English for Academic Purposes (PhD)Presessional

The EAP (PhD) course is specifically for students with offers to begin their PhD in January or April.  Applicants with conditional offers to study a PhD  beginning in September, should apply to study on either the Business Management English Presessional Programme (for the Birmingham Business School) or the English for Academic Purposes Presessional for all other schools.  

The length of course you need depends on your future course, your existing level of English and the level you need for your university degree.

If you wish to apply for one of our presessional programmes you must present an IELTS as evidence of English language ability. Please note that  we no longer accept the TOEFL test.

Course content

Preparation for the demands of your academic programme that will help you to:

  • Improve your academic language skills in preperation for writing assignments
  • Practise writing academic essays and reports
  • Develop your speaking and pronunciation skills
  • Enhance your ability to understand academic lectures
  • Develop specialist vocabulary to allow you to take part in discussions related to your future academic course

You will study in small groups of students (maximum 15) and be taught by experienced, academic English tutors.

Length of course

The length of course you need depends on your existing IELTS score and on the IELTS score you need for your PhD. 

Length of course (Some programmes in * schools may require higher grades)
 Academic area  Main programme IELTS required  22-week entry requirement  11-week entry requirement
 Engineering and Science  6.0 with no less than 5.5 in any band  5.0 (4.0 in writing)  5.5 (5.0 in writing)
 Arts*, Business*, Education (Taught), Health Sciences, Public Policy, Social Sciences  6.5 with no less than 6.0 in any band  5.0 (5.0 in writing)  6.0 (5.5 in writing)
 Medicine, Dentristy, Research Education, Law (LLM)  7.0 with no less than 6.5 in any band  6.0 (5.5 in writing)  6.5 (6.0 in writing)

If your IELTS score is not listed above, you will need to apply for an alternative presessional course.

Course dates 

Fees and funding

For all information about this course please contact:
presessional@contacts.bham.ac.uk
+44 (0) 121 415 8492.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

You must have an offer for a PhD course at the University of Birmingham. 

IELTS requirements

The minimum IELTS score you need for this course depends on the required IELTS score for the degree or course you wish to study next. If you have an offer letter from the University of Birmingham, it will tell you the required IELTS score for your chosen course.

Use the following table to find out if you have the minimum IELTS score for the EAP(PhD) presessional course.

Length of course (Some programmes in * schools may require higher grades)
 Academic area  Main programme IELTS required  22-week entry requirement  11-week entry requirement
 Engineering and Science  6.0 with no less than 5.5 in any band  5.0 (4.0 in writing)  5.5 (5.0 in writing)
 Arts*, Business*, Education (Taught), Health Sciences, Public Policy, Social Sciences  6.5 with no less than 6.0 in any band  5.0 (5.0 in writing)  6.0 (5.5 in writing)
 Medicine, Dentristy, Research Education, Law (LLM)  7.0 with no less than 6.5 in any band  6.0 (5.5 in writing)  6.5 (6.0 in writing)

If your IELTS score is not listed above, you will need to apply for an alternative presessional course: Find out what length of of course you need

Successful completion

Progression to your academic department is based on achieving the appropriate final score in coursework and final examinations, and at least 90% attendance.

Foundation and Undergraduate Presessional Progression Requirements (Internal assessment equivalent to IELTS)
EAP(PG)  marksIELTS (approximate equivalence)CEFR equivalent
49-51 4.5 B1
52-55 5.0
56-59 5.5 B2
60-63 6.0
64-67 6.5 C1
68-71 7.0
72-74 7.5

 

The EAP presessional curriculum is designed in accordance with:

  • Research into academic English: We have explored what makes academic English different from the “general” English which you may have learned before
  •  Research into learning and language learning: We know how to break up academic English into pieces that can be taught and learned in the best way from the beginning of the course to the end
  •  The requirements of your academic departments: We have talked to departments around the University and we understand what different departments expect you to be able to do

You will have an average of 20 hours class per week (including tutorials), plus 20 independent study hours for completing homework and carrying out assignments. Please note that it is university policy to run 50 minute hours as standard to incorporate breaks/changeover of classes.

Typical timetables

 

These  sample timetables  provide you with an idea of how your weekly study will be arranged.

A typical timetable 
 

  Sessions 1 & 2  

9.00 -  13.30 

Session 3

14.30 - 17.00

 Monday   Academic Language & Study Skills Listening Skills Independent Study/
Language Support
 Tuesday  Academic Language & Study Skills English in Your Subject Independent Study/
Language Support
 Wednesday  Academic Language Skills Independent Study/Extra Curricular Activities Independent Study/
Language Support 
 Thusday   Academic Language & Study Skills  English in Your Subject Independent Study/
Language Support 
 Friday  Academic Language & Study Skills  Individual Tutorials/ Language Support Independent Study/
Language Support 

The BIA has an excellent reputation for the quality of its courses and offers a friendly, welcoming and supportive study environment. BIA staff have high academic qualifications and extensive teaching experience. The unit is also a member of 'English UK' and is accredited by the British Council.

Leisure programme

We offer:

  • Day trips  to places of cultural and historic interest.
  • A full and lively social programme for all summer presessionals (for example sports activities,trips to the cinema and museums).

Accommodation

During your presessional course you will be guaranteed accommodation within walking distance of the university campus. Our student accommodation will allow you to enjoy your life in Birmingham in safe and welcoming surroundings.

Further information about our accommodation, including virtual tours of bedrooms and kitchens, can be found online.

If you have further questions please contact: living@contacts.bham.ac.uk