Congratulations! It’s almost time for you to join us for your pre-sessional programme and we can’t wait to welcome you.

This website guides you through the important steps you need to complete before you arrive and in your first few days.

We look forward to seeing you soon!


Step One


Find out if you need a visa

Many international students need a Tier 4 (General) visa in order to come to the UK.

Find out whether you need a visa and how to apply.

You will need to obtain a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number from the University. You will need to use this CAS number on your Tier 4 visa application.

Students issued with a single CAS will receive a Tier 4 visa in their passport and it will be valid for their Pre-sessional course only. You will then have to apply for a new Tier 4 visa in the UK for your Main programme of study.

Some students will be issued with a joint CAS for both their Pre-sessional and their Main programmes of study. This will mean that you will receive a temporary entry visa in your passport and a letter informing you where you can collect your Tier 4 visa, which will be a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) card.

Getting a Tier 4 visa can take a long time. You can apply for your visa up to three months before the programme start date and you should apply for your visa at least six weeks before you come to Southampton. You will not be able to join the programme if you arrive in the UK after the programme start date, so it is very important to allow plenty of time for your visa application.


Step Two


To help make your arrival in the UK as easy as possible, we run a free Meet and Greet service at London Heathrow Airport. On the day before your programme begins we will be at the airport to meet you and there will be a coach service to take you to your accommodation in Southampton.

Once your place on a pre-sessional course has been confirmed, you will receive an email inviting you to book a place on the Meet & Greet service.

Course A students must book by 17:00 (BST) on 22 June 2016 for the Meet and Greet on the 29th and 30th June 2016. You can also book a place by accessing our booking form directly, to do so please click here.

Course B students must book by 17:00 (BST) on 20 July 2016 for the Meet and Greet on the 27th and 28th July 2016. You can also book a place by accessing our booking form directly, to do so please click here.

Meet and Greet representatives will be at London Heathrow Airport from 08:00 until 22:00. The last coaches will depart when all pre-booked students have been met by a member of the Meet and Greet team – this may be before 22:00.

Please note that the coach service is for students only. Luggage allowance will be two large bags and one small hand luggage bag. If there are seats available, your friends and family members may be able to join you on the coach but priority will be given to students. If there are no places on the coach for your friends or family we will help them find another form of transport to get to Southampton.

If you are not using the meet and greet service and you need information on how to get to the University, please view this link.

Find out more about Meet and Greet.


Step Three


Have you arranged your accommodation?

If you want to live in one of our Halls of Residence during your pre-sessional course, you will need to apply to us directly. All pre-sessional students with a confirmed place for a pre-sessional course, and who apply for a room with us by the deadline, will be guaranteed accommodation in Halls of Residence. You can apply for accommodation now: you will need your student ID number (see step 5).

When you apply through the link above you need to select academic session ‘2016-17’ and type of application ‘Presessional (EAP summer)’.

The deadline for applications is 4 weeks before the start of the start of your pre-sessional course: 31 May 2016 for the eleven week course starting in June and 30 June 2016 for the six week course starting in July.

Accommodation for your pre-sessional programme

Once your place on a pre-sessional programme is confirmed, and after we have received your accommodation application, we will allocate you a room in halls of residence for the duration of your pre-sessional programme. Please note that if demand for rooms is high, some students on the 11 week course may need to move rooms within the first 10 days of the course.

You will receive an offer of accommodation from us from mid-May onwards.  You will need to accept the offer by the deadline included in the email. We recommend you regularly check the status of your application using the online accommodation system. You will be required to register card information and create a payment plan to accept your offer.

Before you arrive, you will be emailed a link to our e-induction. It is important you complete this e-induction which contains important information about living in halls. It will also tell you which room you have been allocated, although there are situations when we may need to make changes before you arrive.

On arrival you will need to show us some photographic ID, for example your passport. This will help us get you to your room more quickly.

There is no need to bring any bedding, as a bedding pack will be provided in your room containing a duvet, duvet cover, pillow, pillow cover and sheet. Cooking utensils like pots, pans, plates and cutlery are not provided. These can be purchased at low cost from local stores when you arrive.

Please do not bring electrical items, such as kettles, rice cookers or hair dryers from your home country to the UK. You will not be allowed to use them in our halls of residence because health and safety regulations require electrical items to be manufactured to UK safety standard and we retain the right to confiscate any kitchen equipment that does not meet British or European standard. You can buy these sorts of items when you arrive in the UK. Mobile devices and computers from home are permitted in our Halls.

If you live in halls you are automatically covered by the University’s contents insurance policy. This means your personal belongings may be replaced if they are stolen or damaged. It is important that you check the terms and conditions of the policy so that you understand what is included in the insurance cover. You may need to buy additional cover, for example, if you want cover for a bicycle.

If you wish to cancel your accommodation for your pre-sessional programme please email: accommodation@southampton.ac.uk.

Have you applied for accommodation for your main degree programme?

There is a separate application process for University accommodation for your main degree programme. If you haven’t already done so, you must apply for accommodation for your main degree programme online before 1 August 2016.

Your University student ID number will be the same for your pre-sessional course and your main degree programme. You will need to use it for your Halls of Residence application(s).

If you decide you would like to find a room in a private house for your Pre Sessional course, you can still apply for a room in Halls of Residence for your main degree programme.

You can find out more about the different types of University accommodation on the Accommodation website. You can also find information on how to apply in this useful guide.

If you meet the terms of our accommodation guarantee, you will be guaranteed an offer of a place in a University hall of residence for your main degree programme. This is likely to be a different room or hall to the one you stayed in during your pre-sessional programme, so you may need to move before your main degree programme begins.

After you have submitted an application please check your online accommodation account regularly as this is where you will see the offer. You must accept the offer of accommodation for your main degree programme by the deadline given (normally five days) – if you do not, the offer will expire. To accept the offer, log into your online accommodation account and accept within the deadline.

If you are offered University accommodation but you then find alternative living arrangements, please reject your offer of accommodation as soon as possible by logging into your online accommodation account.

If you have any questions about your accommodation, please email: accommodation@southampton.ac.uk.

Not staying in University Halls of Residence

We encourage students to live in Halls of Residence as the accommodation fee includes costs of services (electricity, gas and water) and also includes WiFi and a wired internet connection. You also have a bus pass for the uni-link bus service that gives you free use of their network around the city.

If you decide not to apply for University accommodation, the Residences team and Students’ Union can help advise you on how to look for private rented accommodation in Southampton and Winchester. The University is a partner in the Southampton Accreditation Scheme for Student Housing (SASSH), which only advertises properties where the landlord agrees their property complies with SASSH safety and quality standards.

If you are looking for private rented accommodation, you will need to show your landlord proof of your right to live in the UK. This can be completed once you arrive in the UK. Do not, under any circumstances, let yourself be parted from your original documents. We advise you bring photocopies of your passport and visa to give to your landlord.

Find out more about looking for private rented accommodation.
For more advice or information, contact Residences on +44 (0)23 8059 5959 or via accommodation@soton.ac.uk.

At the end of your pre-sessional programme

If you accept an offer of University accommodation for the first year of your main degree programme, you are likely to be in a different room to the accommodation you stay in during your pre-sessional studies. You will have applied for your room expressing preferences for location and room type that we will try and match, if we are able to. This means that you might need to move from one room to another during the ‘move weeks’ that follow the end of your course (move weeks are the period between the end of your pre-sessional accommodation contract and the start of your main degree accommodation contract).

While the Residences Team will provide support and guidance during move weeks, we cannot provide transportation or lifting assistance during your move. We can provide short term storage for your belongings (less than 24 hours) as you move from one room to another – longer term storage will have to be arranged privately if necessary.

During your stay in pre-sessional accommodation, we will email you with guidance to make sure you are aware of the steps you need to take before you move.

If you have any further enquiries about your accommodation, please see our accommodation website for further details.


Step Four


Prior to arrival you must set up your University computing account and email address. You can do this from any computer with an internet connection. You will be asked to provide:

• your pre-sessional student ID number (you will find this in the email correspondence from the pre-sessional admissions team)
• your family name
• your date of birth

When you set up your account you will be provided with a computing account username and you will also be asked to select a password to use with our services. It is very important to remember both your username and password, so you can access the services available.

Step-by-step guide

Please note that this process must be carried out by the student and not by their agent or representative. It is essential that students know their username, email address, password and the answers to the security questions when they arrive at Southampton.

Once you have set up your University computing account, it is very important that you check your University email account regularly. The University will send important information to you using this email address, for example, information about your course, fees and accommodation.

To access your emails, go to SUSSED, sign in using your new username and password and then click on the ‘Email’ icon which is accessible from the ‘Home’ tab.

This step-by-step video will guide you through the process of setting up your University computing account:

  1. Go to www.subscribe.iss.soton.ac.uk
  2. Click on Create your University computing account.
  3. Enter your details and click on Next – the system should now recognise you. If you receive an error message, check and correct your details if necessary. You will be then asked to accept the conditions shown on the screen.
  4. Enter the answers to the security questions (you may change the questions if you wish).
  5. You will be given a username. Make sure you write it down as you will need it later and it will not be displayed again.
  6. Choose and enter a password, and then enter it again to confirm it. This will ensure you did not make an error when typing the password. Please make sure this is a password you will remember.
  7. Tick the boxes to show whether you want to be included in the external online directory.
  8. Click on Next. If no mistakes are found, you will see a message confirming your username and your university email address along with a green bar, this is confirmation that you have successfully set up your University computing account.
  9. Your account will become fully active within 30 minutes.

Step Five


We advise you apply for your ID card up to three days before you are due to arrive in Southampton. To apply, go to our ID card application page. You will be asked to log in using your University username and the password, which you chose when you set up your IT account. Please have a suitable digital passport-style photograph ready to upload.

If you have applied for your ID card on time, you will be able to collect your ID card during registration when you arrive.

If you have difficulty ordering your ID card online, your ID card will be printed during your registration appointment.

If you are on the 12 week pre-sessional programme, you should apply for your ID card by Friday 24th June.
If you are on the 6 week pre-sessional programme you should apply for your ID card by Friday 22nd July 2016.

Your ID card allows you to use certain University facilities. When you apply for your card you can also choose to pay for additional services. These services include Sport and Wellbeing membership and an Arts Pass, which gives you discounts on music, theatre and art at the University of Southampton.

You will need to upload a photograph for your ID card. Please make sure that this photograph shows your face clearly and is suitable for an academic setting.


Step Six


Have you paid your fees? 

You must pay your fees in full before you arrive.

Please pay any fees you owe online.

Your fees will be stated in the email sent to you confirming your place on the pre-sessional programme. They will also be stated in your CAS statement if you are a student who requires a visa to study in the UK.

How to pay

You will need your student ID when paying your fee and you will have received this in email correspondence from the admissions team.

Please note that we do not accept fee payments in cash.

Pay online 

This is the fastest and cheapest way to pay. Use our guide to help you through the process. We advise that you use Internet Explorer to access our payment system.

If you have already used the web payments system for your pre-payment, you can log in using the same details.

If you haven’t used the web payments system before you will need to create new user account and create a new password and security question of your choice. You will also need your pre-sessional student ID. You will receive an email with instructions on how to activate your account before you can make a payment.

When you log into the web payments system you will see a page called ‘Current Items’.

On the Current Items page, you may see an invoice for your pre-sessional programme fees. If so, tick the ‘Pay’ box, click on ‘Pay invoice’.

If it says ‘You have no outstanding invoices’ on the Current Items page, click on ‘Pay on account’ at the top right hand of the screen and follow the instructions to make your payment.

Pay by telephone

Contact the Student Services Centre on +44 (0)23 8059 9599 to pay by credit or debit card. Please state that you are paying pre-sessional programme fees and give your pre-sessional student ID number when you pay.

You can telephone between 08:30 and 17:30 BST, Monday to Friday (08:30 – 20:00 BST on Tuesdays from June 2016).

Pay by bank transfer

Please use our online payment system: WU Business Solutions


Are you sponsored?

If your fees are being paid by a sponsor then you will need to provide a financial guarantee from your sponsor. You can send a scanned copy of this directly to sponfee@southampton.ac.uk before you arrive.


Step Seven


Prepare for registration

During your first few days in Southampton you will need to attend a registration event to verify your attendance at the University. You will be given a timetable of induction activities, including information about this registration event, on arrival at your halls of residence. If you are staying in privately rented accommodation, your schedule will be emailed to you a week before the induction.

It is very important that you attend this event on the time and date given to you. If you do not attend the event you will be unable to start your programme.

You will need to bring the following documents with you:

  • a valid and in date passport
  • your valid and in date visa/biometric identity card (BRP), leave stamps or immigration status document showing your permission to stay in the UK for study at the University of Southampton.
  • your student ID number (you should find this on your offer letter)
  • your personal email address

During registration, after you have completed the identity check, you will be able to enrol. To do this you will need the username and password you created when you set up your IT account, so it is important to create your IT account in advance and remember your log in details.

You will need the following information to enrol, so please make sure you bring it with you to your registration event:

  • your term time address in the UK (you can change it later if you are staying in temporary accommodation)
  • your UK home telephone number
  • your UK mobile telephone number

Collecting your student ID card

You will be able to collect your ID card during registration (if you have applied for it in advance).

Collecting your bank letter

If you know which bank you wish to use during your stay in the UK, please bring the name of the bank to your registration appointment. During registration, we will be able to provide you with a letter you can use to open your UK bank account – please see When You Arrive.