Personalised English Language Enhancement (PELE)

What is it

PELE is a course designed to help you enhance your communication skills in English in your preferred way. PELE is available as an elective or general education course for all students across faculties at UNSW. The course codes are HUMS1005 for undergraduate students and ARTS5505 for postgraduate students.

Who is it for

It is for anyone who wants to enhance their English communication skills and develop more effective learning strategies in a warm and inspiring learning community of peers.

What will you do in PELE?

You will learn a personalised, autonomous way of enhancing your communication skills, as you are guided to design and implement your own personal project to address your needs. You’ll be supported by a non-judgmental and nurturing learning community of teachers and mentors (former PELE students). They will introduce useful tools and resources while guiding you to find your strengths and areas to work on.

How will you benefit?

You'll improve a specific aspect of English communication chosen by you (academic writing, presentation skills, pronunciation etc.). Other benefits reported by former PELE students include:

  • increased confidence in using English in authentic contexts
  • enhanced professional communication skills for better interpersonal relationships
  • improved time management and productivity skills
  • greater knowledge about useful methods and tools for autonomous learning
  • opportunities to develop critical thinking and reflective skills
  • new friendships with students from different backgrounds and disciplines
  • increased sense of belonging

Following successful completion of the course you can apply to become a PELE Mentor, which provides further professional development opportunities.

How is the course delivered?

PELE runs twice a year (hybrid mode in Term 1, face-to-face in Term 3). Weekly classes include a lecture followed by a live tutorial. There are also a number of social clubs that you can join to improve your communication skills in an authentic context and make friends with people from diverse cultural backgrounds. You'll also have access to additional video resources and get connected with the PELE community on an innovative platform called OpenLearning.

You can watch the following videos to find out more about how we work and learn in PELE:

PELE for Undergraduate and Postgraduate (coursework) students

Weekly classes include a two-hour lecture and a two-hour live tutorial. If you're interested in taking part in PELE, you can check the timetable for HUMS1005 and ARTS5505. If you have any questions, please contact the School of Humanities and Languages at

PELE for HDR candidates (ARTS5507)

The course is free for HDR candidates but your academic performance will be formally assessed and recorded on your transcript. Auditing is not permitted.

Eligibility criteria:

  • You must have permission from your supervisor to attend
  • You must be available to attend the weekly classes (either in person or online) during the Term (10 weeks in total)

To join the waitlist, please complete this form. For enquiries, please contact the Graduate Research School

Here are comments about PELE by some previous PELE students.

“Due to COVID-19, I took a fully online course last semester. Though I was worried about whether online courses would not be good for my study at first. In fact, not at all! PELE taught me more about autonomous learning, emotional management and smart working. Now I have been able to write easily and think critically, and I also got a high score in the assignments this semester. And I am very honoured to participate in PELE's mentor program this semester.”

Qi Diao (Exchange Program in 2020)


“This is my first year, and I was very depressed because I couldn't make it to Sydney and my study plan was messed up by this pandemic situation. But I was always cheered up and inspired by Mira, Long and our PELE members! So thank you again! I [am] so grateful for your feedback and help! Taking PELE will be one of my best memories in my life!”

Xiting Wu (Master student in Translation and Interpreting, 2020)


“PELE is a community that goes beyond “just” improving English. PELE´s team made all the efforts to accommodate my needs, and it was rewarding to be part of this community from São Paulo, Brazil, 13 hours behind Sydney.  The reward was to enhance my understanding of many aspects of life and improve my writing skills on the top of that.”

Mirian Sayuri Vaccari (PhD candidate, Faculty of Built Environment, 2020)