3 years full-time (plus optional placement year)
AAB (full entry requirements)
September 2020 (term dates)
£9,250 per year (2020/21)
£17,890 per year (2020/21)
By combining English and History of Art, you’ll get to explore how textual and visual material interact with one another.
Studying the two subjects together asks how creativity responds to and works to shape the world. You’ll learn how to master art-historical and literary criticism, and discover the connections and differences between artistic media. In doing so, you’ll gain an exciting and fresh perspective on the history of human expression, graduating with skills highly prized by employers across a wide range of industries.
We are 2nd in the UK for English and 5th in the UK for History of Art (Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020)
In the Times Higher Education’s ranking of the 2014 Research Excellence Framework, the Department of English had the highest proportion of ‘world-leading’ (4*) research of all UK English departments and the Department of History of Art were first in the UK for research impact among History of Art departments.
The city of York has a long tradition of cultural heritage and literary excellence which you can engage with. The Department of English partners with the York Festival of Ideas, the annual York Literature Festival and the biennial York International Shakespeare Festival. Our hugely successful Writers at York series brings in a stellar cast of world-famous contemporary writers throughout the year.
You'll cover a broad range of literary and art-historical topics that range from the classical period to the 21st century. Our international outlook takes account of the European and global contexts of art and literature.
All combined course students take 120 credits each year, adding up to 360 credits across the course of your degree. You’ll split your time equally between English and History of Art in your first year. In Years 2 and 3, it’s possible to vary the balance and devote more time to one subject or the other.
As you progress in Years 2 and 3, you'll be able to specialise more in both subjects, choosing your own blend of modules taught by experts in the field and introducing you to the newest and most exciting research and ideas.
There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:
In the first year of your degree, we’ll introduce you to the undergraduate study of English and History of Art. Our modules will give you the skills you need to start undertaking literary and art-historical research, and advice on how to combine the two disciplines.
You'll take the following three modules in English, which are worth 20 credits each. These modules are designed to lay the foundation of literary study for your whole degree.
Get a feel for the shape of literary history by studying works from the medieval, early modern, eighteenth-century and Romantic, and modern periods.
Key Concepts is a year-long foundation module that provides you with important critical and methodological contexts for the study of literature. In addition, you will be introduced to strategies for developing essay-writing skills, engaging with criticism and critical theory, and revising work to improve its fluency and persuasiveness, as part of the Department of English's innovative Writing at York provision.
You will also take three 20-credit modules in History of Art:
Plus one from:
And one from:
In addition to the above you will also need to complete our online Academic Integrity module.
This module covers some of the essential skills and knowledge which will help you to study independently and produce work of a high academic standard which is vital for success at York.
This module will:
In the second year of your degree, you’ll choose from a range of intermediate modules across the English and History of Art departments.
You'll take a minimum of 40, and a maximum of 80, credits in English in Year 2.
You will choose from the same breath-taking range of English options as our single subject students. These include Critical Practice (20 credits) and our Intermediate Option Modules:
In History of Art, you will choose from a range of Intermediate seminar modules (20 credits each), which range from the late antique to the contemporary. Some of these are focused on specific periods; some consider specific places; some examine specific media; whilst others are thematic; or consider specific institutions. Modules include:
You will also undertake the year-long Dissertation training module (20 credits) to help prepare you for your dissertation in your third year.
In the third year of your degree, you will undertake a dissertation (40 credits), one of the distinctive features of the English/History of Art degree at York. The dissertation invites students to undertake a research project that brings the study of English and History of Art together, and is supervised by a member of staff in each department.
This year-long advanced module offers you the chance to use all the research and writing skills you will have developed at York.
You'll take a single, term-long special subject History of Art module (40 credits) from a variety of options, allowing you to understand a period, place, or problem in unprecedented detail. Modules include:
You will also take two Advanced Option Modules(20 credits each) in English, one in the Autumn and one in the Spring. These reflect the wide-ranging and cutting-edge research expertise of the Department and you can typically expect to choose from around 25 options on varied topics such as:
Please note, modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Every course at York has been designed to provide clear and ambitious learning outcomes. These learning outcomes give you an understanding of what you will be able to do at the end of the course. We develop each course by designing modules that grow your abilities towards the learning outcomes and help you to explain what you can offer to employers. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
You'll need copies of the texts set for each module. Where possible, the Department works to arrange digital copies via the University Library. Where this is not practical, you'll be instructed in advance of the start of each term about the texts and editions you'll need to purchase (whether new or second-hand).
UK/EU or international fees? The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK, EU or international student.
For more information about tuition fees, any reduced fees for study abroad and work placement years, scholarships, tuition fee loans, maintenance loans and living costs see undergraduate fees and funding.
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2020/21 throughout the year.
You can use our living costs guide to help plan your budget. It covers additional costs that are not included in your tuition fee such as expenses for accommodation and study materials.
“Students from all backgrounds achieve consistently outstanding outcomes”
The TEF Panel, Office for Students, June 2018
Our Gold Teaching Excellence Framework award demonstrates our commitment to the delivery of consistently outstanding teaching and learning for our students.
You’ll study and learn with academics who are active researchers, experts in their field and have a passion for their subjects. Our approach to teaching will provide you with the knowledge, opportunities, and support you need to grow and succeed in a global workplace. Find out more about our approach to teaching and learning.
English at York is renowned for its flexible and innovative approach. We emphasise small-group teaching, which means you’ll mainly be taught in seminars of up to fifteen people. You’ll also take part in workshops, attend lectures, and consult staff on a one-to-one basis.
In History of Art, teaching occurs in a variety of ways, including lectures to the entire cohort and workshops, where group work is often prioritised, especially at the start of your degree when you are still finding your feet. The department is, however, most committed to small-group teaching. From the first year onwards, like English, you will regularly be in seminars with no more than fifteen other students. This creates a lively, guided, democratic environment for discussion, which, we believe, represents the best way to learn.
In addition, the Department of History of Art is committed to seeing and understanding works of art and architecture in all their detail and complexity. As a result, wherever possible, we take you to see the works themselves in the flesh, often making use of our international connections and partnerships with Tate, the V&A, and the National Gallery, as well as a host of local museums and galleries, to give you privileged access.
You can typically expect eight hours of contact time per week — and sometimes more. There are also numerous opportunities for informal contact.
Our cutting-edge research informs all our teaching activities. Our friendly, approachable, and accessible staff are world-leading experts in their fields. They are each available to meet individually with you during two weekly open office hours. We organise many guest lectures and readings by well-known artists, curators, and writers.
In your first year, you can expect:
|Lectures||3-4 hours per week|
|Seminars||2 hours per week|
|Workshops||2-4 hours per week|
|Film Screening||0-2 hours per week|
These figures are based on an average student in an average week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.
Outside your timetabled hours, you'll study independently. This may include preparation for classes, follow-up work, wider reading, practise completion of assessment tasks, or revision.
In the UK, full-time students are expected to spend 1,200 hours a year learning. That's about 40 hours of classes and independent study each week during term time. Everyone learns at a different rate, so the number of hours you spend on independent study will be different to other students on your course.
You will be based in the Department of English and Related Literature and the Department of History of Art on Campus West.
Your contact hours will be divided between Derwent College, Vanbrugh College, the Spring Lane Teaching Building, and other nearby locations on Campus West. In addition, you may be taught at the historic King’s Manor campus in the centre of town, and in a range of museums and galleries across the region, the country, and continental Europe.
Our beautiful green campus offers a student-friendly setting in which to live and study, within easy reach of the action in the city centre. It's easy to get around campus - everything is within walking or pedalling distance, or you can always use the fast and frequent bus service.
The Department of English and Related Literature employs a variety of assessment methods, including group presentations and closed exams, but with a strong emphasis on essay writing. Your main mode of assessment will be essays, which will range from short exploratory exercises to more detailed discussions on a topic of your choice. We offer high levels of feedback and ample opportunities for you to meet with staff to discuss your written work.
Assessment in History of Art takes a variety of forms, from assessed seminar participation, involving presentations as well as group work and discussion, through essays of increasing length and ambition, to open and closed exams. We offer a range of forms of assessment mindful that different students have different strengths, and to enable you to demonstrate your flexibility to your future employers.
In both cases, the culmination of your degree is a year-long bridge dissertation, an independent piece of research of 7,000-8,000 words tailored to your own particular interests, across literature and art history.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
The figures above are based on data from 2016/17.
Studying English and History of Art at York will provide you with numerous career possibilities. You’ll learn presentation, language, and critical thinking skills during your combined degree, and gain expertise in complex analysis and research. These skills suit a wide range of careers related to the creative industries, from arts administration to conservation and curation.
My undergraduate degree in History of Art was extremely visual. I was able to immerse myself in the writings and ideas of so many incredibly clever people and came to see visual culture as fascinating and a gateway to understanding.Leila Johnston, BA English/History of Art
AAB including an A in English Literature (English Language and Literature is also acceptable)
|Access to Higher Education Diploma||36 credits at Distinction, including at least 9 credits in Literature-related units, and 9 credits at Merit or higher|
|BTEC National Extended Diploma||DDD with an additional A Level or equivalent qualification in English Literature at grade A|
|Cambridge Pre-U||D3, D3, M2 including D3 in English Literature|
|European Baccalaureate||80% overall, with 85% in English Literature.|
|International Baccalaureate||35 points, with 6 in all Higher level subjects, including English Literature.|
|Other international qualifications||Equivalent qualifications from your country|
Meeting the following additional criteria may qualify you for an alternative offer.
|Widening participation||If you successfully complete one of the following programmes, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Next Step York, Realising Opportunities. More about widening participation.|
|Contextual offers||If you have experience of local authority care or live in an area with low progression to university, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to two A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer. More about contextual offers.|
|EPQ||If you achieve A or higher at EPQ, you may be eligible for an alternative offer up to one A level grade (or equivalent) below our typical offer.|
If English isn't your first language you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. We accept the following qualifications:
|IELTS||6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component|
|PTE Academic||61, with a minimum of 55 in each component|
|GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language)||Grade C|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, with a minimum of 169 in each component|
|TOEFL||87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
|Duolingo||Minimum overall score of 110|
For more information see our undergraduate English language requirements.
You may be eligible for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. These courses will provide you with the level of English needed to meet the conditions of your offer.
The length of course you need to take depends on your current IELTS scores and how much you need to improve to reach our English language requirements.
After you've accepted your offer to study at York, we'll confirm which pre-sessional course you should apply to via You@York.
To apply to York, you will need to complete an online application via UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).
We look for intellectual and literary curiosity, open-mindedness, and analytical ability.
We encourage mature students to email the Admissions Tutor for consultation and advice.
At the University of York, we are committed to providing the support our students need to achieve their full potential and have an exceptional, transformational experience. The York Access Scheme offers help to those faced with social, personal or educational challenges which have affected their performance in education. We also offer support for care leavers.
Get in touch if you have any questions
We offer a range of campus accommodation to suit you and your budget, from economy to premium.
Explore campus and city life and hear what our current students have to say about living here.
Lively, full of culture and beautiful, York is regularly voted one of the best places to live and visit in the UK.