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International Foundation Programme for Postgraduate Study (Graduate Diploma)

Course Description

This pre-Master's course is a bridge between undergraduate and postgraduate study and will prepare you for studying a Master's degree at a UK university. Through tailor-made courses and training, you will develop an appropriate level of understanding in the subject area you wish to study at postgraduate level. You will also practise postgraduate study skills, including project management, essay writing, research skills, critical analysis and presentation skills, and improve your language proficiency in English. You will develop professional communication skills for working in international contexts, enhance your intercultural competence and build your social and professional networks.

The programme aims to achieve a good balance between challenging and supporting you. In addition to structured learning, you have opportunities to take part in extra-curricular activities, such as professional networking events, workplace visits, and employability workshops to facilitate your career planning and intercultural learning.

If you complete this course satisfactorily, you are guaranteed progression onto one of over 20 Master's degrees at Birkbeck and, if you continue your studies to Master's level at Birkbeck, you will be entitled to a 10% discount on your Master's degree tuition fees.

Visit the International Foundation Programme for Postgraduate Study (Graduate Diploma) page on the Birkbeck, University of London website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Sophia Munnik

4084.jpg Sophia Munnik moved to the UK from South Africa for her postgraduate studies at Birkbeck, University of London. Birkbeck was always her first choice of university because of its excellent reputation and internationally-recognised qualifications.

Aged 24, Sophia decided to study a part-time MA in Applied Linguistics at Birkbeck because of the interesting combination of subjects covered in the course. Her two-year Master’s degree gave her the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills first gained when she studied her BA in Linguistics and English at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Sophia said: 'Studying at Birkbeck was a really positive experience for me. I have gained so much in terms of my education, and my mind has really developed. Postgraduate education is incredibly important, and Birkbeck has absolutely changed my life. Through my studies, I was able to pursue my interests in sociolinguistics, psycholinguistics, and how you use language to express your identity. My dissertation focused on media coverage surrounding the legalisation of gay marriage in South Africa.'

Sophia combined her studies with working full-time, and said this was only possible because of the support from her lecturers and the quality of Birkbeck’s online resources. She added: 'Birkbeck was the ideal university for me as I could work during the day and study in the evening. It was great that the lectures were after office hours, and the lecturers were unbelievably understanding. The online resources, including access to PowerPoint presentations, are invaluable.'

During her MA in Applied Linguistics, Sophia first worked in retail and then her current job in recruitment. She plans to return to university education soon. Sophia said: 'My ambition is to become an academic, and Birkbeck has already helped me get closer to my goal. I will study for a PhD at some point.'


School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy, Postgraduate Taught (PGT) Bursary - Single Award

Applications are invited for one 'Postgraduate Taught' Bursary worth £6,000, to be awarded to a candidate with an outstanding academic record who shows high potential for strong performance on one of the School's 'Postgraduate Taught' programmes.This competition is open to new Home/EU and International students who are applying for either a full-time or part-time MA/MSc place in the departments listed below; the competition is also open to students who are applying to the Department of Philosophy and the degree of M.Phil. Stud. Philosophy.This £6,000 award is in the form of a bursary (i.e., there is no 'fee waiver' but the bursary may be used towards payment of fees). If awarded to a part-time student, the bursary will be paid for two years of PGT study.Please note that in order to apply for funding you must also complete an application for a place at Birkbeck on an MA/MSc programme within the School of SSHP or the MPhil. Stud. in the Department of Philosophy, either before or at the same time as applying for funding.Prospective studentsCandidates will be expected to fulfil similar academic criteria to those demanded by external funding bodies. They will normally possess at least an upper second class honours degree or equivalent.

Value of Scholarship(s)



This competition is open to new Home/EU and International students who are applying for either a full-time or part-time MA/MSc place in the School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy; the competition is also open to students who are applying to the Department of Philosophy and the degree of M.Phil. Stud. Philosophy.This competition is open to new students only.

Application Procedure

Before you apply, you should contact the relevant department for advice.Once you have identified a relevant programme, you will need to:Apply online for the relevant MA/MSc or MPhil. Stud. (Dept. of Philosophy) degree in the normal wayDownload the SSHP Postgraduate Taught Bursary Application Form Word iconThe SSHP Studentship application form should be returned to Jane Halstead, Assistant School Manager, via the following email address:[email protected] STATE ‘PGT BURSARY’ AND DEPARTMENT APPLIED TO IN THE ‘SUBJECT’ LINE OF YOUR E-MAIL.Any queries relating to the PGT Bursary can also be sent to this email address.

Further Information



Postgraduate Support Scheme for final-year undergraduates (full-time) - 20+ Awards

We are pleased to announce that, for October 2015 entry, Birkbeck has a limited number of new £10,000 postgraduate scholarships. These scholarships are for students progressing from a full-time undergraduate degree to a part-time Master’s degree starting in 2015/16.

Value of Scholarship(s)



To be eligible for the scholarship you must be:Starting a 2-year part-time taught Master’s degree in 2015/16
Domiciled in the UK/EU
Progressing from an undergraduate course for which you were charged the higher tuition fee (applicable since 2012–13)
Studying at postgraduate Master’s level for the first time

Application Procedure

If you want to apply for this support, you must follow these steps:Submit an application for your intended course
Submit an application for the Postgraduate Support Scheme

Further Information


Entry Requirements

Good first degree or equivalent qualification from a recognised university. If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6, with not less than 5.5 in each of the sub-tests.

Course Fees

Full-time home/EU students: £ 5400 pa Full-time overseas students: £ 11675 pa

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Recipient: Birkbeck, University of London

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