Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023
QS World Rankings by subject 2022
Of universities included in the National Student Survey 2022
English and Related Literature at York is unlike any other English degree. We have a unique approach to what literature is and does, how we read it, how we write about it and even how we make it.
At York, you will be at the forefront of literary study. Our modules are designed and taught by world experts working at the cutting-edge of literary study.
We offer a breathtaking choice of modules with an unsurpassed geographical and linguistic range, giving you the freedom to tailor your degree to your interests with the support of friendly and accessible tutors. With period coverage extending from Greek and Latin classics to literature being published right now, there’s something for everyone, including creative writing, drama, fiction, film, poetry, and the chance to get your hands dirty in our printing studio.
No discipline equips its students better to understand and interpret a wide range of texts or to form articulate and persuasive responses to a range of challenges. Our graduates go on to careers in all sorts of fields, even areas that traditionally haven’t recruited among Arts and Humanities graduates.
An English graduate’s creativity, passion, and ability to adapt – along with outstanding presentation, language, and reasoning skills – are what employers look for. Join us at York to discover a world of literature.
We’re a top ten research department according to the Times Higher Education’s ranking of the latest REF results (2021), and 98% of our research was rated 3* and higher.
We partner 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 and our Writer-in-Residence offers creative writing workshops and events throughout the year.
English at York is fantastic! I have had the opportunity to cover a broad range of modules that have introduced me to literature of different periods and exciting theoretical debates. I have particularly valued the flexibility of the course; an array of modules are available, and I have been able to tailor each term with options to suit my developing interests.Loretta, BA English
York’s English degree offers exceptional flexibility and choice. We provide a comprehensive overview of literary history and criticism while also encouraging you to explore the subjects that you are most passionate about.
You will get the chance to examine literature from the ancient classics to the present, and from the United Kingdom and beyond. You’ll also study non-English texts, in the original language or in translation.
Writing is embedded in each year’s curriculum, helping you to discover and refine your own critical and creative voice. We have a strong commitment to the Creative Industries, offering option modules on creative writing and writing in the marketplace.
There are opportunities for you to spend time abroad during your course:
We’ll introduce you to a range of different texts and critical approaches in your first year to lay the foundation for your degree. Through a carefully designed curriculum, you will be introduced to the historical and theoretical study of literature. This will be supplemented by additional skills-based modules.
Get a feel for the shape of literary history by studying works from the medieval, early modern, eighteenth-century and Romantic, and modern periods.
Explore a range of responses to ancient literary texts and literature from around the world.
Develop new skills and methods for the study of literature now.
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:
Our Now Modules will help you to expand the possibilities for writing about literature and help you to develop the research skills that will underpin your final-year dissertation.
Writing Now expands the possibilities for writing about literature, exploring contemporary forms that emphasise a more fluid relationship between critical and creative practices. Research Now propels you toward advanced literary research, helping you to develop your own critical interventions as you hone ideas for your final-year dissertation.
Our Intermediate Option Modules allow you to deepen your understanding of the relationship between literary works and the cultural, historical, and political contexts in which they were produced. These cover topics such as:
You will also choose from subjects included in our World Literature modules, which invite you to engage with questions of language, translation, and cultural difference in ways that equip you with important skills in linguistic analysis and description. Some are taught partly in the original language and partly in translation, others entirely in translation - the choice is yours. Recent offerings have included:
You’ll have the opportunity to explore further the areas you’ve developed an interest in over the course of your studies through the diverse range of module choices available to our third-year students. In addition, the subject of your English dissertation is entirely up to you, which means that there is an exciting opportunity for you to shape the trajectory of your final year.
Our Advanced Option Modules reflect the wide-ranging and cutting-edge research expertise of the Department and cover literature from the classical period to the twenty-first century, as well as film and creative writing. Students can typically choose from around 25 options. Recent offerings include:
The degree culminates in the dissertation; an in-depth exploration of 7,000-8,000 words on a topic of your choice. Research lectures and writing labs support the one-to-one supervision you will receive from a member of staff. This year-long capstone project is a wonderful opportunity to display your skills in detailed research, elegant writing, and rigorous argument. You can also choose to do a dissertation with creative practice, which might involve producing a portfolio of creative writing; a translation project; or an external engagement project.
Our modules may change to reflect the latest academic thinking and expertise of our staff.
Our course structures are changing in September 2023. Find out more about how this course may be affected.
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.
Get a taste of university-level study on one of York's free short courses, including our subject course, 'Poetry: how to read a poem'.
|UK (home)||International and EU|
The level of fee that you will be asked to pay depends on whether you're classed as a UK (home) or international student. Check your fee status.
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.
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).
We'll confirm more funding opportunities for students joining us in 2023/24 throughout the year.
The Department of English and Related Literature offers a number of scholarships and bursaries for Home and International/EU students:
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.
At York we engage with and argue with (and against!) academics who are considered the experts in their own field. This all sounds very intellectually grandiose but what I most appreciate is how incredibly nice they are – as teachers (in seminars), as colleagues (on the Board of Studies), and as people (in pubs!).Gan, BA English
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.
York’s English degree is renowned for its flexible and innovative approach. We emphasize 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. You can typically expect eight contact hours per week - and sometimes more. There are also many opportunities for informal contact.
In your first year, you can expect:
|Lectures||2-3 hours per week|
|Seminars||2 hours per week|
|Workshops||2-3 hours per week|
|Film Screening||2-3 hours per week|
These figures are representative of a typical week. Your contact hours will vary throughout the year due to your module choices, non-compulsory classes, exam periods and changes to scheduled activities.
The rest of your time on the course will be spent in independent study. This will include guided preparation for seminars and lectures. We recommend that students spend at least six hours in preparation for a two-hour seminar and at least two hours in preparation for a one-hour lecture, as well as at least one further hour of revision and consolidation after each teaching session. You will also devote time to wider reading; complete ‘formative’ assessments (practice essays and short exercises); write essays and revise for exams; and take advantage of opportunities for informal contact, including one-to- one consultations, workshops, guest lectures, and readings.
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, on Campus West.
Your contact hours will be divided between Derwent College, the Spring Lane Teaching Building and other locations nearby on Campus West.
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.
We employ 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, to the 7,000-8,000-word dissertation in your final year. We offer high levels of feedback and ample opportunities for you to meet with staff to discuss your written work.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
The figures above are based on data from 2017/18.
No discipline equips its students better to understand and interpret a wide range of texts – whether literary, historical, political, or social – or to form articulate and persuasive responses to a range of challenges and questions. The Department has a dedicated Careers Officer, which means you will get specialised advice and support throughout the three years of your degree.
You’ll learn presentation, language, and reasoning skills during your English degree, and gain expertise in complex analysis and research. These skills suit a wide range of careers, from law and teaching to national and local government and the creative industries.
While at York I learned to read fast while absorbing key details and to express myself clearly. I learned to listen and to be generous when sharing ideas. I gained confidence and developed a more independent way of thinking.Sarah Ward-Lilley, BA English
Head of International Bureaux, BBC News
AAA/A*AB including an A in English Literature (English Language and Literature is also acceptable)
|Access to Higher Education Diploma||39 credits at Distinction, including at least 9 credits in Literature-related units, and 6 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, D3 including English Literature.|
|European Baccalaureate||85% overall, with 85% in English Literature.|
|International Baccalaureate||36 points including 6 in English Literature at Higher Level.|
|T levels||We are currently not accepting T Levels for this course unless an additional A Level (or equivalent qualification) in English Literature has been taken.|
|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 three A level grades (or equivalent) below our typical offer: Black Access Programme, Next Step York, Realising Opportunities, YESS. 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 (Academic and Indicator)||6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in each component|
|C1 Advanced and C2 Proficiency||176, with a minimum of 169 in each component|
|Duolingo||110 overall, with a minimum of 100 in each component|
|GCSE/IGCSE/O level English Language (as a first or second language)||Grade C|
|LanguageCert International ESOL SELT||B2 Communicator High Pass with a minimum score of 33/50 in each component|
|PTE Academic||61, with a minimum of 55 in each component|
|TOEFL||87 overall, with a minimum of 21 in each component|
|Trinity ISE III||Merit in all components|
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 English language test 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.
Get in touch if you have any questions
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