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Coventry University launches online pre-sessional English program on FutureLearn to support international students

Wednesday 29th April 2020, London, UK: Coventry University is launching a Pre-sessional English Online Award on global social learning platform,, in order to help international students build the English language and academic skills needed for successful university study in the UK. 

The Pre-sessional English Online Award (PSE), delivered by experts at Coventry University, will allow students to develop their reading, writing, listening and critical thinking skills and explore language specific to higher education in the UK. Learners will also gain insights into the experience of studying at a UK university and will familiarise themselves with British academic culture. 

The PSE Online Award is delivered over 14 weeks and is made up of a series of short online courses. During the program, students will receive support and feedback from tutors and will have the opportunity to engage with students around the world whilst earning a qualification that provides a 0.5 IELTS uplift. The PSE Online Award is achieved on successful completion of all assessments and will equip students with the English language skills required for university study in the UK. 

Initially piloted in autumn 2018, Coventry University’s PSE Online Award was the first ever fully online-pre sessional course. The program is now open for enrolment enquiries and will begin on 18 May 2020 for those starting a degree in September 2020, while the following run will commence on 7 September 2020 for those starting a degree in January 2021. 

Nigel Smith, Director of Content at FutureLearn, commented: “Universities and students all over the world are facing disruption to their curricula and terms, which is why it is crucial that they have access to additional support and resources to ensure their education keeps moving forward.  Many international students especially will not be able to physically attend the vital pre-sessional courses they need to start and continue on their educational journeys. At FutureLearn, we are proud to work with partners like Coventry University in order to provide that support for students and other universities, and ensure the UK’s higher educational institutions can continue to deliver a world-class experience for students.” 

Mary Forbes, Pre-sessional Courses Director at Coventry University said: “This is the first wholly online pre-sessional course to be delivered anywhere in the world. We designed the course from the ground up to focus on engaging students through interactive tasks and activities, opportunities to interact meaningfully with other learners and their tutor, and the use of world class media. The course integrates powerful tools from our virtual learning environment into the FutureLearn platform to create a sleek, modern-looking and easily navigable course that learners have given a 100% satisfaction rate. The PSE Online Award is delivered and assessed wholly online and the sound pedagogic principles underlying the course have delivered excellent outcomes for learners since its pilot delivery in autumn 2018. We are looking forward to welcoming and working with our newest cohort of learners from around the world this May and helping them to achieve their educational goals.”

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Notes to editors

About FutureLearn

Here at FutureLearn, our purpose is to transform access to education. We do that by partnering with over a quarter of the world’s top universities to support over 11 million learners across the globe to develop skills and achieve their personal and professional goals. We’re a leading social learning platform founded in December 2012 by The Open University and are now jointly owned by The Open University in the UK and The SEEK Group. We use design, technology and partnerships to create enjoyable, credible and flexible short online courses and microcredentials, as well as undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. In addition to top universities, we also partner with leading organisations such as Accenture, the British Council, CIPD, Raspberry Pi and Health Education England (HEE), as well as being involved in government-backed initiatives to address skills gaps such as The Institute of Coding and the National Centre for Computing Education.

About Coventry University 

* Described in the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2019 as “one of the most innovative modern universities, bold with its vision of what the 21st century student experience should be”, Coventry’s student satisfaction levels and teaching quality have been rated among the best in the UK. Coventry has been ranked one of the top 15 UK universities for 5 years running in the Guardian University Guide, given a five star overall rating by the QS Stars award system, and achieved a gold rating in the UK government’s Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) in 2017.


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