Search for courses or information

Course summary

At UEL we believe people should be given the opportunity to succeed at university.  New Beginnings is a unique course that offers access to some degree programmes for mature people and those without formal qualifications.

There are three different routes: Regular (10 week course), Accelerated (5 week course) and Intensive (1 week course). Applicants are allocated to an appropriate course after an initial interview and entry test.  

The course is designed to accommodate busy schedules and is taught at the university’s modern campuses.  You will receive lots of support to help you succeed, including, support with academic writing, IT and library support as well as access to UEL’s excellent facilities. 

On successful completion of the New Beginnings course you will be able to progress onto some degrees at UEL, including, but not limited to, Business Management, Education Studies, Early Childhood Studies, Psychology, Accounting and Finance, Public Health, Sports, Film and Music.  See our course links to confirm if your choice of degree can be accessed through New Beginnings. 

Course fee: £200 (a means tested bursary to cover the course fee may be available to eligible students).

Contact us

If you have any questions, talk to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0) 20 8223 3333 or email study@uel.ac.uk.

Get in touch

Grow degree-level skills

Develop your academic reading, writing and thinking skills in preparation for undergraduate study.

Kick-start your career

Develop your confidence and independence and transform your employability and career options.

Flexible learning

Fit your study in with your work and personal commitments and have access to UEL's extensive learning facilities and resources.

EnquireVisit UEL

What you will learn

New Beginnings builds on the skills you have gained from work and life experiences to prepare you for studying a degree. You will also develop your academic skills, including how to:

  • be an effective learner
  • read analytically
  • think critically
  • research academic topics
  • write academic essays
  • use academic conventions to acknowledge sources of information
  • work in a group
  • deliver academic presentations.

Teaching and learning is achieved through lectures, tutorials, workshops, group activities, presentations, guided reading and writing tasks, independent and online learning. Sessions are held at the University’s modern campuses.  You will be fully supported throughout the course with lots of opportunities to use UEL’s facilities and support services.

On successful completion of the course and assessment you can progress to many of our undergraduate degrees (please see our course listings to see if your choice of degree can be accessed through New Beginnings). Subjects include:
Business Management Early Childhood Studies
Education Studies Psychology
Sports & Exercise Science Accounting & Finance
Psychosocial Studies                 Fashion Design
Public Health Music Performance & Production
*some students may be offered a foundation year.

Case study

Paralympic debutant Vanessa Daobry only started competing in the F34 shot put in 2015 but has since experienced a meteoric rise to the top of her sport.

While training in the UEL gym, paralympic athlete Vanessa Daobry completed the ‘New Beginnings’ course at UEL, which prepares mature students who have been out of education for some time to study for a bachelor’s degree.

“It’s been a very interesting course, in all honesty,” she says. “They teach you not just about university about how you work within university, what the environment’s like, what’s expected of you, what you can access to get support. It’s amazing. I think every student should do something like that before they go to university.”

“I didn’t have the chance to go to university when I was younger so if the opportunity is there, I’m going to grab it with everything I can.”

Course duration and assessment

This course is delivered over 10 weeks, with set subjects covered each week. You will attend a 3-hour taught session per week with approximately 15-20 hours additional guided and independent study.

Courses start throughout the year.  Entry tests start 2 months before the course and you must be registered 2 weeks before the course starts. 

Upcoming start dates:

Start date: 10 September 2018
Duration: 10 weeks, 3 hours once a week
Begin your degree: January/September 2019

Start date: 7 January 2019 
Duration: 10 weeks, 3 hours once a week
Begin your degree: September 2019

Start date: 23 April 2019
Duration: 10 weeks, 3 hours once a week
Begin your degree: September 2019

This course is delivered one day a week for 5 weeks from 10am to 5pm.  The classes are highly interactive and there are independent and guided tasks to complete each week in approximately 15 hours of home study.  

  • Start date: 2nd July 2018
  • Duration: 5 weeks, 1 day a week
  • Begin your degree: September 2018

  • Start date: 29 October 2018
  • Duration: 5 weeks, 1 day a week
  • Begin your degree:  January/September 2019

  • Start date: 1 July 2019
  • Duration: 5 weeks, 1 day a week
  • Begin your degree: September 2019




The course is delivered in one week from 10am to 5pm.  The classes are highly interactive with approximately 4 hours guided and independent learning each evening.  

  • Start date: 9 July 2018
  • Duration: 1 week (Monday to Friday)
  • Begin your degree: September 2018

  • Start date: 3 September 2018
  • Duration: 1 week (Monday to Friday)
  • Begin your degree: January/September 2019

  • Start date: 10 December 2018
  • Duration: 1 week (Monday to Friday)
  • Begin your degree: January/September 2019

  • Start date: 9 July 2019
  • Duration: 1 week (Monday to Friday)
  • Begin your degree: September 2019

  • Start date: 5 August 2019
  • Duration: 1 week (Monday to Friday)
  • Begin your degree: September 2019

How you'll be assessed

Regular entry (10 weeks): You will be assessed on two pieces of written work, a presentation and meeting the attendance and punctuality requirements.

Accelerated entry (5 weeks): Assessment is through a final exam, a presentation and meeting the attendance and punctuality requirements. 

Intensive entry (1 week): There is a final exam assessment, plus a presentation and very strict attendance and punctuality requirements. 


Entry requirements

Applicants can start New Beginnings after successful completion of an entry test.  Students are also expected to have a qualification in English language and maths at GCSE grade C or above, or an equivalent level 2 qualification.  If you are working towards these qualifications, you can still enrol on the Regular New Beginnings course, but you must have successfully completed your level 2 courses before starting your degree.

You may also be interested in

  • Why study at UEL?

  • Student finance

  • Introduction to Law and Criminology

Course Enquiry Form

Enquiry Details
Study Interests
Personal Details
Contact Details
Communications Consent

Please tell us how you would like to receive information relating to this enquiry and applying to study at UEL.

Terms and Conditions

The information you provide may be used by the University of East London to contact you regarding any enquiries you make, the University, courses you may be interested in and events you may wish to attend. Your information will not be disclosed to external organisations other than those acting as agents for the University of East London for the purpose of providing the University's customer relationship management service. It will be processed securely and in full accordance with the UK Data Protection Act 1998 at all times.

Please see our Data Protection Policy