English Language and Literature (BA)

The single honours degree in English Language and Literature provides you with the opportunity of specialising in two subjects, both equally stimulating and rewarding as they interact and illuminate each other.

English Literature offers access to the whole chronological span of English literature, from the Anglo-Saxon period to the twenty-first century. You will be able to study writing in English from England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, North America, the Caribbean, India, and Australia. Nor is the curriculum restricted to the printed word: we are intrigued by the connections between literature and film, art, music, history, language, and popular culture, and our teaching reflects these interests. 

Within English Language, you will be provided with a rigorous grounding in the analysis of the language. You will learn such essential linguistic tools as phonetics, grammar and discourse analysis from those who are helping develop those fields. Since we take a broad approach to language, you will also learn how to analyse the types of multimodal (e.g. word+image+sound) texts that predominate in contemporary and new media. 

The School offers a challenging programme of modules drawn from each subject, supported by a friendly atmosphere and excellent staff-student relationships.

Please note that this integrated degree replaces the Joint Honours degree and is intended to allow students to combine the two subjects in a more cohesive and creative way.

Key facts

UCAS CodeQ300
Entry pointSeptember 2016
Duration3 years
Typical places availableThe School of English, Communication and Philosophy typically has 350 places available.
Typical applications receivedThe School of English, Communication and Philosophy typically receives 1450 applications.
Typical A level offerAAB including an A grade in English Literature or English Literature and Language or Creative Writing. General Studies is not accepted.
Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offerWBQ core will be accepted in lieu of one A-level (at the grades specified above), excluding English Literature or English Language and Literature, or Creative Writing for English Literature degrees.
Typical International Baccalaureate offer36 points, including 6,6,5 in Higher Level subjects to include English Literature.
Other qualificationsApplications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome.

Detailed alternative entry requirements are available for this course.
QAA subject benchmark

The Programme that we offer cuts across three different Benchmark Statements: English Studies, Linguistics and Communication.

Admissions tutor(s)

Mrs Jillian Burnett, Course Administrator

Dr Anthony Mandal, Admissions Tutor

Dr Mercedes Durham, Admissions Tutor

Important Legal Information: The programme information currently being published in Course Finder is under review and may be subject to change. The final programme information is due to be published by May 2016 and will be the definitive programme outline which the University intends to offer. Applicants are advised to check the definitive programme information after the update, to ensure that the programme meets their needs.

This Single Honours degree enables you to combine the study of English Language and English Literature by choosing from the full range of modules offered by each subject. Although you spend roughly half of your time on each subject, the flexibility of the degree means that you can specialise in different areas across the programme.

Year one is a foundation year designed to equip you with the skills for advanced study and to give you an overview of the two subjects that will enable you to make informed choices from the modules available in the following years. In years two and three you select from a range of literature and language modules in which you will build on the foundation year, developing high-level skills. 

English language 

English Language is concerned with the structure, use and significance of language, with a particular focus on the English language as it is spoken and written across the world in many different social and professional settings. It studies spoken, written and multimodal texts but also how speakers and hearers learn, interpret and evaluate language and communicative contexts. Studying for a degree including English Language develops abilities to analyse and critique the language and communication that surrounds us but also helps to develop strong skills in communicating clearly and effectively. English Language graduates are known for their ability to combine the best of social science skills, such as technical analysis and systematic method, with the best of humanities skills, such as flexibility, communication and critique.

The English Language element of this degree programme combines a strong foundation in the analysis of language and communication, with plenty of opportunities for students to pursue specific academic and career-related interests. There are modules in descriptive traditions of language, such as the study of phonetics, grammar and child language, but also in critical traditions such as the study of discourse and the relation between language and power. The School also offers a number of modules that are directly relevant to career areas in education, the media, health, and the legal process.

English literature 

The English Literature element of this degree programme offers opportunities to study all periods of literature in English from the Anglo-Saxon period to the twenty-first century and from many different parts of the world. In year two you select from a range of period-, genre- or theme-based modules in which you will build on the foundation year, reading a variety of texts in their historical and cultural contexts. In final year there is a range of more specialised modules in which you can pursue interests developed in the previous two years and engage with current issues in research and scholarship, enabling you further to develop analytical and presentational skills that employers will value, as well as equipping you for postgraduate study. The focus throughout the degree is on becoming a careful, attentive, and informed reader, sensitive to the nuances of language and style and able to articulate your responses to texts in writing which is precise, stylish, and effective.

I've really enjoyed studying at Cardiff, due mainly to the fantastic variety of interesting modules on offer. With modules on sounds of speech, accents and dialects to the visual communication of advertising, to the history of the language from Celtic varieties to Present Day English, there's a module for everyone.

Adam Duce, BA English Language

Year one

You will take 80 credits within English Language and English Literature and 40 credits in another Humanities subject which may be from the School of English, Communication and Philosophy or an associate School.

Students of this course can choose to study modules outside of their allocated School(s) core and optional modules. These can be chosen from modules from participating Academic Schools.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Introduction To Language & SocietySE111020 credits
Introduction to Poetry and the NovelSE213620 credits
Introduction To LanguageSE110920 credits
Reading and IdentitySE213120 credits

Year two

Module titleModule codeCredits
Sound, Structure and MeaningSE141120 credits

Module titleModule codeCredits
Visual CommunicationSE137320 credits
SociolinguisticsSE136920 credits
Research MethodsSE131820 credits
History of EnglishSE139820 credits
Language & CultureSE140220 credits
Language & the MindSE140420 credits
Reading Old EnglishSE244120 credits
Shakespeare and Renaissance DramaSE244220 credits
Elizabethan ShakespeareSE244320 credits
Modernist FictionsSE244520 credits
Modern Welsh Writing in EnglishSE244820 credits
Creative Writing ISE241720 credits
Twentieth-Century Crime FictionSE245520 credits
Fiction of The Indian SubcontinentSE228320 credits
Introduction to Romantic PoetrySE245020 credits
Modernism and the CitySE246320 credits
The Post-1945 American NovelSE256620 credits
Imaginary Journeys: More to HuxleySE245720 credits
Introduction to Visual CultureSE246120 credits
Language & GenderSE140320 credits
Contemporary Women's WritingSE244620 credits
African-American LiteratureSE245120 credits
International Study Abroad (60 credits) AutumnSE625160 credits
International Study Abroad (60 credits) SpringSE625260 credits
Children's Literature: Form & FunctionSE244720 credits
Words & MeaningSE137020 credits
DiscourseSE136220 credits
Representing the VictoriansSE246620 credits
The Robin Hood TraditionSE236720 credits
Fictive Histories/Historical FictionsSE246720 credits
Gothic Fiction: The Romantic AgeSE246820 credits
Romanticism, Politics, AestheticsSE246920 credits
Social Politics and National Style: American Fiction and Form 1920-1940SE247020 credits
Ways of ReadingSE244920 credits
Literature and ScienceSE247120 credits
Dickens in Many MediaSE247220 credits

Year three

Module titleModule codeCredits
Communication DisordersSE134720 credits
Persuasive CommunicationSE137120 credits
Project in Language and Communication 1SE138120 credits
Project in Language and Communication 2SE138220 credits
Forensic LinguisticsSE132420 credits
Functions of GrammarSE134020 credits
Language Learning and TeachingSE132920 credits
Language, Genre and IdeologySE139720 credits
DissertationSE138040 credits
Lifespan CommunicationSE132720 credits
Nineteenth-Century Crime FictionSE239020 credits
DissertationSE252420 credits
Writing Caribbean SlaverySE256820 credits
Creative Writing II: Special TopicsSE237020 credits
HitchcockSE254420 credits
Creative Writing III: Special TopicsSE237320 credits
Love, Death and Marriage in Renaissance LiteratureSE258320 credits
R. S. Thomas: No Truce with the FuriesSE257820 credits
French TheorySE257020 credits
Second-generation Romantic PoetsSE258220 credits
Desire, the Body and the Text: Psychoanalysis & LiteratureSE258020 credits
Utopia: Suffrage to CyberpunkSE258120 credits
Children, Language & CommunicationSE131220 credits
Communicating in RelationshipsSE134420 credits
Sound in ActionSE140720 credits
Dissertation in English Language & LiteratureSE141240 credits
Social InteractionSE133920 credits
Patterns of LanguageSE139620 credits
Media DiscourseSE140820 credits
The Graphic MemoirSE140920 credits
International Study Abroad (60 credits) AutumnSE625160 credits
International Study Abroad (60 credits) SpringSE625260 credits
Bluestockings, Britannia, Unsex'd Females: Women in public life, 1770 - 1800SE258820 credits
Gothic Fiction: The VictoriansSE258920 credits
Interwar Experiments: Sex, Gender, StyleSE258420 credits
Modern British Political DramaSE259020 credits
Norse Myth and SagaSE256020 credits
Canterbury Tales: Genre, History, InterpretationSE257920 credits
Four English Poets of the Twentieth CenturySE259120 credits
Gender & Monstrosity: Late/Neo VictorianSE256420 credits
Middle English Romance: Monsters and MagicSE258620 credits
Poetry in the Making: Modern Literary ManuscriptsSE259220 credits
Postcolonial TheorySE259320 credits
Shakespeare's Late PlaysSE259420 credits
Medical FictionsSE259620 credits
Visions of Past and Future in Children's LiteratureSE259520 credits
Military Masculinities in the Long Nineteenth CenturySE259720 credits
The University is committed to providing a wide range of module options where possible, but please be aware that whilst every effort is made to offer choice this may be limited in certain circumstances. This is due to the fact that some modules have limited numbers of places available, which are allocated on a first-come, first-served basis, while others have minimum student numbers required before they will run, to ensure that an appropriate quality of education can be delivered; some modules require students to have already taken particular subjects, and others are core or required on the programme you are taking. Modules may also be limited due to timetable clashes, and although the University works to minimise disruption to choice, we advise you to seek advice from the relevant School on the module choices available.

The Cardiff BA in English Language and Literature will be taught using the following methods:

  • Weekly lectures
  • Weekly small group seminars
  • Contact via Virtual Learning Environments.

Most of the assessment in English Literature is by assessed essay, while English Language uses a combination of assessed coursework and exams. Where appropriate, some modules in Years Two and Three also make use of other modes of assessment such as student presentations, journal entries, or portfolios of creative writing; there are group presentations; exercises involving data analysis or other forms of linguistic analysis; visual design projects; in the final year students also have an opportunity to write a dissertation on a topic of their own choice.

Many modules offer the opportunity for students to submit a formative piece of work: this does not count towards the mark for the module but provides you with valuable practice in developing and expressing your ideas. Feedback is given on all formative and assessed work.

The School of English, Communication and Philosophy offers intellectually stimulating programmes of study, shaped by the latest research. We have a supportive learning environment, where students are enabled to acquire a range of skills and a wealth of specialist knowledge.

Our programmes foster intellectual skills, such as critical thinking, close analysis, evaluating evidence, constructing arguments, using theory, and the effective deployment of language in writing and in debate. We also help you gain experience in team-working, independent research, and time management. A range of formative and summative assessment methods are used, including essays, examinations, presentations, portfolios, and creative assignments.

Jobs

  • Lecturer
  • Teacher
  • Writer
  • Crime Intelligence Analyst

Duration

3 Year(s)

Next intake

September 2016

Places available

Typical places available

120 places for Single and Joint Honour programmes that include English Language,

Applications received

Typical applications received

There were 150 applications for the Single Hons BA English Language and Literature for entry 2013.

Accreditations

QAA subject benchmark

QAA subject benchmark

The Programme that we offer cuts across three different Benchmark Statements: English Studies, Linguistics and Communication.

What are the aims of this Programme?

This Single Honours degree scheme enables you to combine the study of English Language and English Literature by choosing from the full range of modules offered by each subject. Although you spend half of your time on each subject, the flexibility of the degree means that you can specialise in different areas across the programme.

Year 1 is a foundation year designed to equip you with the skills for advanced study and to give you an overview of the two subjects that will enable you to make informed choices from the modules available in the following years. In Years 2 and 3 you select from a range of literature and language modules in which you will build on the foundation year, developing high-level skills. The focus throughout the degree is on becoming a graduate who is attentive to both literary and linguistic features of texts and discursive practices, sensitive to the nuances of language and style and developing analytical and professional skills that employers will value.

English Language is concerned with the structure, use and significance of language, with a particular focus on the English language as it is spoken and written across the world in many different social and professional settings. It studies spoken, written and multimodal texts but also how speakers and hearers learn, interpret and evaluate language and communicational contexts. Studying for a degree including English Language develops abilities to analyse and critique the language and communication that surrounds us but also helps develop strong skills in communicating clearly and effectively. English Language graduates are known for their ability to combine the best of social science skills, such as technical analysis and systematic method, with the best of humanities skills, such as flexibility, communication and critique.

The English Language element of this degree programme combines a strong foundation in linguistic and communicational analysis with plenty of opportunities for students to pursue specific academic and career-related interests. We offer modules in descriptive traditions of language, such as the study of phonetics, grammar and child language, but also in critical traditions such as the study of discourse and the relation between language and power. We also offer a number of modules that are directly relevant to career areas in education, the media, health, and the legal process.

The English Literature element of this degree programme offers opportunities to study all periods of literature in English from the Anglo-Saxon period to the twenty-first century and from many different parts of the world. In Year 2 you select from a range of period-, genre- or theme-based modules in which you will build on the foundation year, reading a variety of texts in their historical and cultural contexts. In Final Year there is a range of more specialised modules in which you can pursue interests developed in the previous two years and engage with current issues in research and scholarship, enabling you further to develop analytical and presentational skills that employers will value, as well as equipping you for postgraduate study. The focus throughout the degree is on becoming a careful, attentive, and informed reader, sensitive to the nuances of language and style and able to articulate your responses to texts in writing which is precise, stylish, and effective.

What is expected of me?

Students are expected to attend and participate in lectures and seminars for all modules on which they are enrolled. They are expected to devote 200 hours of study to each 20-credit module, consisting in a combination of formal contact hours and independent study.  In line with University policy, attendance will be monitored at specific ‘points of engagement’ throughout the year.  Students with good cause to be absent should inform their module leaders, who will provide the necessary support.  Students with extenuating circumstances should submit the Extenuating Circumstances form in accordance with the University’s procedures.

Students are expected to adhere to the Cardiff University policy on Dignity at Work and Study.

How is this Programme Structured?

The programme is offered in full-time mode over three academic years or part-time mode over four to nine academic years.  360 credits are studied (120 credits per year).  The first year consists of 80 core credits (40 credits in English Language and 40 credits in English Literature).  A further 40 credits are chosen from either the area of English Language or English Literature or from another Humanities subject group.  Students in their second year take 40 compulsory credits in Discourse and Sound, Structure and Meaning, plus a further 20 credits from the range of English Language modules available.  As there are no compulsory modules in English Literature, students choose 60 credits from the range of optional English Literature modules available to make up the 120 credits for the year. Students in their final year choose all 120 credits from the range of English Language and English Literature modules available.  These can be split equally across English Language and English Literature (60 credits from each to make up the 120 credits) or they can opt to take 80 credits from one discipline and 40 credits from the other. Students must pass each academic year before being allowed to proceed.

Will I need any specific equipment to study this Programme?

There is no specific equipment required to enable study on this Programme.

What skills will I practise and develop?

Students will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills, both those which are discipline specific and more generic ‘employability skills’.

Many of the learning outcomes listed above involve practising skills that are transferable to numerous areas of employment. In addition, students who engage with the programme will practise and develop the ability to:

·         Communicate effectively with others.

·         Think analytically about problems.

·         Use electronic and other sources of information as appropriate to the project chosen.

·         Take responsibility for their own learning programme and professional development.

How will I be taught?

A diverse range of teaching and learning styles is used throughout the programme. Students attend lectures, participate in seminars and carry out independent research in preparation for each session. Modules usually last one semester and mostly consist in 2 lectures and 1 seminar per week, as well as independent study.

The learning activities will vary from module to module as appropriate, but may include such activities as: interactive lectures, seminar discussions of prepared texts/topics, student presentations or group presentations, small-group work within seminars, translation classes, formative writing exercises, journal entries, and film showings. Students are expected to do the reading and other relevant preparation to enable them to take a full part in these activities and are encouraged to explore the resources of the library as appropriate.

In the final year of the degree students have the option of choosing to write a dissertation on a topic of particular interest to them.

How will I be assessed?

Assessment

The taught modules within the programme are assessed through a variety of methods:

·         Traditional academic essays

·         Data-based essays

·         Projects involving data collection and transcription

·         Formal exams

·         Oral presentations

·         Practical creative projects

·         Journal entries

·         Portfolio

All modules offer the opportunity to undertake formative work appropriate to the module. The form(s) of summative assessment for individual modules are set out in the relevant Module Description. Most modules are assessed by assessed essay and/or examination, but some include other forms of assessment such as journal entries, a portfolio, or presentations. The assessment strategy is structured to lead students from specimen question papers towards the production of an informed answer. Emphasis in assessment is placed on the writing of clear, persuasive and scholarly essays presented in a professional manner and submitted on time. Details of any academic or competence standards which may limit the availability of adjustments or alternative assessments for disabled students are noted in the Module Descriptions.

Feedback

Students will receive individual written feedback on written coursework and group written feedback on exams.

Written feedback is provided on both formative and summative assessment and students are encouraged to discuss their ideas with module tutors in seminars and, where appropriate, on a one-to-one basis in office hours.

How will I be supported?

Every student is assigned a personal tutor and will meet him/her for regular Academic Progress Meetings (one per semester). There is a form to fill in before each Academic Progress meeting which is designed to help you reflect on the written feedback and the reasons for the marks you have received from the previous round of assessment. You will discuss this feedback and your reflections on it with your personal tutor.

In addition, all staff have weekly office hours during teaching weeks and students may make appointments to see their personal tutor or module leaders on a one-to-one basis about any issues. Staff may also be contacted by email. Details of the office hours and email addresses of staff are provided in the Module Guide for each module.

Use of Learning Central, the University’s Virtual Learning Environment, will vary from module to module as the module leader feels appropriate for the specific contents of the module but will normally at least include making lecture handouts available online.

What are the Learning Outcomes of this Programme?

Graduates from this programme will be able to:

·         Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of core areas of English language studies, including phonetics, grammar, semantics, pragmatics and discourse analysis

·         Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of a range of empirical linguistic phenomena and of the relevant descriptive terminology so as to have a practical understanding of what language is and how it works in actual use

·         Demonstrate responsiveness to the central role of language in the creation of meaning and a sensitivity to the affective power of language

·         Demonstrate awareness of how different social and cultural contexts affect the nature of language and meaning

·         Critically evaluate ideas, arguments and empirical research

·         Collect, evaluate, synthesise and interpret qualitative (and quantitative) data

·         Demonstrate awareness of different literary periods, movements and genres and of the variety of English literature.

·         Demonstrate understanding of the importance of historical and cultural contexts.

·         Demonstrate knowledge of the critical issues and/or debates surrounding or raised by texts.

·         Demonstrate understanding of the shaping effects of historical and cultural circumstances on the production and meaning of texts.

·         Demonstrate the ability to select and organise material purposefully and cogently.

·         Demonstrate the ability to handle complex ideas with clarity.

·         Demonstrate the ability to analyse and interpret material drawn from a diversity of literary periods

·         Demonstrate the ability to apply high level critical skills of close analysis to literary texts.

·         Demonstrate knowledge of appropriate critical vocabulary and terminology.

·         Demonstrate the ability to sustain a critical argument that is responsive to the workings of language and literary styles.

·         Demonstrate awareness of the bibliographic conventions of the discipline and their role in communicating information.

Other information

We have a number of opportunities to study abroad in Europe and the United States, including Erasmus programmes.

Admissions tutors

Mrs Jillian Burnett, Course Administrator

Dr Anthony Mandal, Admissions Tutor

Dr Mercedes Durham, Admissions Tutor


Key Information Sets (KIS) make it easy for prospective students to compare information about full or part time undergraduate courses, and are available on the Unistats website.

Applying

Get information and advice about making an application, find out when the key dates are and learn more about our admissions criteria.

How to apply
Students outside the Glamorgan Building

Open Day 2016

Open days are your chance to get a real first-hand experience of the university and the city.

Related courses

Related links