A challenge exists in designing and teaching a foundation technical course for a university Information Systems programme. It is not a computer science course and requires appropriate positioning in the IS domain. Through a series of iterations, and through the introduction of a number of interventions, a course was developed which embraces Chickering and Gamson’s (1991) seven principles of good educational practice in undergraduate education. The outcomes are positive: students are less intimidated and more motivated; increased attendance of classes and lab workshops, improved pass rate; greater retention of students into second year papers; more motivated lecturers and tutors; and increased requests to become tutors.