English Literature and Religious Studies (BA)
Many students find joint honours both stimulating and rewarding as they observe both similarities and differences in the two subjects.
The Joint Honours degree in English Literature and Religious Studies provides you with the opportunity of specialising in two university honours subjects.
As a joint honours student, you will find that often there are complementary issues and perspectives as well as skills and that link subjects, be they critical analysis, historical contexts or recent research.
English Literature at Cardiff offers access to the whole span of English literature, from the Anglo-Saxon period to the twenty-first century. 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.
Religion has been part of human experience from the earliest traces of human existence up to the present day. It has been the way most cultures have sought to express their understanding of the purpose of life and the foundation of personal and social behaviour. The study of religion is therefore rich and exciting, and you will have the opportunity to explore your own and other peoples' religious history and culture, and some of the fundamental questions of existence in a flourishing centre of research.
Each school involved in delivering the degree offers a challenging programme of modules, supported by a friendly atmosphere and excellent staff-student relationships.
|Entry point||September 2016|
|Typical places available||The School typically has 350 places available|
|Typical applications received||The School typically receives 1450 applications|
|Typical A level offer||AAB including an A in English Literature or English Literature and Language or Creative Writing. General Studies is not accepted.|
|Typical Welsh Baccalaureate offer||WBQ 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 offer||35 points, 6 points each required from English and one other subject, both at higher level.|
|Other qualifications||Applications 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|
Philosophy and Religious Studies/Theology
Dr Louise Child, Course Administrator
Dr Louise Child, Admissions Tutor
Dr Megan Leitch, 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 is a three-year degree programme comprising of some core modules that provide essential skills and training as well as a wide variety of optional modules for you to select from in order to tailor your degree to meet your interests.
The degree provides the training necessary for students who wish to study English Literature or Religious Studies at postgraduate level, and a valuable range of intellectual and transferable skills for students who enter other professions.
You will take 60 credits in English Literature and 60 credits in Religious Studies.
|Module title||Module code||Credits|
|Introduction To Biblical Hebrew||RT2104||20 credits|
|Further Biblical Hebrew||RT2105||20 credits|
|Introduction To The Bible||RT2103||20 credits|
|The Story of Christianity||RT4103||20 credits|
|Introduction to New Testament Greek||RT3107||20 credits|
|Further New Testament Greek||RT3108||20 credits|
|Introduction To Arabic||RT1109||20 credits|
|Further Elementary Arabic||RT1110||20 credits|
|Introduction To The Study of Religion 1||RT1111||20 credits|
|Introduction To The Study of Religion 2||RT1112||20 credits|
|Introduction To Sanskrit||RT1106||20 credits|
|Further Elementary Sanskrit||RT1107||20 credits|
|Texts in Time 1500-1800||SE2132||20 credits|
|Literature, Culture, Place||SE2133||20 credits|
|Shakespeare and Chaucer||SE2135||20 credits|
|Medieval Narrative and Nation||SE2137||20 credits|
In Year 2, you take 60 credits of English Literature modules and 60 credits of Religious Studies modules.
In Year 3, you take 60 credits of English Literature modules and 60 credits of Religious Studies modules. If you wish, you can write a dissertation on a topic of your choice in either discipline.
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.
Teaching methods include lectures, seminars, practicals, field trips, and one-to-one tutorials. You will also undertake independent study and research, with guidance from tutors.
A range of formative and summative assessment methods are used, including essays, examinations, presentations, portfolios, and creative assignments.
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 History, Archaeology and Religion
In 2013/14, 92% of the School's graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduation.
QAA subject benchmark
|QAA subject benchmark|
Philosophy and Religious Studies/Theology
Overview and aims of this course/programme
The BA in Religious Studies and Philosophy gives students the opportunity to study the most general questions about reality, knowledge and ethics in Philosophy whilst developing a critical understanding of Religious Studies with relevance to the historical development of religions in contemporary societies.
Philosophy combines breadth of content with the flexibility required for students to pursue specific interests and to specialise if they want to.You will study morality including applied ethics, normative ethics andmetaethics; political philosophy including political issues and the legitimacy of political institutions; the philosophical aesthetics of art, music and literature; the nature of mind, thought, language and action; the fundamental nature of reality; the nature of knowledge. You will do this through studying some of the most influential writings in Western literature.
Religious Studies encourages you to explore religions and theologies in relation to a wide range of historical, theoretical, and social issues, and according to a range of methodological approaches (incl. textual hermeneutics, language study, gender theories, cultural and theoretical anthropology, conflict studies, media, globalisation etc). Students have the opportunity to study a wide range of religious traditions including: Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism.
What should I know about year five?
Students are expected to attend and participate in the lectures and seminars for all modules on which they are enrolled. 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 the member of staff who convenes module, who will provide the necessary support. Students with extenuating circumstances should submit the Extenuating Circumstances Form in accordance with the School’s procedures.
The total number of hours which students are expected to devote to each 20-credit module is 200. Of these, 30 hours will be contact hours with staff (lectures and seminars); the remaining 170 hours should be spent on self-directed learning for that module (reading, preparation for seminars, research, reflection, formative writing, assessed work, exam revision).
Students are expected to adhere to the Cardiff University policy on Dignity at Work and Study, which can be found here: http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/govrn/cocom/equalityanddiversity/dignityatwork/index.html
How is this course/programme structured?
The programme is studied full-time over three academic years. 360 credits are taken (120 credits per year). Year 1 is a foundation year designed to equip you with the skills for advanced study and to give you an overview of the subjects that will enable you to make informed choices from the modules available in Year 2 and the Final Year. In Year 2 you select from a range of modules in which you will build on the foundation year, developing a solid understanding of the core areas of Philosophical inquiry and the study of Religion. 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.
You will take up to three subjects in the first year which must include Philosophy (40 credits) and Religious Studies (40 credits), with the balance of credits chosen from one other subject block (the choices available include Theology and a range of classical source languages of Religious Studies such as Greek, Hebrew, Arabic and Sanskrit). The second and third years consist of 120 credits per year chosen from the range of Philosophy and Religious Studies optional modules for that particular year of study. Joint honours students must take 60 credits in each department in their second and third years. Students must pass each academic year before being allowed to proceed.
What should I know about year four?
No specific equipment is required.
What should I know about year three?
Please see Learning Outcomes
What should I know about the preliminary year?
A diverse range of learning and teaching styles is used throughout the programme. Students will attend lectures using a wide variety of sources such as texts, images, film, music, drama.The lectures are supported by seminars, where the smaller group sizes encourage acquisition of more specialized knowledge, understanding and skills using methods such as group work and discussion, oral presentations and source criticism. Students also attend tutorials (personal one-to-one meetings with a lecturer) and are expected to study independently in preparation for each session.
Each one-hour seminar requires six to eight hours of preparation; in the seminar itself you will use the knowledge acquired during the preparatory time to present and test your arguments. In the process, you will receive feedback on your ideas and arguments from lecturers and fellow students. In your essays you will combine a range of sources – sometimes contradictory – into a coherent argument using evidence from a range of scholarly and academic sources. You will receive individual feedback on your essays from lecturers.
Core modules in Year One usually comprise of two weekly lectures, supplemented by seminars in small groups. In Year Two, and especially Year Three, the emphasis shifts further towards seminar work. In total, you would be expected to work 35-40 hours per week.
All of the taught modules within the programme in Years 2 and 3 are optional. In the Final Year students can choose to write a dissertation on a topic of their choice (subject to supervisory availability and approval of the title by the Board of Studies).
What should I know about year one?
Formative assessment is provided as feedback on coursework through written comments and individual discussion and on oral seminar presentations through individual guidance.
Summative assessment for most modules takes place through one or more of the following methods: unseen examinations; open book examinations; portfolios of essays; and (if chosen) the dissertation. The form(s) of summative assessment for individual modules are set out in the relevant module description. Assessment methods are chosen as most appropriate to elicit the skills, knowledge and competencies developed by the module. Not all skills are assessed directly (e.g. the accurate and clear oral communication of concept and theories). However, opportunities are made available for the development of such skills in seminar presentations, and their value is emphasised to students. Details of any academic or competence standards which may limit the availability of adjustments or alternative assessments for students with disabilities are documented in the Module Descriptions.
- Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of important concepts, theories, problems and arguments in the main areas of Philosophy, such as metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of mind, logic, moral philosophy and, political philosophy.
- Demonstrate familiarity with the ideas and arguments of some of the major philosophers in the history of the subject, encountered in their own writings.
- Demonstrate awareness of some major issues currently at the frontiers of philosophical debate and research.
- Display precision of thought and expression in the analysis and formulation of complex and controversial problems.
- Construct and justify arguments whileforming independent, fair and well-supported assessments of conflicting views and opinions.
- Explore critically beliefs and values, and question their presuppositions.
- Appreciate the diversity of competing theories, and of competing interpretations of theories and texts, in Philosophy and Religious Studies.
- Apply philosophical concepts, theories, arguments and methods to some of the major problems, both theoretical and practical, facing human reflection, life and society.
- Demonstrate critical understanding of religious traditions on the basis of source material from different religious traditions and of modern discourses on religion.
- Demonstrate knowledge of the diversity of religions in a global context, in history and in the present.
- Demonstrate a general understanding of the various approaches adopted by Religious Studies and Theology to the study of religious traditions and theologies.
- Develop an awareness of the different theories of religion, but also critically assess the limits of knowledge that can be achieved about religion.
How will I be taught?
In order to encourage students to apply their learning to the world outside of the University, the school has a dedicated Work Placements Officer who supports students with accessing a wide range of work experience opportunities both in and out of term time. This together with additional career related workshops and the department’s academic programme, students will begin to develop a range of discipline-specific skills that employers now demand. Students learn to assess critically a body of knowledge, to develop hypotheses, test them against qualitative and quantitative evidence, and present conclusions both in writing and orally. They learn to work both independently and as part of a team. Students have the opportunity to study abroad during the second (as an exception also in the third) year through the Erasmus programme. The University-wide ‘Languages for All’ programme will allow students to study a foreign language free of charge alongside their degree programme.
The department has developed an e-portfolio for students to identify and store their academic and non-academic progress in order to demonstrate their successes to future placement providers and potential employers during their second and third year of study.
To support our students with settling into university and academic life as quickly as possible we have a student mentoring scheme where new students are buddied up with second and third year students. This is where academic and non-academic concerns can be discussed in a safe and informal environment and many fears can be allayed.
Dr Louise Child, Course Administrator
Dr Louise Child, Admissions Tutor
Dr Megan Leitch, Admissions Tutor
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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