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We have put together some information we believe might be important to you. There's a little bit of everything you need to know about coming to the UK, joining the United family and, of course, making the most out of your stay. If there is anything else you need to know and you cannot find it here, please get in touch!

What's United World like?

We're a small but popular school situated in the cosmopolitan town centre of Bournemouth on the south coast of England. Bournemouth has seven miles of sandy beaches and a beautiful surrounding forest that make it an ideal location for you to study and relax. Our popularity lies in our desire to listen to what your needs are and offer flexible courses at a friendly price. As for our objective, we're always aiming at developing courses based on your individual requirements, whether you want to learn English for career development opportunities, a course at university or simply for fun. Our students come from all over the world and many make friends for life. All you need is a desire to learn!

 

What happens on my first day at school?

 

You will receive an email from us telling you what time you should get to school on your first day. When you arrive at United World, you will be given a placement test and needs analysis so we can decide what classes are more suitable for your level and goals. You will also receive a welcome pack with information about the school, what to do in Bournemouth, and a free drink at the United Lounge.

What courses do you offer?

We offer accredited English-language courses for anyone with a desire to improve their English and achieve their goals in life. For those need to improve their English for many different reasons such as going to university, job opportunities, meeting new people and travelling abroad, we offer an English for Life programme. If your ultimate goal is to achieve an international certification you should join our English for Exams programme. Maybe you are thinking about a course that can make a difference in your professional life, so Professional English is what you are looking for. As I said, we offer different courses for different people with different needs. All you need is the desire to learn! If you want to learn more information about our courses, just click on the link below.

 

What about my level?

You will take an online placement and needs analysis and then have a little chat with our Director of Studies. After that you will be placed in one of the following levels in our English for Life Curricular Grid.  Go to our course information page for more information about each level. 

 

What about my timetable?

It all depends on how many lessons you want to have. You can usually choose between 15 and 25 lessons per week.

 

When can I start my course?

You can usually start most of your courses at any time. Our continuous assessment policy allows us to place students in a class that challenges their current English language proficiency 49 weeks a year. 

Just don't forget that the school will be closed for the Christmas holidays from 18.12.2020  to 11.01.2021.

It is also important to remember that most UK bank holidays fall on a Monday, so classes start on a Tuesday those weeks.

 

I'm not 18 years old yet. Can I still join United World?

Even though the majority of our students are over 18, our school also welcomes students who are 16 to 17 years old. At United World, we want to make sure that all our students really enjoy their stay at the school but according to British Council regulations and the British law all under 18s have to follow more strict guidelines to join our school:

  • All 16 to 17 year old students must stay with one of our host families

  • Under 18s curfew is 10.30pm and your host family will inform us if you are coming home late at night

  • You must tell the school if you are ill or are going to miss a class. The school will need to confirm the reason for non- attendance with your host family

  • If you would like to go on any trips which are not included in your package, we must have written permission from your parents

  • 16 to 17 year olds may study with students over 18 years of age

 

What about under 16s?

Students who are 12 to 15 years old are also welcome. We take group bookings for under 16s all year round. During the summer we also take individual bookings through our sister company The Language Training Co.

Do you organise any free time activities?

At United World we believe that the English experience should continue outside of the classroom. In order to fully benefit from your stay in Bournemouth, you will have the opportunity to immerse yourself in activities and continue to practise your English, make new friends and learn more about life in England. We provide a varied social and activity programme all year round which caters for all preferences and allows you to make the most out of your time in the UK. Our trips and activities are either free or can be booked for a small cost at reception.

 

What can you tell me about life in Bournemouth?

 

Founded in 1810, Bournemouth is a coastal resort town in the county of Dorset, on the south coast of the England. The population of Bournemouth is approximately 200,000. In a 2007 survey Bournemouth was found to be the happiest place in Britain. It is one of the most cosmopolitan towns in the UK and the second most popular destination for language students after London. Being on the south coast near to continental Europe means the climate is quite mild with hot and humid summers and cool winters. It has a higher than average number of sunny days. Next to Bournemouth you have the town of Poole with one of the largest natural harbours in the world and a great place for water sports such as wind and kite surfing. On our doorstep you will also find the New Forest, which is a beautiful national park with many picturesque villages located within its confines and is ideal for trekking, cycling and horse riding.

What should I do if I have a problem during my stay?

When you're a student in a foreign country, there is always something new to learn apart from the language. Here at United World, we aim to ensure that your experience in the UK is a safe and positive one. We understand that students face many new challenges and situations and we have staff available to assist with any problems or difficulties you may have. All students will have an induction, student card and be introduced to key members of staff on their first day in school. The school 24 hour emergency number and email address is on the back of the school identity card. We will give information regarding who to speak to, lesson timetables, rules and regulations of the school and British law. All staff members have had safeguarding training which includes understanding and recognising the possibility of grooming, extremism and radicalisation in today’s society. To learn more, just download the files below.

 

How should I prepare for my trip?

 

When you book your course with us we will send you everything you need to know about your stay with us. Having said that, before you leave home you should make sure you have:

  • your Letter of Acceptance.

  • a valid passport or ID, and a visa (if required).

  • travel insurance and health insurance.

  • some pounds sterling £ for the beginning of your stay.

  • and if you are taking any prescribed medicine, please bring a letter with relevant information from your doctor.

What's life in the UK like?

Life in the UK can be quite similar or very different from your country. It really depends on where you come from. We still have some tips for you, though.

  • England might be more expensive than you think so do some research before you decide how long you will be staying with us.

  • Change some money to Pounds sterling (£) before you come.

  • Opening and closing times for shops are probably different than in your country. Most shops and businesses open at 9 am and close about 5.30 pm. Shops do not close at lunchtime and are usually open on Sundays.

  • Learn some phrases to use at the Airport when you arrive.

  • What about your mobile phone? You may need to unlock it before you come.

  • The weather can change a lot. Bring warm clothes and an umbrella, even in the summer.

  • If you are vegetarian or don’t eat pork or beef, make sure you check food labels as many things contain gelatine (including some yoghurt).

  • Many products also contain nuts, so be careful if you have a nut allergy.

  • You will need to show your ID or passport to do a number of things in The UK. This includes entry into bars and clubs.

 

 

I am staying in a host family. Is there anything I should know?

 

All families are different but there are some things that we always like to remind students about:

  1. It is a nice gesture to buy a small gift for your host family. Many students also like to email the family to let them know about them and inform them of arrival times. 

  2. Most families are mixed male and female and they may also have students from other schools of the opposite sex. 

  3. Host families usually have dinner (the main meal of the day) between 6 and 7 pm. You are expected to have dinner at this time with your family. You can tell them if there is anything that you particularly enjoy eating. Lunch is usually just a snack, such as a sandwich or a quick meal.

  4. Many British families have pet cats or dogs.

  5. Remember that most host families work and/or have children. If you wish to Skype or talk to your family late at night due to time differences, try to be respectful of people who may be sleeping in your house.

  6. English houses do not usually have a bidet and you may not be able to use the shower late at night (after 11 pm).

  7. A bathroom is usually shared in families. It is not usual to have a bathroom connected to your room for your use only (en-suite).

  8. You cannot cook for yourself in host families. However, families usually enjoy tasting food from other countries and if you know how to cook, perhaps you can cook something typical for them.

  9. If you are not sure if you are allowed to use something in the house, always check and ask first.

  10. And most importantly... be open-minded and learn more about the British culture. It will help you make the most of your stay here in Bournemouth.

Do I need a visa to study in the UK?

You might need a visa to come to the UK depending on where you come from. You can use the link below to find out.

Here is also some basic visa information in case you need one:

  • Students requiring visas must study for a minimum of 15 hours per week, which means you will have to attend at least 20 lessons per week. 

  • Students requiring a study visa will only be accepted at United World as student visitors. A student can apply for a student visitor visa for a maximum of 11 months and there is no minimum level of English requirement. You will need to provide evidence of financial sponsorship. If you are under 18 and wish to apply for a course of 6 months or less, you need to apply for a Child Visa. United World CANNOT accept applicants wishing to apply for a Tier 4 General Student visa.

  • Students requiring a study visa for one of our courses will not be allowed to work either full or part time.

  • Please note that when completing a visa application make sure that you follow the Student Visitor route (short-term study visa).

 

Can I work in the UK?

 

Visa students are usually not allowed to work in the UK. However, many European students like to find work in Bournemouth as a means of getting further language practice. Here is some basic information about finding work in the UK:

  • If you have the right to work in the United Kingdom you will need first to obtain a National Insurance Number (NI number) which your employer will request from you. 

  • You can obtain your NI number once you have arrived in the United Kingdom by calling the following number 0345 600 0643 -  Monday to Friday 8 am to 6 pm. The school can call for you if you have concerns over your level of English. 

  • An interview will be arranged for you at a job centre in Weymouth or Southampton and you will need to take some form of ID such as a passport, national ID card or driving licence.

Once you have your National Insurance number, then you can start looking for a job. There are a number of places to look for work in Bournemouth and our team will be more than happy to point you in the right direction.

What else is there to know?

You can find additional information about our school by downloading our student handbook and terms and conditions.

 
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Brandon & Clifton House

44 - 46 St Peter's Rd.

Bournemouth, Dorset, UK

BH1 2LT

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