English for Academic Purposes Presessional

The English for Academic Purposes Presessional course is for international students who have a conditional offer to study at the University, but who do not currently meet the English language requirements. The course is tailored to your level of English and allows you to meet the English language requirements for your programme without retaking IELTS. 

The EAP programme runs throughout the year and offers different programme lengths ranging from 42 weeks to 6 weeks. 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.

Read more abut learning and teaching on the EAP Programme.

Length of course

The length of course you need depends on your existing IELTS score and on the IELTS score you need for your university degree.  For example, some students may need to do a longer course starting in September or January. 

 Course dates 

Fees and funding

Fees and deposit

To book a place on this course, self-funding students will need to pay a deposit of £450 (this will be deducted from your tuition fee).

The following fees and deposit amounts currently apply (see following table for PhD student information): 

Fees by course length
Course lengthDatesFees
42 weeks 26 September 2016 - 15 September 2017 £13,440
31 weeks 09 January – 15 September 2017 £9,920
20 weeks 24 April – 15 September 2017 £6,400
15 weeks 30 May – 15 September 2017 £4,800
10 weeks 10 July – 15 September 2017 £3,200
6 weeks 7 August – 15 September 2017 £1,920

The following fees and deposit amounts currently apply for PhD students: 

PhD student Presessional fees by course length
Course lengthDatesFees
11-week option for PhD students 26 September - 09 December 2016 £3,520
09 January - 24 March 2017 £3,520
22-week option for PhD students 26 September 2016 – 24 March 2017 £7,040
42 weeks 26 September 2016 – 15 September 2017 £13,440
31 weeks 09 January – 15 September 2017 £9,920
20 weeks 24 April – 15 September 2017 £6,400
15 weeks 30 May – 15 September 2017 £4,800
10 weeks 10 July – 15 September 2017 £3,200
6 weeks 7 August – 15 September 2017 £1,920
How to pay these fees is detailed on the Methods of Payment for the Presessional English Courses page.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

You must have an offer for a course (undergraduate or postgraduate) 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 presessional course.

Minimum IELTS entry scores
IELTS score for your future degree course      Minimum IELTS score for EAP course
 6.0  4.0 (4.0 minimum in all skills
 6.5  4.5 (4.0 minimum in all skills)
 7.0  5.0 (4.5 minimum in writing)

Please note that in order to meet UKVI entry requirements all presessional applicants who need a Tier 4 visa must provide a valid official Secure English Language Test (SELT) certificate, attaining at least a B1 level of English in all skills.

Progression

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.

Post-graduate Presessional Courses Entry and Progression Requirements 2016-17
LEVELSchools
Programmes
Schools
IELTS Requirements
BME/EAP2

IELTS entry level

20-week course
BME/EAP2

IELTS entry level

15-week course
BME/EAP2

IELTS entry level

10-week course
BME/EAP2

IELTS entry level

6-week course
Exit Mark Required
 1  

Business

  • GDBA
  • 24-month MScs & MBAs
Science & Engineering
 

6.0

(minimum of 5.5 in each band)
 

5.0

(minimum of 4.0 in writing)
 

5.0

(minimum of 4.5 in writing)
 

5.5

(minimum of 5.0 in writing)
 

6.0

(minimum of 5.5 in writing)
 

40%

or more

Assessment Group 1

 2  

Business

  • All 21-month MBAs
  • All 12-month MScs except those listed below in 3.
Education (taught), Social Sciences, Humanities, Historical Studies, Health Sciences, Public Policy
 

6.5

(minimum of 6.0 in each band)
 

5.0

(minimum of 5.0 in writing)
 

5.5

(minimum of 5.0 in writing)
 

6.0

(minimum of 5.5 in writing)
 

6.5

(minimum of 5.5 in writing)
 

50%

or more

Assessment Group 2

 3

 

Business

  • 12- & 15-month MBAs
  • 12-month MScs:

Marketing, International MarketingMarketing Communication,

Strategic Marketing & Consulting, HRM

Dentistry, Education (PGR), Law, Medicine, Physiotherapy
 

7.0

(minimum of 6.5 in each band)
 

6.0

(minimum of 5.5 in writing)
 

6.0

(minimum of  6.0 in writing)
 

6.5

(minimum of 6.0 in writing)
 

7.0

(minimum of 6.0 in writing)
 

60%

or more

Assessment Group 3

Less than 40% - Fail: the student is unlikely to be able to pursue academic study through the medium of English without close formal departmental support and monitoring by BIA during the academic year

This score is the equivalent to a B1 in the Common European Framework of Reference and is belowthe UKVI requirement for continued studies

Please note: failure to complete the Presessional programme successfully will mean that you have not fulfilled the conditions of your offer. Other English language test results will not be accepted after this point. Therefore, your offer to study at the University of Birmingham will be withdrawn for that academic year.

How to apply

2016-17 Presessionals

The following deadlines for Presessional applications apply in 2017:

  • 20-week Course - 24th March
  • 15-week Course - 28th April
  • 10-week Course - 9th June
  • 6-week Course - 7th July
  • 4-week Course - 21st July

Before applying please read the following:

Important information about presessional courses at the University of Birmingham

To apply for the course from 11 January 2016 (or later), you will need to send us the following:

Making your application

You can send us these forms and documents:

  • By e-mail: e-mail scanned copies of the forms and your documents to presessional@contacts.bham.ac.uk
  • By post: send us your forms and copies of your documents to:
    Birmingham International Academy
    The University of Birmingham
    BIRMINGHAM
    B15 2TT, UK

The EAP PG 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 for 20-week and 15-week courses
 

  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 

  

A typical  timetable for 10-week and 6-week courses: Timetable A
 

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 Guest Lecture  /  Lecture follow up 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 

 

A typical  timetable for 10-week and 6-week courses: Timetable B
 

Session 1 

9.00 -  13.30 

 

Sessions 2 & 3

14.30 - 17.00

 Monday  Independent Study/
Language Support
Academic Language & Study Skills Listening Skills
 Tuesday Independent Study/
Language Support 
English in Your Subject Academic Language & Study Skills
 Wednesday Guest Lecture  /  Lecture follow up Independent Study/Extra Curricular Activities
 Thusday  Independent Study/
Language Support 
 English in Your Subject  Academic Language & Study Skills
 Friday

Independent Study/Language

Support / Academic Writing

 Individual Tutorials/ Language Support

  

Student views

Jia Sue (China)

"I developed my skills and learned how to write and reference a good essay, how to summarise and paraphrase ideas and how to collect information for an essay. It was all extremely useful for my current studies. The people on my course who had not done this Presessional found it more difficult so I would recommend doing a Presessional course instead of re-taking IELTS."

Violaine Bucchiotty (France)

"I’d recommend taking a BIA programme rather than re-taking an IELTS test because the Presessional is more interesting. We had some fascinating discussions in class and there is no better way to improve your English fluency than exchanging points of view with people from different cultures."

Further student testimonials

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.

Information about accommodation for Presessional students.

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