excel in your study abroad journey with our expert team!


Course Work for Pathway Program and Sandwich Courses

 Let’s discuss the coursework of pathway courses and sandwich programs to learn better their differences and similarities:


Courses of the Pathway Program

As you move through pathway courses, you will learn about the objectives, outcomes, expectations, competencies, and requirements of foreign countries' higher education. You will be ready for higher study after this.


Pathway program also offers you a blend of language training with discipline-specific coursework. For example, your coursework can include various disciplines like finance, business, computing, law, management, art and design, medicine, social science, pharmacy media, and many more., which will enable you to study these specialisations further, specifically in your graduation. Many of these university and foundation courses also have tie-ups with other universities and can further ensure students’ admission into other universities for graduation or post-graduation courses.


Courses of the Sandwich Courses

Placements are required for a Sandwich course and are not elective. There are options other than a sandwich course if you don't want to take a placement away from your studies.


In specific subjects, some colleges offer mandated placements and Sandwich degrees. By imposing several required placements for students pursuing particular degrees, universities like Lancaster University and the University of Bath have begun to set an example for universities across the country.


Some of the sandwich courses are Computer Science (MComp), Aerospace Engineering (MEng), Business Logistics and Transport Management (BA Hons), Bioengineering (BEng Hons), Fashion (BA Hons), Business Accounting (BSc Hons), Banking and Finance (BSc Hons), and various others.

Documents Required for Pathway Program and Sandwich Courses

To pursue pathway programs or sandwich courses in UK, you need some documents, which are given below;


Pathway Programs

Universities may have different specialised requirements, but generally speaking, most of them have some basic documentation needs, which are listed below:


Sandwich Courses

Document required for sandwich courses in the UK is similar to other programs, with the following requirements:

  • Academic Transcripts: At least 60% from a recognised university.

  • Statement of Purpose (SOP)

  • Proof of English Proficiency: TOEFL or IELTS scores.

  • GMAT/GRE Scores: For Master’s degree programs.

  • Updated CV

  • Letter of Recommendation


Are you confused about which university is suitable for you to study abroad or in the UK? Share your queries with MOEC Counsellors and get free assistance Now.

Get free Assistance

Cost of Studying for Pathway Program and Sandwich Courses

In this section of the blog, we will learn about how the cost of studying pathway courses and sandwich programs differ from each other.


Pathway Program

The chosen institutions and fields of study will determine how much it costs to pursue a Foundation course. For instance, the early year Foundation degree at Kingston University London would set you back £6,000, whereas the Foundation course at Ulster University costs £3,500 a year.


This means that a student enrolled in a foundation course at an accredited university in the UK is also qualified for support from the UK government. On the other hand, you are also qualified for a Student Finance Tuition Fees Loan if you are a first-year undergraduate and if you have a parent, caregiver, or guardian who is physically challenged.


Sandwich Courses

In comparison to regular courses, the fees are lower. Actually, the minimum payment required of students enrolled in normal courses is 20% of the total required payment of £9,250 (£1,850).


The amounts will differ based on where you study. To find out more about the many kinds of costs you can anticipate, check in advance with your university.


Also, read: Healthcare Courses in UK

Career Prospects for Pathway Program and Sandwich Courses

 In this section of the blog, we have discussed the career prospects of both sandwich courses and pathway programs.


Pathway Programs

Foundation courses can offer insightful information on pursuing further education in the United Kingdom by preparing the candidates to develop the necessary skills. Graduates have a broad range of career alternatives to choose from, including paramedics, teachers, nurses, sports coaches, technical professions, healthcare, banking, welfare, and many more.


Sandwich Courses

A sandwich placement is a work placement that students are required to complete as part of their course, whereas a sandwich program is an educational program that includes work placement as an integral part of the course.


Master's courses in Fashion and Luxury Management, Communication and Digital Marketing for Fashion, and Fashion Marketing and Sustainability allow students to undertake a sandwich-course work placement during the two years of their education. The courses begin either in October or January.


Students enrolled in the master's program in interior architecture and design at LISAA Paris, LISAA Rennes, LISAA Nantes, and LISAA Strasbourg can undertake a sandwich course work placement during their fifth year. Students at LISAA Bordeaux can undertake a sandwich coursework placement starting in their third year.


To sum up, both pathway programs and sandwich courses have their own significance. Pathway programs offer a valuable pathway for Indian students to fulfill their professional and academic objectives in the UK. Meanwhile, sandwich courses blend the greatest aspects of education and dining, making them highly beneficial for students. You may fulfill both your need for information and your desire for real-world experience with a sandwich course.


We hope you liked reading the blog. However, if you have doubts and want to study in abroad universities, contact our expert counsellors at Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC). You can also take free online counselling through our website. Our expert counsellors will provide you with the best support and guidance you need for admission and visa. In addition, they will help you shortlist the universities according to your profile. For more information or any queries, contact application02@meridean.org or 1800-1230-00011.


Question: Do all universities offer Sandwich courses?

Answer: No, not all universities provide sandwich courses. However, a few universities do provide placement options, such as Loughborough University, the University of Greenwich, Kingston University London, the University of Sussex and many more.


Question: What is the duration of the sandwich course in the UK?

Answer: Sandwich courses in the UK vary in length depending on the level of study. They take two years for master's degree programs and four years for bachelor's degree programs. An integrated master's degree, on the other hand, takes five years. Students are permitted to pursue internships and training for a maximum of nine to twelve months.


Question: What is the most important thing to know before submitting an application for a sandwich course in the United Kingdom?

Answer: Before applying for a sandwich course in the UK, it is essential to understand how involved a university is in placing and supporting students. It would also be beneficial to look over the placement alternatives and their range listed on the website.


Question: What are the eligibility criteria for the pathway program?

Answer: For pathway programs, eligibility requirements vary among US universities. 

  • Transcripts of your academic records and an English language competence score are required for undergraduate study. 

  • In the US, graduate-level pathway programs are typically connected to primary academic courses. So, you must be accepted into your chosen academic program.


Question: How do programs for pathways work?

Answer: The pathway programs and the academic programs are perfectly coordinated. The chance to learn with students from around the globe facilitates the acquisition of the necessary language and practical skills. The ethnic mesh-up can be quite helpful in overcoming cultural gaps and improving knowledge of American society.


Question: What are the benefits of pursuing pathway programs?

Answer: The benefits of pursuing pathway programs are:

  • Many chances to improve your English language proficiency.

  • Students might receive an early introduction to the teaching and assessment methods used by the institution before enrolling in university programs.

  • Access to committed educators with years of experience working with Indian students.

  • Indian students benefit from the on-campus educational experience in integrating into American society.


Question: What are the different kinds of pathway programs?

Answer: The community of Indian students generally prefers three primary categories of pathway programs:

  • Bachelor’s preparation

  • Accelerated Bachelor’s preparation

  • Master’s preparation


Question: For a sandwich course, does the student receive payment?

Answer: Indeed, students who complete a 9–12 month internship receive a stipend that varies based on the organisation, industry, and job title.


Question: What is the minimum knowledge required for people to choose sandwich courses in the UK?

Answer: Before enrolling in a sandwich course, students must understand the degree of the university's support and placement efforts for them. Learning more about the placement possibilities and scope described on the website is also a good idea.


Question: What is the pathway coursework?

Answer: Pathway coursework includes various fields, such as finance, business, computing, law, management, art and design, medicine, social science, pharmacy media, and many more.

Contact our counselors for application details

Get your free counselling

blog meet

Get the best study abroad guidance

Contact MOEC Experts for Study Abroad Guidance!


By using our site, you agree to our use of cookies.