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English Language and English Literature BA (Hons)

Key features of this course:

  • The course is dynamic and innovative, with highly enthusiastic teaching informed by contemporary research
  • Clear focus on the socio-cultural aspects of language use and an emphasis on the development of research skills with opportunities to present research outcomes through a student conference in the final year
  • Develops evaluation and reflection of linguistic and stylistic choices
  • Strong emphasis on the development of advanced literacy and communication skills
  • Pays particular attention to developing transferable communication and research skills in support of employability and provides the subject content required by those who wish to progress into teaching
  • Study diverse literatures emanating from the sixteenth through to the twenty-first centuries – and encompassing both ‘canonical’ and ‘marginal’ texts
  • Opportunities to play an active role in local and regional literature festivals, related events and a work project module

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For more information about teaching, learning and assessment on this course, please see the single honours course pages for English Language and English Literature.

Scope of the course content meant that I could research and write in a wide variety of areas, sometimes crossing into other disciplines such as Sociology. This kept the process of studying fresh and interesting.

Josh Crampton, BA (Hons) English Language Joint Honours graduate.

Studied in combination, these two subject areas will provide you with the opportunity to develop your all-round understanding of English – how it is spoken and written and how that has changed over time and in different places; the literature that it has produced and the continual processes of evolution that determine understanding and readings of it. The course provides an ideal foundation for graduates who wish to become teachers; it develops a rounded, transferable set of competencies and skills that offer sound preparation for a wide variety of jobs and career paths; it offers good preparation for progression to postgraduate academic study.

In English Language your critical and intellectual faculties are honed in a variety of teaching and learning contexts. You focus on the socio-cultural aspects of language use and exploration of linguistic and stylistic choices. By your third year you will be carrying out your own independent research projects on aspects of English language as it is used in spoken and written communication   – communication central to the construction of human beings’ identities, and that is as varied, diverse and rich as are its speakers and writers. During the course, there are opportunities for you to undertake work placements, supporting you to recognise and apply the very broad range of transferable skills and competencies that you are developing.

English Literature provides opportunities to explore literatures from the 16th to 21st centuries, embracing both mainstream, ‘canonical’ and less familiar, ‘marginal’ texts. It invites you to share with your lecturers cutting-edge thinking in spheres as diverse as Shakespeare in translation, children’s literature, contemporary American writing and ecocriticism (the understanding of literary texts through exploration of the interconnections between human culture and organic and animal worlds). From the outset, you will develop skills of close and creative reading, as well as a critical awareness of the relationship between texts and their contexts. Increasingly as the course progresses, you will explore literature from a range of theoretical perspectives current throughout the humanities. This, in turn, will support you to specialise in the areas of literature that interest you most. There are also opportunities to explore relationships between literature and other kinds of expression, for example painting and illustration.

Taught by academics who are acknowledged experts in their fields, both subject areas will hone your critical and intellectual faculties, supporting your articulacy and enabling you persuasively to develop and present your ideas. In combination, English Language Studies and English Literary Studies provide you with exciting opportunities to study not only how we communicate with one another but also to consider how our communication shapes, structures and responds to contemporary societies and cultures (with ‘contemporary’ embracing not just the cultures of your today but the todays of diverse others, from speakers, readers and writers in 17th century England to those of 20th century America). Studying them in combination will be for you if your interest lies in the ways in which human beings communicate with one another, how they make sense of their society and cultures, and how communication itself shapes the meanings and ideologies of our ever changing world.


Entry requirements

104 UCAS Tariff points

The points above are the new UCAS tariff, which will be used for courses starting from September 2017. See our new UCAS tariff page for more information.


Study options

Full-time or part-time study available

Get in touch

Dr Tricia Connell
Admissions Tutor, English Language and English Literature
01905 855293 

Joanne Henderson
Course Administrator
01905 542417

Admissions Office
01905 855111

Course content

Year 1

Core modules:

Describing English
What is Literature?



Module options:

The History of the English Language
Name Studies
Introduction to Sociolinguistics
Introduction to Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)
Improving English Usage and Style in Academic Writing
French Stage 1
German Stage 1
Spanish Stage 1
Japanese Stage 1
Italian Stage 1
Chinese Mandarin Stage 1
English Literature Across the Centuries
English Renaissance Texts and Contexts
Creativity in Women’s Writing: Difference in View
Introduction to American Writing
Power, Sex and Identity in Restoration Literature
Science Fiction: Alternative Worlds
Improving English Usage and Style in Academic Writing

Year 2

Core modules:

Approaches to English Language Studies: Critical and Theoretical Matters
Literary Criticism: Theory and Practice


Module options:

Language and Power
The English Language in the 21st Century
Research Language Variation
Language Awareness and Analysis in Teaching English as a Foreign Language
Shakespearean Comedy
Culture and Politics in Victorian Fiction
The Pre-Raphaelites: Word and Image
Children’s Literature
Literary England and the Great War, 1900 – 1930
The American Short Story
Enlightened Minds: Literature 1688 – 1760
Literature in English Around the World

Year 3

Core modules:



Module options:

World Englishes
Multilingualism Matters
Language, Style & Identity
Introduction to Language Acquisition
Independent Research Project
Work Project Module
Key Concepts and Principles in Teaching English as a Foreign Language - Methodology
Justice and Revenge in English Renaissance Drama
Love, Religion and Politics in English Renaissance Poetry
Fantasy and the 1980s
Cities and Fiction
American Writing and the Wilderness
Irish Writing since 1900
Literature in Film Adaptation
What Happens Now: Twenty-First Century Poetry Plus
Postcolonial Literature
Independent Research Project
Extended Independent Research Project



Our English Language and English Literature degree provides continuous opportunities to develop employability skills and includes work experience options, a credited work project module, and a career and professional development module. There is a range of opportunities to study for a semester abroad in Europe and the USA in the second semester of the second year. 

Many graduates of English Language and English Literature will take a postgraduate education course as a fourth year of study and enter the teaching profession. Others will find that the skills acquired through the study of English Language are particularly highly regarded in all professions where good communication skills are prized such as publishing, journalism, public relations, human resources and web-based communication.

Graduates also often take a certificate in TEFL and become teachers of English as a second language at home or abroad. Those graduates who achieve particularly good results in their first degree may choose to progress to a Masters course, which will then often lead to a career as a researcher or further study to PhD. Many students progress to careers requiring good communication skills such as Public Relations or develop research careers with media or publishing companies.

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

English Language and English Literature BA (Hons) - QQ23 

UCAS is the central organisation through which applications are processed for entry onto full-time undergraduate courses in Higher Education in the UK.

Read our How to apply pages for more information on applying and to find out what happens to your application.

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