Postgraduate Degree Pathways

Our range of Master’s Preparation qualifications will fully prepare you for a master’s degree at a world-class university. Whether you are looking for a short Master’s Pre-Sessional course or a longer Master’s Preparation course, our qualifications will equip you with the necessary academic and English language skills to get into your chosen university and help you succeed once you get there.



Successful completion guarantees* you a place on a master’s degree


91% of NCUK students successfully complete their master’s degree in just 1 year


89% of NCUK students achieve a pass or above at master’s degree level

Benefits at a glance

  • Designed exclusively for international students
  • Recognised by leading universities in the UK, Australia and New Zealand
  • Choose from over 2,500 master’s degrees in a wide range of subjects
  • Improve your English language ability and enhance your academic skills
  • English for Academic Purposes module is recognised for visa purposes at NCUK Universities
  • Gain valuable master’s degree practice including group work and research skills
  • A unique application service: submit one application to NCUK and we’ll apply to universities on your behalf

Our Master’s Preparation qualifications are designed to enable you to study your master’s degree with confidence and succeed within the optimal degree length at university.

What is a Master’s Pre-Sessional?

Delivered over 10 weeks, the Master’s Pre-Sessional is a short course designed for international students who want to improve their English language and academic study skills to ensure they are fully prepared for a master’s degree at a UK, Australian or New Zealand University.

During this course, you will study a range of modules that will equip you with the essential skills needed for a master’s degree. You will enhance your research skills by learning to effectively source and evaluate information, undertake a literature review to enhance your academic skills, and learn to manage roles and responsibilities by working as part of a group.

By completing the Master’s Pre-Sessional, you will have the confidence to succeed in your master’s degree.


What is Master’s Preparation?

Similar to the Master’s Pre-Sessional, the Master’s Preparation course will improve your English language, academic study skills, and experience of working in a project group but will also give you the opportunity to complete a 5,000 word dissertation. Being able to formally undertake a practice dissertation before starting your master’s degree gives you chance to understand what is required whilst also improving your research and academic writing.

Depending on your English language level (see entry requirements below), you will either study our Master’s Preparation over 20 weeks, or Master’s Preparation (Enhanced) over 30 weeks.

This course will fully prepare you for a master’s degree at a UK, Australian or New Zealand University and will equip you with the key tools to succeed first time.

University Progression

Our Master’s Degree Pathway qualifications are trusted by universities worldwide. Whether you complete Master’s Preparation or Master’s Pre-Sessional qualifications, you will gain access to more than 30 leading universities in the UK, Australia and New Zealand.

NCUK University Partners

Click on the button below to view the universities where you can progress to study master’s degree.

What can I study at university?

Because of our partnership with a worldwide network of high-quality universities, you can choose from more than 2,500 master’s degree courses. There’s a wide range of subjects to choose from, including Business Management, Computer Science, Engineering, Pharmacy, Law, Environmental Sciences, Fashion, Marketing and so much more!

Use our University Course Finder tool to search for your dream master’s degree today.

The NCUK Guarantee



By choosing to study with NCUK, you will benefit from the NCUK Guarantee. Successful completion of this qualification guarantees* entry on to a master’s degree at an NCUK University Partner!

*for full terms & conditions of the guarantee, please click here

Entry Requirements

Click on the bars below to find out all about our entry requirements, including age requirements, academic background, and work experience.

Age requirements

There is no minimum age requirement, but you should have either completed a bachelor’s degree or a Chinese 3-year diploma or be in the process of studying the final year of your qualification.

Academic and English Language requirements

  • Master’s Preparation (Enhanced): IELTS 5.0 (or equivalent) plus Chinese 3-year Diploma OR completion of a bachelor’s degree
  • Master’s Preparation: IELTS 5.5 (or equivalent) and completion of a bachelor’s degree
  • Master’s Pre-Sessional: IELTS 5.5 (or equivalent) and completion of a bachelor’s degree

In most cases, you should have completed a degree/diploma in a subject closely related to your intended master’s course* Some universities offer a limited number of master’s ‘conversion courses’ which allow students with different subject backgrounds to apply.

*Please note that the Master’s Preparation qualifications are designed for students who have not studied their bachelor’s degree in English and may not be suitable if you already hold a bachelor’s degree from a UK, Australian, or New Zealand University. 

Work experience

Work experience is not essential for entry to the Master’s Preparation or Master’s Pre-Sessional, but may be required for progression to specific master’s degree courses, for example, MBA courses. Our dedicated team at NCUK can advise you on the master’s progression options open to you.

Qualification & Module Overview

The following document will provide you with an overview of what to expect from the Master’s Preparation qualification and a wider understanding of each individual module. This includes information on the aims of the qualification, course structures, assessment methods and more.

View this document by clicking the button below:


Ruoying Wang

Ruoying Wang

Thanks to studying NCUK’s Master’s Preparation qualification, I learned the academic English and presentation skills that really helped me to succeed in my master’s degree at university.

Leeds Beckett University MSc Accounting

Rina Uesugi

Rina Uesugi

The subjects on the NCUK Master’s Preparation qualification were fascinating and all my teachers were British and friendly, which really helped me to improve my English language skills.

The University of Manchester MA Intercultural Communication

Chao Feng

Chao Feng

My NCUK Master’s Preparation experience gave me a huge advantage when I started my postgraduate study in the UK. I learned a lot about western university culture and how to write a successful dissertation.

University of Sheffield MSc Management

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