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Studying in the UK

Last updated: 03/10/2022 16:47

You may find the pace and level of academic work higher than you have been used to when you start your course, but support is available to help you improve your study skills.

Personal tutor

Your personal tutor should be your first point of contact. This is a member of teaching staff within your School who will be able to help you if you have any academic, personal or health concerns that are affecting your studies. They may also refer you to one of the other university advice staff if they feel you would benefit from speaking to a specialist. Your personal tutor should arrange to see you at least three times each year, but you can also arrange a meeting with them.

English language support

If English is not your first language, you may find you need extra support understanding lectures, seminars and completing assignments. We offer a variety of in-sessional English language and study skills courses specially designed to help you succeed.

Some Schools have their own programmes of language and study skills support for international students which are specifically developed to meet the needs of a particular course or subject area.

Differences in studying in the UK

Prepare for success is a free interactive website for international students that provides examples of what it is like to study at a UK university.

You are likely to find that some things are similar, but many things will be different. Many people find that studying at university is a new challenge, and they need to find different ways of working and studying effectively.

As with all aspects of life in a new country and culture, it is important to keep an open mind and be flexible. If you are unsure about anything, ask your personal tutor, or someone in your School.

In the UK students often work independently, studying on their own for long periods of time. To get the greatest benefit from your course you need to organise your time carefully, as simply attending lectures will not be enough for you to pass your degree.

At the start of your course you should know how much work you are expected to do and the important dates for completing it. Undergraduate and taught postgraduate students are given a School Course Handbook which will outline what is expected of you. It will give information on:

  • The course content
  • How the course will be taught, for example, by lectures, seminars, group work etc.
  • How you will be assessed, for example, by examination and/or written work and what proportion of your overall mark a piece of work or examination represents
  • When the assessments will take place, and what marks do you need to obtain to pass the course.

You can also access online advice about improving your study skills and revision techniques.