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Religious Studies and English Literature (BA)

Entry year


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

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Course overview

This joint honours degree gives you the opportunity to combine the study of Religious Studies with the opportunity to encounter English literature in all its diversity.

English literature at Cardiff has long enjoyed an international reputation for its teaching and research. But more than this – we pride ourselves on nurturing a friendly, personalised and supportive environment for our students. We aim for the best and for success in all we do.

Our curriculum offers access to the whole span of English literature, from the Anglo-Saxon period to the 21st 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 the way most cultures have sought to express their understanding of the purpose of life and the foundation of personal and social behaviour.  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. Your lecturers are active researchers in their fields, bringing the latest research into teaching.

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

Distinctive features

This degree provides the training necessary for students who wish to study either discipline at postgraduate level, and a valuable range of intellectual and transferable skills for students who wish to enter a variety of other professions.

UCAS codeVQ63
Next intakeSeptember 2020
Duration3 years
ModeFull time
Typical places availableThe School typically has 350 places available.
Typical applications receivedThe School typically receives 1450 applications.
  1. School of English, Communication and Philosophy

    John Percival Building

    Colum Drive

    Cardiff

    CF10 3EU

  2. School of History, Archaeology and Religion

    John Percival Building

    Colum Drive

    Cardiff

    CF10 3EU

Entry requirements

BBC-BCC. B in A Level English Literature, English Language and Literature (combined A-level) or Creative Writing  

Extended Project Qualification: Applicants with grade A in the EPQ will typically receive an offer one grade lower than the standard A level offer. Please note that any subject specific requirements must still be met.

The Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate will be accepted in lieu of one A-Level (at the grades listed above), excluding any specified subjects.

DMM Humanties or Social Science. Any other BTEC subject if combined with an A-Level excluding General Studies and Critical Thinking.

Achieve the IB Diploma with 655 in 3 HL subjects. 6 in HL History, Classics or Ancient History preferable.

Alternative qualifications may be accepted. For further information on entry requirements, see the School of English, Communication & Philosophy and School of History, Archaeology & Religion admissions criteria pages.

GCSE

Grade C or grade 4 in GCSE English Language.

IELTS (academic)

At least 6.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each sub-score.

TOEFL iBT

At least 90 with minimum scores of 17 for writing, 17 for listening, 18 for reading and 20 for speaking.

PTE Academic

62 with a minimum of 51 in all communicative skills.

Trinity ISE II/III

II: at least two Distinctions and two Merits.
III: at least a Pass in all components.

Other accepted qualifications

Please visit our English Language requirements page for more information on our other accepted language qualifications.

GCSE English Language Grade C or 4, IGCSE English First Language grade C, IGCSE English as a Second Language grade C.

Tuition fees

UK and EU students (2020/21)

Please see our fee amounts page for the latest information.

Students from outside the EU (2020/21)

Please see our fee amounts page for the latest information.

Additional costs

Accommodation

We have a range of residences to suit your needs and budget. Find out more on our accommodation pages.

Course structure

This is a three-year degree programme. You will study 120 credits of modules per year, split equally between the two subjects.

The modules shown are an example of the typical curriculum and will be reviewed prior to the 2020/21 academic year. The final modules will be published by September 2020.

Year one

In your first year, you take 60 credits of Religious Studies and 60 credits of English Literature modules.

You may study religion through texts, poetry, art, film, biographies, fieldwork and drama. You will be introduced to key ideas about ritual, gender and place that provide a dynamic foundation for further study across a range of modules offered in your second and third years. You will also have the option to study one of the original languages of religious texts on offer.

Year one English Literature is a foundation year designed to equip you with the skills for advanced study and to give you an overview of the subject that will enable you to make informed choices from the modules available in years two and three.

Year two

In Year Two, you take 60 credits of Religious Studies modules and 60 credits of English Literature modules.

In Religious Studies you will have the opportunity to develop a more advanced knowledge of a range of religious traditions, building on introductory modules undertaken in year one and develop your awareness of the role of religion in shaping the cultural, intellectual, and ethical concerns of contemporary societies.

In year two English Literature there are no compulsory modules. You may select from a range of modules based on period, genre or theme in which you will be reading a variety of texts in their historical and cultural contexts.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Now and Next: From Academia to Employment (20 Credits)HS000420 credits
What is ReligionRT020120 credits
Independent Study or Critical TranslationRT020220 credits
Exploring Christian DoctrineRT020320 credits
Christian EthicsRT020420 credits
The Hebrew Bible: Stories, Suffering and JusticeRT020520 credits
Buddhism: The First Thousand YearsRT020820 credits
Intermediate Scriptual LanguageRT021120 credits
Elementary Language for the Study of ReligionRT021220 credits
Further Elementary Language for the Study of ReligionRT021320 credits
Emotions, Symbols and Rituals: Introducing the Anthropology of Religion through FilmRT021420 credits
Foundational EthicsRT021520 credits
From Jesus to the New Jerusalem: New Testament StudiesRT021620 credits
History and Religion of Ancient IsraelRT230120 credits
Style and GenreSE141620 credits
The Robin Hood TraditionSE236720 credits
Modernist FictionsSE244520 credits
Children's Literature: Form and FunctionSE244720 credits
Introduction to Romantic PoetrySE245020 credits
African-American LiteratureSE245120 credits
Modernism and the CitySE246320 credits
Gothic Fiction: The Romantic AgeSE246820 credits
Social Politics and National Style: American Fiction and Form, 1920-1940SE247020 credits
Literature and ScienceSE247120 credits
Dickens in Many MediaSE247220 credits
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Women WritersSE247620 credits
Shakespeare's Tragedies and HistoriesSE247720 credits
Contemporary Poetry: Tradition and InnovationSE248120 credits
GirlsSE248220 credits
Object Women in Literature and FilmSE249420 credits
Renaissance Poetry, Prose and Drama: The Principal Genres, Issues and AuthorsSE249720 credits
Decadent Men, 1890s-1910s: Wilde to ForsterSE249820 credits
Chaucer's Gender Politics: Chivalry, Sex and Subversion in the Canterbury TalesSE261820 credits
Contemporary British FictionsSE261920 credits
Experimental Early Modern DramaSE262020 credits
Writing MourningSE262120 credits
Philosophy and LiteratureSE262320 credits
Jane Austen in ContextSE262520 credits
ENCAP Employability ModuleSE625520 credits

Year three

You choose a further 60 credits of Religious Studies and 60 credits of English Literature modules.

You will have the opportunity to deepen your understanding of religious themes and topics with a range of specialised modules. You may also acquire skills in qualitative and quantitative research into religion(s) in contemporary societies, depending on your module choices.

By your third year of English Literature study you will have gained experience of a variety of literary periods, topics, genres and approaches, developing your critical faculties and your skills in analysing texts and contexts. You will therefore be in an excellent position to choose between a range of more specialised modules that engage with current issues in research and scholarship in relation to authors and texts both well-known and possibly less well-known to you.

If you wish, you can write a dissertation on a topic of your choice in either Religious Studies or English Literature.

Module titleModule codeCredits
Dissertation or Critical TranslationRT030130 credits
The War of the Worlds: An Introduction to the MahabharataRT030430 credits
The Life and Legacy of Dietrich BonhoefferRT030530 credits
Exploring GnosticismRT030630 credits
Islam in the Contemporary WorldRT030730 credits
The War Against the Jews: Antisemitism, the Holocaust, and Jewish ExperienceRT030830 credits
Advanced Scriptural LanguageRT030930 credits
Religion and the News: Conflict and ContextRT031030 credits
The Graphic MemoirSE140920 credits
Fictive Histories/Historical FictionsSE246720 credits
DissertationSE252420 credits
HitchcockSE254420 credits
Modern Drama: Page, Stage, ScreenSE255120 credits
Gender and Monstrosity: Late/Neo VictorianSE256420 credits
Utopia: Suffrage to CyberpunkSE258120 credits
Second-generation Romantic PoetsSE258220 credits
Bluestockings, Britannia, Unsexed Females: Women in Public Life, 1770-1800SE258820 credits
Gothic Fiction: The VictoriansSE258920 credits
Poetry in the Making: Modern Literary ManuscriptsSE259220 credits
Postcolonial TheorySE259320 credits
Visions of Past and Future in Children's LiteratureSE259520 credits
Island Stories: Literatures of the North AtlanticSE259820 credits
Medieval Romance: Monsters and MagicSE259920 credits
John MiltonSE260820 credits
The American Short StorySE260920 credits
Apocalypse Then and NowSE261120 credits
Criminal ShakespeareSE261220 credits
Scandal and Outrage: Controversial Literature of the Twentieth and Twenty-First CenturiesSE261320 credits
Representing Race in Contemporary AmericaSE261620 credits
Love, Death and Marriage in Renaissance DramaSE262220 credits
Visuality, Culture and TechnologySE262420 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.

Learning and assessment

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.

How will I be supported?

As well as having regular feedback from your personal tutor in each course, you will have a reading week each semester for guided study and a chance to catch up on assessed work, reading and revision. These weeks are also used by staff to visit students on their year abroad.

You will have access through the Learning Central website to relevant multimedia material, presentations, lecture handouts, bibliographies, further links, electronic exercises and discussion circles.

The University offers a range of services including the Careers Service, the Counselling Service, the Disability and Dyslexia Service, the Student Support Service, and excellent libraries and resource centres.

Feedback

We’ll provide you with frequent feedback on your work. This comes in a variety of formats including oral feedback during tutorials, personalised feedback on written work, feedback lectures, generic written feedback and feedback on tutorial performance.

Coursework will be marked by your module tutor and your tutor will give you written feedback on your work. You will also have a feedback class after each assessment. Students will be given general feedback in relation to examinations following the May/June examination period and you will be able to discuss your overall performance with your personal tutor as part of the monitored student self-assessment scheme.

How will I be assessed?

A range of assessment methods are used, including essays, examinations, presentations, portfolios and creative assignments.

Essays and examinations are used not only for assessment purposes but also as a means of developing your 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 enable you to produce your best work, and written feedback on essays feeds forward into future work, enabling you to develop your strengths and address any weaker areas.

The optional final-year dissertation provides you with the opportunity to investigate a specific topic of interest to you in depth and 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.

What skills will I practise and develop?

As a result of engaging fully with this course, you will acquire and develop a range of valuable skills, both those which are discipline specific and more generic ‘employability skills’. These will allow you to:

  • grasp complex issues with confidence
  • ask the right questions of complex texts
  • have an imaginative appreciation of different views and options and analyse these critically
  • identify and apply relevant data
  • develop practical research skills
  • propose imaginative solutions of your own that are rooted in evidence
  • communicate clearly, concisely and persuasively in writing and speech
  • work to deadlines and priorities, managing a range of tasks at the same time
  • learn from constructive criticism and incorporate its insights
  • work as part of a team, developing a collaborative approach to problem-solving
  • use IT programmes and digital media, where appropriate
  • take responsibility for your own learning programme and professional development.

Careers and placements

Career prospects

School of History, Archaeology and Religion

In 2015/16, 94% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduating. Some of our graduates enter professions which make direct use of their academic expertise, while others compete very successfully in a wide range of other fields.

We organise interactive workshops with the Careers Service to help students identify their skills and attributes and have our own, in-School Workplace Placements and employability officer.

Religious and Theological Studies students may choose to study the module ‘Religion in the Workplace’ which focusses specifically on developing employability and enterprise skills.

School of English, Communication and Philosophy

In 2015/16, 95% of the School’s graduates who were available for work reported they were in employment and/or further study within six months of graduating.

We provide our students with a highly satisfying academic experience that assists their development as critically-minded, culturally-aware citizens whose high analytic skills, powers of expression and progressive self-reliance make them extremely attractive to employers.

English literature graduates have excellent analytic and communication skills that fit them for a full range of professions and further training. Their cultural expertise and intellectual abilities are valued in the public and private sector, and in contexts as varied as the classroom, the law courts or the media.

Placements

The School of History, Archaeology and Religion has a dedicated Work Placements Officer who supports students with work experience opportunities both in and out of term time and careers advice.

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Spring 2020

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