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The University of Southampton

PRES0013 Academic Listening (Pre-sessional LLM)

Module Overview

This module is non-credit bearing and forms part of the Pre-sessional LLM Programme in which you study academic speaking, academic listening, academic reading and academic writing. You also attend independent learning workshops to further develop critical thinking and study skills necessary to succeed at the University. This module is intended to help you to strengthen their ability in listening and note-taking through the development of effective skills and strategies. The main focus of the module is on preparing you to cope confidently in lecture and seminar situations. You will be able to apply skills developed in class by attending weekly guest lectures on a variety of relevant Law topics. The module also provides support for the Academic Speaking module.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

The LLM Pre-sessional academic listening module is part of an integrated programme designed to enable you to learn and practise the academic listening skills you will need to succeed in your future university study. Throughout the module, you will be strongly encouraged to develop your academic listening skills and confidence, to understand different accents. You will also be taught effective practice in note taking and techniques to help you to understand a variety of academic lectures.

Learning Outcomes

Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • use effective strategies for overall listening comprehension
  • use knowledge of vocabulary to interpret meaning in context
  • take effective notes during lectures and seminars, using a range of standard abbreviations and symbols
  • summarise notes in oral or written form, demonstrating an understanding of main and supporting detail


The listening syllabus helps you to develop strategies for improving your listening, and focuses in particular, on how to listen effectively in lectures and how to take appropriate and useful notes while listening. You will attend a weekly lecture in order to practise the skills taught, and to accustom you to the style of lecture used in the UK. Areas that you will cover include: ï‚· Using an introduction to help understand the law lecture better ï‚· Identifying the key points a law lecturer wants to make ï‚· Distinguishing key points from examples ï‚· Identifying ways in which a law lecturer signals key points ï‚· Recognising when new terminology, terms and concepts are being introduced in a law lecture ï‚· Recognising ways in which information is organised in law lectures ï‚· Identifying key phrases that indicate how a law lecture is organised ï‚· Identifying main and subtopics in a law lecture ï‚· Developing strategies to use when information in a text has not been heard/understood ï‚· Identifying phrases in a law lecture that indicate connections between ideas ï‚· Understanding emphasis in law lectures ï‚· Identifying digressions ï‚· Understanding connected speech ï‚· Using strategies to predict the content of a law lecture

Special Features

This listening module forms part of the Pre-sessional LLM Programme and is taught alongside academic speaking, academic reading and academic writing. The listening module also includes film club, where you watch a short film or documentary twice a week and gather afterwards with a tutor to have a discussion on it.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

You will experience a wide variety of teaching and learning methods including: full class teaching; real life and videoed lectures; individual, pair and group work in class; discussions in small groups; set tasks to be completed outside class; use of authentic lectures for exploitation; self-directed independent study and tutorials. Teaching methods include: Taught sessions, seminars, law lectures, film club, case reading sessions and workshop individual support through your academic advisor and listening and speaking tutor. Learning activities include: Individual study, group and pair work, and discussions in small groups and tutorials.

Independent Study2
Total study time7

Resources & Reading list

BBC iPlayer.

TED Talks.

UEFAP Listening.

S Cottrell (2008). The Study Skills Handbook. 

British Council Learn English: Professionals Podcasts.

BBC Radio 4: The Reith Lectures.

E Kisslinger and M Rost (2009). Contemporary Topics: Academic Listening & Note taking Skills Book 2. 

BBC Learning English: Academic Listening.

C Campbell and J Smith (2009). English for Academic Study: Listening. 

T Lynch (2004). Study Listening. 

BBC Law in Action.

University of Warwick.

British Council Learn English: Listen and Watch.

D Beglar and N Murray (2009). Contemporary Topics: Academic Listening & Note taking Skills Book 3. 

BBC Radio 4 podcasts.


Assessment Strategy

Informal tasks designed to provide formative feedback on:  listening and note-taking skills  strategies to improve your listening skills.




MethodPercentage contribution
Assessment 50%
Examination  (90 minutes) 50%
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