Academic English classes

We run a programme of in-sessional Academic English Support classes (AES classes) to support students with English as an additional language. The programme is free of charge and aims to help you to achieve higher marks through the best use of your English language skills. 

AES classes are voluntary and run as non-credit modules alongside your compulsory modules.

Modules – Autumn term 2022

Modules will be taught face-to-face, and lessons are generally two hours in length. Any exceptions will be highlighted.

Academic Writing Skills (SK020/SK024/SK028 )

This module provides guided practice in language and style for academic writing. The module will help you improve your ability to analyse essay questions, structure an essay, formulate abstract concepts and use abstract vocabulary, organise paragraphs, develop an introduction and a conclusion, and evaluate academic sources. You will be allocated to a group depending on your faculty.

The teaching will be online, taking place in University Weeks 4-10.

Academic Speaking Skills - Discussions and Presentations (SK034/SK035)

This module provides guided practice in developing effective speaking skills in academic contexts. During the module you will have opportunities to express opinions and consider arguments, and to learn more about the context of (studying in) the UK. This module is a good opportunity to develop your confidence in using English in a comfortable environment. The teaching will be face to face classes.

To offer some flexibility, the modules are available in 4-week (SK034) and 8-week (SK035) versions.

Academic Reading Skills (SK335)

This module provides an opportunity to develop your confidence in academic reading at both macro and micro levels. The module will help you to understand the nature of academic texts and become more familiar with some representative types. You will also become aware of some of the challenges related to approaching academic reading and will be able to deploy relevant skills and strategies to meet these challenges.

The teaching will take place online in University Weeks 3-6 or 8-11, and you will be allocated to a group depending on your availability. 

Grammar Review (SK051)

This module covers a wide range of grammatical areas at an advanced level. Supported by resources and activities on the Moodle page, you can work through a review of grammar in preparation for, or alongside, the taught sessions. Grammar areas which are covered include: noun phrases; verbs; conditionals; prepositions; relative clauses; adverbs; punctuation; and tenses.

The module consists of 1-hour face to face classes over 8 weeks. The classes are very practical in nature and designed to give you plenty of opportunity for informal, guided practice. 

Module registration

If you are an eligible student with English as an additional language, you will be emailed a link to an AES Registration survey where you can identify Academic English Support classes that you would like to enrol onto. If you have not received an email by week 2, please email

Please note that spaces are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. You will receive an enrolment confirmation email when you are enrolled onto your chosen module(s) (subject to demand) and the classes will appear on your timetable.

Additional Support


We offer a programme of workshops on a range of academic skills such as referencing, reading, using sources, and structuring an essay. These can be booked through CareerHub.

1:1 Academic Skills Appointments

We offer one-to-one academic skills appointments to help with any aspect of your studies.

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Need help?
Colchester Campus Student Services Hub
Telephone:  01206 874000
Southend Campus Student Services Hub
Telephone: 01702 328444