Skip to main content Skip to navigation

English and Theatre Studies (BA) (Full-Time, 2019 Entry)



Full-time 2019 entry, AAB, IB 36

Theatre is the most public literary form. This course emphasises the relationship between writing and performance, asking how theatre intervenes in history to foster social and political change.

Visit Us

Get a prospectus

Taught across the Department of English and Comparative Literary Studies and the School of Theatre and Performance Studies, this degree allows you to choose among modules that focus on theatre theory and practice, as well as among modules that explore drama and other literary texts from Ancient Greece to Renaissance England to the contemporary United States and beyond.

If you want to become part of the next generation of writers, directors, actors, designers, reviewers, teachers, academics and creative producers, this degree will teach you how to present persuasive written and oral arguments while developing your independence and creativity. You’ll have many opportunities to see a diverse range of productions at the world-renowned theatres in nearby Stratford-upon-Avon and on campus at Warwick Arts Centre. We’ll also encourage you to make your own theatre, whether by choosing practical modules or by taking part in Warwick’s acclaimed student theatre societies.

In your first year, you’ll gain an understanding of literature from the classical past to the here and now. You’ll look at post-war British theatre from the ‘angry young men’ to the women of the ‘awkward brigade’.

In your second year you’ll think about theatre as an intervention in public space. You’ll study English language plays that have shaped democratic institutions around the world as well as plays from the Greeks to the present that constitute the European tradition of theatre. But you’ll also start selecting from a fascinating array of modules from Arthurian literature to post-9/11 fiction, Romantic and Victorian poetry to postcolonial writing and literary theory.

In your final year you’ll study Shakespeare as a jobbing playwright. You’ll think about his writing for the early modern stage, but also about his afterlife in subsequent performance on stage and film. And you’ll choose modules that extend your horizons, including proposing your own research project as a dissertation.

Teaching and assessment is distinctive. You’ll write essays, deliver presentations and take exams – you might also teach a class of schoolchildren, script a short film or write a sonata. 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.

Contact hours

Guided learning of typically eight contact hours per week. Seminars are usually 1.5 hours each.

Class size

Targeted teaching with class sizes of 10 - 15 students (on average)

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.

As a student on our English degrees, you will have the opportunity to spend your third year at one of our partner institutions in Europe, China or the USA. You will then return to Warwick to complete your fourth and final year of your degree.

You will be able to apply to transfer to the four-year course when you are in your second year at Warwick, subject to availability of places from the University's International Office.

A level: AAB to include A at A level in English Literature or combined English Language and Literature. We make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances.

IB: 36 to include 6 at Higher Level in English Literature or combined English Language and Literature.

You will also need to meet our English Language requirements.

  • Contextual data and differential offers: Warwick may make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances. These include students participating in the Realising Opportunities programme, or who meet two of the contextual data criteria. Differential offers will be one or two grades below Warwick’s standard offer (to a minimum of BBB).
  • Access Courses: Access to HE Diploma (QAA-recognised) including appropriate subjects with distinction grades in level 3 units. Candidates must meet essential subject requirements.
  • Warwick International Foundation Programme (IFP) All students who successfully complete the Warwick IFP and apply to Warwick through UCAS will receive a guaranteed conditional offer for a related undergraduate programme (selected courses only). For full details of standard offers and conditions visit the IFP website.
  • We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications. For more information please visit the international entry requirements page.
  • Taking a gap year Applications for deferred entry welcomed.

    Interviews We prefer to interview candidates before making an offer. Interviews are tailor-made to each individual and designed to explore your suitability for study at Warwick, so they do not follow a set pattern. Separate arrangements will be made for international students to complete an online interview.

    Open Days All students who have been offered a place are invited to visit. Find out more about our main University Open Days and other opportunities to visit us.

Year 1

  • British Theatre Since 1939

  • Medieval to Renaissance English Literature

  • Introduction to Theatre and Performance Studies

  • One of the following:
    – Epic into Novel
    – Modes of Reading
    – From Text to Performance

Year 2

  • Drama and Democracy

Year 3

  • Shakespeare and Selected Dramatists of His Time
Selection of optional modules that current students are studying:
  • Chaucer
  • European Theatre
  • Remaking Shakespeare
  • Early Modern Drama
  • Restoration Drama
  • Russian Narratives
  • The Classical Tradition in English Translation
  • Writing for Theatre and Performance
  • Tragedy in Performance: Conventions | Discourses | Dramaturgies
  • 20th Century Irish Theatre
  • 19th Century Melodrama in Context
  • Post-war British Theatre and Social Abjection
  • The Author Dies Hard

We’ll encourage you to think broadly about the possibilities open to you, and the networks you can form. A few graduates used their degrees to establish exciting ventures with friends, founding companies and theatre groups. Many are recognised in their fields or on their way to becoming so.
English graduates are much valued by both public and private sector employers, as they value enhanced communication skills coupled with an understanding of how to use language effectively.

Through your course and extra-curricular activities you will develop the high-level skills employers seek, including:

  • Advanced literacy and communication skills with the ability to apply these skills in appropriate contexts.

  • Ability to present persuasive written and oral arguments cogently and coherently.

  • Capacity to analyse and critically examine information.

  • Ability to process complex information in a structured and systematic way.

  • Capacity for independent thought and judgement – critical reasoning skills.

  • Ability to understand, interrogate and apply a variety of theoretical positions and weigh the importance of different perspectives.

Where are our graduates now?

Ben is a writer, currently writing a second comedy series as well as a new drama series for Radio 4. He is also a regular contributor of sketches to a variety of BBC3, ITV1 and E4 shows and pilots.

Lucy is a Resident Director, having freelanced as a youth theatre director, assistant director and BBC Steward. She’s previously worked at the Oxford Playhouse and Magdalen College School.

Tim is a historical fiction writer, author of The Last King of Lydia and The King and the Slave.

Helping you find the right career

Our department has a dedicated careers consultant to help boost your employability and prepare for a career. There are workshops and events throughout the year. Previous examples include:

  • What to do with your English and Comparative Literary Studies degree
  • Working in the radio and TV sector
  • Working in the publishing sector
  • Warwick careers fairs throughout the year
  • The Society of Young Publishers events with industry speakers, for students who want to break into publishing

A level: AAB to include A at A level in English Literature or combined English Language and Literature. We make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances.

IB: 36 to include 6 at Higher Level in English Literature or combined English Language and Literature.


Degree of Bachelor of Arts (BA)

3 years full time

Start Date

October 2019

Location of study
University of Warwick, Coventry

Tuition fees
Find out more about fees and funding

Additional costs

There may be costs associated with other items or services such as academic texts, course notes, and trips associated with your course.

This information is applicable for 2019 entry.

Given the interval between the publication of courses and enrolment, some of the information may change. It is important to check our website before you apply. Please read our terms and conditions to find out more.

Related degrees