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English language courses and testing

Our courses are designed to give you a positive learning experience and help you improve your English for academic study.

This page provides details of the Pre-sessional English courses we offer international students, which are designed to improve your English language skills. You can also find out whether you are eligible to take our internal English language test.

Courses to improve your English

Study at home

We offer online Pre-sessional English courses, allowing international students the chance to develop degree-ready English language skills with us via a combination of live and interactive webinars and recorded lectures. 

Online Pre-sessional English Courses

Our Pre-sessional English (PSE) courses are for students who need to improve their English level before starting a degree programme at the university.

We will help you develop a range of skills needed for study, including academic writing, speaking skills for seminars, presentation skills, academic vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation. There are assessments at the end of each course that you need to pass in order to progress onto your chosen degree programme.

Our online courses run in the Summer for 6 or 10 weeks and provide 30 hours of study per week. Courses are taught online using live webinars (15 hours per week), pre-recorded lectures (5 hours per week) and guided, independent learning (10 hours per week). Our live sessions will be delivered both in the am and the pm UK time to accommodate students from different time zones. 

Online courseFeesDates
6 week£2,0405 Jul 2021 – 13 Aug 2021
10 week£3,4007 Jun 2021 – 13 Aug 2021
2021 course fees and dates for online Pre-sessional English courses

Do I need to take the 6 or 10 week online Pre-sessional course?

Depending on the degree programme you want to apply for and your current English language level, you will either need to take a 6 week or 10 week online Pre-sessional English course:

Note: Our online Pre-sessional English courses do not require a Secure English Language Test (SELT), e.g. UKVI IELTS (Academic), for entry, and students may take our placement examination (see English Language Testing section) to determine which course is most suitable. If you have taken a test (whether an IELTS test or another alternative English language qualification) over 2 months ago and have scored 0.5 lower than needed in one component you will also be able to take our placement test.

Note: there is no charge for the placement test for online Pre-sessional English courses, it is included in the online course fee.

If you do not have the required IELTS or equivalent and would like to take our English Placement Test to determine which of our online Pre-sessional English courses is right for you, please email and we will arrange an online test before you are offered a place on any Pre-sessional English courses.

What can I expect on a Pre-sessional English language course?

English language courses usually include:

  • A placement test (if necessary) to find out your level of English, to help make sure you are on the right course, at the right level
  • Development of listening, reading, writing, speaking, as well as pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary and functional language skills
  • Development of study skills
  • Regular homework and assessments (such as progress tests and presentations)
  • Individual tutorials (meetings with a teacher) to talk about your studies and progress
  • Student centred teaching and activities with pair work, group work and individual work
  • ‘Can Do’ statements to show you what we expect students to do at different levels 
  • Teaching programmes written by teachers to show you what you will be studying every week
  • Use of course books and other published materials, the internet and computer-based resources
  • End of course certificates and reports 

How do I apply for an online Pre-sessional English course?

To apply please complete one of the following application forms:

English language testing

There’s no need to worry if you aren’t sure whether you have the correct English language level or certificate. We conduct online English language tests for applicants who hold offers to one of our degrees which are conditional on English language. 

You may need to take this test if: 

  • You have taken a test, but it is now out of date 
  • You have taken a test over 2 months ago and have scored 0.5 lower than needed in one component (whether in an IELTS test or another alternative English language qualification) 
  • You have taken an English language qualification that we do not yet recognise. See our English language entry requirements for more information.
  • You are applying for one of our online Pre-sessional English courses (please note, in this instance, the fee for the test is included in the course fee) 

The test consists of the following components: 

  • Speaking test (15-minute online video interview, e.g. via Zoom / Skype / Microsoft teams) 
  • Listening test 
  • Reading test 
  • Writing test 

Applicants complete the reading and writing tests before the interview, in which speaking and listening are assessed. Online interviews take place at a mutually agreeable time. 

To apply for a test, you need to have a student ID number and have a conditional offer ‘subject to CEFR B2 level in English Language’. Tests cost £80 and take place throughout the year. Visit our How to pay page for more about paying online.

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How to pay






For more information or to apply, please email the admissions team: