English Language and Spanish (BA)

The Joint Honours degree in English Language and Spanish provides you with the opportunity of specialising in two university honours subjects.

Many students find joint honours both stimulating and rewarding as they are able to observe both similarities and differences in the two subjects.

English Language at Cardiff has a distinctive character. You will be provided with a rigorous grounding in the analysis of the English language, learning such essential linguistic tools as phonetics, grammar and discourse analysis from those who are helping develop those fields. You will also learn how to analyse the types of multimodal (e.g. word+image+sound) texts that predominate in contemporary and new media. We also focus on the intersection of language with culture, society, politics and mind.

In Spanish, you develop high-level language skills with the aim of achieving near-native competency along with in-depth knowledge of aspects of the culture, history, politics and society of Spain. Students spend their third year in Spain or a Spanish speaking country, practising and developing their language skills. The course will enable you to develop your writing skills through a range of exercises including resumes and essays with your oral and aural skills being practised through a varied pool of audio-video material, websites, films and computer programmes.

It is important to remember that studying languages is not just about the language itself. It involves examining many aspects of a country and its culture, its social structures and institutions, politics, history, literature and cinema. Through the study of such areas you are able to gain a better understanding of Spanish culture and of how Spain has evolved over the centuries, becoming what it is today.

As a joint honours student, you will find that often there are complementary issues and perspectives that link subjects, be they critical analysis, historical contexts or recent research. 

Each school involved in delivering the degree offers a challenging programme of modules, supported by a friendly atmosphere and excellent staff-student relationships.

Key facts

UCAS CodeQR3K
Entry pointSeptember 2016
Duration4 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 offerABB. Three A-level subjects, including a B in a modern foreign language for beginners or B in Spanish for the advanced pathway. Two AS subjects may be considered in lieu of a third A-level.
Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offerWBQ core will be accepted in lieu of one A-level (at the grades specified above).
Typical International Baccalaureate offer33 points including a Modern European Language.
Other qualificationsApplications from those offering alternative qualifications are welcome. Please see detailed admissions and selection criteria for more information.

Detailed alternative entry requirements are available for this course.
QAA subject benchmark
Admissions tutor(s)

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.

English Language

English Language at Cardiff has a distinctive character. As would be expected of any good English Language programme, you will be provided with a rigorous grounding in the analysis of the English language. Thus 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.

Language analysis, though, is just the starting point. What makes Cardiff special is our focus on the intersection of language with culture, society, politics and mind. While arming you with technical skills of analysis, we then expect you to grapple with exciting theories that will enable you to take into account the multifarious aspects of the context of language use and interpret the communication in a complex and meaningful way.

Year one

In year one you take 60 credits in English Language and 60 credits in Spanish.

Year two

Year three: Sandwich year

You spend year three studying abroad.

Year four

You will take 60 credits in English Language and 60 credits in Spanish.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Spanish Language (BA Languages)ML038220 credits

Module titleModule codeCredits
Communication DisordersSE134720 credits
Persuasive CommunicationSE137120 credits
Forensic LinguisticsSE132420 credits
Language Learning and TeachingSE132920 credits
Language, Genre and IdeologySE139720 credits
May 68. Marking Changes in European Politics and CultureML139920 credits
Catalan Language and Society (Prereq EU0294)ML038120 credits
Student Language AmbassadorML139820 credits
Spanish for professional purposesML038320 credits
Translation as a ProfessionML239320 credits
The Graphic MemoirSE140920 credits
Advanced Translation Practice (Spanish)ML038620 credits
Functions of GrammarSE134020 credits
Patterns of LanguageSE139620 credits
Media DiscourseSE140820 credits
Communicating in RelationshipsSE134420 credits
Sound in ActionSE140720 credits
International Study Abroad (60 credits) AutumnSE625160 credits
European Cinema: thinking the real of fictionML230220 credits
Dissertation/Project (Translation)ML238920 credits
Dissertation Joint Honours - in SpanishML038920 credits
Dissertation Joint Honours - in EnglishML039620 credits
Dissertation in Language and Communication 1SE138320 credits
Extended DissertationSE138540 credits
Dialect in Literature and FilmSE141320 credits
Island Stories: Literatures of the North AtlanticSE259820 credits
Dissertation in Language and Communication 2SE138420 credits
Persuasion in the Legal ProcessSE141420 credits
Professional & Intercultural CommunicationSE141720 credits
Dissertation (Single Honours - in English)ML038740 credits
Dissertation (Single Honours - in Spanish)ML038840 credits
Stories from the Edge: Minority Voices from Spain and Latin AmericaML037820 credits
Spanish American PoetryML037920 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.

School of English, Communication and Philosophy
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.

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.

School of Modern Languages
Lectures provide an overview of the key concepts and frameworks for a topic, equipping students to carry out independent research for the seminars and to develop their own ideas.

Seminars provide an opportunity for students to explore the ideas outlined in the lecture in a small group environment. Seminars would usually consist of about 15 students and the seminar leader (a member of the teaching team). Seminars may take various formats, including plenary group discussion, small group work and student-led presentations. Seminars offer a rewarding opportunity to engage critically with the key ideas and reading of a topic, and to explore areas of particular interest with an expert in the field. It is vital that students prepare for seminars (undertaking any set reading, developing independent critical thought) in order to gain the maximum benefit from the sessions.

Lectures and seminars enable students to develop communication and analytical skills, and to develop critical thinking in a supportive environment.

Essays and examinations are used not only for assessment purposes but also as a means of developing students’ capacities to gather, organise, evaluate and deploy relevant information and ideas from a variety of sources in reasoned arguments. Dedicated essay workshops and individual advice enables students to produce their best work, and written feedback on essays feeds forward into future work, enabling students to develop their strengths and address any weaker areas.

Dissertation: The optional final-year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to investigate a specific topic of interest to you in depth and thereby to acquire detailed knowledge about a particular field of study; to use your initiative in the collection and presentation of material; and present a clear, cogent argument and draw appropriate conclusions.

Pastoral Care: You will be allocated a personal tutor for the entire period you are at the University. Personal tutors are members of the academic staff who are available to students seeking advice, guidance and help.

School of English, Communication and Philosophy
In 2013/14, 91% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

School of Modern Languages
In 2013/14, 95% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

The destinations from the School are often international in nature, with many graduates enjoying their overseas student experience to such an extent that they opt to take time out to travel further, or go abroad on graduation in the hope of securing employment. 

Of those who choose to remain in the UK, many start work immediately following their studies. Their employment options are varied and many opt to utilise the language skills that they have developed over their degree, in roles such as Translators, Language Assistants, Export Assistants and Proofreaders, working with their languages in organisations such as Bearmach Ltd, the British Council, Global Response and Inter Global.

Duration

4 Year(s)

Next intake

September 2016

Places available

Typical places available

SCHOOL OF ENGLISH, COMMUNICATION AND PHILOSOPHY

In 2013/14, 91% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduating.

Degrees in English Language combine the best of humanities skills (flexibility, communication, critique) and social science skills (technical analysis and systematic method). Common destinations include primary and secondary school teaching, teaching English as a foreign language, (digital) journalism, marketing and public relations, sales and advertising, the civil service and public administration.

SCHOOL OF MODERN LANGUAGES

In 2013/14, 95% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.

Many graduates enjoy their year overseas so much that they take time out for more travel, or go abroad on graduation in the hope of finding a job. Of those who choose to remain in the UK, many start work immediately following their studies.

Employment options include roles as translators, language assistants, export assistants and proofreaders, working with their languages in organisations such as Bearmach Ltd, the British Council, Global Response and Inter Global.

Applications received

Typical applications received

Accreditations

QAA subject benchmark

QAA subject benchmark

Overview and aims of this course/programme

Many students find studying a joint honours stimulating and rewarding as they are able to observe both similarities and differences between the two subjects. By combining English Language and Spanish, you will gain a variety of transferable skills and knowledge beneficial for your future.

English Language at Cardiff has a distinctive character. As would be expected of any good course, 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 texts (for example combining word, image and sound) that predominate in contemporary media. We also focus on the intersection of language with culture, society, politics and mind.

Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world. Spoken by more than 400 million people across more than 20 countries worldwide, it is one of the most useful languages in the world for business and leisure alike. It opens doors to a vibrant and diverse range of cultural experiences.

Spanish at Cardiff University enables you to access, analyse and evaluate current developments across the Hispanic world as well as the cultures and values of the past. Having studied Spanish, you will be ready to take advantage of the wide-ranging opportunities open to language graduates today  

We offer Spanish for both advanced students and beginners. In terms of language acquisition, this course will enable you to develop your writing, oral and aural skills through a range of learning activities, and using a variety of audio-visual materials.

In addition to language tuition you will be introduced to Spanish history and culture seeks to provide a solid foundation for more specialised studies as you progress through your course.  You will spend your third year in Spain or a Spanish-speaking country, practising and developing your language skills.

It is important to remember that studying languages is not just about the language itself. It involves examining many aspects of a country and its culture, its social structures and institutions, politics, history, literature and cinema. Through the study of such areas you are able to gain a better understanding of Spanish culture and of how it has evolved over the centuries, becoming what it is today.

As a joint honours student, you will find that often there are complementary issues and perspectives that link subjects, be they critical analysis, historical contexts or recent research.

Each school involved in delivering the degree offers a challenging course of modules, supported by a friendly atmosphere and excellent staff-student relationships.

What should I know about year five?

How is this course/programme structured?

This full-time course lasts for four years with two semesters per year. There are 120 credits a year, split equally between the two subjects. Most modules are worth 20 credits. The third year is spent abroad.

What should I know about year four?

In your final year you will take 60 credits in English Language and 60 credits in Spanish.

The year four English Language modules are offered in the subject areas in which our staff are currently working, giving you a unique insight into some of the most up-to-date and innovative research. These modules often require you to gather and analyse your own data.

Currently the modules address areas such as communication disorders, forensic linguistics, persuasive communication, language learning and teaching, language and ideology, phonology, corpus linguistics and media discourse. You will have the opportunity to undertake a project (20 credits) or extended dissertation (40 credits) in your chosen area of research (subject to performance in year two).

We no longer distinguish between beginner and advanced Spanish students in the final year and all students will take the same language modules. You will refine your linguistic skills in terms of expression and translation, and specialise in your areas of interest by choosing specialised module options. 

You will hone your Spanish-language skills in terms of expression and translation, pursue more of the options begun in year two and specialise in an area of your choice.

What should I know about year three?

Your third year will be spent abroad in a Spanish-speaking country. Options include studying at one of our partner universities, working as an English assistant in a school, or working for a Spanish organisation or company.

If you choose the study option, we have established links with universities in Barcelona, Caceres, Ciudad Real, Granada, Santiago de Compostela y Valencia. In Spanish America we have exchange agreements with universities in Lima (Peru), Mexico City and Guadalajara (Mexico)

Placements for teaching assistants on a scheme run by the British Council can take you to either a major city or a small, rural town. This option provides first-hand teaching experience and allows you to earn a salary sufficient to live on, although you only work on a part-time basis. Prior to the start of your placement, the British Council provides a training weekend in the destination country. In addition, the school you have been assigned to should also guide you in your role as a teacher and help you to find a place to live.

The third option consists of a work placement with an organisation or company in the Spanish-speaking world. The necessary arrangements can be made through personal contacts you may have or by approaching organisations directly. In order to ensure that your work placement affords you plenty of opportunity to speak Spanish and provides you with a beneficial experience, such arrangements will require prior approval by the School.

Any student who undertakes a study placement or a traineeship/work placement in Europe is eligible to apply for an Erasmus grant.      

The year abroad is a great opportunity for you to improve your understanding of the language, immerse yourself in another culture, and gain international study or work experience.

While you are away from Cardiff, you will be assigned a year abroad coordinator, who will keep in touch with you and monitor your progress. You may also get a visit from one of your lecturers who will be keen to find out how you are getting on.

Final year students are usually happy to help with our regular year abroad briefings and have contributed to our extensive ‘year abroad module’ on Learning Central which provides you with student-centred advice throughout your year abroad.

What should I know about the preliminary year?

What should I know about year one?

Year one is a foundation year to give you the skills for advanced study and an overview of the two subjects to inform your later choices. You will take 120 credits in total equally split between 60 credits in English Language and 60 credits in Spanish.

The two core modules in English Language provide an excellent grounding in language description, analysis and interpretation, and in sociolinguistics. You will choose a third module from a list of options.

In year one Spanish you will build on core linguistic skills and be introduced to Spanish culture, literature, civilisation and politics. There are two pathways available: an advanced pathway for students with an A-level or equivalent competence in Spanish and a beginner’s pathway for students with limited or no knowledge of Spanish.

The first year of this programme provides a thorough foundation in the grammar of the language for those students on the beginner’s pathway, and develops the linguistic skills for post A-level students on the advanced pathway.

Other information

Distinctive features

The distinctive features of the course include:

  • core modules that guarantee a solid base for all, but then allow you, with advice from your personal tutor, to carve out a programme that will best fit your interests and career aspirations
  • research-led teaching that allows you to engage with new ideas that are helping to shape the future of English language studies
  • a pathway into this degree for beginners who do not have Spanish A-level
  • a year spent studying or working in a Spanish-speaking country

How will I be taught?

We offer a supportive learning environment, where you are enabled to acquire a range of skills and a wealth of specialist knowledge. Our courses 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.

You will be taught both by lecture and seminar. Lectures provide an overview of the key concepts and frameworks for a topic, equipping you to carry out independent research for the seminars and to develop your own ideas. Seminars provide an opportunity for you to explore the ideas outlined in the lectures.

Seminars usually consist of about 15 students and the seminar leader (a member of the teaching team). Seminars may take various formats, including plenary group discussion, small-group work and student-led presentations.

Admissions tutors

Dr Mercedes Durham, Admissions Tutor


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