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University Language Centre

Application information

We aim to deliver practical courses in a range of modern foreign languages to students who are not language specialists.

Please ensure you read the guidance below before applying for a course.

What is LEAP?

LEAP - Language Experience for All Programme – is the name of our University Wide Language Programme provided by the University Language Centre. These courses are open to all students, staff and members of the public, with the aim of delivering practical courses in a range of foreign languages to students who are not language specialists.

Courses are normally taught for 3 hours per week over a total of 23 weeks (September to May). Some courses only run over 1 semester.

Full course descriptions and details of assessment can be found under each language/course listing.

Objectives

  • To provide language modules at different levels ranging from ab initio to advanced
  • To equip students with the foundations of the communicative skills which they will require when studying or working abroad
  • To help students develop language learning strategies which will enable them to extend and develop their linguistic competences
  • To encourage students to develop ICT skills
  • To help students become independent language learners
  • To provide insight into the cultures of other people's countries.

 

Location

Classes are held in buildings across campus. The location of each class will be shown on the class timetable page.

The LEAP Office is located in Samuel Alexander building (no. 67 on campus map), LG8.2 (lower ground floor).

Class sizes

Class sizes have an upper limit of 22 - less in some languages (see 'maximum entry' in the course description pages). 

Will there be a mix of students on the course?

Classes can be made up of students (credited, non-credited, undergraduate, postgraduate) members of staff at the university and members of the public from the local community and around the North-West. The ULC runs both daytime and evening classes, and the daytime classes tend to be more populated by undergraduate students.

Are these courses for me?

We believe that a second (or third) language is essential for young people who will be seeking work, not only in this country, but in the European Community and elsewhere.

Language learning can be demanding and time consuming, so please be prepared for this when you sign up.

Credited students need to pass the course unit to satisfy the requirements of the degree programme, so regular attendance is required.

Credit rating

For students with ‘free choice’ credits: the majority of our courses have a 20 credit rating and run for the entire session (both semesters).

Occasionally, we are able to take Erasmus students who are unable to attend the whole session, but special arrangements regarding assessment have to be made in these cases. You must always seek LEAP's permission in the first place.

What’s my level?

Some people will already have previous language certifications that we can judge your current level on. If not, the course description gives a good indication of the expected level, or you may want to have a look at the suggested course book (‘set text’ in the course description) to see if you have already covered the topics in previous language learning. If you are still unsure, we can usually arrange for you to discuss your level with one of our Language Tutors. The Common European Framework for Languages can give some guidance on what level you are currently at.

Registration dates

Current students and staff can apply from May until the end of registration week. Until registration week, applications can be emailed or made in person at the LEAP Office. During registration week, you can only apply in person at our registration desk (location to be confirmed). Please note that there are usually long queues during registration week, and places are given on a first-come, first-served basis, so you are encouraged to register early to avoid the queues.

New members of the Public will be able to apply from 23 August 2017 up to the start of classes by completing and submitting the online enrolment form. Only if you need to speak to a tutor during registration week do you need to come in to the University.

See course dates for term dates.

Classes have already started – is it too late to apply?

We prefer all students to start courses in week one, but exceptions may be made if places are still available and level allows. Please contact us below for information.

My course has more than one group – can I choose which one I attend?

Yes, you can choose, provided there are still spaces available at the time of application.

Attendance

Because of the nature of language learning, good attendance is expected on these courses. Most students find that they fall behind if they do not attend regularly.

For credited student, attendance is compulsory. If you attend fewer than 75% of classes, you may be refused an overall mark for the course unit. If you do not attend a formal assessment (such as a class test or assessed presentation) you must complete a mitigating circumstances form (see below).

Assessment and feedback

You will be continuously assessed throughout the course (homework, assignments, tests), usually during class time. Each course description has a breakdown of assessment requirements.

If you are taking the course for credit, all assessment is compulsory.

If you are a non-credited student, a member of staff or a member of the public, assessment is not compulsory. However, we strongly recommend that you do undertake the assessments, as they will help in monitoring your progress on the course. You will also be eligible for a course certificate at the end if you achieve a 40% pass mark (and 75% attendance).

You will receive feedback on your performance in your chosen language informally, following class activities, and formally following assessed tasks.

German LEAP courses use an official Goethe-Institut examination as part of the assessment for levels A1-C1 (not relevant for B2.1 - there is no Goethe exam at B2.1 level).

Assignments and homework

Because language learning is skill-based (rather like learning to play a musical instrument) you will be asked to do more work at home than is normal on lecture courses.

This work may take another 2 or three hours a week, and it is essential that it is done regularly. You will not be able to learn everything a week before an examination and regular independent learning must take place if you are to progress with your language studies.

Credited students should remember also that 20 credits are equivalent to 200 learning hours. As you have only 75 contact hours during the academic year, the other hours must be made up in your own time.

Do you run evening, Summer or intensive courses?

Most classes offer a class in the evening. Please check the timetables section of the language you wish to study to see the class times.

We sometimes run intensive (3-4 week) courses during the summer in certain languages. These will be announced on our website in May/June.

Facilities for language learning within the Language Centre

The Language Centre Open Learning Facilities (Tel: 0161 275 7960) are located in the basement of the South Wing of the Samuel Alexander building.

As part of your independent learning programme, you will have to use these facilities, which include satellite television, internet, foreign language films and videos, cassettes and CDs. You may also record directly from the video facilities. There is a recording room available for recording yourself. For more information, access the Language Centre resources web pages. It is a good idea to read these pages frequently, as the site is updated regularly.

Support for students with disabilities

The Disability Advisory and Support Service (DASS) provides support for current and prospective students who may need additional support.  Please register with the Service to see what support they can provide.

Complaints

If you are able, please talk to your class tutor about any concerns in the first instance. If you would prefer not to discuss it with your tutor, please contact the LEAP Director, John Morley (john.morley@manchester.ac.uk).

If you are still not satisfied after discussion with the Director, you may proceed with formal complaint procedures.