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University Language Centre

Frequently asked questions

Which pre-sessional course can I attend?

The decision on whether to allow you to study on a pre-sessional course rather than take a recognised English language qualification lies with your academic school.

You should contact your School or refer to your main course offer letter before applying for the pre-sessional course to check if you are eligible. See the University study pages for further information. 

What if I don’t have an IELTS?

In order to apply for a pre-sessional course you must have a valid IELTS certificate. Please see our entry requirements page for further information.

What if I have an offer for another University?

In order to apply for a pre-sessional course you must have an offer for an undergraduate or postgraduate course at the University of Manchester.

I have an unconditional offer. Can I attend a pre-sessional course?

Students who have an unconditional offer for an undergraduate or postgraduate course at the University of Manchester are eligible for the three week pre-sessional course.

Places on our other courses are limited and priority must be given to those who need to attend a pre-sessional course to meet their offer conditions.

How do I apply for the pre-sessional course?

You must submit an application online - remember to use the same email address and password as the one on your main course offer letter and apply as a returning applicant.

More information can be found on our how to apply pages.

What is my University of Manchester ID number?

This is indicated on your main course offer letter. Your pre-sessional ID number should be the same ID number. Please check and inform us if it is different so we can merge the records and process your application.

Undergraduate applicants should check with their admissions contact at the main school for confirmation of their University of Manchester ID number which is different from a UCAS ID.

Can I apply via an agent?

Yes, you are welcome to apply via an agent. You must ensure that the preferred email address in your application is the agent’s email address, and all communications to us are sent from your agent.

If you have hired an agent to apply on your behalf you should always contact your agent in the first instance as we will only deal directly with your agent. Please note that if you have an agent acting on your behalf you should speak directly to your agent and request that they contact us with any query. 

How do I know my pre-sessional application has been received?

You will receive an automatic acknowledgment email which confirms your application has been received. Please note that the pre-sessional course start date on this email will display as follows:

PS10a – 4 April

PS20 – 4 April

PS10b – 6 June

PS5 – 8 August

PS3 – 8 August

If you have any queries you can contact presessional@manchester.ac.uk and quote your University of Manchester ID number.

My acknowledgment email shows a different start date. Which is correct?

The pre-sessional course start date on this email will display as follows:

PS10a – 4 April

PS20 – 4 April

PS10b – 6 June

PS5 – 8 August

PS3 – 8 August

The correct start dates for the pre-sessional courses are:

PS10a - 18 April 2017 to 23 June 2017

PS20 - 18 April 2017 to 8 September 2017

PS10b - 3 July 2017 to 8 September 2017

PS5 - 7 August 2017 to 8 September 2017

PS3 - 21 August 2017 to 8 September 2017

What is the application deadline?

PS20/PS10a - Friday 24 February 2017

PS10b - Friday 12 May 2017

PS5 - Friday 16 June 2017

PS3 - Friday 30 June 2017

Please note that you may also have a deadline to accept your offer with your academic school. Failure to accept your place by the deadline may lead to your academic offer and pre-sessional offer being withdrawn.

How long does it take to process my application?

We aim to process your application within three working days. During busy times, or in the event that further information is required from your academic school it can take up to ten working days. If you have not received a reply after ten working days please contact us.

How do I pay?

Once we have considered your application we will contact you with information on how to make payment via our secure on-line shop.

I’m a sponsored student. What do I do about payment?

Once we have considered your application we will contact you by email. Please reply and indicate that you are a sponsored student. We will email you a conditional offer letter. Once we receive your official sponsor letter we can send you an unconditional offer. You must provide us with a valid financial guarantee 20 days before the start of the course.

More information is available on the My Manchester sponsorship pages

What should my financial guarantee include?

The letter must include the following information:

  • must be addressed to The University of Manchester
  • must be produced on official company letter headed paper from the sponsoring organisation/embassy and must state clearly:
    • contact telephone numbers / fax / email
    • the full name of the student to be sponsored
    • the title of the student's programme of study
    • the student's year of study or years of study that the sponsorship will apply to
    • a statement that the student's tuition fees (£ amount) or proportion of their fees (£ amount) will be paid upon receipt of an invoice from the University
    • if you have government funding you should also provide a letter from the appropriate London Embassy

More information is available on the My Manchester sponsorship pages

I have made payment. Do I need to email you?

No, you do not need to email us. We receive an automatic notification once your payment is received. You should receive your unconditional offer letter within three working days of making payment.

I haven’t received an unconditional offer letter

Unless you are a sponsored student you do not need an unconditional offer letter. You will receive an email from us to confirm your offer is unconditional.

For international students, the Certificate of Acceptance to Study (CAS) you receive will confirm you hold an unconditional offer and this is sufficient for immigration purposes.

When do I get my CAS?

In order to receive your CAS you must have accepted your unconditional offer and have completed the Pre-CAS survey, which you will receive with your unconditional offer email.

A CAS will only be issued three months before the course start date. If you are eligible for a joint CAS, the academic school which you are studying with will issue your CAS. If you are eligible for a CAS to cover the Pre-sessional course only, this will be issued by the University Language Centre

We aim to start issuing CASs as follows:

PS10b - from 4 April onwards

PS5 - from 3 May onwards

PS3 - Issued by the main school; please contact your academic school for timescales. 

Please note that we experience a very high number of applications and enquiries from April to September. We will endeavour to provide you with a CAS in a timely manner.  Your patience is appreciated during this busy period. 

You will not receive your CAS until you have confirmed the Draft CAS.

Will I receive a joint CAS for both the pre-sessional and main course?

Students who have a place on the three week pre-sessional course will be issued with a Joint CAS for both the pre-sessional course and the degree level course.

If you still have outstanding academic offer conditions for your degree level course or your degree level course requires you to “successfully complete the pre-sessional course” you will be issued with two separate CAS’s – one for the pre-sessional course and one for the degree level course.

Students who are issued with two separate CAS’s will be required to have UKVI IELTS. Students who are issued with a joint CAS to cover both the pre-sessional and the degree-level course can apply for pre-sessional using UKVI IELTS, Non-UKVI IELTS, TOEFL IBT and Pearson PTE. Further information can be found on our entry requirements page. 

If you have outstanding academic offer conditions, we recommend that you take UKVI IELTS to ensure you can obtain a visa for the pre-sessional course.

How and when do I book accommodation?

Once you receive an unconditional offer for a pre-sessional course you can book your pre-sessional accommodation directly with the accommodation office.

If I attend a pre-sessional course do I still have to retake IELTS?

This is the school’s decision and often they will include this in their offer letter. If you’re not sure please contact the main school.

What if I apply for a pre-sessional course, then later improve my IELTS?

If you inform us that you wish to reduce the length of your course or cancel the course, we can transfer your payment to the balance of your academic course as long as we receive notice in writing at least 20 working days before the start of the course. After this date, a £200 administration fee will apply. For full details please refer to the pre-sessional booking conditions.

What if I have an emergency and need to cancel the course?

You will need to let us know in writing that you wish to cancel, and state the reason why you wish to cancel. Our booking conditions would apply.

Can I arrive late for my pre-sessional course?

Attendance on the pre-sessional course is compulsory to successfully complete the course. If you think you are going to arrive late you must contact us in writing, as soon as possible to request permission and explaining the reason for your delay. We can then confirm if it is possible for you to start late and make the relevant changes to your CAS. Arriving late for your course can affect your immigration status and your main course application.