KBS_Icon_questionmark link-ico

Pre-sessional Course

Apply now

Applications for 2020 entry are currently closed and will not open until January. 

The Pre-sessional course is a full-time English preparation course for international and EU students who hold an offer for a degree at King's. It aims to improve your academic English and introduce you to the UK education system so that you're fully prepared for your degree. 

The Pre-sessional course is ideal if you are a non-native English speaker, have received an offer to study an undergraduate or postgraduate degree at King’s and need to improve your level of English language to meet the requirements of your degree offer.

With the Pre-sessional course being highly sought-after, we also offer a Combined Pre-sessional course as an alternative for students who want to start their studies online before arriving in London.


Key benefits

  • Introduction to the UK academic culture 
  • Improved ability to use academic English appropriately and effectively at university level
  • Focus on improving your linguistic and academic skills required for successful study at King's
  • Expand your vocabulary
  • Unrivalled location in the heart of London


Key information

Application status Closed

Duration 16-weeks, 11-weeks & 6-weeks

Study mode Full-time

Credit value N/A

Course leaders Mr. Sora Zushi

Further details

Course contact for further information

Course contact form Postgraduate admissions

Awarding institution King's College London

Faculty King's International Foundation



Explore campuses

Welcome to King's

In the heart of London

Discover the advantages of studying at one of the top 25 universities in the world and take a look at our central London campuses.

Watch more videos

Course detail


There are several Pre-sessional course lengths to choose from, depending on your current level of English and the language requirements you need to meet for your degree offer:

  • 16-weeks
  • 11-weeks
  • 6-weeks

Use our Pre-sessional English calculator to see what English language score is required for your degree and which Pre-sessional course you should take.  

During the course you’ll focus on reading, writing, listening and speaking English in an academic setting, and develop useful academic skills like notetaking, library-based research, essay writing, discussion, presenting, critical reading and active listening.  

You’ll also have regular tutorials during which you will have the opportunity to ask quesstions and discuss issues related to your studies on the course.  

Combined Pre-sessional

We also offer a Combined Pre-sessional course, which includes a blend of online and on-campus learning. The first four weeks of the course take place online, so you can start from the comfort of your own home. You then come to King’s to study the remaining part of the course on campus.  

There are three course lengths available, depending on your needs: 16-weeks, 11-weeks and 6-weeks. The Combined Pre-sessional courses provide you with all of the same benefits as the face-to-face Pre-sessional, whilst also giving you the flexibility to begin the course online.

Extra preparation 

Do you meet the academic conditions for your degree and the English language requirements, but feel like you could improve your academic English before starting your degree? 

The 6-week Pre-sessional course is a great choice to build your confidence and help you to be better prepared before starting your studies.  

If you need a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, you may also be eligible for an integrated CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies), covering your Pre-sessional course and your main degree. 

Please contact our Admissions team for more information.

Term Dates

Pre-sessional Course Timetable
ProgrammeStart date*End date

16-week Pre-sessional 

22 May 2020     

11 September 2020

11-week Pre-sessional 

25 June 2020

11 September 2020

6-week Pre-sessional 

30 July 2020        

11 September 2020    

*This includes a mandatory course induction.

Course purpose

The purpose of the Pre-sessional course is to:

  • help you to meet the minimum language entry requirements for your chosen degree course
  • help improve your academic writing 
  • let you practise seminar skills and academic discussion in order to express arguments more clearly and concisely 
  • make you a more effective reader 
  • provide opportunities for lecture listening and note-taking practice 
  • develop your grammatical competence
  • improve your understanding of and ability to use academic English appropriately and effectively in an academic environment
  • introduce you to UK academic culture

Course format and assessment


The Pre-sessional course is taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and classes, some of which will be online. Regular tutorials are arranged throughout the course, during which you will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss issues related to your studies on the course. 

This is a full-time intensive course. A typical week includes approximately 17 contact hours, usually including online and face-to-face time; however, some weeks will see more contact hours than others.

You are expected to spend a similar amount of time on self-study.


Typically, students may be assessed by means of any of the following:

  • Essay(s)
  • Viva(s) (a written or oral explication of a piece of research)
  • Oral presentation(s)
  • Exam(s)
  • Seminar(s)
  • Portfolio(s) of work, written and/or oral

 The study time and assessment methods detailed above are typical and give a good indication of what to expect. However, they may change if the course content changes.


Year 1

The Pre-sessional course is taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and classes, some of which will be online, and you are expected to dedicate time to self-study and independent research tasks.

Students will be allocated to one of four modules, dependent upon their target degree course:

The ‘Academic English’ module will be taken by students aiming to progress to:

-          The Faculty of Social Science & Public Policy

-          The Dickson Poon School of Law

-          Arts & Humanities (with the exception of CMCI and DDH)

-          The science and health faculties (NMS, IoPPN, FoLSM, Nursing, Midwifery & Palliative Care)

The 'Management' module will be taken by students aiming to enter management-related courses delivered by King's Business School.

The 'Finance' module will be taken by students aiming to enter finance-related courses delivered by King's Business School.

The 'Cultural Industries and Digital Humanities' module will be taken by students aiming to enter programmes delivered by the Department of Culture, Media and Creative Industries and the Department of Digital Humanities.

The Management, Finance, and Cultural Industries & Digital Humanities modules contain a mixture of core, general content and language and skills central to the target subject area.  The Academic English module focuses on the ability to use academic English vocabulary, genres of text, and skills relating to a wide range of academic situations and topics.       

Please note that the module a student takes is determined by their target degree course; students cannot opt for an alternative module.


You will study the following:

English for academic purposes 

The course helps you to develop your academic essay writing, language, and research skills, as well as your critical reading and listening abilities.

Seminar and presentation skills

The course helps you to develop your oral skills, focusing on your ability to express ideas clearly and concisely, to present and defend a position, and to listen and respond to other people’s ideas. 


Students’ progress is monitored carefully. Regular tutorials are arranged throughout the course, during which you will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss issues related to your studies on the course.

Required Modules
Students are allocated to one module, which is determined by their target degree course.
Optional Modules

Entry requirements & how to apply

Academic entry requirements 

Before you can enrol for the course, you need to have a conditional or unconditional offer to study at King's. 

English Language entry requirements 

Each Pre-sessional course length has a minimum entry level depending on the English language score required by the individual academic department. 

Use the Pre-sessional English Calculator to determine the English language score required by each department.

See the Pre-sessional IELTS entry requirements and the Pre-sessional TOEFL, Pearson and Cambridge CAE/FCE entry requirements for more information.

If you do not know which faculty offers your degree, you can search for your course on our website. 

Please see below details of accepted English tests.

For International students 


If you need to apply for a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK, we can only accept results from a UKVI approved IELTS test with your application. However, if you are applying to our 6-week Pre-Sessional face-to-face English course or our 6 week Combined Pre-Sessional English course, you may be eligible for an integrated Tier 4 visa, which allows us to accept a wider range of English language tests.

For European Union/EEA students  

  • Pearson
  • Cambridge FCE 
  • Cambridge CAE 
  • Cambridge CPE 

Application procedure

If you have already submited an application, you can review your status in the King's Apply Portal. Please contact Admissions on +44 (0) 20 7848 7000 if you have any questions. 

Please be aware that places on Pre-sessional courses are limited and offers are made on a rolling basis. Your place can only be confirmed once you have paid your Pre-sessional course tuition fees in full. 


Please contact our Admissions team if you have any questions about the course or if you are unable to access the online application form.

Personal statement and supporting information

A personal statement is not required for Pre-sessional courses.

The online application requires you to upload documents to our application portal, King's Apply. You do not need all of these documents immediately, but your application will not be considered complete without them. We also have guidance notes (pdf 954kb) to help with your application.

1. English Language Certificate

This must be dated within the last two years. If you have not yet taken an approved test, such as the IELTS, then we will be unable to consider you for our Pre-sessional course as it is a compulsory requirement.

2. Official Offer Letter

If you are holding an offer of study at King’s College London then you do not need to attach your letter, but without an offer for your main degree we will not be able to process your Pre-sessional application.

Application closing date

16 week Face-to-face Pre-sessional - Applications open in January.

11 week Face-to-face Pre-sessional - Applications open in January.

6 week Face-to-face Pre-sessional - Applications open in January.

Help and support

If you don't have a suitable qualification for direct entry to a UK university, or if English isn't your first language, our academic preparation courses can help you get ready for study in the UK.

Preparation courses

Fees and funding

2020 fees*







 *These tuition fees may be subject to additional increases in subsequent years of study, in line with King’s terms and conditions.

Additional costs/expenses

In addition to the costs above, you can also expect to pay for:

  • Books if you choose to buy your own copies
  • Clothing for optional course related events and competitions
  • Library fees and fines
  • Personal photocopies
  • Printing 
  • Society membership fees
  • Stationery
  • Travel costs for travel around London and between campuses

For further information, please visit our fees and funding pages.


Please refer to the Terms and Conditions in your offer letter.

If you are claiming a refund on the basis of being unable to obtain a visa, you must provide documentary evidence that your visa application has been rejected.

Note that if the condition of your offer was related to achieving a higher IELTS score, you must show that you sat an IELTS exam in between accepting your offer and the start of the course. Offer holders who do not retake an IELTS exam in time for the start of the course will not receive a refund.

Please note: You must provide evidence of meeting the above conditions within two weeks of the start of the course.

Financial help and support

Visit the fees and funding webpages to find out more about bursaries, scholarships, grants, tuition fees, living expenses, student loans and other financial help available at King's.

Career prospects

To continue your studies at King's.


Next steps

View our postgraduate guide

Learn more about postgraduate degree programmes at King's. Download our guide in PDF format or order a copy.

Download guide

Order guide

Sound like the course for you?

Apply now

Explore King’s

Accommodation Take a look at our comfortable, safe residences to suit your budget, located close to King's teaching campuses. 
Student life Art, food, music, shopping – you'll never find yourself with nothing to do in the world's most vibrant city.
Extra-curricular Discover the huge variety of extra-curricular opportunities at King’s, from MOOCs to language courses.
London living With four campuses by the River Thames and one in south London, King's is right in the heart of the capital.