UCL Centre for Languages & International Education (CLIE)


International Pre-Master's

The UCL International Pre-Master’s (IPM) is a preparatory course for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL or elsewhere in the UK. The IPM is a stimulating and academically challenging course which provides you with the levels of English language and academic skills required to succeed at graduate level.

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September 2022 and January 2023 entry

We will be offering two course lengths in the 2022/23 academic year:

  • September 2022 – June 2023
  • January – June 2023

We are currently finalising details (dates, entry requirements, etc.) and will update this website by the end of February. 

Application will open late April.

Register your interest and we will email you once this website has been updated and when application is open. 

The current information on this website relates to January 2022 entry.

January 2022 entry

We are planning for the course beginning in January to be taught on the UCL campus. If there are going to be any changes to the teaching and learning due to Coronavirus, we will update this page to reflect those changes and all applicants and offer holders will be notified.

Entry requirements

You will need to provide a certificate from an English language test showing that your level of English meets our requirements. The certificate must be less than two years old from your IPM start date.

Minimum English language requirements

ComponentIELTS Academic Version / IELTS indicatorTOEFL iBT / TOEFL iBT Home EditionTOEFL ITP Plus for ChinaPearson PTECambridge English Scale
Overall score5.57254351162

We may need to request additional information from you in order to assess your suitability for the course.

*For TOEFL ITP Plus for China, we require access to the recording of your speaking interview for assessment.

Minimum academic requirements

You must hold a degree with at least a lower second-class (2:2) or the equivalent from your country. To find out about equivalent qualifications and grades for your country, please visit the UCL International Students website.

Alternatively, if you hold a conditional or unconditional offer for a Master’s degree at a UK university, this can be used to fulfil the academic requirement of the IPM.  

Please note that you must have completed your studies before applying. Your university transcript must show your final overall mark or your Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA).

Course benefits

The UCL International Pre-Master’s helps facilitate the smooth transition to a Master’s degree at a leading UK university by:

  • Improving your academic English language skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing to the level required of Master’s students in the UK.
  • Developing your ability to critically analyse, question, and argue, both generally and within your individual discipline, as well as to carry out independent research.
  • Providing opportunities for extensive practice in real academic tasks that you will typically undertake on graduate degree programmes in the UK.
  • Familiarising you with the UK academic culture - its expectations and practices both generally and within your individual discipline.
  • Developing your ability to reflect on your educational experiences so that you are better able to meet the challenges of postgraduate study.  
  • Enhancing your independent learning skills and learner autonomy in preparation for the demands of studying an academic discipline at a UK university.

With an average of 14 students per class, and regular one-to-one tutorials, you will receive personalised support and guidance, including assistance with your application for entry to Master’s programmes.

Course structure

You will take three compulsory modules that introduce you to the English language, research and academic skills necessary to succeed on a Master’s degree at UCL or another leading UK university.


Module one: English for Academic Purposes

This module will develop your ability to acquire, build and communicate knowledge in academic contexts through the skills of reading, listening, writing and speaking.

Module two: Research, Argumentation and Criticality

This module examines research methods used at graduate level, whilst developing your critical, analytical and argumentation skills and improving your language proficiency to support these.

Module three: Discipline-specific Research, Argumentation and Criticality

This module builds on the first two modules by further developing your research, critical, analytical and argumentation skills in your discipline or one closely related to it.

This involves looking at what knowledge is in that context and how that knowledge is constructed and communicated in a discipline. Options may include:

  • Architecture & Urban Design
  • Business & Management
  • Education
  • Finance, Accounting & Economics
  • Humanities & Social Sciences
  • Law
  • Life Sciences & Medical Sciences

Teaching & Learning

Classes and teaching methods

We like to keep classes small for maximum engagement, so there will be an average of 14 students in a group. Our classes will be face-to-face and are interactive, so there are opportunities to practice, collaborate with other students, and ask questions.

One-to-one tutorials

In addition to classes, one of our teachers will be your assigned personal tutor for the duration of the course. They will usually meet with you every week to provide encouragement, discuss your coursework, and monitor your progress throughout the course.


Your weekly timetable will typically feature:

  • 10 hours of scheduled face-to-face classes in the morning
  • 4.5 hours working collaboratively in your study group in the afternoon
  • 0.5 hours of one-to-one tutorials
  • You will also work independently on set tasks for up to 1.5 hours a day.

Please see our sample timetable to get an idea of your working week.


You will be assessed by a combination of coursework and examination, which will cover the four skills of reading, listening, writing and speaking as well as critical thinking, argumentation and reflection. 

Typical assessment tasks include essays, seminar discussions, oral presentations, reflective writing, reading academic articles, and listening to lectures.

Teaching team

You will be taught by a number of approachable and highly-qualified UCL academic staff with experience and expertise in preparing international students for graduate degree level study.

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The qualification

The UCL International Pre-Master’s qualification can be used to fulfil the language requirement of any degree programme at UCL.

It cannot be used to fulfil the academic requirement of your future Master’s degree.

If your ambition is to study at UCL, you are strongly advised to check if the results of your first degree meet the entry requirements of the Master’s degree you wish to apply for.

Fees and expenses

January 202219 weeks£13,600

Course fees include the costs of all course tuition (including course books), access to the UCL IT network with Internet and e-mail facilities and borrowing and research rights at UCL libraries. Details of how to pay your fees can be found in the How to Apply section.

Field trips and excursions

During the course, you will be encouraged to go on trips and outings to places of interest in and around London for social and academic purposes. As far as possible, the cost of trips organised by CLIE is covered by the Centre, however, you will be responsible for travel costs for the visits. An Oyster card can help you save time and money when traveling around London.

Living expenses

In addition to paying your tuition fees, you will also need to consider how you are going to meet your living costs while you are studying. Funds will be required to cover the costs of your accommodation, food and travel, as well as other costs associated with your studies, such as books, and everyday life, such as clothes and entertainment.

All students should be aware that they will probably incur initial expenses, such as a deposit for accommodation and purchase of books. International students may also need to buy clothing suitable for the British climate.

To learn more, please see the cost of studying at UCL guide.

Further information

Term dates

First IPM TermMonday 10 January to Friday 1 April 2022
Second IPM TermMonday 25 April to Friday 10 June 2022

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How to apply

Find out how you can apply for the UCL International Pre-Master's course, including the documents you will need to submit, how to pay and important visa information.

Abdullah UCL International Pre-Master's student

Student views and testimonies

Our students come from a diverse range of backgrounds and education systems from around the world. Find out what IPM alumni thought about the course and how it helped them prepare for graduate level study.

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UCL International Pre-Master’s students have gone on to study a wide range of Master's programmes at UCL and other leading UK universities.

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A number of different types of accommodation are available to CLIE students, the majority of which is within 10–30 minutes’ walk of the main campus.