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How to apply for Pre-sessional

Follow these step-by-step instructions on how to apply for a Pre-sessional course at UAL.

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Before you apply

1. Accept your main course offer

You must choose and accept 1 UAL main course offer (pre-degree, undergraduate or postgraduate) before you apply for a Pre-sessional course.

Accept your main course offer in the UAL Applicant Portal (or UCAS Dashboard).

2. Remember your main course name and level


Course name: BA (Hons) Illustration at Camberwell College of Arts

Course level: Level 6 Degree

RQF Level

UAL Main Course

Degree Level


Level 3 Introduction courses



Foundation Diploma



Certificate of Higher Education



Bachelor Degree, Graduate Diploma



Master’s Degree, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma





3. Check your main course English language requirements

You can find this information in your main course offer email or in your UAL Applicant Portal.


IELTS (or equivalent) level 6.0 or above, with at least 5.5 in reading, writing, listening and speaking

Look at your valid English test result (IELTS or equivalent 4-skills test) and decide how many IELTS bands (or equivalent) you need to improve: 0.5, 1.0 or 1.5.

4. Choose a Pre-sessional course

Use the grid below to choose a Pre-sessional course. On the left, find out how much you need to improve your English level. On the right, find the best Pre-sessional course for you. Check the course page link for entry requirements, dates, fees and other useful information.

I need to improve my English level by… 

The best course for me is...

1.5 IELTS bands or equivalent

19 Week Pre-sessional

1.0 IELTS bands or equivalent

13 Week Pre-sessional

0.5 IELTS bands or equivalent (Undergraduate/Postgraduate course starts September/October 2020)

9 Week Pre-sessional

0.5 IELTS bands or equivalent (Undergraduate/Postgraduate course starts in January 2021)

Winter 9 Week Pre-sessional

0.5 IELTS bands or equivalent (for Pre-degree level course)

Pre-Foundation English

I have an unconditional offer from UAL

Unconditional Pre-sessional

1.0 IELTS bands or equivalent (wasn't able to get a place on 13 Week Pre-sessional)

EPIC 10 Weeks

0.5 IELTS bands or equivalent (wasn't able to get a place on 9 Week Pre-sessional)

EPIC 6 Weeks

You can't combine scores from different tests. You must meet entry requirements with 1 test result.

If you are waiting for a new test result, do not apply for a Pre-sessional course until you have your certificate. You can't change to a different course after you have sent us your application.

5. Read our Terms and Conditions

You must read our Terms and Conditions (PDF 93KB) and UAL's Privacy Policy before you apply.

6. Choose your visa type

Pre-sessional courses have different possible visa types.

The Tier 4 (General) Student Visa and the Short-term Student Visa are possible for our 2020 Pre-sessional courses.

We’ve provided some useful Visas and Immigration guidance to help you choose the right visa. It’s very important that you understand the rules for your visa.

Check you have the right English language test result for your visa. You need an official test result which is less than 2 years old.

Type of English Language Test

Short-term Student Visa

Tier 4 (General) Student Visa

IELTS Academic



IELTS Academic for UKVI



Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE)



UAL Progress Test



Please note that you need IELTS Academic for UKVI for Level 3 Introduction and Foundation courses.

7. Check your immigration history

Your immigration history includes:

  • Previous UK study
  • Previous Tier 4 study
  • Previous Pre-sessional or EPIC study
  • Current UAL study

You gave immigration history when you applied for your main course at UAL. If your immigration history has changed since your main course application, please send us a new Immigration History Form  (PDF 104KB) with your Pre-sessional application. You may also need to send supporting documents. It’s very important that we have complete, accurate and up-to-date information about your immigration history. Find more information about supporting documents in our Visas and Immigration guidance.

If you studied Pre-sessional or EPIC course last year and did not pass, and you want to apply for a new Pre-sessional or EPIC course this year, we strongly advise you to study English before you start your new Pre-sessional or EPIC course. This will increase your chances of passing Pre-sessional.

If you do not study between the 2 courses, your level of English will probably drop because you won’t practise the language.

Please contact us if you want more advice:

8. Prepare documents for your Pre-sessional application

Check you are ready for your application:

  • You have accepted 1 UAL main course offer and have withdrawn any other applications.
  • You know the name and level of the UAL main course you accepted.
  • You know your main course English language requirements.
  • You have chosen and read about your Pre-sessional course.
  • You have an official English test result less than 2 years old.
  • You have chosen a suitable visa type.
  • You have the right English test for your visa and main course.
  • If you are under 18 you have a signed Parent and Guardian Agreement (PDF 98KB).
  • You have given accurate information about your immigration history and uploaded an Immigration History Form (PDF 104KB) with any new details.
  • You have documents supporting your immigration history.
  • You have a valid passport.

Apply online and upload documents

Log into the UAL Applicant Portal.

Submit complete information about your final IELTS (or equivalent) result. If you don’t enter complete information, we can’t process your application.

If you are an international student and you are currently studying in the UK, you must submit a new IELTS (or equivalent) test result.

If you are under 18, upload your signed Parent and Guardian Agreement (PDF 98KB).

If your immigration history has changed since you applied for your UAL main course, upload your Immigration History Form (PDF 104KB) and documents supporting your immigration history.

Important - If your application is not complete, we can’t process it and you may not get a place on a course.

Watch our How to apply for Pre-sessional video.

After you apply

1. Accept your offer within 2 days

When you have sent us your application, we will review it and make a decision. This usually takes 10 working days. We will email you our decision on your application. Please check your email regularly. We offer places to students who have sent us complete applications and meet entry requirements.

When you receive your offer you must accept your offer in the Pre-sessional section of the UAL Applicant Portal under ‘my applications’.

2. Pay and send proof of payment within 2 days

How to pay

We recommend you pay using UAL’s online payment portal Epay. Epay is the quickest way to pay and is secure.

You can also use Flywire. Flywire is another quick, easy and secure way to pay.

We accept payment via standard bank transfer but this is not the best way to pay. It usually takes 2 weeks to check the payment and for us to confirm your place and you will pay extra charges so it will also cost you more.

Send payment evidence

You must give us evidence that you have paid your total Pre-sessional course fees before we can confirm your place and send you your CAS or visa letter. You must upload payment evidence in the Pre-sessional tab of the UAL Applicant Portal.

Epay evidence

This is the quickest way to pay. Upload a screenshot of the payment confirmation screen or an emailed receipt. We need these 4 pieces of information:

  • OPN number (Epay payment reference number)
  • Amount of money transferred to UAL (full Pre-sessional fees)
  • Date of payment
  • UAL Student ID number

Flywire evidence

Upload the receipt you received by email, or a screenshot from your Flywire dashboard confirming that you’ve paid. We need these 3 pieces of information:

  • Amount of money transferred to UAL (full Pre-sessional fees)
  • Date of payment
  • UAL Student ID number

Bank transfer evidence

We advise you to not pay by bank transfer. If you choose not follow our advice, you must give us a bank transfer receipt which shows the following information in English:

  • UAL’s bank details
  • Amount of money being transferred to UAL (full Pre-sessional fees plus bank charges)
  • Date of payment
  • UAL Student ID number

If information is not in English, it will take us longer to confirm your place.

Main course fees

The Pre-sessional course fee is in addition to your £2,000 main course pre-payment.

If you want a Tier 4 (General) student visa with combined CAS, you need to pay your £2,000 main course pre-payment and your Pre-sessional fee before we send you a CAS.

Booking confirmation

We will email you a booking confirmation when:

  • You have accepted your offer
  • You have paid and sent us evidence of payment

Our booking confirmation email guarantees your place on the course and is also a booking receipt.

Please do not book flights or accommodation until you get our booking confirmation email.

Cancellations and refunds

If you decide you don’t want to do a Pre-sessional course, please email immediately so we can give your place to another student.

If you decide to cancel before we have made you an offer, you must withdraw under the ‘my applications’ tab on the UAL Applicant Portal.

If we have sent you an offer but you have not accepted it, you must decline under the ‘my applications’ tab on the UAL Applicant Portal.

If you cancel your Pre-sessional course after your booking is confirmed, you cannot get another CAS for UAL Pre-sessional. If you want to study at another institution, you will need a new CAS and a new visa.

Please check our Terms and Conditions (PDF 93KB) to see if you can ask for a refund.

3. Apply for your visa

Read our helpful Visas and Immigration guidance before you apply for a visa.

After we have sent you your booking confirmation email, we will send you a CAS or letter you can use to apply for your visa.

Please start preparing your visa application (documents and finances) as soon as you apply for Pre-sessional. Don’t wait until your place on the course is confirmed to think about the visa application!

4. Book accommodation in London

As soon as you receive your Pre-sessional offer, you can apply for Accommodation. You must be 18 years old or over to stay in UAL Halls of Residence. If you are under 18, you must book Homestay accommodation.

5. Pre-register online

About 3 weeks before the enrolment date for your course, we will email you to ask you to pre-register on the UAL Applicant Portal. You must pre-register before you can enrol.

When you pre-register, you need to give this information:

  • Home address - permanent address in home country.
  • Term-time address - address in London (including flat or room number).
  • Emergency contact details.
  • Personal details including passport number and visa details.
  • Passport-sized photo - JPEG, 2 MB max file size (for student ID card).

We will also email you instructions for how to activate your UAL email account.

After you complete your online pre-registration, we will email you your personal enrolment appointment. Students will not be allowed to join the course after the enrolment deadline.


Please make sure you also read our Visas and immigration information for Pre-sessional.

Contact us




Presessional Terms and Conditions 2020 (PDF 93KB)

How to apply for UAL Pre-sessional

This video will take you through the steps to make your Pre-sessional application.