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English Literature


Why study English Literature at Warwick?

What inspires you? Is it the stories left behind by history’s witnesses, or the ideas that define our modern world? Is it the cultures that surround you every day, as well as those of far-away places? Do you want to understand more about how writing lies at the heart of everything we do, and everything we can be – its ability to change our minds and change the world?

A degree in English at Warwick will harness the passion for reading and writing you’ve had all your life and develop it into an expert knowledge of literary culture.

You’ll select an overarching theme, and complement it by choosing from an eclectic selection of modules. Whether your interests are classical, contemporary, or somewhere in between, you’ll have the freedom to create a degree that reflects what motivates you.

How will my degree be structured?

You’ll begin by gaining a grounding in literature, from the ancient past to the present. You’ll develop your critical thinking and grasp of literary theory in Modes of Reading. In Medieval to Renaissance English Literature, you’ll take in the foundational writers of English literature, such as Chaucer, Sidney, Spenser and Shakespeare.

Epic into Novel will give you an understanding of some of the great texts of classical and modern times. And you’ll enjoy the literature and politics that define contemporary life in Modern World Literature – though if you’d prefer to learn a language instead, that option is open to you too.

At the end of your first year, you can choose to follow one of four broad themes, which we call pathways:

  • The English Pathway concentrates on the long history of literature produced in Britain.
  • The North American Pathway focuses on writing and culture from across the Atlantic.
  • The Theory Pathway delves into the critical and theoretical analysis of writing.
  • The World and Comparative Literature Pathway goes global with a comparative approach to literatures from different countries, cultures, and traditions.

Modules you might take at Warwick

How will I be taught?

Most core modules in your first year are taught by means of one lecture and one seminar per week in terms one and two. In your second and third years, optional modules are normally taught by means of one seminar per week (1.5 hours duration).

How will I be assessed?

Assessment is a combination of traditional essays and written examinations together with creative projects, portfolios and performance. For example, in our Shakespeare and Selected Dramatists of his Time module, student creative work recently included film and radio adaptations, musical compositions, painting, sculpture and photography inspired by Shakespeare's texts.

Entry requirements

We require Advanced or Higher level qualifications in English Literature, normally grade A (predicted or achieved). A level English Language is acceptable in addition to English Literature, but is not normally acceptable as a substitute. Combined A level English Language and Literature is acceptable, providing you can show evidence of wider reading in literature in your Personal Statement.

Study abroad

There are opportunities to spend a year abroad at one of the University's partner institutions in Europe, America or Asia.

Student blogs

Find out what our students say about studying at Warwick. Our student blogs are written by current students, studying and often living on campus.



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