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
A modern languages degree equips you with excellent communication, research, critical and evaluative skills, all of which are highly sought after by employers. Our English and Hispanic Studies (BA) degree is designed for those who wish to begin or pursue a study of Spanish language and literature while continuing to study the English tradition.
Explore two rich and diverse literary and cultural traditions while developing your Spanish language skills. There is a core Spanish language module in every year of study. First year core modules will introduce you to Hispanic literature and culture, English literature, and comparative literature. In your intermediate and final years all English and Hispanic optional modules are open to you. Modules in Hispanic Studies cover history, politics, and film as well as literary topics. In your final year, you can choose to write a dissertation on comparative Hispanic and English literature. You’ll also normally spend your second or third year of study abroad.
In your first year, you will take language classes designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of written and spoken Spanish (either Modern Spanish Language 1 or Modern Spanish Language 1 Beginners). You will also take a core module (Modes of Reading) which focuses on questions of approach, critical practice, and reading strategies.
You will choose one additional module in Hispanic Studies which will provide you with the foundation to study further aspects of Hispanic culture in the later stages of your degree (either Language, Text and Identity in the Hispanic World or Images and Representations of the Hispanic World).
You will additionally choose one English module in your first year, from a list of three: Epic into Novel; Medieval to Renaissance Literature;and Modern World Literatures.
How will I learn?
We employ a variety of teaching styles, including: lectures; seminars, 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.
You will have around 12 hours of contact time per week.
Seminars generally involve around 15 students.
How will I be assessed?
We will track your progress through a variety of methods, including 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 a modern or classical language and either English Literature or English Language and Literature (combined)
- 36 to include 5 at Higher Level in English Literature and 5 at Higher Level in a modern or classical language
- We welcome applications from students taking BTECs alongside an A level in a modern or classical language 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 Spanish Language 1
Do you have A level or an equivalent in Spanish and want to consolidate, extend and refine your skills to advanced level? This module will equip you with sound grammatical and linguistic foundations, with the aim of increasing your confidence in reading, listening, speaking and writing in Spanish. You'll use authentic resources in a variety of media from around the Hispanic world, including books, articles, newspapers, television and radio, as well as taking part in our virtual language exchange with students in Colombia, and culminating in production of a language portfolio to demonstrate your competence in the spoken and written language.
Modern Spanish Language for Beginners
As a beginner in the acquisition of the Spanish language, you’ll gain a keen grammatical awareness, a sound understanding of cultures and societies across the Hispanic world, and most of all, confidence in reading, listening, speaking and writing in Spanish. Using authentic resources, including newspapers, television and radio, you are expected to end your course able to sustain everyday conversations in Spanish, read authentic texts, follow the gist of TV extracts and write at an intermediate level in Spanish. You'll also work on basic translations to and from Spanish as a means of consolidating your knowledge.
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 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.
And one option in Hispanic Studies:
Language, Text and Identity in the Hispanic World
How has the Spanish language travelled around the world and what happens when it co-exists with other languages? How do writers use language to explore identity, and what happens when they work between two (or more) languages? What skills do we need as readers to interpret the nuances of texts that travel between languages? This module will equip you with the skills to understand and appreciate the cultural and sociolinguistic diversity of the Hispanic world and give you a strong grounding in the sociolinguistic, literary and cultural analysis of texts that address this diversity. The module explores the different varieties of Spanish spoken around the world, along with some of the principal languages that share its territory. It also reads a variety of texts that negotiate national and gender identities across linguistic and cultural borders, with a focus on those that travel between non-hegemonic Hispanic contexts and the Anglosphere.
Images and Representations of the Hispanic World
Where did the familiar stereotypes of Spain and Latin America come from? How have they circulated and been received at different times and in different places? And how have Spaniards and Latin Americans represented themselves to travellers, tourists, artists, and even invaders? Through the study of representations of the Hispanic world, you'll investigate significant topics including (de)colonisation of the Americas, stereotypical views of the Hispanic world and the imagining of Spanish identity through art and film in the 20th century. You'll be expected to read widely and independently, and to gain the analytical skills needed to conduct close textual and film analysis.
Icons of the Hispanic World
You’ll be introduced to major cultural landmarks from across the temporal, geographical and disciplinary range covered within Hispanic studies. You’ll engage with iconic figures at the heart of the Hispanic cultural imagination, and with canonical authors whose work has been influential in a Hispanic context and beyond. You'll acquire the skills required to conduct close analysis and critique of primary sources, both written and visual, in a variety of genres, and in so doing, foster your linguistic competence and increase your awareness of the range and diversity of Hispanic culture. There will be opportunities to improve your research techniques and to present clear and cogent arguments based on your analysis of primary sources.
Modern Spanish Language 2
On this module, you'll extend your competence in Spanish. You'll deepen your understanding of advanced grammatical and linguistic structures, increase the range and sophistication of your vocabulary, and refine your use of register in authentic spoken and written discourse. You'll use resources from a variety of media from around the Hispanic world, and take part in our virtual language exchange with students in Latin America and Spain. At the end of the course, you should have sufficient mastery to discuss different topics, report on your independent reading and support your opinions with solid arguments.
Modern Spanish Language 2 (Post-beginners)
Modern Spanish Language 3
On this module, you'll consolidate your fluency in spoken and written Spanish, and refine your translation skills to advanced level. You'll practise oral and discursive expression using a range of advanced linguistic structures, vocabulary and registers. You'll be engaged in independent study, for example in researching and preparing work for presentation in class in order to develop your communicative and intercultural competence and the capacity to structure your own learning.
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 will pay reduced tuition fees for their third year.
Graduates from these 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
"Friendly and easy to talk to"
"The department is incredible, they’re always on hand to help me whether it was with my year abroad queries or just general language-related issues. The best thing about them is that they’re really friendly and easy to talk to."
BA Modern Languages
"My favourite module that I've studies so far is one called Transnational Stories in Italy ... It focuses on Italy in the present day - also what does it really mean to be Italian these days - viewed through the lens of contemporary literature."
Italian Studies BA
Why did you choose to study languages at Warwick?
"I started quite early on with Italian, it was something that I'd carried on through my school life, and something that I just wanted to pursue my interest in, and Warwick offered the choice for me to pursue that at degree level."
How did you find the transition from A level to University?
"The transition from a level to degree level for me wasn't such a big jump because I did have such, such a solid foundation of base of knowledge. And when you do come in to study in a language degree level, the first year is based on ability, so the classes are split from beginner level, intermediate to an advanced level, so you’re never put in to a point where you feel you're out of your depth."
What has been your favourite module so far?
"My favourite model that I've studied so far is one called 'Trans National Stories in Italy'. It was, sort of, fits again with my biases about what I was interested in, sort of in contemporary history rather than a sort of very deep, deep historical perspective that sort of focuses on Italy and the present day. Also, what does it really mean to be Italian these days, viewed through a lens of contemporary literature."
Why study cultural modules whilst learning a language?
"They're not really distinct really in my mind, and I've think in Warwick’s mind as well, because when you learn the language, of course, you can just learn the verb endings the grammar, but when you learn a culture of a language as well, it helps, it helps you with sort of intricate details that you wouldn't already be aware of."
What modules can you choose?
"At Warwick there is such a wealth of different options available, which does sort of allow you to sort of pursue your own interests as well. Obviously, when you're in your first year, there is a required sort of base level of knowledge. So there will be some compulsory modules, but you're more than allowed to indulge your own interests."
Where did you go for your year abroad?
"So for my year abroad, I went to Pisa in western Tuscany, sort of where the Tower is, that’s how I always describe it to people, but there was so much more there for me because Warwick has so many links with many different universities in Italy. There was there was a choice of at least about 20 universities, I think it was, when we came to choose our destinations and there's so much information available about them all, you get to speak to students who've been away previously and that was how it was it was actually sold to me initially."
What are your plans after University?
"So after university, I've sort of been I've been interested in quite a few different industries. I've got some work experience in finance coming up soon. I've been applying for things that marketing internships and grad schemes because their language degree that they're fairly in demand just because of the transferability of the skills that you gain on them."
What advice would you give to someone looking at studying languages?
"Learning the language is such a, it's such a valuable experience, It's because everybody says, “I wish I could speak a language”, but if you do a language, you can, indeed you gain, you gain so much world experience; you get to live abroad, you get to indulge yourself in a lot of cultural experiences that you wouldn't normally do. There are so you can so many strings to your bow that you can have, having studied a language - just life-skills wise, as well as language-skills wise."
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.