Academic Courses in the UK

Academic Courses in UK

Academic Courses

There are more than 25,000 academic courses offered at UK Universities annually. While this number of choices means that the right course in the UK is surely out there for you, it can be quite the task to find out which on it is. Any future international student who wishes to study at an academic course in the UK needs to find answers to the following questions.

  1. What subject do you want to study at in the UK?
  2. Which academic level (BA, MA, Ph.D.) do you want to study at in the UK?
  3. How do you wish to study your course in the UK?
  4. What are your future career opportunities?
  5. When do you want to study your course in the UK?

At first, answering all these questions may sound daunting to you, but there is no need to worry as you can rely on the assistance from UKStudy’s Elite team of educational advisers. We will guide you through every step of the way, so that you can study at your chosen course at any university you want, anywhere in the UK for free! All you have to do is take One Small Step and tell us what you need by filling out our rapid inquiry form right here.

How to Study at an Academic course in UK?

UK education system consists of 8 levels in total; and higher education courses which are taught in universities at Foundation, Bachelor, Master, and Ph.D degree courses, consist the final 4 levels. Some university courses may also ask students to pass a special pre-university course, unique to the UK called A-level, in order to be able to study at certain subjects like Medicine, Dentistry, etc. Any Inquiries Regarding admission to study a Bachelor degree course should be sent to the institutions At least twelve months before the proposed starting date of your chosen course. Most higher education institutions do not have a formal closing date for reception of applications; however, admission to a taught academic course may have to be submitted by a specific date which varies from course to course. It is also advisable to apply as early as possible given the closing dates and the possibility of competition for scholarships given by foundations, trusts and the universities themselves. For Admission to study at a Master’s Degree level course in the UK, a UK Bachelor’s degree in an appropriate subject, awarded with first or second-class Honours, or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard from a university or educational institution of university rank is required. Also, in case the US/Canadian marking scheme is used, a minimum Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.0 is required. Also providing proof of English language proficiency is a mandatory requirement for most UK universities. You can find out which universities allow students to study in the UK without IELTS or a similar English proficiency qualification by contacting our adviser here.

Academic Course Admission Requirements

There are certain requirements set by UK universities for students who wish to study an academic course at their facilities. Please note that some of these categories are optional depending on your chosen university. Application fee: All colleges require that you pay an application fee while applying. The fee amount will differ depending upon the college and course being applied to, so check with UKStudy advisers about different application fees.


A Statement of Purpose (SOP) is your introduction to the college and admission officers. It is always written in the first person and describes the reason for applying to a particular college. It needs to highlight why you are a perfect fit for the college and why the college should accept you. The style of writing could differ from formal to casual, but it is very important to note that it should reflect your personality as well.


 Essays are also required to be submitted by a prospective student to serve as their educational resume. Essays are an important part of the university admissions process. Students may be required to write one or two essays, along with a few optional essays too. Common topics include career aspirations, strengths and weaknesses, skills, experiences, and reasons for considering a particular school.


A letter of recommendation (LOR) is a reference letter written by a third party describing the qualities, characteristics, and capabilities of the prospective student to recommend him to the college in terms of that individual’s ability to perform a particular task or function. The third-party could be a professor, direct manager, etc.


Applications to all undergraduate courses are filled through Universities and Colleges Admission System or UCAS – a central organization in the UK that is responsible for receiving undergraduate applications and forwarding them to the respective institutions. UCAS allows you to apply to five Universities through a common form. £13 is the fees for one course or £24 for multiple courses and applications. The services offered by UCAS are designed for the admission to the September/October intake in the UK and you normally apply directly to a university for courses starting in January or February. If you require help with providing any of these documents, feel free to contact our advisers for tips and guidelines to ensure that you have the best chance for admission at your academic course in the UK. Click on the link below to get started.

Academic course Intake seasons

The final point to note is when to apply in order to study in UK universities. The main intake seasons for Academic courses are September/October and January/February in the UK. The services offered by UCAS are designed for the admission to the September or October intake in the UK.

UK Education System

Secondary School

GCSE – Year 10 and Year 11

In the last two years of secondary school (age 14 to 16), most pupils study for GCSE qualifications. Year 11 is an important year in the British Education system as students take their GCSE exams. Students are usually aged 15 or 16 in Year 11 and it is the last year of compulsory secondary education in the UK. GCSEs are usually taken over two years but the special Year 11 Pathway allows students to take five to seven GCSEs in one year only, contact us for more details.

Sixth Form – Year 12 and Year 13


The A-Level is a school leaving qualification offered by educational bodies in the United Kingdom and the British Crown dependencies to students upon completing secondary or pre-university education. At sixth form level, most pupils at the end of Year 13, take the Advanced Levels (A levels) exams, often in three or four subjects. The two years are often called Lower Sixth and Upper Sixth. A-levels are unique in providing an unrivaled depth of study in a few, specialist subjects. Therefore, after two years, students will have developed the kind of subject knowledge which is often only acquired during the first year of university education in many other countries. Additionally, A-levels also develop students’ broad study skills and their ability to think and argue critically. They prepare the students fully for the challenge of studying at world-class universities. It’s also important to note that Advanced Level courses are the only possible route for students who wish to study Medicine and Dentistry in the UK. The Advanced Level course is comprised of two years, O-Level (the first year) and A-Level (the second year). Students usually learn 5-6 modules in detail, which would give them the possibility of entering higher ranked universities in the UK, based on the mark they achieve.

International Foundation Year (IFY)

International students who are normally 17 years of age and have successfully completed 11 or 12 years of school education with acceptable marks in their leaving examinations are eligible to attend an International foundation program. This program is designed and intended for those international students who have the potential and motivation to succeed, but do not yet have the formal qualifications required for entry to a university undergraduate degree program. Usually, students with 11 years of academic education are suitable to study the International Foundation Year and then progress to university level. In addition, mature students and those with an educational gap can study the International Foundation Year.

Higher Education

Higher Education

UK universities and colleges offer thousands of top-notch courses, leading to qualifications that are respected by employers and academics worldwide; entry to British universities is based on the competitive entry process. Every UK higher education course sets its own unique entry requirements. These entry requirements are there to ensure that you have the right skills and knowledge to successfully complete the course. UKStudy advisers can help you with all the information you need, please contact us now.

International Year 1

The International Year One is a carefully designed course for students who are overqualified for a foundation year but under-qualified for direct entry to the first year of an undergraduate degree. It aims to provide you with the academic knowledge, study skills, and the English language proficiency to succeed as a second-year undergraduate degree student. There are very limited choices of subjects available as this route has only been implemented in the UK education system since 5 years ago. But, thousands of students have already benefited from this intensive course to enter the second year of the university directly. The length of this course is 12 months and usually, 9-12 modules are covered during this time.

Bachelor’s or undergraduate degree

The Bachelor’s degree is designed to help you gain a thorough understanding of a subject. Full-time, this normally takes three years to complete (four in some cases). There are different titles of degrees, such as Bachelor of Arts (B.A), Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.), Bachelor of Education (B.Ed.) and Bachelor of Engineering (B.Eng.).


This course is designed for students planning on undertaking a Master’s degree; the course offers a unique experience that combines English language training, research, presentation and study skills with optional GMAT classes. This course is usually 3-6 months based on the student’s requirements and have three to four entry points during the academic year. In most cases when the student studies this course at bespoke college, academic tutors will help them choose and apply for the right postgraduate course and university. However, universities will review these applications on a case-by-case basis and progression is not guaranteed.

Master or Postgraduate degree

A master’s degree can be a viable option for those who want to further their knowledge of a particular subject, explore other areas of interest after having completed an undergraduate degree, or improve their career prospects. Master’s degrees typically take one year to complete; most master’s courses lead to an MA (Master of Arts) or MSc (Master of Science) qualification, but there are also subject-specific qualifications including MEng (Master of Engineering), MFA (Master of Fine Arts), LLM (Master of Laws), MArch (Master of Architecture), and more.


At the moment, this course is being offered at very limited institutions. The Pre-PhD Program offers comprehensive preparation for international students pursuing a Ph.D. or Doctoral degree in the UK. The program consists of intensive English classes combined with research methods, study skill training, and “Doctoral Thesis authoring”, to ensure optimum achievement at the actual university course. Students receive the best possible preparation for their Ph.D. course, with highly structured exam training for IELTS and a wide range of specialist modules in their related field of study. The “Doctoral Thesis authoring” module also allows them to select and develop their research field, which will ultimately benefit them in their thesis project. The course can be 6 or 9 months based on students’ preferences and needs.

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