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Intensive Academic English Skills Course (4-w UNC)

Start date
2023-24 entry: 27 August 2024
4 weeks
Course Type
Postgraduate, Presessional English, Undergraduate, Presessional English
Image for English for Academic Purposes (UNC)

If you have an unconditional offer and want to get off to a strong start, our 4 week pre-sessional Intensive Academic English Skills course is for you. Designed to develop your English language and academic skills in a short amount of time, this course will provide confidence before you start your main University programme.


What you will study

  • Accuracy and fluency in Academic English for study
  • The ability to write academically using accurate referencing and avoiding plagiarism
  • A range of reading skills for academic texts
  • Grammatical competence
  • Vocabulary and study skills
  • Seminar and presentation skills
  • Critical thinking and writing skills
  • Skills for working independently and with a team
  • Preparing for an assignment 
  • Getting to know others through volunteering 
  • getting to know Birmingham city and the University campus

The minimum enrolment age for our Presessional English programme is 16 years.

If you have an unconditional offer and wish to study a longer course, you are welcome to apply for the 6 and 10 week online and on-campus courses.

The course served as an excellent preparation for university studies in the UK. It focused on relevant topics and enhanced essay writing skills providing an insight into ideal structures of an essay. It provided me with the necessary skills to tackle assignments on my degree course and improved my English skills in general. I enjoyed the interactive classes and the friendly atmosphere of the course and interacting with students from different parts of the world.

Fabian (Austria)

Why study this course?

Small class sizes

Our maximum class size on all our Presessional English courses is 18 students, so tutors can give you individual attention and regular tutorials to help you meet your needs. All our tutors are qualified and experienced in teaching English for Academic Purposes (EAP).

A lively social programme

Study on campus and you will get to know the University and experience student life in the city. Take part in our social programme and get involved in cultural and sporting activities, make friends and practise your English in the wider context.


Find all the support you need and make the most of your campus community experience by booking your Presessional University accommodation.

British Council accredited courses

The British Council inspected and accredited Birmingham International Academy, University of Birmingham in March 2022. The Accreditation Scheme assesses the standards of management, resources and premises, teaching, welfare, and safeguarding under 18s and accredits organisations which meet the overall standard in each area inspected (see for details).

The large English language teaching department of this university offers courses in academic English for adults (18 years and above) and young people (16 years and above). Strengths were noted in the areas of strategic and quality management, staff management, premises and facilities, learning resources, academic staff profile, academic management, course design, learner management, teaching and care of students. The inspection report stated that the organisation met the standards of the Scheme.




The fee for this course is £1,800.

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

How To Apply

The deadline for receipt of applications is six weeks before the start date of the course.

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.

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

Apply Now 

You must be an international student and have an unconditional offer for a main degree programme at the University of Birmingham.


Our maximum class size on the 4-week intensive Academic English Skills course is 18 students, so tutors can give you individual attention and regular tutorials to help you meet your needs. All our tutors are qualified and experienced in teaching English for Academic purposes (EAP).



Contact Hours

You will have 15.8 hours of tuition (or 19 classes of 50 minute lessons). Each 50 minute class is followed by a 10 minute break. Classes are scheduled between 9.00 am and 6.00 pm, Monday to Friday. You will also be expected to do between 7-10 hours of independent study a week.

Classes are Monday to Friday. There is no teaching on Saturday or Sunday.

There is a public holiday on 28 August 2023 and there will be no classes.


Assessment Methods

The course is assessed through weekly formative assignments, seminar tasks, in class activities and 1-1 tutoring to ensure that you are maintaining improvement in core skill areas.  At the end of the course you will write an essay and give a presentation and receive detailed feedback to progress your skills.

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 CVs 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.