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Pre-sessional courses

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English Language programmes

The pre-sessional English Language courses taught by University of Essex International College (a Kaplan International Pathways college) are ideal if you need to improve your English before starting a course at Essex.

Spring/Summer Pre-sessional programmes for October 2020 starters

All of our Pre-sessional programmes for students starting in October 2020 are now closed and so we are no longer accepting applications.

So that you can start studying with us this October, you’ll need to have accepted your offer, and met any conditions of your offer, by the end of September. If you’ll need to apply for a Tier 4 visa to join us, then you will still be able to start studying remotely with us from early October until you are able to obtain a visa and travel to Essex, so you do not need to have a visa in place at the start of your course. If you would prefer to be here at the start of your course then you’ll need to allow more time to make a visa application, and should accept your offer and meet any conditions of your offer as soon as possible, and by mid-September at the latest.

We are aware that some English Language tests may be cancelled or postponed, or you may be unable to attend due to travel restrictions, please see below links for full details of the English Language tests that we can accept, including online tests, and the scores we require. Please note these are updated regularly with any additional tests that we are now in a position to accept:

If you already hold an English language test that isn’t listed in the tables above, or your current English language test is not at the level required please contact your relevant Admissions Office:

We offer a variety of Pre-sessional programmes which are designed to either increase your English language level, increase your confidence with UK academic study skills or both! 

If you are taking one of our Pre-sessional English programmes, you will not be required to re-take an English language test (such as IELTS, TOEFL, Pearsons) at the end of the Pre-sessional course. Instead you will undergo Kaplan’s own English language test and your new English level will be assessed. If you have met the English level required, the English language condition will be removed from your main course offer.

Autumn Pre-sessional programmes

We are happy to announce that we are now accepting applications for our autumn term Pre-sessional programmes.

These programmes are designed to support applicants beginning main course programmes in January 2021, or April 2021 to achieve the English language conditions of their offer.

The 10 week programme will provide an equivalent IELTS uplift of 1.0 and the 5 week programme will provide an equivalent IELTS uplift of 0.5.

Both programmes will be taught online only.

Length  Enrol
Start date  End date  Fee  Application dead-line  Deposit dead-line
10 weeks 17 Sept 2020 21 Sept 2020 27 Nov 2020 £3,980 15 Sept 2020 15 Sept 2020
5 weeks 22 Oct 2020 26 Oct 2020 27 Nov 2020 £1,995 20 Oct 2020 20 Oct 2020 

How can I apply?

We are able to accept the following English certificates for entry to these online Pre-sessional programmes:

  • Academic IELTS- you do not need to hold UKVI IELTS and we are able to accept IELTS Indicator (the online version.
  • TOEFL including TOEFL Special Home Edition and My Best scores
  • Pearson
  • Kaplan International Test of English (KITE)
  • China’s College English Test (CET4 and CET6)

Ideally, your current English language certificate should be dated within 2 years of the start date of the pre-sessional programme you wish to apply for.

To apply please complete the Pre-sessional English application form (.pdf) and return it to PSE@essex.ac.uk by the deadline provided above.

A £250 deposit will be required to secure your place on the online programme. The balance of the Tuition fees will need to be paid prior to starting the programme. Details of how to make payment will be provided in your offer letter.

If you are a sponsored applicant we will require proof of sponsorship to explicitly state that it covers the pre-sessional programme and that it covers online teaching. Sponsored students are not required to pay a deposit.

If you have any queries regarding Pre-sessional English language please do not hesitate to email us at PSE@essex.ac.uk

Spring/Summer Pre-sessional programmes for October 2021 starters

We anticipate that these programmes will be available on campus. 

If there is any disruption to travel then contingency plans will be in place to ensure that the programmes still go ahead. Applications for these programmes will open in November 2020.

How to Apply

If you are interested in studying a pre-sessional English course before your main programme of study, you can check your eligibility and apply via your myEssex applicant portal. For Tier 4 applicants a UKVI IELTS, dated within 2 years of the pre-sessional course start date, will be required with your application (unless applying for the 4 week ASPP).

If you are an Undergraduate applicant who is applying for a for year 2 or 3 entry, or via a link agreement, please email PSE@essex.ac.uk for details of how to apply to our Pre-sessional programmes. 

Pre-sessional English Language with Study Skills (PELSS)

Our programmes provide you with integrated training in Academic English Language and Study Skills to prepare you for University undergraduate and postgraduate degree level study. The programmes run for 10, 15 and 20 weeks, providing improvements to your IELTS score equivalent to 0.5, 1.0 and 1.5 respectively. PELSS will help you to develop the following skills:

  • Reading: critical reading and note taking skills
  • Writing: academic essay writing and citation skills
  • Listening: understanding lectures and seminars and note-taking skills
  • Speaking: seminar discussions, debate and presentation skills

You will be given opportunities to focus on English language and study skills development in areas related to your chosen degree area at the University of Essex.

Length Enrolment  Start date  End date  Fee  Application deadline Deposit deadline
20 weeks  22 April 2021  26 April 2021  10 Sept 2021  £7,980  26 March 2021 2 April 2021 
15 weeks 27 May 2021  31 May 2021  10 Sept 2021 £5,985  30 April 2021  7 May 2021 
10 weeks  1 July 2021  5 July 2021  10 Sept 2021 £3,990  4 June 2021  11 June 2021 

If you would like to be considered for one of our Pre-sessional English courses but the application deadline has passed, please email pse@essex.ac.uk because we may still be able to consider your application

Pre-sessional English Language (PEL)

Offered at both Colchester and Southend, our programmes focus on enhancing your English language skills to prepare you for University undergraduate and postgraduate degree level study. You will be taught further grammar and vocabulary development as well as additional reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. The programmes run for 5 and 10 weeks and provide an improvement in your IELTS score of equivalent to 0.5 and 1.0 band respectively.

Length  Enrol
Start date  End date  Fee  Application dead-line  Deposit dead-line 
10 weeks 1 July 2020 5 July 2020  10 Sept 2020  £3,990  4 June 
11 June 2021
5 weeks  5 August 2020  9 August 2020  10 Sept 2020  £1,995  9 July 2020 16 July 2021

If you would like to be considered for one of our Pre-sessional English courses but the application deadline has passed, please email pse@essex.ac.uk because we may still be able to consider your application

Academic Skills Preparation Programme

If you have an unconditional offer to study at the University of Essex, you can take our Academic Skills Preparation programme. This course introduces you to the academic study and research skills commonly used at UK universities and will help you become familiar with the University campus, student life in the UK and adjust more easily to our academic culture. This programme is an excellent preparation to your degree studies and will help you to achieve your academic goals.

Length Enrol
Start date  End date  Tuition fee  Application dead-line  Deposit dead-line 
4 weeks 19 August 2020 23 August 2020 17 Sept 2020 £760  16 July 2021 23 July 2021
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Pre-sessional finder

You can study a pre-sessional course before the start of your main course at Essex. The right pre-sessional course for you depends on your current IELTS score and the subject you'll be studying afterwards. Our pre-sessional finder tool will show you the options available to you.

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