English BA (Hons) Add to your prospectus

Key information


  • Course length: 3 years
  • UCAS code: Q300
  • Year of entry: 2018
  • Typical offer: A-level : AAB-ABB / IB : 35-33 including 6 in HL English with no score less than 4 / BTEC : Applications considered
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Our English degree programme gives you the flexibility to combine the study of Literature and Language in a balance that suits you.

Study as part of joint-honours at 100:0 Choosing this subject as a Single Honours

You can maintain an equal balance of both subjects throughout your degree, or you can choose to specialise in either Literature or Language. We offer Literature modules covering a wide range of texts, genres and themes from the early medieval period to the present day. Our Language modules aim to provide understanding of the historical, social and psychological factors that shape the English language used in everyday life.

In each year of a Major (75%) English programme, you will choose 90 credits from our range of English modules.

Programme in detail

Year One is a foundation course designed to give you the basic skills and tools for the advanced study of English Literature and Language. You will have the opportunity to study English Literature from various periods and literary genres.

Other modules help you to develop your reading and critical skills, and introduce you to modern approaches to the study of English language. In Years Two and Three, you will have the freedom to plan the specific path that you follow through the programme.

You may choose to construct a programme combining English Language and Literature, or to specialise in either. The Language modules aim to provide understanding of the historical, social and psychological factors that shape the English language used in everyday life. The Literature modules are designed to foster interpretive skills applying to a wide range of genres and historical periods.

Year Two focuses on the major periods of English Literature and core aspects of English Language study. If you choose to focus on Literature, to ensure that your study has appropriate breadth, you must take at least one unit devoted to pre-1800 Literature (this can also be taken at level three).

In Year Three the emphasis is on specialisation within different genres and learning to work more independently – for instance, a dissertation on a topic of your choice provides you with the opportunity to explore that topic in depth.

Study as part of joint-honours at 75:25 Choosing this subject as a Major

Year One is a foundation course designed to give you the basic skills and tools for the advanced study of English Literature and Language. You will have the opportunity to study English Literature from various periods and literary genres.

Other modules help you to develop your reading and critical skills, and introduce you to modern approaches to the study of English language. In Years Two and Three, you will have the freedom to plan the specific path that you follow through the programme.

You may choose to construct a programme combining English Language and Literature, or to specialise in either. The Language modules aim to provide understanding of the historical, social and psychological factors that shape the English language used in everyday life. The Literature modules are designed to foster interpretive skills applying to a wide range of genres and historical periods.

Year Two focuses on the major periods of English Literature and core aspects of English Language study. If you choose to focus on Literature, to ensure that your study has appropriate breadth, you must take at least one unit devoted to pre-1800 Literature (this can also be taken at level three).

In Year Three the emphasis is on specialisation within different genres and learning to work more independently – for instance, a dissertation on a topic of your choice provides you with the opportunity to explore that topic in depth.

Study as part of joint-honours at 50:50 Choosing this subject as a Joint

Combining English with another subject allows you to take advantage of the range of choice available on our English programmes while also developing your interests in another subject.

In Year One, you will take modules aimed at developing the skills necessary for advanced study. From Year Two, you will choose from a range of Literature modules that focus on specific periods, genres or themes, and Language modules that develop your understanding of the ways in which language works in the world.

In each year, you will take 60 credits of English and 60 credits from your other subject choice.

Study as part of joint-honours at 25:75Choosing this subject as a Minor

English is a flexible subject open to many influences from its wider culture (eg politics, philosophy, history) and from other art forms (such as film, music, or digital media). As such, a 25% English programme will complement any other choices that you make. We cover a wide range of literary writings in English, from the early medieval period to the present day, and a variety of approaches to understanding the way in which the English language, written and spoken, works.

In each year, you will take 30 credits of English from our range of 15-credit and 30-credit modules.

Department Key Facts

Number of first year students

224 Year One undergraduates in 2016

UK league tables

Ranked 13th for History in the Guardian University Guide 2017

National Student Survey

89% are satisfied overall with their programme and 95% are satisfied with teaching (NSS 2016)(National Student Survey 2016)

Research performance

Ranked 10th in the UK for 4* and 3* research (REF 2014)

Why this subject?

Challenge yourself to look deeper

We will challenge you to engage fully with words and texts, informed by the best in critical thinking and debate. The flexible framework of our programmes allows you the freedom to choose areas of specialisation as you progress through your degree. Our Literature modules offer a diverse body of texts spanning historical periods from the medieval to the modern and introducing a range of critical concepts. Our Language modules explore the function of English language in its historical and modern day usage across a range of contexts and media. All of our programmes share a first year that introduces key skills of English in all its varieties.

Explore English in all its breadth

Our Literature modules cover a wide and continuous range of writing in English, from the Middle Ages to the present, and including every major genre: drama; prose fiction; poetry; and nonfictional prose. In our module lists you will find titles as diverse as: Children’s literature; Gothic fiction and film; Talking pictures; Creative writing and Women writers; alongside the more familiar modules in the large literary periods, such as Medieval, Renaissance, Victorian and Modernist Literature. Our Language modules offer a variety of approaches and subjects, with titles including: Varieties of Northern English; Language in society; Psycholinguistics and Language and literature. There are also opportunities to study the interface between literature and film and narrative in graphic media. Share ideas in our small group tutorials We are committed to small group teaching, with no more than nine students in a group for most of our modules. Increasingly fewer universities offer this. This encourages a more rewarding learning experience, with ideas shared and explored with your peers and tutors.

Share ideas in our small group tutorials

We are committed to small group teaching, with no more than nine students in a group for most of our modules. Increasingly fewer universities offer this. This encourages a more rewarding learning experience, with ideas shared and explored with your peers and tutors.

Debate with leading academics in the field

Our tutors are all respected academics whose work is valued both nationally and internationally. Our teaching is research-led, which means not only will you be challenged intellectually but your own research skills will be fostered and encouraged.