Bachelor of Arts (BA)
4 years full-time, normally including a year abroad
27 September 2021
Department of Study
School of Modern Languages and Cultures
Location of Study
University of Warwick
Our English and French (BA) degree gives you the opportunity to explore connections and interactions between two major literatures and cultures. Our modules reflect the range and diversity of the culture, history, and society of the English and French speaking worlds. Intensive language work opens up the richness of French language and cultural life. This means you’ll graduate as a highly qualified linguist with advanced intercultural skills, a deep understanding of key issues and developments in France’s past and present, and an advanced knowledge of French, English, and comparative literatures.
Explore two rich and diverse literary and cultural traditions while developing your fluency in French. There is a core French language module in every year of study. First-year core modules will introduce you to French literature and culture, English literature, and comparative literatures. In your intermediate and final years all English and French optional modules are open to you, spanning topics from literature and critical theory to history, politics, philosophy and film. In your final year, you can choose to write a dissertation on comparative French and English literature. You’ll normally spend your second or third year of study consolidating your language skills abroad.
In your first year, you will take language classes designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of written and spoken French. You will also take the core module The Story of Modern France, where you will examine primary texts from major periods and events in French history, literature, and politics; you will choose one further first-year module in French. On the English side of your degree, you will take a module which focuses on questions of approach, critical practice, and reading strategies. You will additionally choose one English module in your first year, from a list of three: Epic into Novel; Medieval to Renaissance Literature; or Modern World Literatures.
In your intermediate and final years, you will take core and optional modules in English. You will also further develop your French language skills in more advanced language classes. You will be able to develop your own particular interests in Francophone culture by choosing from a wide selection of modules offered by specialists in French culture, society, literature, politics, philosophy, film, and history. If you wish, you can also select from interdisciplinary cross-School modules.
How will I learn?
We employ a variety of teaching styles, including: lectures; seminars of about 15 students, in which the emphasis is on student participation; and written and spoken language classes in small groups. You will spend the rest of your time studying independently, preparing for classes, reading and analysing materials set for study, writing essays and working on your language skills.
12 hours per week (15 hours per week in first year).
Seminars generally involve around 15 students.
How will I be assessed?
We will track your progress through language assignments, essays, presentations, portfolio submissions and examinations (written and oral). Throughout your course you will receive detailed, personalised feedback to help you to improve your skills.
The final degree classification is determined by your intermediate and final-year marks; each of these years contributes 50%.
Your year abroad
We strongly recommend that students take a year abroad, if they are able to. Students may move to a three-year degree if circumstances do not permit them to complete a year abroad. In such cases, there will be further language reinforcement work and students will be encouraged to spend time abroad in other ways, during vacation times.
You will usually spend your year abroad doing one of three things:
- Working as a language assistant teaching English in a primary or secondary school
- Studying full-time at a partner university in your chosen country
- On a work placement
The year abroad options are flexible so we recommend you check the department's subject pages for more details.
General entry requirements
- AAB to include English Literature (or English Language and Literature combined) and French
- 36 to include 5 in Higher Level English Literature (or English Language and Literature combined) and 5 in Higher Level French
- We welcome applications from students taking a BTEC alongside A level French and A level English Literature (or English Language and Literature combined).
We welcome applications from students with other internationally recognised qualifications.
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).
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).
Taking a gap year
Applications for deferred entry welcomed.
We do not typically interview applicants. Offers are made based on your UCAS form which includes predicted and actual grades, your personal statement and school reference.
Modern French Language 1
You will deepen your understanding of French grammar and syntax with the help of tutors experienced in facilitating the transition from A-level to university-level competence. You will learn appropriate technical vocabulary and handle complex structures. You will develop the skills required to produce authentic and accurate translations of journalistic material from French to English. Finally, writing in formal French introduces you to the structures and methods used to debate ideas on contemporary issues. You will increase your reading and comprehension skills and develop your ability to exploit texts for vocabulary, idioms, syntax and grammatical structures. Working with a native speaker in small groups, you will discuss topics on contemporary French culture and society, using audio, video and text resources.
Modes of Reading
What is a reader? How is our understanding and perception of a text formed? What does it mean to think critically when we read? This module allows you to explore these questions by putting a spotlight on the question of critical thinking in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. By studying a series of literary texts in relation to some of the most influential literary and cultural theorists of the last hundred years, you will take your own position on everything from Marxism, queer and feminist theory to ecocriticism and postcolonial critique.
Choose one option in French Studies:
The Story of Modern France
Why is modern France obsessed by the past? What are the milestones in the creation of modern France? How have notions of France and Frenchness been shaped through the stories told about them? These are some of the questions you’ll explore through close reading of primary sources from major periods and events in French history. You’ll be guided on your journey by a range of materials, from the cartoons of May 1968 to prints dating back to the French Revolution, and from stories of Charlemagne to films and texts reflecting France’s ongoing preoccupation with its (often controversial) recent past. Equipped with these foundations, you will be well prepared to study further aspects of French and Francophone culture in the later stages of your degree.
French Cultural Landmarks: Love, Language and Power
French is the language of love, or so the saying goes, and on this module, you’ll explore what love, desire and sex signified in earlier periods and how this challenges contemporary perceptions. You will encounter the social preoccupations of French culture, such as gender, power and political engagement, exploring these ideas through the study of a wide range of resources, from the courtly love of the Medieval period to the heyday of French classical theatre epitomised in the work of Molière and Racine, bringing us to present-day considerations of gender, identity and society in the French novel.
And one option in English:
Epic into Novel
Tracking the transition from the epics of the ancient world to the novels of modernity, this module introduces you to some of the most influential and formative works of world literature. You will study central texts of the classical world, such as Homer’s Iliad and Virgil’s Aeneid; ancient Indian epic The Mahābhārata; Milton’s Paradise Lost; as well as novels like Henry Fielding’s bawdy comedy Tom Jones and Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o’s novel of decolonising Kenya, A Grain of Wheat. Reading across history and cultures, between languages and genres, you will develop the skills to analyse narrative, character, and style.
Medieval to Renaissance English Literature
Taking you from the mythical court of King Arthur to the real world of ambition, intrigue, and danger in the courts of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, this module introduces you to early literature written in a range of genres (romance, epic, fabliau) and poetic forms. You will study texts like Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Thomas More’s Utopia, Edmund Spenser’s The Faerie Queene, and Shakespeare’s Sonnets to explore some of the period’s highest ideals—‘trawthe’ or integrity—as well as some of humanity’s darkest impulses: greed, deception, revenge, and desire.
Modern World Literatures
This module introduces you to the defining concerns, styles, and contexts of modern world literature from 1789 to the present. You will encounter concepts like Romanticism, modernity, gothic, and postcolonialism through novels, short stories, poetry, and drama from revolutionary France to Meiji era Japan, industrial Britain to the decolonizing Caribbean. Your reading might include Mary Shelley’s gothic novel Frankenstein, Lu Xun’s story of China in transition 'Diary of a Madman', or Clarice Lispector’s haunting meditation on life in Rio de Janeiro The Hour of the Star. You may also replace this module with a language module.
Modern French Language 2
You will consolidate and develop the productive and receptive language skills you acquired in your first year. By the end of the course, you should have appropriate knowledge of vocabulary and syntactic and grammatical structures to produce written French in two prescribed genres. You will develop your skills in translation to and from French, with a focus on specific translation problems, and increase the accuracy with which you use grammatical structures. In spoken French, you will comprehend and produce structured spoken French on a range of topics of contemporary significance in the context of simulated scenarios.
Modern French Language 3
You will consolidate and develop your ability to write and speak confidently and at a level of intellectual sophistication in correct French. By the end of the course, you should be able to produce a structured written argument on a topic related to your intellectual interests or of cultural concern, in French that is grammatically correct, idiomatic, varied in vocabulary and grammatical structure, and in an appropriate register. You should be able to translate from French to English and English to French accurately, using your detailed knowledge of grammar, vocabulary and idiom, and employing an appropriate register. You will strengthen your skills in pronunciation and intonation and demonstrate these through fluent oral presentation and discussion of an intellectually serious topic.
Examples of optional modules/options for current students:
^Year Two or Three depending on when the year abroad is taken
Additional course costs
There may be costs associated with other items or services such as academic texts, course notes, and trips associated with your course. Students who choose to complete a work placement or study abroad will pay reduced tuition fees for their third year.
We believe there should be no barrier to talent. That's why we are committed to offering a scholarship that makes it easier for gifted, ambitious international learners to pursue their academic interests at one of the UK's most prestigious universities. This new scheme will offer international fee-paying students 250 tuition fee discounts ranging from full fees to awards of £13,000 to £2,000 for the full duration of your Undergraduate degree course.
Graduates from Modern Language courses have gone on to work for employers including:
- British Airways
- Civil Service
- Grayce Consulting
- HM Revenue and Customs
- Ipsos Mori
- NBC Universal
- Save the Children International
- The Department for International Trade
They have pursued careers such as:
- Business and financial project management professionals
- Chartered and certified accountants
- Financial accounts managers
- Human resources and industrial relations officers
- Management consultants and business analysts
- Public services associate professionals
- Teachers and other educational professionals
Helping you find the right career
Our department has a dedicated professionally qualified Senior Careers Consultant to support you. They offer impartial advice and guidance, together with workshops and events throughout the year. Previous examples of workshops and events include:
- What are you doing after Warwick? Career planning for final year language students
- Careers in the Public Sector
- Warwick careers fairs throughout the year
- Completing effective CVs and Application Forms for students from the School of Modern Languages
- Reflecting on Your Year Abroad
- Languages Alumni Evening
"My favourite module so far is France and the Right, from Dreyfus Affair to Le Pen, mainly because I love looking at French politics. You also get to interact with different source materials such as songs, videos and pamphlets which makes it really interesting, and for the assessment in the module I’m able to write an essay with my own title."
BA English and French
Why did you choose to study languages at Warwick?
"It wasn't that much of a choice in the sense that it was my clearing option, but I looked at the course that was on offer compared to other clearing options that was available to me and Warwick just seemed to be the best option in terms of teaching and how its assessed and module choice as well. I was just like, actually, this is where I want to be."
How did you find the transition from A level to University?
"Everyone says that the transition from A level to University is really scary, but I actually found that the teachers at Warwick made it really easy in terms of grammar when we came in they were just like, right, we want to make sure you're familiar with this and then we're going to throw this in the mix as well, just to see how you cope."
What has been your favourite module so far?
"My favourite module has to be the one I'm currently doing, which is France and the Right, from Dreyfus Affair to Le mainly because I just love French politics, but also you get to see the history of it and interact with different source materials. Like we've looked at songs, we've looked at videos, we've looked at pamphlets, you know, it's really interesting and um, in terms of assessment, I'm able to write an essay with my own title. So I'm actually researching some really interesting stuff for them, and for that, I say that just get me really excited."
Why study cultural modules whilst learning a language?
"A cultural module is definitely help with language modules in the sense that you learn the reasons behind certain language choices. Like for example, when you're looking at newspaper translations, whatever like that, you might find that leftist papers more likely to refer to ‘the Republic’ and ‘Marianne’ and things like that. And you need to know, hold on, what are these things? And that's where the culture modules come in. They sort of tell you what you need for the translations."
What do you like most about being part of the School of Modern Languages and Cultures?
"I have to say the best thing about the School of Modern Languages and Cultures is the people, like the staff are so friendly, they make you feel really welcome. If you have a problem, then someone will say “these are my office hours, come see me”. If you've been talking to them about a particular bit of research and you pass them in the corridor, they re-initiate the conversation."
What is the teaching in the school like?
"Teaching and learning is really interesting in the sense that it's not so much, “I am the teacher I’m going to tell you this”. It's more like, “I am the teacher, what do you think about this?” And then it opens it up to a whole avenue of discussions."
What are your plans after University?
"After university I'm probably hoping to do postgrad and then probably a PhD, because I kind of really like the idea of teaching at University. I've had such positive experiences at myself, so it would kind of be nice to see it from the other side I guess."
What advice would you give to someone looking at studying languages?
"Honestly, it's probably going to be, um, one of the best decisions you've ever made because especially if you come to Warwick, if you ever had any other plans like I did, you don't look back because they make you feel so welcome. You get to do so much interesting stuff and it's taught in such a nice way that you're like, actually, there's not much better than this."
About the information on this page
This information is applicable for 2021 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.