Skip to content

Pre-Sessional English - Research (PSER) Programme

 If English is not your first language, you may need to join a PSER programme before starting your Research Degree at De Montfort University. This is a specialist programme to prepare international research degree students for research study in UK higher education. The Pre-Sessional English - Research (PSER) Programme can only be used in conjunction with a campus based PhD. It cannot be used with an International PhD (IPhD).

Learning outcomes & Course duration

The PSER programme is a campus based programme. It is 8-weeks of intensive study in English for Academic Purposes (EAP), aimed at prospective students who need to provide evidence of English ability to begin a PhD at De Montfort University. The programme is a mixture of live taught sessions and guided asynchronous study.

The overall aims of the PSER Programme are for students to:

  • Develop ability in the four language skills of Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking, to the level required for a PhD, equivalent to IELTS 6.5 overall and no less than 5.5 in each component.
  • Develop a vocabulary which is appropriate for various academic contexts, both spoken and written.
  • Develop a range of study skills necessary for PhD study.
  • Develop an awareness of UK Academic Culture, including key issues such as critical thinking, plagiarism and autonomy.

Entry Criteria

  • A UKVI IELTS (Academic) known as a Secure English Language Test (SELT) certificate at 6.0 or equivalent, with no component below 5.0 and shall have been taken not more than two years prior to entry.

Benefits of completing the PSER

  • Develop your ability to write in academic contexts.
  • Develop a range of essential reading skills for PhD.
  • Develop your speaking and listening skills.
  • Gain insight into the UK research degree lifecycle.
  • Improve your academic study skills.
  • Increase your English language skills, including improved academic vocabulary.

 Programme Fees

The PSER programme is £2,000 for academic year 2021/22. You must make full payment before the programme begins. You must also make a deposit payment of 50% of your Research Degree fees. This information will be outlined within your offer letter. Payments need to be made by 6 June 2022.

 Deadline & How to apply

Please note that the PSER is not currently recruiting. Future intake dates will be posted here later in the year. For further information on the PSER, please email the PGR Admissions team at