education in the UK
Preparing students for academic success
Studying English in the UK opens doors to world-class universities
An English language course in the UK can help students access the UK’s world-class higher education system and post-study work opportunities. A UK higher education gives students access to high teaching standards, world-leading research, valuable work placements and shorter programmes than other countries. This means students can qualify sooner and take advantage of the UK’s new Graduate work visa to start an international career.
English for academic purposes (EAP)
English for Academic Purposes courses give students the skills they need to succeed at an English-speaking university. These courses focus on developing study skills such as essay and report writing, reading and listening to complex ideas, and taking part in academic discussions.
Some courses are designed to prepare students for the IELTS Academic examination, which is the most commonly accepted exam for entry to most UK universities.
Many language centres that offer academic English courses also offer university application services, helping students to select a course and apply for a place at a UK university.
University pathway courses
Pathway courses prepare international students for study at a UK university, by improving their English, subject knowledge and independent study skills. They are often a requirement for international students who gained their academic qualifications outside of the UK, as they bridge the gap between qualification levels.
They also help students get used to life as an international student in the UK. Academic expectations in the UK are different to those in some other countries, so students practice essential skills for independent study and essay writing which will help them succeed in their course.
Pathway providers often have direct partnerships with UK universities. Many courses guarantee progression to the university course providing students pass their foundation year.
Pre-sessional English at a university
Universities offer pre-sessional English courses at their on-campus language centres, for students who need to improve their language skills before starting their undergraduate or post-graduate course.
Many UK universities offer these courses over a few months or weeks depending on the student’s existing English language proficiency. Start dates are usually fixed, depending on the student’s starting level.
Students usually apply for the pre-sessional and degree course at the same time. Provided they pass the pre-sessional course they can continue directly onto the degree course.
Graduate work visa
The UK’s new Graduate route allows students to work in the UK for two years after completing a higher education course.
The route opened on 1 July 2021. To be eligible, students must successfully complete a course at undergraduate level or higher from a UK higher education provider. And the Student (or Tier 4) visa they studied with must still be valid.
> Find out more about the Graduate route on ukcisa.org.uk.