Top UK Universities Offering Pre-Masters Programs: 2024 Guide

UK Universities Offering Pre-Masters

Thinking about a master’s degree but worried your undergrad prep might not be enough? Feeling the need to solidify your knowledge and skills before diving into postgraduate studies? If so, a pre-master’s program could be the perfect stepping stone for you. There are several UK universities offering pre masters courses designed to bridge the gap between your undergraduate studies and the demands of a master’s program. These programs often come with affordable tuition fees and shorter durations, making them a highly accessible option.

Sound intriguing? We’ve compiled a list of the top UK universities offering pre-master’s programs, complete with details to help you choose the right fit for your academic journey. Keep reading to discover your launchpad to a fulfilling master’s degree!

What Is A Pre-Master’s Course?

A pre-master’s course specifically targets international students seeking to improve their skills before pursuing a master’s degree. It provides additional work on developing their English, research skills, academic writing, seminar skills, and other common skill sets necessary for a master’s program. It is a programme to prepare international students for a master’s degree in every adequate sense. 

Pre-master’s courses can be as short as ten weeks or as long as a year. They are typically 1 to 2 semesters long and aim to provide an essential grounding for proper postgraduate education. Students can expect to improve their English-speaking skills and study techniques. A pre-master gives international students the necessary boost to access equal opportunities as other students.

What Is The Eligibility For A Pre-Master’s?

Before exploring the UK universities offering pre masters, let us look at the eligibility criteria. Before you explore pre-master courses in UK universities, ensure that you fulfil the following requirements to apply.

  • You have acquired a bachelor’s degree from a recognised institute.
  • You may be required to submit proof of English proficiency tests.
  • The undergraduate degree does not satisfy the basic requirements needed for your desired master’s degree.
  • Your English skills require improvement.
  • Your studying, research and presentation skills require improvement.

Top UK Universities Offering Pre-masters

Here’s a list of the top UK universities offering pre-masters. Note that having a bachelor’s degree from a recognised university is mandatory for all courses.

UniversityCourse DurationAverage Tuition FeeEntry Requirements
Oxford Brookes University4 months£6,400IELTS: 7.0Age: 21
London Metropolitan University15 weeks£10,000IELTS: 5.5
University of NewcastleTwo trimesters£25,000IELTS: 5.5TOEFL: 50
Northumbria UniversityFour months£7,000IELTS: 6.0
Queen Mary University of LondonTwo years (integrated with master’s)£10,000IELTS: 5.5TOEFL: 72
Liverpool International College1 year£20,000IELTS: 5.5
University of Brighton2 – 3 Terms£14,500IELTS: 6.0
University of Surrey1 semester£15,000IELTS: 6.0

Oxford Brookes University

Furthermore, with global rankings among the top 50, Oxford Brookes University stands out as one of the best options in the UK for a pre-master’s course. Particularly noteworthy is their focus on study skills, which encompasses various research techniques and methodologies. The admission process for the January intake typically begins in September. Students can conveniently submit their applications through the university’s official website.

London Metropolitan University

London Metropolitan University has partnered with the Education Centre of Australia to ensure international students can access pathway programmes. These are structured to provide reading, listening, writing, speaking, presentation and research skills. Ranked among the top 1000 in the world, this university offers one of the best pre-master’s in the UK.

The University of Newcastle

University of Newcastle: One of the UK Universities Offering Pre-Masters

Offers three intakes in January, May and September, the University of Newcastle is one of the top UK universities offering pre-masters. Their programmes are provided in different subjects so students can select the one that suits them. Additionally, they focus on soft skills and English speaking for overall personality development. The university is ranked 134 by QS World Rankings in 2022 – 2023.

Northumbria University

Ranked 401 by the Times Higher Education, Northumbria University has pre-master’s courses in various specialisations. The universities design pre-master’s courses to bridge the gap between bachelor’s and master’s studies for international students. These courses typically begin enrolling students in September, with intake starting in January.

Queen Mary University Of London

This is one of the best universities that offer pre masters in uk. Provided as certificate programmes, the pre-master courses are subject-specific pathway programmes for developing essential academic skills in international students. Moreover, an extensive focus is given to improving English skills. Queen Mary University of London is ranked 19th in the United Kingdom by QS World Rankings.

Liverpool International College

This university offers guaranteed entry to the master’s programme to international students who complete their pre-master’s here. Most significantly, they have a one-on-one teaching methodology that allows the faculty members to focus on students’ individual needs. Commendably, Liverpool International College has been ranked 155 globally by the US News & World Report Rankings.

University of Brighton

In addition to offering a wide range of popular subject-specific pre-masters courses in design media, finance, business, tourism, science and engineering, the University of Brighton, ranked among the top 55 in the UK by QS World Rankings, is dedicated to fostering students’ well-rounded development essential for pursuing an advanced master’s degree.

University of Surrey

The University of Surrey is ranked among the top 200 universities globally by Times Higher Education. Their pre-master courses are designed to provide rapid progression in  standard skills so students can observe the difference right away. Furthermore, enrolment to this university depends solely on your performance in English tests. Thus, the pressure of fulfilling other prerequisites decreases significantly. 

Other UK Universities Offering Pre Masters

In addition to the above institutes, some other UK universities offering pre masters are as follows. Students can explore the different courses offered by them as well.

  • University of Aberdeen
  • University of Bath
  • Canterbury Christ Church University
  • Cardiff University
  • University of Chester
  • Durham University
  • University of East Anglia
  • University of Exeter
  • University of Huddersfield
  • King’s College London
  • University of Leicester
  • Nottingham Trent University
  • Royal Holloway, University of London
  • Regent’s University London
  • SOAS University of London
  • Swansea University
  • University College London
  • University of Sheffield
  • University of St Andrews
  • University of Sussex


1. Is pre-masters mandatory in the UK?

Pre masters in UK universities aren’t mandatory for postgraduate programmes. It is a course that international students can explore if they feel their undergraduate degree lacks the necessary skills required for a master’s.

2. How much does it cost to study a pre-master in the UK?

The average cost of pursuing pre masters in UK universities is around £11,737.

3. What is a pre-master in the UK?

Pre-masters is an intensive 1.5 or 2-semester programme that introduces students to the necessary skills for a master’s programme, for instance, English skills, studying techniques, academic research, etc. Once you complete the programme and achieve the required grades, you can enter your chosen postgraduate degree at the University.

4. What IELTS score is required for pre-masters?

UK universities typically require a minimum IELTS score of 5.5 to 6.0 for admission to a pre-master’s program.

5. What is the qualification for pre-masters?

Candidates applying for pre-master’s degrees must have an undergraduate degree from a recognised or accredited university. Certain universities may also have minimum grade requirements depending on the chosen course.

6. Is it possible to change universities after a pre-master course is completed?

Although it is possible to change universities after a pre-master’s course is completed, the procedure may be different for each university. Students are advised to inquire at the university for adequate information.

Thank you for reading our guide to the UK universities offering pre-masters! Let us know your thoughts and queries in the comments section below!

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UK Universities Offering Pre-Masters

Top UK Universities Offering Pre-Masters Programs: 2024 Guide

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