University English Scheme (UES)

The University English Scheme (UES) is for students who wish to take part in our programme of academic English courses for non-native English speakers.

Classes focus on the English language needed for academic study including reading, writing, listening and speaking for academic purposes.

You can choose to take the 20-credit module in English for academic purposes if this fits into your programme of study. If you don't need the credit points, you can participate in our non-credit classes and choose from a range of class types depending on your needs. We can also help you on an individual basis through our University English Scheme (UES) one-to-one tutorials. 

Non-credit modules

The following shows a sample of the non-credit modules that we offer. Our non-credit modules are designed to help you develop your academic English for study.

  • Academic English
    This is a module for students who want to improve their academic English skills. We cover writing effectively, reading academic articles, giving oral presentations and so on.
  • Academic English for your PhD
    This module is for students who are engaged in research (i.e. PhD students). The focus is on developing the language to explain and present your research in both written and spoken formats.
  • Academic speaking and pronunciation
    This class gives you the opportunity to develop your speaking skills. Topics in the past have included making assumptions, information exchanges and debates.
  • Grammar for academic writing
    In this module, we explore and practise the different grammatical structures needed for different types of writing.
  • Academic reading and vocabulary
    This module helps students to deal with the reading on their courses by looking at different reading strategies. Students will also broaden their academic vocabulary.
  • Writing your master's dissertation
    This module is for international students who are currently writing or about to start writing their master's dissertations. Sessions will cover, for example, structuring text, writing abstracts and introductions, reviewing the literature, and making claims.


The following is a sample of the one-off workshops that we offer. If you are unfamiliar with studying at university level, or just want to update your skills, these workshops are for you. Some sessions focus on general academic language development and others look at language within the colleges:

  • Avoiding plagiarism
    How to avoid plagiarism by paraphrasing the words of others more effectively, and how to correctly reference sources.
  • Writing a critical review
    What does it mean to read and write critically?  How do you go about critiquing an article by an expert?  This class will look at how to improve critical reading and writing skills.
  • Synthesising sources
    This class looks at using multiple sources of information to support points and arguments, and how to incorporate these into writing to maximum effect.
  • Successful academic reflective writing
    These sessions focus on reflective writing within the colleges. Each session will have a disciplinary focus, such as academic reflective writing for the Health Sciences.

All classes are free, and you need only come to the specific sessions that interest you. All students are welcome, but these sessions will be of particular interest to those returning to study or from outside the UK.

One-to-one support with academic English

The University English Scheme language tutorials give you the chance to make a private appointment with a UES tutor. We offer these half-hour appointments on a regular basis during term time and sometimes during the semester breaks. We can help you with:

  • improving structure/organisation/vocab in assignments, dissertations and theses
  • pronunciation practice
  • helping to design a good oral presentation
  • clarifying problems with particular grammatical points

Find out more/book a session


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