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Unit information: Pre-sessional 14 week course for postgraduate students in 2020/21

Unit name Pre-sessional 14 week course for postgraduate students
Unit code LANG00029
Credit points 60
Level of study QCA-3
Teaching block(s) Academic Year (weeks 1 - 52)
Unit director Ms. Jones
Open unit status Not open

The IELTS level that you need to enter the unit will depend on the IELTS required to progress to your next course of study. See our website for details.



School/department Centre for Academic Language and Development
Faculty Faculty of Arts


The main aims of the Pre-sessional are:

  • to improve students' command of general and subject-specific academic English;
  • to develop the academic skills necessary to succeed at a British university;
  • to help students adapt to living and studying in a UK higher education environment;
  • to help students meet the English language conditions for entrance to UK universities.

The 14-week pre-sessional allows students with a lower IELTS writing band to benefit from 4 extra weeks of concentrated language and writing tuition before moving into the 10-week unit.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of this pre-sessional, you will be able to:

  1. understand and use appropriate academic language and style;
  2. apply appropriate listening and note-taking strategies in an academic context;
  3. apply appropriate reading strategies for a variety of academic purposes;
  4. present and discuss your work with a non-expert international audience;
  5. use the work of others appropriately in your academic work;
  6. evidence learning through writing under timed conditions;
  7. apply critical questioning to all aspects of your academic work;
  8. reflect on your learning and set appropriate goals.

Teaching details

Whether you have chosen an on campus or online delivery mode for this course, it runs over 14 weeks and is taught in small groups of 12-16 students. In both the on campus and online courses you will spend half your time in a classroom (virtual or physical) with a small group of students and a teacher. The other half of your time will be spent working individually or collaboratively on guided or autonomous tasks.

You will be expected to take an active part in interactive classroom activities, including pair and group work, peer review, and presentations. You will also be asked to prepare in advance of the class and follow up with work to consolidate your learning.

One part of the course will use a problem-based learning approach which will allow you to demonstrate your ability to work collaboratively and think critically and creatively on an interdisciplinary real-world problem.

Another part of the course will help you to develop a portfolio of learning to demonstrate your progress towards meeting the expectations of your future studies.

Assessment Details

To progress, students must complete and submit

a. portfolio of weekly work completed including evidence of development in response to feedback (ILOs 1,2,3,4

b. problem Based Learning group output with evidence of participation in the process and product (ILO 5)

In addition, students must also submit

c. A video file of an individual presentation evidencing their development (ILOs 1,3,4)

Component a and b are on a pass /fail basis

Component c is assessed according to criteria (pass mark dependent on language profile requirements)

Reading and References

As directed by teaching staff.