English for Academic Purposes Presessional

Presessional English courses

Start date
2020-21 entry: Please see course details
Duration
Between 6 and 41 weeks, please see course details
Course Type
Postgraduate, Presessional English, Undergraduate, Presessional English

Presessional English courses offered during term-time and the summer with flexible entry points. The length of course you attend will depend on your current level of English (English Language test score) and the requirements of your main University of Birmingham offer.

COVID-19

Please be assured that we will make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption, for example in response to COVID-19.

Information for future students and applicants

Special measures due to the COVID-19 outbreak

If you have applied, or intend to apply to our Pre-sessional English programmes please note that we have put in place more flexible arrangements due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Due to the impact of COVID-19 on test centres the following English language qualifications will also be accepted for Presessional English courses taken online or for when an integrated CAS can be issued for on-campus courses.

IELTS Academic (non-UKVI) qualifications can also be accepted in the same way.

  • TOEFL “At Home” Test
  • Duolingo English Test

Summer Presessional English course dates:

  • 20 week – starts 26 April 2021- ends 17 September 2021 - On campus
  • 20 week – starts 26 April 2021- ends 10 September 2021 - Online
  • 15 week - starts 1 June 2021 - ends 17 September 2021 -On campus
  • 15 week – starts 1 June 2021- ends 10 September 2021- Online
  • 10 week - starts 21 June 2021 - ends 27 August 2021 - Online
  • 10 week - starts 12 July 2021 - ends 17 September 2021 - On campus
  • 6 week - starts 19 July 2021 - ends 27 August 2021 - On campus
  • 6 week - starts 19 July 2021 - ends 27 August 2021 - Online
  • 4 week - starts 16 August 2021 - ends 10 September 2021 - On campus

 Find the right length presessional course for you

 

Presessional English Pathways is for international students who hold a conditional offer to study at the University of Birmingham, but who do not currently meet the English language requirements. The Presessional English for Academic Purposes programme is tailored to your level of English and allows you to meet the English language requirements without retaking an English language test. These courses are suitable for: Undergraduate and Foundation students; Postgraduate students (taught and research); PhD students; and Study Abroad students. 

You can be assured that all our online Presessional English programmes will be run to the same high standard as our campus-based programmes. They are designed to develop your English language and academic skills in preparation for your studies at the University of Birmingham. 

Iā€™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."

Violaine Bucchiotty (France), International student studying at Birmingham International Academy

Why study this course?

The Presessional courses are designed to help you improve your English language and academic skills in a relatively short period of time, developing your accuracy and fluency in English for academic study. You will be taught by qualified tutors, experienced in teaching English for Academic Purposes.

Frequently Asked Questions for our Presessional English online courses

 

Coronavirus (COVID-19) latest updates and FAQs for future students and offer-holders

Visit our FAQs

Fees

Fees

You will need to pay the full balance of the course fee by the end of the first week of the course:

Fees by course length

Course lengthFees
41 weeks £15,375
31 weeks £11,625
21 weeks £7,875
20 weeks £7,500
15 weeks £5,625
11 weeks £4,125
10 weeks £3,750
6 weeks £2,250
4 weeks £1,500

 

How to pay these fees is detailed on the Methods of Payment for the Presessional English Courses page.

Cancellations and refunds: for details of the Presessional refund policy, please go to: www.birmingham.ac.uk/international/bia/presessional/refund-policy.aspx

Additional Course Costs

There are no additional course costs.

How To Apply

 

For Presessional English courses, application deadlines run one week prior to the start date for online courses and for on campus courses starting in the summer, applications must be made 6 weeks before the start of the course.

Students holding offers for the Foundation course must upload a copy of their Kaplan offer letter to their presessional application.

Please note that the University reserves the right to close applications earlier in the event that the course is full.

Due to high demand for Presessional English courses you are advised to apply as early as possible.

Before applying please read the following:

Important information about presessional courses at the University of Birmingham

Apply now for our 20, 15, 10 and 6 week summer presessional courses

Apply now for our 4 week summer presessional course

When clicking on one of the Apply Now buttons above you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you can create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. 

If you have any queries please contact: presessional@contacts.bham.ac.uk


Entry requirements

You must have a conditional offer for a course (undergraduate or postgraduate) at the University of Birmingham.

The minimum English Language score you need for this course depends on the required English Language 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 English Language test score for your chosen course.  This is usually a test score for IELTS (UKVI), TOEFL or Pearsons Academic.

The following English language qualifications will also be accepted for Presessional English courses taken online or for when an integrated CAS can be issued for on-campus courses.

IELTS Academic (non-UKVI) qualifications can also be accepted in the same way.

  • TOEFL “At Home” Test
  • Duolingo English Test

 

Find the right length presessional course for you

 

Please note that in order to meet UKVI entry requirements all Presessional applicants for our campus based courses  who need a Student Route visa must provide a valid official Secure English Language Test (SELT) certificate, attaining at least a B1 level of English in all skills.

The Presessional English for Academic Puporses programme is designed to help you to develop your English language and academic skills in preparation for your studies at the University of Birmingham.  It is especially designed by our academic staff and will develop:·     

  • Accuracy and fluency in English for academic study
  • Academic reading and writing skills and critical use of source materials
  • The ability to listen to lectures, take notes and participate in academic discussions
  • Speaking skills for presentations and seminars
  • Grammatical competence and strategies for building discipline-specific vocabulary

Teaching takes place in small classes with no more than 18 students to maximise class participation. Regular 1-1 tutorials are provided every two weeks to provide feedback on your learning. Additional language support is available during summer Presessional courses.

The first week of your programme includes an introduction to all the University’s facilities and support services including the welfare team. The last 1-2 weeks of the course is usually timetabled for assessment and feedback on your progress.

The online Presessional English courses

Online Presessional English courses are produced by our own academic staff at the University and are delivered to the same high quality as our on-campus courses. You will have 14.25 hours of live classes per week taught online, in addition to pre-class and post-class activities. This is 19 sessions of 45 minutes per week. All the course materials and tasks are easily accessed from our virtual learning environment, Canvas.

  • They will include a mixture of interactive, class-based discussion and listening tasks set by your dedicated class tutor, as well as guided reading and written tasks with feedback to develop your skills.
  • You will be fully supported throughout your course and will receive regular 1-1 tutorials (face-to-face online) to discuss your progress and answer any questions.
  • You will be assessed using a mixture of coursework and online tests.

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."      

Contact Hours

Typical Timetable

Presessional courses taught on campus have 15.8 hours of tuition per week (19 classes of 50-minute lessons). Classes are held Monday – Friday and are scheduled between 9.00 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. During the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the proportion of in-person teaching (when permitted) will vary depending on UK Government guidelines; but is expected to be 25% of the total teaching hours. For on-campus courses in summer 2021, delivery will be a mixture of on-campus and online teaching.

For online Presessional courses, timetabled sessions will take into account the needs of students studying in different time zones. Live online teaching is scheduled between 8.00 a.m. and 2.00 p.m. GMT. Recordings can be accessed on Canvas. Live classes are of 45 minutes duration with 19 sessions per week (or 14.25 hours total weekly). Up to 20 hours per week should be allowed for completion of all pre and post-class activities and coursework.

Sample timetable for Presessional English summer 2021
  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
 9 - 9:50 am  Reading and Writing  Reading and Writing  Academic Orientation  Reading and Writing  Reading and Writing
 10-10:50 am  Reading and Writing  Reading and Writing   Academic Orientation  Reading and Writing  Reading and Writing
 11-11:50 am  Listening and Speaking   Listening and Speaking   Academic Orientation   Listening and Speaking   Listening and Speaking
 12- 12:50 pm   Listening and Speaking   Listening and Speaking  Enrichment   Listening and Speaking   Listening and Speaking
 1-1:50 pm   Enrichment   Enrichment   Enrichment   Enrichment   Enrichment

Enrichment classes are in addition to the taught classes scheduled weekly.

There is no teaching on Saturday or Sunday. There is a one week teaching break between 5 to 9 July 2021. 

The University closes for 15 days in each academic year, from 1 October to the following 30 September. Eight of these days are public holidays: Christmas Day, Boxing Day, and New Year's Day holidays; Good Friday and Easter Monday; May Day; Whit Monday; August Bank holiday Monday.

For all bank holidays and University-closed days please click here.

Assessment Methods

Course assessment

All courses are assessed using a mixture of coursework, portfolio assessment and tests.

Over the duration of your course, you will study three modules: Reading and Writing; Speaking and Listening; Academic Orientation/English for Specific Academic Purposes (ESAP). Each module assesses your language skills: Reading, Writing Speaking and Listening. You will need to meet the English Language Entry Requirements for your programme with your scores in these assessments:

  • Reading and Writing module - you will take a Reading into Writing exam.
  • Speaking and Listening module - you will take a listening exam and take part in a seminar discussion
  • ESAP module - you will provide activities from your course work and you will do a group presentation.  

Progression

The requirements for successful completion of your English presessional programme are:

  • The achievement of the appropriate final mark for all assessed work (examinations and assessed coursework)
  • A minimum of 90% attendance
  • Fulfilment of the university requirements for reasonable diligence

EAPP_employability

Preparation for your career should be one of the first things you think about as you start university. Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.

Our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area, offering a specialised team (in each of the five academic colleges) who can give you expert advice. Our team source exclusive work experience opportunities to help you stand out amongst the competition, with mentoring, global internships and placements available to you. Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CV’s and job applications will help give you the edge. In addition, our employer-endorsed award-winning Personal Skills Award (PSA) recognises your extra-curricular activities, and provides an accredited employability programme designed to improve your career prospects.

Your Birmingham degree is evidence of your ability to succeed in a demanding academic environment. Employers target Birmingham students for their drive, diversity, communication and problem-solving skills, their team-working abilities and cultural awareness, and our graduate employment statistics have continued to climb at a rate well above national trends. If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.

Culture and collections

Schools, institutes and departments

Services and facilities