Communication for University Success

Applying for and being accepted to university is a tenuous process for every sixth former. UCAS applications, references, writing what might be your first meaningful CV is daunting at the best of times. For students living in the UK who moved here during their school career, applying for university has a few extra challenges.

Students born in countries where the main language isn’t English may have to prove their academic English fluency before being accepted to university. Usually the English Language GCSE is sufficient, but some universities want applicants’ English GCSE to be 7 or higher, particularly for communication-intensive courses like medicine and law. Students who may have been in the UK for a short time before GCSEs may only achieve 4s or 5s, which frankly, is a wonderful achievement for that time in their lives. So what can they do to ensure acceptance to university, particularly because English isn’t required at A-Level?

The IELTs course – International English Language Testing course – is specifically designed to support applicants who want to pursue higher or further education. This course supports and teaches academic communication and thinking skills, with a specific focus on formal speaking, listening to lectures, analysing and writing about data, and reading academic research. It teaches higher level grammar and punctuation skills, so you can impress your first-year professors with your writing skills, and not be placed in entrance communication courses, or taking a foundation year.

Don’t worry about using up an A-level space to take up this opportunity, IELTs is offered during core sessions. For more information, or if you think IELTs may be right for you, please email Mrs. Zimmerman at