International students

Pre-Sessional courses

Two female students sitting on some steps outside talking

English Language programmes

We offer a range of Pre-Sessional English Language (PSE) courses taught by University of Essex International College (a Kaplan International Pathways college) and our partner organisations in China (designed and developed by Essex Pathways).

The courses are designed to support you to improve your English language skills before beginning a main programme of study at University of Essex.

If you have any queries, please contact us at PSE@essex.ac.uk. You can also find out more about these courses on the UEIC webpages.

University of Essex International College (UEIC)

Situated within our main campus sites in Colchester and Southend, UEIC offers a variety of Pre-Sessional programmes to:

  • improve your English language skills to support you to achieve the level required in your main course, and meet your offer conditions, or
  • increase your confidence with UK academic study skills, or
  • both of the above.

Essex is a campus-based university, and we know that our students value being together on campus. We offer our Pre-Sessional English courses on our campuses in the UK in the months and weeks before the start of your main study programme. This means you can settle in ahead of your main course programme and experience being in an English-speaking environment, as well as being part of our diverse, global campus community. We hope that you will travel to the UK to join us, however, if you have extenuating circumstances which mean you are unable to travel to the UK then we do offer our programmes online. If you require a visa, it is not possible to take a Pre-Sessional programme online while living in the UK as this is not permitted under Student visa sponsorship rules.

If you join a UEIC Pre-Sessional English programme you will take Kaplan’s own English language test at the end of the course. If you successfully pass this, the University will remove the English language condition from your main course offer. You will not be required to take another independent English language test such as IELTS, TOEFL or Pearson.

UEIC Pre-Sessional programmes available:

Pre-Sessional English Language with Study Skills (PELSS)

Our PELSS programmes provide you with integrated training in Academic English Language and Study Skills to prepare you for Undergraduate or Postgraduate degree level study at University of Essex.

The programmes are available at our Colchester campus or online, and run for 20, 15 and 10 weeks providing an uplift to your English language score equivalent to IELTS 1.5, 1 and 0.5 respectively.

As part of the programme you will work on grammar and vocabulary, reading and writing, and speaking and listening. You will also work on key skills such as engaging in academic discussion in seminars and lectures, and academic writing skills.

You will complete an independent project in which you will be given the opportunity to focus on areas relevant to your chosen degree at The University of Essex. The project will introduce you to a range of research and study skills including planning, drafting, and presenting.

PELSS on campus:

Length Enrolment Course dates Fee Application deadline Deposit deadline
20 week 21 April 2022 25 April - 9 Sept 2022 £8,200 11 March 2022 18 March 2022
15 week 26 May 2022 30 May - 9 Sept 2022 £6,150 15 April 2022 22 April 2022
10 week 30 June 2022 4 July - 9 Sept 2022 £4,100 20 May 2022 27 May 2022

PELSS online:

Length Enrolment Course dates Fee Application deadline Deposit deadline
20 week 21 April 2022 25 April - 9 Sept 2022 £8,200 15 April 2022 18 April 2022
15 week 26 May 2022 30 May - 9 Sept 2022 £6,150 20 May 2022 23 May 2022
10 week 30 June 2022 4 July - 9 Sept 2022 £4,100 24 June 2022 27 June 2022

Pre-Sessional English Language (PEL)

Our PEL programmes focus on enhancing your English language skills to prepare you for undergraduate and postgraduate degree level study. This programme develops your speaking, listening, reading and writing skills. It prepares you for your end of course exam, as well as introducing key language and vocabulary for studying at University in the UK.

The programmes are available either at our Colchester or Southend campuses, or online. They run for 10 and 5 weeks and provide an uplift to your English language score equivalent to IELTS of 1.0 and 0.5 respectively.

PEL on campus:

Length Enrolment Course dates Fee Application dead-line Deposit deadline
10 weeks 30 June 2022 4 July - 9 Sept 2022 £4,100 20 May 2022 27 May 2022
5 weeks 4 Aug 2022 8 Aug - 9 Sept 2022 £2,050 24 June 2022 1 July 2022

PEL online:

Length Enrolment Course dates Fee Application dead-line Deposit deadline
10 weeks 30 June 2022 4 July - 9 Sept 2022 £4,100 24 June 2022 27 June 2022
5 weeks 4 Aug 2022 8 Aug - 9 Sept 2022 £2,050 29 July 2022 1 Aug 2022

Results

You will receive your PELSS or PEL results on 9 September 2022. Provided you have successfully passed, and you have satisfied any other conditions of your main course offer, you will be issued an unconditional offer letter for your main programme of study at University of Essex within 5 working days.

Getting your CAS

If you need a student visa to study in the UK you will need a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) in order to submit a visa application.

Online only PSE applicants

As long as you have successfully passed the Pre-Sessional programme and have provided us with any information we have requested, CAS for your main programme of study will be assigned within 5 working days from 9 September 2022.

On campus applicants

Linked CAS

We always aim to issue linked CAS if it is possible for us to do so. This means that you will be given one CAS, which will cover both your Pre-Sessional programme and main programme of study, meaning you only need to make one visa application.

Linked CAS will be assigned if:

  • You are taking a Pre-Sessional programme less than 12 weeks long
  • English is the only remaining condition of your main course offer.

Standalone CAS

If you:

  • Are taking a Pre-Sessional programme longer than 12 weeks
  • Have other conditions in your main course offer
  • Do not have a minimum of CEFR B2 level (equivalent to IELTS 5.5 in every component)

You will not be eligible for a linked CAS and instead will be issued two separate CAS:

  • One for your Pre-Sessional programme - assigned no later than 4-weeks prior to the start date of your programme
  • One for your main course programme - assigned within 5 working days from your Pre-Sessional results being released on 9 September 2022 (so long as you have successfully passed, have achieved any other conditions and have provided us with any information requested). In most cases applicants in this position will be able to make their new visa application from within the UK.

 

Academic Skills Preparation Programme (ASPP)

If you hold an unconditional offer to study at the University of Essex, and are impatient to get started with your studies in the UK, you may wish to take our 4-week long ASPP programme which is available either at our Colchester campus, or online.

Through completion of an independent project on a subject related to your chosen degree topic, ASPP will introduce you to academic study and research skills commonly used in UK universities. The programme will introduce you to British culture and society and support you to settle in and familiarise yourself with campus life prior to beginning your main programme of study. The programme also includes a module to support you to increase your personal development and employability skills.

ASPP on campus:

Length Enrolment Course dates Fee Application deadline Deposit deadline
4 weeks 18 Aug 2022 22 Aug - 16 Sept 2022 £800 8 July 2022 15 July 2022

If you study ASPP on campus in the UK and require a student visa you will be issued with a linked CAS which will cover both your ASPP programme and your main programme of study.

ASPP online:

Length Enrolment Course dates Fee Application deadline Deposit deadline
4 weeks 18 Aug 2022 22 Aug - 16 Sept 2022 £800 12 Aug 2022 15 Aug 2022

If you study ASPP online and require a student visa you will be assigned a CAS for your main programme of study only. You will need to travel to the UK after you have finished the ASPP as you will not be permitted to study the ASPP online from within the UK due to student visa sponsorship rules.

How to apply

To apply for any of our Pre-Sessional programmes you must first have an offer in place to study an Undergraduate or Postgraduate degree at University of Essex.

If you are applying to study PELSS or PEL this offer should be conditional on English language. There are different requirements depending on whether you are applying to study on campus in the UK or online from your home country. Further detail is provided below.

If you are applying to study the ASPP then you should hold an unconditional offer to study at University of Essex and you will not be required to have an accepted English language test (you only need to have satisfied the English language requirement of your main programme).

Applications can be made via the ‘Applying’ tab of your MyEssex applicant portal.

Studying in person on campus

If you wish to study PELSS or PEL on campus in the UK you must hold a Secure English Language Test such as UKVI IELTS (academic), Trinity or Academic Pearson Test of English (PTE) for UKVI. This must be dated within 2 years of the start date of your Pre-Sessional programme.

This will enable us to know your baseline level of English and determine which programme you may be eligible for depending on the uplift you require.

If you do not hold a secure English language test but wish to study on campus in the UK please email PSE@essex.ac.uk to discuss your options.

Studying online

If you would like to apply to study the Pre-Sessional programme online from your home country, you do not need to hold a secure English language test. However, you must hold an accepted English certificate to enable us to know your baseline level of English and determine which programme you may be eligible for depending on the uplift you require.

The certificates we are able to accept are:

  • Academic IELTS (UKVI or non UKVI), including IELTS indicator (the online test)
  • TOEFL IBT including the Special home Edition and “my best scores”
  • Trinity ISE
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic or PTE for UKVI.

If you hold an English language certificate that is not listed please email pse@essex.ac.uk and we can advise whether we are able to accept it for admission to a Pre-sessional programme.

We are unable to accept Duolingo for entry to our Pre-Sessional programmes.

In China Provision

If you are resident in China, you may be interested in taking a Pre-Sessional programme on campus at one of our partner institutions in China.

These Pre-Sessional programmes focus on enhancing your English language skills to prepare you for undergraduate or postgraduate degree level study. You will be taught further grammar and vocabulary skills as well as additional reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. The programmes run for 11 and 6 weeks and provide an improvement to your English language score equivalent to IELTS 1.0 and 0.5 respectively.

If you take a Pre-Sessional English programme with one of our partners in China you will take the Essex Pathways English language test at the end of the course. If you have successfully passed you will be provided with a transcript and the University will remove the English language condition from your main course offer.

United Kingdom Education Centre (UKEC), Chengdu

Length Course dates Fee Application deadline  Deposit deadline 
11 weeks 20 June - 2 Sept 2022 £4100 / ¥37700  10 June 2022   10 June 2022  
6 weeks 25 July - 2 Sept 2022 £2050 / ¥18900  15 July 2022  15 July 2022 

Guangdong University of Foreign Studies (GDUFS), Guangzhou

Length Course dates Fee Application deadline  Deposit deadline 
11 weeks 20 June - 2 Sept 2022 £4100 / ¥37700  10 June 2022   10 June 2022  
6 weeks 25 July - 2 Sept 2022 £2050 / ¥18900  15 July 2022  15 July 2022 

Beijing Zhongguancun Foreign Language School (BZFLS), Beijing

Length Course dates Fee Application deadline  Deposit deadline 
11 weeks 20 June - 2 Sept 2022 £4100 / ¥37700  10 June 2022   10 June 2022  
6 weeks 25 July - 2 Sept 2022 £2050 / ¥18900  15 July 2022  15 July 2022 

Results and CAS issue

You will be provided with your results on 9 September 2022.

If you have achieved all the conditions of your main course offer, an unconditional offer letter and Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) will be issued for your main programme of study at University of Essex as soon as possible so that you can make a student visa application.

How to apply

Applications can be submitted via the “Applying” tab of your MyEssex applicant portal once this page is updated and we are able to accept applications.

In order to apply you must hold an accepted English language certificate:

  • IELTS, UKVI or non UKVI Academic (including IELTS indicator)
  • TOEFL iBT including TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition and My Best Scores
  • Trinity ISE
  • PTE (Pearson Test of English Academic) or PT (Pearson Test of English Academic) for UKVI
  • CET-4
  • CET-6

If you have any queries please email PSE@essex.ac.uk

Three female students looking at a laptop together smiling
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.

Find a Pre-Sessional course