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Durham Centre for Academic Development

Collaborative Courses

As part of our Academic Language & Communication (ALC) Programme, the English Language Centre is able to offer students courses designed and delivered in collaboration with other University support departments. The purpose of these collaborative sessions is to offer students courses from key support departments whilst providing tailored language support.

Some of our collaborative partners are listed here, with more information on current and recent courses, booking arrangements and availability.

Careers, Employability and Enterprise Centre

Durham International Student Employability Programme (DISEP)

This programme runs in terms 1 and 2, and is very popular. It is designed to help international students navigate the recruitment process, and courses include:

  • Interview Skills
  • Assessment Centre: Group Tasks
  • Writing Effective CV and Cover Letters
  • Preparing for the Employer Information Fair
  • Graduate Scheme Applications
  • Presentation Skills

You can book DISEP courses through our online booking system. DISEP courses have limited places, and booking is essential. Because of their popularity, we only release DISEP courses for booking 2 weeks before they are due to take place.

DISEP timetable 2017-2018

Academic Skills Programme

We also work closely with the Academic Skills Programme to provide multiple sessions. The Academic Skills programme provides support for all taught students to develop their academic writing, maths and general study skills. You can find out more and book by visiting their webpages.


The Library and the ALC programme collaborate to provide additional language support on several of their sessions. You should watch for these being advertised at the Bill Bryson Library.

In addition, 'Finding Academic Sources: Beyond the Reading List' is a course we collaborate on to give detailed guidance about finding appropriately “academic” sources and is particularly useful for MA students researching and writing essays and dissertations. The session covers how to improve the success of your searches for reliable academic sources and save time and money using the library catalogue and electronic journal databases, whether you have a recommended reading list or not. If we are running this course this term you will be able to book it via our online booking system.

NHS and Counselling

The NHS and Counselling both work with us to provide a course specifically for international students called 'Talking Changes: Academic Wellbeing for International Students'. This course helps international students identify sources of anxiety and stress, to understand the symptoms and potential impact of stress on your mental wellbeing, and provide you with a series of strategies for coping- with the aim of improving your ability to manage your academic life here in Durham. This course usually runs in term 1- see if it is available currently by checking our online booking system.


We work with several colleges to provide tailored sessions on academic writing, academic skills and academic communication. You can check with your college to see whether they provide these sessions and how to sign up.

Many colleges will also forward weekly information from us regarding upcoming and available ALC courses.

Student Testimonials

'Joining this course is definitely the right choice. It is very useful for both job hunting and from an educational perspective'.

Preparing for the Employer Information Fair 2013

'A very useful course. The tutors are patient and give us a clear understanding of using the library and other sources'.

Finding Academic Sources: Beyond the Reading List 2013