Product of dienst

Academic English for PhD candidates

Are you a PhD candidate who has not yet met the English-language requirement for admission to the PhD programme? Or do you simply want to improve your academic English skills? Academic English for PhD candidates is for you!

This course is designed to improve your English to the required level for PhD admission.

This course is offered in collaboration with Wageningen Graduate Schools (WGS).

Course description

Academic English for PhD candidates is an intensive 8-week course that improves your academic English (reading, speaking, listening and writing) and prepares you for the RATEr (an English proficiency test accepted by WUR).

Target group

  • Prospective and current PhD candidates who have not yet met the English entry requirement for their PhD programme.
  • PhD candidates with a B2-level of English who want an intensive course to improve their English-language skills so they can study and work more easily at Wageningen University.

Course objectives

  • Improve / Refine your academic reading, writing, listening and speaking skills
  • Improve your written grammar
  • Develop your academic vocabulary to participate more easily in lectures and lab meetings
  • Improve the clarity of your accent
  • Learn how to put your ideas on paper
  • Learn to write structured paragraphs
  • Prepare for the RATEr
  • Develop general all round communication skills

Course programme

Academic English and pronunciation:

  • 24 sessions
  • Academic English: 4 hours per week (2 2-hour sessions)
  • 1 hour per week pronunciation
  • 40 contact hours, 64 self-study hours

    When you must still fulfil the English requirements to be admitted to the PhD Programme, you can take the RATEr on July 9, 2019. If you pass the RATEr, you have met the Graduate Schools’ entry requirement for proficiency in English. More about RATEr >>


    The course will be from April 29 until June 27. The course will start when we have 11 participants.

    Course materials

    Course materials will be distributed in the course.


    Participants must attend 90% of the course sessions and submit all assignments on time to receive a certificate. Course participants who do not meet the attendance requirement will not receive a certificate.

    Course fee*

    • Academic English for PhD candidates, excluding RATEr + mock exam
    WUR PhD candidates € 770
    External PhD candidates € 850
    • Academic English for PhD candidates, including RATEr + mock exam:
    WUR PhD candidates € 1.045
    External PhD candidates € 1.150

    *Fee includes study and training material

    Entrance requirement

    To be admitted to this course, you need

    1) A score of at least 60 on the Oxford Online Placement Test (click here to make an appointment for this test) or an equivalent score on another international test:

    • At least 6.0 on the IELTS exam
    • At least grade C on the FCE exam (Cambridge)
    • At least 80 on the TOEFL exam (internet-based)

    2) An intake interview (15 min) to assess your speaking skills. Speaking level must be at least CEFR B2-. We will contact you to schedule an appointment when we have 11 registrations or more.

    3) A writing assignment (40 min). Writing level must be at least CEFR B2-. We will contact you to schedule an appointment when we have 11 registrations or more.