Pre-Foundation English

Design by Rohit Sharma
Rohit Sharma

English language preparation for students beginning a Foundation Diploma or Level 3 Introduction course at UAL


Please note that all Presessional and EPIC courses in academic year 2017/18 are now closed.

Please check our website in early 2018 for information about Presessional and EPIC courses taking place in 2018/19.

What is Pre-Foundation English?

An English language preparation programme for students who want to improve their language level in order to progress onto Foundation Diploma in Art & Design or Level 3 Introduction courses at University of the Arts London. 

Successful completion of this course means you can progress onto your Foundation Diploma or Level 3 course without having to take another IELTS test.

Pre-Foundation English will develop your English language and study skills in a creative arts context. You will have the opportunity to visit several of UAL’s Colleges to get familiar with resources available to you. You will also gain experience of the teaching and learning methods at UAL, which is great preparation for your main course. Learners will be using English in everyday situations, in real-life contexts. The maximum number of students per class on the Pre-Foundation English course is 14. At the end of the course students will take an assessment in order to achieve the equivalent IELTS entry score needed for their course.

What is the difference between Pre-Foundation English and other English exam preparation courses?

Pre-Foundation English is a focused English language programme specifically for students studying at UAL. Please read the attached document below for a detailed comparison:

Who can take this course?

Pre-Foundation English is only for students who have a conditional offer for a Foundation Diploma or Level 3 Introduction course at University of the Arts London.

We offer a separate Presessional course for students joining undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

You must take an IELTS for UKVI test if you want to study Pre-Foundation English under a Tier 4 visa. Other internationally recognised certificates may be accepted if you will not be studying Presessional under a Tier 4 visa. If you have a certificate other than IELTS, please contact the Presessional office well in advance to check whether this can be accepted as proof of English level.

Dates, fees and entry requirements

You can join this course if your current IELTS score (or equivalent) is 0.5 below the requirement. There are also minimum skill score requirements. 


Pre-Foundation English

Entry Requirements


Foundation Diploma / Level 3 Introduction course entry requirements (IELTS)

Overall ScoreEach skill (minimum)

Dates: 3 July – 18 August 2017 (7 weeks)
Course fees: £2,530
Maximum class size: 14 students
Location: Language Centre, 272 High Holborn, London WC1V 7EY
Application deadline: 19 June 2017
Enrolment deadline: 10 July 2017

Students will not be allowed to join the course after the enrolment deadline.

If your score is below the Pre-Foundation English entry requirement, we recommend that you take an Academic English course at the Language Centre. For more information about UAL main course entry requirements, visit the UAL English language requirements page. 

Course content and assessment

The syllabus focuses on the development of language competence and fluency and the skills that you will need in Further Education, including specific skills for courses at UAL.

You will use a course book and a range of other materials reflective of the art and design focus of the University.

You will be assessed in academic writing, presentation and discussion, listening and reading. These assessments will help you to develop the skills and knowledge you will need for your Foundation course.

You will have one-to-one tutorials with your tutor to discuss your progress and receive advice on your studies. There will also be visits to other sites of the University that will help prepare you for the year ahead.

Self-study and independent learning
We want to help you to become a confident and independent student so we will regularly give you homework and self-study tasks. You will be expected to do approximately 8-10 hours of self-study per week. This is likely to increase when you are preparing for your assessment.

You will be able to use all of the University facilities including the libraries and IT facilities and University staff will be on hand to show you how to use them.  

Teaching hours
Pre-Foundation English lessons take place Monday to Friday for 4 hours per day, in either the morning or afternoon as per the timetable for your course (a total of 20 hours per week).

Staff information
Pre-Foundation English is taught by experienced English language tutors. They all have a diploma or equivalent level ELT/TESOL qualification and some also have an MA in Linguistics and others an MA in the Visual Arts.

The Language Centre at UAL is accredited by the British Council.

Accommodation for Presessional

Accommodation is available in our halls of residence for Presessional students. If it is your first time studying in the UK, we strongly recommend staying in our halls to get yourself familiar with London. Take a look at our Accommodation opportunities for Presessional. For more information, download the guide:

UAL Presessional Guide (PDF 1.1MB).

Additional information

Please note:

  • You can only join Pre-Foundation English if you have an offer for a UAL Foundation Diploma in Art & Design or Level 3 Introduction course starting in the academic year 2017/18. You must meet the language entry requirements in order to join the course. If you do not meet the entry requirements, please contact the Language Centre for information on alternative courses.
  • If you are unable to take up your place on the Pre-Foundation English programme, the course fee will be refunded to you, minus the booking fee. The booking fee is non-refundable, except where the University considers there are significant extenuating circumstances.
  • Your class may be in the morning, afternoon or evening. It is therefore important that you do not make other commitments, including accepting work, until you receive your timetable.
  • You are required to attend at least 90% of the course otherwise you may be asked to leave. Do not arrange holidays during the course. If you are absent due to sickness for more than 3 consecutive days you will be asked to provide a certificate from an NHS doctor. 
  • Insurance, provided by the company “Endsleigh”, is included in your tuition fees. The policy starts from the moment we receive your booking and covers medical emergencies, theft and many other things.

How to apply

International students: you will automatically receive an application form in your offer pack. In addition to paying the Pre-Foundation English course fee, you must also accept your place on your main University course and pay the non-refundable deposit of £2,000 before you can join Pre-Foundation English.

EU students: you will need to contact the Presessional office to request booking instructions. For immediate queries please contact us:

Tier 4 visa information

If you are eligible to study under Tier 4, you will be issued with a CAS to cover study on Pre-Foundation English only. After you successfully complete Pre-Foundation English, you will need to make a new visa application for your Foundation Diploma or Level 3 Introduction course at UAL.

Please note: we strongly advise all students to take an IELTS for UKVI test before applying to Pre-Foundation English. Upon successful completion of the Pre-Foundation English course, you will need an IELTS for UKVI test result with a minimum of 4.0 in each skill in order to make a Tier 4 visa application for your Foundation Diploma or Level 3 Introduction course at UAL. If you require further information or have any questions about this please contact us: