Pre-sessional English Courses

All you need to know about pre-sessional English courses. What are they? How are they different to IELTS? Where can you study them?

What are they?

Pre-sessional English courses are short courses which seek to better the English of international or overseas students with either a conditional offer, or the aim to study a UK university degree.

While pre-sessional courses commonly range from 4 to 12 weeks in length, it all depends on the individual’s current English language level, and the language level required by their chosen degree.

Who needs it?  

Pre-sessional English course students are, more often than not, international or overseas students whose first language is not English. Students can also be those who:

  • have yet to meet the minimum language requirement of their conditional offer;
  • are joining an exchange programme in the UK (e.g. Erasmus or Study Abroad);
  • and / or are planning to progress onto a degree programme at a UK university.

Though, there are rare cases where people do a Pre-sessional English course just to familiarise themselves with British university culture and life before beginning their actual studies… We’re not here to judge!


Who provides them?

Many HEIs (Higher Education Institutions), as well as Pathway Providers, offer Pre-sessional English courses that are tailored to the degree programmes they offer.

Whilst it makes more sense for individuals to choose the same university of their intended degree course, it is important to consider the gap between their current and required language level to be accepted for their intended degree course.

Length of Pre-sessional English course Score difference to achieve conditional offer requirement
4 – 6 weeks 0.5
8 – 12 weeks 1.0
16 – 24 weeks 1.5

This is due to the reason that some UK universities offer lengthier pre-sessional courses than others (e.g. 100+ weeks pre-sessional courses), which are more useful in some cases!

Here is a short list of the HEI Pre-sessional English course providers:

·         Royal Holloway University, London ·         University of Oxford
·         University of Essex ·         University of Edinburgh

A short list of some Pathway providers and their partner universities:

To check whether a university offers Pre-sessional English courses, contact Team AppUK on

What are the entry requirements for a Pre-sessional?

Pre-sessional English course programme students are expected to have at least a basic level of knowledge in the English language. Different universities however, have different levels of minimum English language requirements. It is therefore advisable to check with us before making your decision.

What happens after the Pre-sessional course? Is there an assessment?

Unfortunately, yes. After the Pre-sessional course is fully completed, a test with four different components – Listening, Speaking, Writing and Reading (similar to IELTS exams) – follows.

The big difference between a Pre-sessional’s assessment and an IELTS examination however, is that the test will cover what was taught during the Pre-sessional course. IELTS tests are a more general English exam.

Is there a high success rate for Pre-sessional students?

The short version – yes (hooray!). In comparison to the IELTS rate, Pre-sessional English courses tend to have a higher pass rate. For instance, the Brunel Language Centre (Brunel University London) reported that their Pre-sessional programmes  have an average pass rate of 96%. Plymouth University also hold a ‘high student success rate’ for their Pre-sessional courses.

What are the pros & cons of doing a Pre-sessional?

Pros 😊 Cons
A large variety – Tailors to different needs, hence better chances at succeeding Costly
UK study experience, prior to intended degree course Time consuming
Enhancing your English Language ability Examination
No need to take the IELTS repeatedly  

 Pre-sessional English course vs. Internal English Test

University Internal English Tests are distinct English tests created by universities.

Internal English Tests are much shorter in duration since they do not require the need for classes nor lessons. While they are also similar to the IELTS tests, which assesses four different components at once, they are only offered by a limited amount of UK universities such as Birmingham City University and Coventry University.


For more information, and to apply for a pre-sessional course, contact Team AppUK on


ApplicationUK’s easy-to-use online application portal provides a simple solution to postgraduate application stress. With its smart digital self-assessment tool, personalised application plan, and application tracking system, you can be rest assured that your application will go through smoothly. Our experienced counsellors are also here to provide expert advice, reassurance, and continuous support.

Keep up to date with all the latest news from ApplicationUK on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram


Media Graduates – What to do Next?

It may be seen as a ‘soft option’ by many, but media studies and its related fields are by no means easy degrees. Along with the industry being notoriously difficult to get into, you may now be worrying about what you will do after you graduate. Luckily, that is where we come in. A fair amount of Team AppUK are themselves media graduates, and so we have plenty of experience in what to do once you have completed your course. We know that your degree has enabled you to develop excellent communication and analytical skills, you have great cultural awareness, and are up to date with all the latest technologies and theories. These skills are some of the top for employability, making you stand out to future employers. Media Studies degrees have high employability rates, with over 78% of students in full time employment after graduating, whilst a little over 6% of graduates go into further study.

Here, we will talk you through the top job opportunities available to media graduates, and how further study could boost your employability even further.


Social Media Marketing

The amount of job vacancies with ‘Social Media’ in the title has jumped by over 1500% (and climbing!) since 2010, meaning that social media is one of the fastest growing jobs markets out there. With a high number of dedicated agencies, who provide social media marketing services to other companies, alongside the growth of in-house social media teams, there are plenty of options for those who want to go in to social media marketing. Social media roles are ideal for new graduates, as many of you will have grown up with social media and so have a solid understanding of how the various different platforms work. This is an area in which young, fresh graduates have an advantage over older, more professionally experienced colleagues.

Using social media in a professional sense is not the same as using it personally however, so you may feel that you need a little more training before you enter the work place. Many universities now have both MA and MSc courses in social media available, covering areas such as understanding social media, analysing social media statistics, social research, and business intelligence. Offering both practical and theoretical practice and experience, a Master’s in social media would give any new graduate the edge over their contemporaries.

Find out more about Master’s courses in Social Media here.

Digital Marketing

If you are interested in Social Media Marketing, but would prefer a job that covers a slightly broader base of activities, Digital Marketing could be for you. Digital Marketing Assistants and Executives traditionally look after all online marketing activities for a company, including social media, SEO, email marketing, and website management. Digital marketing roles combine creativity with technical knowledge and know-how. Again, there are many agencies who will look after the online marketing activities for external companies, whilst other businesses will have their own in house teams. In general, in house digital marketing roles will have a far broader scope of activities. Within an agency, the job may be more specialised.

A digital marketing postgrad qualification will enable you to learn the basics of theory behind digital marketing activities. You can complete a qualification in Digital Marketing through The Chartered Institute of Marketing (the top professional body in the UK). You can find details of these courses here. Alternatively, universities also offer both MA and MSc courses in Digital Marketing. Within these you will receive full support from industry professionals and leaders, and could even carry out placements within professional settings.

Find out more about Master’s in Digital Marketing here.

Public Relations (PR)

PR covers all aspects of advertising a company that are not marketing. It is a hard role to explain, and an even harder industry to get in to, but the rewards from a PR job can be great. In its essence, a PR role involves raising brand awareness through indirect activities such as news stories, events, and social media, amongst others. It is a creative and challenging industry, but there is a reason it is so popular with job seekers! PR works across many different markets, and again you would have the choice between working in an agency for a range of different clients, or working in house focusing on one brand and identity.

Universities across the UK offer great quality PR Master’s courses, both MA and MSc. Many of these also include placements within PR agencies, allowing students to gain real professional experience and build a network of useful contacts before they have even entered the industry as a professional. These aspects make graduates look favourable to future employers, and enable you to stand out from the crowd in what is a very competitive market. Courses include modules on areas such as media relations, brand strategy, crisis management, and even digital media.

Find out more about Master’s degrees in Public Relations here.

Media Planning

Media Planners work with clients to identify which media platforms would best promote their products. Platforms range from social media, to television, to billboards at the side of the road, and those in media planning apply both critical thinking and creative ideas to decide which would be best for their clients at building brand awareness and driving sales. Media planning is a slightly more analytical, and less creative, role than those we have previously discussed, and so may suit some graduates more. Media planners tend to be agency based, rather than in house, so have to opportunity to work with a range of clients, sometimes within a range of industries.

As of yet, there are no specific media planning qualifications or postgraduate degrees. However, more general marketing master’s courses will often have elements of media planning within their structure and content, and many courses will allow students to choose elective modules so that they can focus on their individual interests.

Find out more about MA and MSc courses in Marketing here.

TV/Video/Radio Production

Another area in which your Media Studies degree will come in useful is in producing for TV, film, and/or radio. A bit of research on the top producers in the industry reveals that many of them started off with an undergraduate degree in media and communication studies. The roles require good communication skills, and a strong knowledge of the media and culture, both of which your degree will have provided you with and allowed you to develop. The industry is competitive, and experience is extremely beneficial. If you feel you have time, you could complete an internship whilst studying for your undergraduate degree. Even getting involved in your university’s TV channel or radio station would help.

Fortunately, many master’s courses in media production also offer placements, and encourage you to get professional, hands-on experience of the industry. Many universities in the UK have links to some of the top media companies, and courses are taught by industry experts and professionals themselves. Therefore, completing a master’s degree provides you with both an excellent theoretical understanding, and practical skills.

Find out more about TV/Video/Radio Production courses here.

To find out more about all master’s courses, visit our Find A Course page, or contact Team AppUK on


ApplicationUK’s easy-to-use online application portal provides a simple solution to postgraduate application stress. With its smart digital self-assessment tool, personalised application plan, and application tracking system, you can be rest assured that your application will go through smoothly. Our experienced counsellors are also here to provide expert advice, reassurance, and continuous support.

Keep up to date with all the latest news from ApplicationUK on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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IELTS – Commonly Asked Questions


The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is the world’s most popular English language proficiency test for higher education and global migration. It is a pre-requisite for obtaining a Tier 4 visa, and a good IELTS grade is usually required by universities when applying for Masters courses in the UK. Previously, we gave advice on ‘How to prepare for IELTS’, explaining the test procedure, and what to do in the lead up to it.

Here, we answer your most commonly asked questions, hopefully making what is quite a confusing process, a lot simpler for you!

Which type of IELTS should I take?

There are two types of IELTS; IELTS (Academic) UKVI, and IELTS (Academic). The main difference is that you will need IELTS (Academic) UKVI if you are applying for a visa to study in the UK. There are some exceptions, and UK universities will accept IELTS (Academic), but you don’t want to take any chances. After all, no visa = no study!

What score do I need in my IELTS results?

The results you need will depend on the university and course you wish to attend, as entry requirements vary. You can check this by searching for your chosen universities here. However, as a general rule, master’s courses need an IELTS of between 6.0 and 7.0. The majority of Engineering courses require 6.0, and Business courses 6.5. For courses such as English Literature, where a high proficiency in English is needed, 7.0 is often asked for. In addition to this, the majority of IELTS will also have a minimum individual scoring level, for example: a university may be looking for an overall average of 6.5, but with no individual score lower than 5.0.

Where can I take the IELTS?

UKVI (UK Visas and Immigration) have a certain number of approved English language test centres that meet Home Office requirements. If you are intending on using your IELTS in your UK immigration application, you must ensure that you take your tests in one of these centres. Details of approved test centres can be found here.

How do I register for IELTS?

We recommend registering through British Council, who will take you step by step through the registration process, and have a number of UKVI approved test centres around the world. They will also make it clear whether you are applying for IELTS (Academic) UKVI or not.

Click here to apply through British Council.

What will the IELTS consist of?

Below is a handy chart detailing the components of the IELTS (Academic) exam, so you can know what to expect in advance.


With the UKVI approved IELTS, you can also take a pre-sessional course. These last for between 3 and 20 weeks and focus on improving your academic English. They cover areas such as academic writing, note-taking, and presentation skills. Find out more about IELTS pre-sessional courses here.

For information and tips on taking IELTS, please visit the below links:

General IELTS help and guidance

IELTS tips

IELTS practice papers

If you have any further questions or queries on IELTS for postgraduate study, please contact Team AppUK on

For queries on IELTS for undergraduate study, please contact UKEC on


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What Now? Next Steps After Your Undergraduate Degree



If you are in your final year of undergraduate study, February is probably the time you are starting to think seriously about your future. You’ve got around four months before you graduate. What are your next steps? The reality is, you’ve got three options; employment, travel, or further study. As an international student you will also have other factors to consider, namely: do you want to stay in the UK? During your three years spent completing your undergraduate degree, you will have met plenty of people you may not want to leave, meaning that being able to remain in the UK is a priority for you. But what do you do whilst you are here?

Here, we run through the three top post-graduation options, hopefully making your decision a little easier! 


One option, post-graduation, is to go straight into employment. Should you choose to stay in the UK, you have two choices; graduate scheme or direct entry. Graduate schemes are typically offered by large companies and can last anything between 18 months and 3 years. They generally include a mixture of paid training and work, and have start dates in the autumn months. This means you get a summer off! Direct entry jobs work just like any normal job in that you would be expected to start soon after accepting the role. These roles tend to be in smaller organisations, and often employers will be looking for more specialist skills. Depending on your home country, the situation is likely to be similar, and your UK degree will certainly work in your favour in a crowded jobs market. Working in the UK, even for a short period of time, after you graduate will nonetheless provide you with great experience that will help you stand out in the global employment market.

Going from student life, to employment life, is a big adjustment though. No more lie ins, midnight feasts, or mid-week nights out! And your holiday time will be seriously reduced. In the UK, the minimum holiday entitlement is 28 days (including the 8 national bank holidays), which is just four weeks in total, making it very hard to fit in any travelling you may still want to do.

For more information on graduate employment, click here.





During your undergraduate degree, you probably took advantage of the prevalence of cheap flights and the UK’s proximity to the continent, and so have seen much of Europe already. Therefore, you may be keen on venturing further afield. Traditional travel routes for student’s post-graduation include Australia, the USA, and Asia. Now, as an international student, you may likely be from one of these countries or areas anyway, so this option might not be for you. You also need to consider what you want to do once you’ve finished travelling. If your ultimate goal is to settle in the UK, you may find it difficult to get visa approval after having been away for a number of months or years. And if you think the adjustment between student life and employed life will be hard, returning to the 9-5 after months of living it up in paradise will be even tougher!

Which is why we would recommend your third option:

 Postgraduate Education

Whether it is a masters degree or a conversion course, further study will ultimately enhance your employment prospects both in the UK and worldwide. You’ll be able to stay in the UK for at least another year, meaning you won’t have to say goodbye to your UK based loved ones just yet. You’ll also be able to take advantage of university term times and holidays, and fit in some more travelling. Did we mention that postgraduate students are also eligible still for student discount? Whilst still being an official student, you can take advantage of websites such as STA Travel, who offer significantly reduced rates and discounts to those still in education.

Applying for postgraduate study doesn’t even have to be a stressful process! ApplicationUK’s online platform allows you to compare and apply for UK postgraduate courses in one simple process. We also have a team of dedicated advisors on hand to give you personalised support and help, whenever you might need it. There are plenty of scholarships available for international postgraduate students, details of which can be found here, including those based on country of origin, subject type, and academic merit. Apply and enrol on a course through ApplicationUK and you could even receive a £300 bursary.


We hope this has made your options, and future decisions, a little clearer. Should you decide to go for postgraduate education, applications for courses beginning in the next academic year are still open. Search for your ideal course here, or contact Team AppUK on

Keep up to date with all the latest news from ApplicationUK on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


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Postgraduate Scholarships – March and April 2017 Deadlines

Thought about where you want to study your Masters yet? Or, have you not even considered your options? Most of all, the big question is: how about your funding and scholarship research? Luckily, ApplicationUK has a comprehensive scholarship database specifically aimed at providing busy people like yourself with all the scholarship and funding information you need. And scholarship deadlines are coming up fast. This article will focus on exciting scholarships from our database with March and April deadlines.

March 2017





University of East Anglia (partial and full scholarships available)

Politics, Philosophy, Language and Communication Studies School Scholarships (partial)

Interested in studying politics, language, philosophy, or communication studies? UEA has a great opportunity for you. They offer £1,000 scholarships for all international students who are beginning their course in September 2017. These scholarships will be awarded on academic merit, by achieving IELTS (7.5 overall with at least 6 in each component) and the overall strength of the application. Students must apply and receive an offer by the deadline to be considered.

Deadline: 31st March 2017


MSc Academic and Professional Scholarships (full International fees)

UEA has an outstanding opportunity for aspiring Economics and Finance students. The university is offering competitive scholarships equal to full International fees, available to students taking any of the following programmes:

  • MSc Economics
  • MSc Finance and Economics
  • MSc Behavioural and Experimental Economics
  • MSc Industrial Economics

No separate application is necessary, and all international applicants who have received an offer by 17th March will be automatically considered. Need helping acquiring this offer? ApplicationUK can help. Click here to register and start applying.

Deadline: 17th March 2017 (get applying, the deadline is coming up soon!)




Coventry University (partial available)

As previously highlighted, Coventry University has a May intake, and best of all, they also have scholarships available. See below for links and deadlines:

Faculty of Business and Law – International Dean’s Excellence in Academia Scholarship (IDEAS)

Faculty of Engineering, Environment and Computing – International Dean’s Excellence in Academia Scholarship (IDEAS)

Faculty of Health and Life Sciences – International Dean’s Excellence in Academia Scholarship (IDEAS)

Value (for each): £3,000

Deadline (for each): 31st March 2017

April 2017


University of Sheffield (partial available)

International Merit Postgraduate Scholarships (Eurasia)

Sheffield University have some excellent Merit Postgraduate Scholarships, which are worth 50% of annual postgraduate tuition fees.

However, these scholarships are nationality-specific, and are only available to students from the below countries,

Eurasia: Russian Federation, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Georgia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, and Iran.

To be eligible, students must have applied for a place by 14th April 2017, and the deadline for scholarship applications is Friday 21st April 2017.


Postgraduate Taught Sheffield Scholarships

Sheffield also offer a wider range of scholarships for different countries, including:

Kenya, Uganda, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania, Mauritius, Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Mexico, Paraguay, Panama, Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela, Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar (Burma), Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Canada, Ghana, India, Iran, Japan, Kazakhstan, Nepal, Pakistan, Russia, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine, USA.

An award of £2,000 is available if your tuition fees are between £16,000 and £18,000 or £2,500 if your fees are £18,001 and above. If you are applying to the MSc Global Marketing Management course, the scholarship amount is £1,250.


Deadline: Apply as soon as possible to get an offer and secure the funding!



University of Bournemouth (full and partial available)

BU Commonwealth Shared Scholarship (External Scholarship) – MSc Public Health, LLM Public International Law or MSc Tourism Management 

Students from developing Commonwealth countries, who are applying for the above courses are eligible to apply. This extremely generous award includes a full tuition fee waiver, return airfare to the UK, arrivals allowance, monthly allowance, and thesis and study costs. The deadline for this is coming up shortly, so make sure you get your application in, receive your offer and apply!


Deadline: 1st April 2017

Academic Excellence Scholarship (International)

Bournemouth University also has an award for outstanding international students. To qualify, students must have achieved a minimum of 65% in their Bachelor degree, or an upper second-class Honours (2:1) degree from a UK university. The award is £3,500 in the form of a tuition fee reduction.


Deadline: 1st April 2017


To get a scholarship, you need a conditional/unconditional offer from the university. ApplicationUK’s easy-to-use online application portal provides a simple solution to postgraduate application stress. With its smart digital self-assessment tool, personalised application plan, and application tracking system, you can be rest assured that your application will go through smoothly. Our experienced counsellors are also here to provide expert advice, reassurance, and continuous support.

Keep up to date with all the latest news from ApplicationUK on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


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Reminder: Americans are eligible for federal student aid!

The FAFSA or Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a student aid fund run by the U.S. Department of Education to help finance students pursuing higher education, whether it be a Bachelors or Masters degree.

What a lot of Americans don’t realise is that they are still able to make an application for student aid EVEN if they choose to pursue a degree in the UK. There is a lot of confusion on whether funding is available for Americans overseas and who it might be available to.

Let’s make it simple then…

Remember this date: June 30th
Most Americans will be familiar with the FAFSA if they have previously completed an undergraduate degree in the U.S. In fact, even earlier; as Seniors in high school are required by their schools to fill out a FAFSA as a class assignment. This is in order to teach students to take control of their student funding in the years ahead.
June 30th is the typical deadline for the online FAFSA application but it does vary in some states so please check on this website:

Eligibility: You must be an American citizen with a high school diploma or GED who has been enrolled or accepted as a student at a university degree or certificate program. You can click to see this simple pathway on the following image:



Type of aid: Pell Grant, Direct Subsidized Loan, Direct Unsubsidized Loan, Direct PLUS Loan
If you’re an undergraduate student who is spending less than a year’s time in the UK then Pell Grants are the best option. Grants don’t have to be paid back but are only awarded if you’re eligible according to your financial need. Those who cannot apply for a grant will need to look at Direct Subsidized Loans, loans with no interest charges until after graduation.

For undergraduates who don’t demonstrate financial need (depends on yours or parent’s income)—Direct Unsubsidized Loans are available but charge interest straight away.

Direct PLUS Loans are most suitable for postgraduate students and parents of students with a good credit history, interest is charged at all times.

Which UK universities are eligible to receive US student aid?
For a full list please have a look here:

Not the right option for you? If you’d like to learn more about other funding opportunities for American students, please message our AppUK team at


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ApplicationUK Scholarship Competition – Win £2,000!

ApplicationUK are now offering students the opportunity to win £2,000 if they choose to study their postgraduate courses in the UK!

The UK is an incredibly popular study destination for international students, and looking at the figures, it isn’t difficult to work out why! Read on to find out more about ApplicationUK, and how you could be in with the chance to win £2,000 to study in the UK.

Great career opportunities

It’s all about getting that good job at the end of the day! Studying in the UK boasts top career opportunities. The UK ranks in the top five in the world for university-industry collaboration (according to the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report 2014-15).

Statistics also show that UK educated international graduates achieve higher average salaries than if they had been educated at home, according to the Tracking International Graduate Outcomes study (BIS 2011). Think the price of studying abroad is too pricey? Think long term – your prospects for higher salaries and faster career progression can make up for those hefty tuition fees in no time at all.

UK qualifications are valued for their heavy skills-based focus for the workplace. Over two thirds of businesses in the UK have links with universities, and over a third partner with universities for research and innovation. This means that UK educated graduates will benefit from developing both a practical skill set and highly relevant academic knowledge.

Outstanding university reputation

Employers across the world value UK degrees very highly.  And little wonder, given that according to the QS World Rankings, four of the top ten universities on the planet are in the UK, and the 2013/14 QS World University Rankings found that employers worldwide consider UK graduates as among the most “employable”. From a global survey of 27,000 graduate employers, five UK universities were ranked in the top 10. This is a firm indication that UK degrees are recognised across the planet.

Consistently high levels of student satisfaction

The UK ranks second in the world for quality of scientific and research institutions (World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report 2014-15).

The International Undergraduate Students: UK Competitive Advantage report asked 365,754 international students studying outside their home country to give feedback on what it’s like to study in this country. The UK scored top in every aspect: recommendation, overall satisfaction, arrival overall, learning overall, living overall, and support overall. (Source) The UK beat other countries such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the US. In summary, international students are usually very satisfied with their experiences here.

Famous courses unique to the UK

Previously, we listed some of the strangest courses on offer at universities in the UK (source). From Yoga Studies to the likes of Circus Studies at Bath Spa University, there are some bizarre combinations. Others on offer include:

MBA Football Industries

MA the Beatles, Popular Music and Society

You won’t find these British culture-specific courses anywhere else!

In need of more convincing to study in the UK? We think the details below might just do it for you…

Our ApplicationUK scholarship

We are offering a generous £2,000 scholarship for prospective postgraduate students who use ApplicationUK for their postgraduate applications to universities in the UK! This is a great opportunity to start off your university studies with a bit of extra cash – it certainly makes a difference! This is on top of our existing £300 enrolment bursary, available for all students who successfully acquire an offer to study a postgraduate degree in the UK, via ApplicationUK.


How to enter:

Step 1: Submit an essay or video focused on the following topic: “Why do you want to study in the UK?” Essays must be at least 500 words long, and videos have no length requirement. There are no structure requirements or guidelines. Be as creative as you like!

Step 2: All submissions must be sent via email to: Please input your full name and the heading “Why do you want to study in the UK?” into the subject of the email. Plagiarism is a big no-no – we will cross-check all entries for plagiarism.

Step 3: Successfully submit a postgraduate application via ApplicationUK, arrive in the UK and enrol at your chosen university.

Our ApplicationUK panel will announce the winners late October 2017, after we have confirmed the successful enrolments. 


Terms and conditions:

This competition is administered and promoted by ApplicationUK.

The deadline for you to submit your entries is midnight 30th of July.

Entries are limited to one per person. Only individual entries will be accepted. Essay answers must have a minimum word count of 500 words in order to be accepted.

Entries must be original work by the entrant.

Any form of plagiarism will result in automatic disqualification. It is the responsibility of the participant to ensure that their essay does not infringe the copyright of any third party of any other laws.

Entries must be written in English in an appropriate document format.

ApplicationUK reserve the right to use names, information and submissions without obtaining further consent from the participant or providing payment to the participant for any commercial or non-commercial endeavours.

ApplicationUK will not be responsible or liable for any costs, problems, damage or loss of whatsoever nature to the participants resulting from participating in this competition.

ApplicationUK is not liable for any university application fees incurred by the university that the student applies for.

By submitting your entry, you are agreeing to being published on our website for promotional purposes.

ApplicationUK reserves the right to make any amendments at any given time without prior notice. 

Brexit, and its Impact on International Students in the UK

What we know so far about Brexit, and how it could impact international students in the UK

Following on from last night’s decision by MPs in the House of Commons to formally allow the Prime Minister, Theresa May, to trigger Brexit proceedings, we’re taking a look at what sort of impact it will have on international students in the UK.



First up though, what even is Brexit?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past six months, those of you in the UK already (and those further afield) will have no doubt heard of Brexit. In fact, its recently dominated the news so much, we’ve hardly heard of anything else! But you may still be unsure of what it even means, let alone the impacts it could have on your life in the UK.

Back in June 2016, UK citizens voted to leave the European Union (EU) in a referendum with one of the highest voter turnouts the country has even seen. Over 30 million people cast their vote, with the ‘Leave’ campaign winning by 52% to 48%. The term ‘Brexit’ is simply a short hand way of referring to this decision, combing ‘Britain’ and ‘exit’.

And what will be the effects of this decision?  In short, nobody knows yet. The Prime Minister must trigger Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon (sort of like the EU constitution) in order to begin negotiations to leave the EU. No negotiations can be made beforehand. Theresa May has previously announced her intention to trigger Article 50 by March 2017. Once announced, the government have two years in order to conduct negotiations about what sort of deal the UK will have with the EU once out of it. This includes things like trade, immigration, laws, and so on. If Article 50 is triggered at the end of March 2017, the UK will officially be out of the EU by April 2019.


So, what will this mean for you, international students in the UK?

Again, no one really knows. However, the fall of the pound against almost all international currency has meant that life in the UK is a much cheaper option for international students. Current exchange rates (correct as of 9th Feb 2017) include £1 to 1.26 US Dollar, £1 to 8.62 Chinese Yen, and £1 to 5.57 Malaysian Ringgit. Because of this, British universities could also stand to receive an additional £227 million in tuition fees as enrolments from international students rise by 9%. A further increase in funding of £187 million could also come through, if the Government decide to charge European students the international rates. Increased funding to universities should then mean better facilities, staff, and courses being offered to students.

Potential future plans include the creation of an ‘Erasmus Plus Plus’ scheme, in which the current restrictions on the Erasmus exchange programme are widened to allow students from across the world to participate. This would mean that international students from countries such as China, India, and the United States could complete exchange programmes with UK universities with the opportunities for scholarships and funding. Speaking to The Telegraph last month, Professor Catherine Barnard, Head of EU Law at the University of Cambridge, also described how relaxing current visa regulations could help offset the decline in applications from EU students. Something the Government may consider when working with the universities to attract new students to the UK.

No matter how Brexit turns out, ApplicationUK will always be here to help you through your postgraduate application process, and make your introduction to student life in the UK as smooth as possible.



ApplicationUK‘s easy-to-use online application portal provides a simple solution to postgraduate application stress. With its smart digital self-assessment tool, personalised application plan, and application tracking system, you can be rest assured that your application will go through smoothly. Our experienced counsellors are also here to provide expert advice, reassurance, and continuous support.

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New Biomedical, Electronic and Sports Engineering courses at Nottingham Trent University

Are you a potential Engineering student? There are more options out there than you think. For example, have you considered Biomedical, Electronic and Sports Engineering? Nottingham Trent University may be the ideal place for you.


Nottingham Trent University, previously dubbed “the most environmentally friendly university in the UK”, by the People and Planet Green League, also boasts outstanding employability records, and a strong research arm. The Research Excellence Framework, (REF) also claims 90% of research submitted by the university is “world-leading”, “internationally-excellent,” or “internationally-recognised” standard (Source). Nottingham Trent University has recently launched some new MEng and BEng Engineering courses in the fields of Biomedical, Electronic and Sports Engineering, specifically in collaboration with PepsiCo, GlaxoSmithKline and Speedo, which give graduates an edge in the industry. But firstly, what exactly are these fields, and what potential careers are we looking at?

1) Biomedical Engineering

In a nutshell, Biomedical engineering (BME) is the application of engineering principles and design concepts to medicine and biology for healthcare purposes (e.g. diagnostic or therapeutic). This exciting discipline involves the exciting application of engineering knowledge and skills to human biology, healthcare and medicine. It is a broad area of study which includes a remarkable amount of knowledge from other subjects such as electronic and electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, maths and biology. Overall, students will gain broad training in modern biomedical engineering and learning about the complexities of human anatomy and physiology.

Biomedical Engineering can lead to exciting career paths such as:

  • Biomedical engineer
  • Design engineer
  • Manufacturing systems engineer
  • Quality manager
  • Nuclear engineer

What does Nottingham Trent offer?

To help you, the student, become a bioengineer of the future, Nottingham Trent works closely with the industry to prepare you for an exciting career in the industry. Their courses are highly practical, as they use real examples and projects. The courses will look at current health issues and develop materials, processes and devices to help prevent, treat and rehabilitate patients.

  • Meng Biomedical Engineering
  • BEng Biomedical Engineering

2) Electronic Engineering

Electronics engineering utilizes non-linear and active electrical components (such as semiconductor devices, transistors, diodes and integrated circuits) to design electronic circuits, devices, microprocessors, microcontrollers and other systems. In summary, electronics is within the broader scope of electrical engineering as an academic subject, and covers subfields such as analog electronics, digital electronics, consumer electronics, embedded systems and power electronics. It is an exciting subject that covers an extremely relevant topic for today’s current society.

Electronic Engineering can lead to exciting career paths such as:

  • Aerospace engineer
  • Broadcast engineer
  • IT consultant
  • Nuclear engineer

What does Nottingham Trent offer?

Nottingham Trent offers great Electronic Engineering courses. The course offers the opportunity to be at the forefront of the practical electronic engineering revolution, and opportunities to dig deep into the latest challenges facing electronic engineering departments and companies. Want the latest developments? These courses offer the invaluable opportunity to keep up-to-date in this rapidly developing field.

  • Meng Electronic Engineering
  • BEng Electronic Engineering

3) Sports Engineering

Sports engineering involves the technical application of maths and physics to solve sporting problems, which is within the realm of designing equipment, building facilities, compliance with safety standards and analyzing athlete performance.

Sports Engineering can lead to exciting future career paths such as:

  • Exercise physiologist
  • Bicycle engineer
  • Sports technology engineer
  • Fitness app developer
  • Safety instructor

Sports engineering is a growing field, which opens up the realm of possibility for future work.

What does Nottingham Trent offer?

Being a relatively new field, Nottingham has taken the initiative to produce courses to meet growing demand. The rapidly expanding area is actually attracting large interest and investment from professional sports clubs, sportswear and equipment manufacturers, in addition to health and wellbeing app and technology developers. With the rise and demand of healthy lifestyles and fitness regimes, the demand for students with this skillset and knowledge base will definitely be valuable in the future. Nottingham Trent’s courses teach students to design and develop sport technology devices and concepts.

  • MEng Sport Engineering
  • BEng Sport Engineering

Scholarships by Nottingham Trent

All international students, regardless of nationality can get £2000 per year for the duration of their course, which is a fantastic tuition fee discount that makes a difference.

Accommodation by Nottingham Trent

Even better, students who apply for one of the courses above will be guaranteed accommodation in the NTU hall of their choice! Not only that, but they will also pay first term of rent! (Source) This is especially appealing for students who may be worried about accommodation availability and choice.

The final word

Nottingham Trent has some fantastic engineering opportunities for both undergraduate and postgraduate applicants. No idea where to start? That is where we can help.

Get into contact with our UKEC Malaysia counsellors for free consultation and application guidance. Our counsellors can advise and tailor your application, providing personal statement guidance, visa support, and general support which extends to our offices in the UK.

Tips for choosing your firm and insurance undergraduate choices on UCAS

So, you’ve received an offer to study at university in the UK. Congratulations! Problem is, you are receiving more and more, and now it’s pretty difficult to decide where to go.

Arguably, making the final firm and conditional choice is one of the most difficult stages of the entire process. Luckily this article will break things down step-by-step and make that all-important choice slightly more easy for you. Our experienced UKEC Malaysia counsellors can provide more detailed guidance on this as well.


Firstly – what is a firm choice?

Firstly, it is best to know the definitions of firm choice and insurance choice. Your firm choice is your first choice, and this is the university you definitely want to attend – all being well with your exam results. Remember, once you choose this course as your firm choice you are making a formal commitment to attend this university or college, which will affect the next 3 years of your university career.

What is an insurance choice?

An insurance choice is a back-up choice to a conditional firm acceptance. Since it is a back-up, it is best to go for something with lower offer conditions. This means you’ll only attend your insurance choice course if you don’t meet the conditions of your firm. Of course, make sure that you are happy with this choice as well.

Top tips: For making your firm and insurance choices:

  1. Review-review-review:

Re-familiarise yourself with the course descriptions and modules. Are they what you want to study? Have a browse through the student satisfaction scores, graduate employment stats, Google the location and type of university. Is it where you want to study? Will you be happy? Once you have received your last decision back from the universities you’ve applied to, you will have a few weeks before replying to your offers – so don’t rush it. Hungry for more detailed information? Our UKEC Malaysia counsellors can also provide you with more detailed information about the universities, and we also have direct feedback and contact with Admissions Tutors back in the UK.

  1. Choosing a firm:

Be realistic. Be honest with yourself – can you meet the requirements of the offer? Is the offer flexible? In theory, even though the course requirements appear to be set in stone, universities will still accept “near-miss” applicants. Ask our UKEC Malaysia counsellors for more advice on choosing a firm.

  1. Choosing an insurance:

Your insurance choice is a back-up option. Meaning, it does not make any sense to pick an insurance choice with higher entry requirements than your firm choice. Also, make sure that you would be happy to go there! An insurance choice is also a commitment to that university.


Choosing a firm and insurance university choice is probably one of the most important choices you’ll make in your educational career. Key things to remember:

  • You will only attend your insurance choice course if you don’t meet the conditions of your firm choice, but do meet the conditions of your insurance.
  • You can’t switch between firm and insurance once you get your results. No ifs, no buts. So, make sure you’re happy with your firm and insurance before you confirm!
  • You must decline all other offers, so make sure that you are absolutely sure that you want to attend those universities.

How can UKEC Malaysia help in this process?

With 7 offices in the UK, and over 15 years of experience, we have experience and location-advantage. We provide free consultation services for students, (which includes visa, accommodation, and much more) even after you’ve submitted your application. We can communicate with universities swiftly and get feedback on your application status. While Malaysia sleeps, UK is awake again, meaning we can work around the clock to deal with your enquiries. Making a firm and insurance choice is an incredibly important decision for a student, and that’s why UKEC Malaysia is here to help. Book an appointment with one of our counsellors, bring along your UCAS application summary and we can help you deal with any application enquiries and provide tailored advice.

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