UG Advanced Diploma in British & European Studies Pre-Master's Course

Course details

Pre-Master's Course 2019-20

The UG Advanced Diploma in British and European Studies course is a full-time, year-long pre-master's programme which aims to prepare students for graduate studies at leading universities.

From day one, we teach students how to think independently and help you to develop your critical and analytical thinking skills.

It combines courses in the humanities and social sciences with an intensive English language and academic literacy programme and is suitable for graduates of any discipline.

Our course brochure can be viewed online.

British & European Studies

You study all of the following:

Michaelmas Term (7 October - 13 December 2019)

Hilary Term (13 January - 13 March 2020)

Trinity Term (13 April - 12 June 2020)

English language & literacy module

You will take the following English language and academic literacy classes*:

  • Academic literacy (essay writing and study skills)
  • Critical reading
  • Listening and speaking skills
  • English grammar
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Digital literacy
  • Planning, researching and writing a Master's dissertation
  • Individual weekly academic writing tutorial

*If your first language is English, or you are approaching native speaker level in the language (IELTS 7.5 and above) you would be required to take an additional academic course each term (from a choice of over 60) and would also be required to write an essay of 3,000 words on your chosen option. In addition, you would normally be required to follow courses in academic literacy and critical thinking over two terms.

Please note that the above academic/language options may change from year to year.

Graduate applicants

If you are intending to apply for admission to a Master’s degree on successful completion of the course you should hold a good first degree in any subject. Applicants should note that successful completion of the pre-Master's course does not guarantee progression to Master's degree courses at Oxford for which separate application is necessary.

Non-graduate applicants

We also welcome applications from those with a strong interest in the civilisation and culture of Britain and Europe who may have no formal qualifications but who would like to follow an intellectually stimulating and engaging interdisciplinary course. In such cases, we would look for previous experience in the study of subjects such as history, politics, history of art, literature and sociology at a level equivalent to that of the first two years of an undergraduate degree. We may also ask for evidence of written work. Importantly, we are looking for a high level of commitment, as well as the capacity for intellectual growth and development. Admission will be based on information provided in the application form and at interview.

If you have any questions concerning your suitability for admission and would like to discuss your interest in the course with us, please contact our programme administrator at or call us on 01865 280360.

Academic and Cultural Orientation Week: 30 September - 4 October 2019

To ensure you settle into university life at Oxford, our Academic and Cultural Orientation Week has been designed to offer you a smooth transition not only to your full-time academic studies, but also to help you integrate successfully into everyday life in the UK.

Here are some of the sessions you can expect:

  • Oxford and its university
  • Cultural adjustment
  • Introduction to British culture and values
  • Self and time management skills
  • Accessing student support services 
  • Writing a personal statement
  • Graduate studies at Oxford
  • Interpreting assessment criteria and feedback
  • Sourcing scholarly literature online
  • Settling in to life in Oxford

After your classes we invite you to join us for:

  • Walking tour of Oxford
  • Welcome afternoon tea
  • Bodleian Library tour
  • Choral evensong at Christ Church
  • Welcome dinner
  • Pre-Master's students' mixer
  • Pub quiz

You'll also have an opportunity to participate in the University's Freshers' Fair.


Visit our Facebook page

Read our course brochure for more information

Weekly individual academic writing tutorial

You will benefit from a weekly one-to-one academic writing tutorial throughout the year.

Weekly individual academic tutorial

At the end of your second term and during your final term, in addition to your weekly individual academic writing tutorial, you will also receive a weekly academic tutorial to guide you in the preparation of an extended essay of 5,000 words in an academic subject of your choice.

Course books and materials

All course books and study materials are included in your course fees.

College Associate Membership (Optional)

Associate membership of one of the University's 38 colleges enables you to enjoy the unique social and intellectual life of an Oxford college and to use a wide range of facilities which vary from college to college, but usually include:

  • Common Room
  • Dining Hall
  • Library
  • IT facilities
  • Café/Coffee Shop
  • Gym and sporting facilities
  • Bar

Requests for college associate membership must be made at the time of application and cannot be guaranteed. As associate memberships are limited in number, early application is strongly advised. For additional information on college associate membership and related fee, please contact our course administrator.

British Heritage & Culture

During your year at Oxford University, to help you discover the real Britain, we include a series of study visits and cultural events at no extra cost such as:

  • Houses of Parliament
  • Ashmolean Museum
  • Tate Britain - The EY Exhibition: Van Gogh and Britain
  • Royal Shakespeare Company, Stratford-upon-Avon - Molière's Tartuffe 
  • Royal Opera House, Covent Garden - Tchaikovsky's Queen of Spades
  • Royal Ascot

Please note that places visited and cultural events are subject to change.

Frequently asked questions

Where do students go after completing their pre-Master's course?

One of the most frequently asked questions by potential applicants concerns student destinations following successful completion of a pre-Master's course. The majority choose to follow postgraduate courses at leading universities. Students who have recently completed our pre-Master's courses have been offered places on graduate programmes at the following universities for 2017-18:

  • University of Oxford
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of St Andrews
  • London School of Economics
  • ETH Zurich
  • University of Amsterdam
  • Humboldt University, Berlin

See our most frequently asked questions. If you cannot find an answer to your question, by all means get in touch with us by phone (+44 1865 280360) or by email (

Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements for the UG Advanced Diploma in British and European Studies course but, ideally, you should have study experience at undergraduate level or equivalent. Applicants who intend to apply for admission to graduate courses following successful completion of the pre-Master's course should hold a good first degree at the point of application to this programme.

If you have any questions regarding your suitability for this course, please don't hesitate to email us at or call us on +44 1865 280360.


Upon successful course completion, students will be awarded a University of Oxford Undergraduate Advanced Diploma in British and European Studies.

Assessment methods

Assessment for the Oxford pre-Master's UG Advanced Diploma in British and European Studies consists of continuous assessment in the form of coursework assignments and seminar presentations for both English language and academic subjects.

Michaelmas Term 2019
Two academic essays of 2,000 words
A number of short English language tasks

Hilary Term 2020
Three academic essays each of 2,000 words OR Two academic essays and one presentation
One academic literacy essay of 2,000 words and a number of short English language tasks

Trinity Term 2020
One academic essay of 2,000 words
One academic essay of 4,000 - 5,000 words
A number of short English language tasks

What our former students say about the course

'The British and European Studies course is an incredibly well-thought out programme. It has enabled me to improve my academic literacy skills and to immerse myself in European and British culture. It has also given me the confidence I need to take a postgraduate course in English…Many thanks for an enriching experience.' (Rita, Brazil)

'Thank you for an inspiring academic course! I've learned a lot about diverse disciplines, language and culture. The tutors are great and Oxford will be forever in my heart.' (Alex, Netherlands)

‘…An unforgettable programme! The holistic combination of interesting classroom learning and exciting field trips made the subjects taught come alive. Overall a thoroughly recommended course!’ (Ryal, Singapore)

'The British and European Studies programme is truly unique. The course offers a broad range of classes taught by wonderfully supportive instructors who instilled me with the confidence and knowledge I needed to enter my Master's programme feeling fully prepared. I feel so lucky to have been a student on this course and wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone looking to gain the essential tools needed to further their academic careers.’ (Ellarie, USA)

‘I have truly enjoyed my experience at Oxford and would highly recommend this program. Thank you for this wonderful and challenging learning experience!’ (Kleitja, Canada)


Oxford offers students a wide variety of accommodation options which include:

  • College (in-College and in properties across Oxford)
  • University (single rooms and flats)
  • Private (flat-share, flats and houses)

Please note that it becomes increasingly difficult to secure accommodation in Oxford from late spring onwards. Although we are happy to help provide you with suggestions for accommodation before and after arrival, securing appropriate accommodation is ultimately the responsibility of each student.


Students on the pre-Master's UG Advanced Diploma in British and European Studies course have access to a number of libraries across the University including the unrivalled resources of the Bodleian Library.

Course Fees

If you are a Home (UK) or EU student who has not already completed a first degree, your tuition fee will be £9,250.

If you are a Home, EU, or non-EU student and already hold a first degree, your tuition fee will be £16,715.

College Associate Membership Fee (Optional)

The College Associate Membership fee is £3,300 (approx).

Apply for this course

There are no formal entry requirements for the UG Advanced Diploma in British and European Studies course but, ideally, you should have study experience at undergraduate level or equivalent.

You should email us

  • a completed application form (available from the apply button on this page)
  • a personal statement of 500 words (max.)
  • a copy/copies of your university transcript(s) and/or any other relevant certificates
  • a copy of your IELTS (Academic) Test certificate (if applicable). If your first language is not English* you must take an IELTS (Academic) Test and achieve a minimum overall score of 6.5.
  • a digital passport photograph
  • the official email address of an academic or professional referee

*If you have been educated through the medium of English at secondary school, have studied at tertiary level in an English-speaking country or have completed a distance-learning degree programme (or equivalent) in English, the IELTS Test requirement may be waived. Please contact us to discuss your individual circumstances.

You should also send to the address below:

  • your university/college transcript(s) and/or any other certificates

When we have received your completed application form and all related documentation, you will be contacted by the Programme Administrator who will arrange a telephone interview for you.

The deadline for applications is 15 August 2019.

Contact us

  • Phone: + 44 (0)1865 280360
  • Email:
  • Skype: oxfordcourses
  • Post: British & European Studies, OUDCE, 1 Wellington Square, Oxford, OX1 2JA, UK
  • Facebook page

If you have any questions about this course, please email