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English Literature BA (UCAS Q300)

An English student reading in the library at the University of Warwick

Find out more about our English Literature degree at Warwick

Study at one of the world’s top universities for English Literature. Our degree will spark your passion for reading and writing, and develop your intellectual, political, and creative responses to literature and the world. As your understanding of literature and yourself is transformed, you will be prepared for an array of careers that value strong communication skills and critical thinking.


General entry requirements

A level typical offer

AAA or A*AB to include grade A in English Literature or English Language and Literature (combined).

A level contextual offer

We welcome applications from candidates who meet the contextual eligibility criteria and whose predicted grades are close to, or slightly below, the contextual offer level. The typical contextual offer is ABB including an A in English Literature or English Language and Literature (combined). See if you're eligible.

General GCSE requirements

Unless specified differently above, you will also need a minimum of GCSE grade 4 or C (or an equivalent qualification) in English Language and either Mathematics or a Science subject. Find out more about our entry requirements and the qualifications we accept. We advise that you also check the English Language requirements for your course which may specify a higher GCSE English requirement. Please find the information about this below.

IB typical offer

36 to include 6 at Higher Level in English Literature or English Language and Literature (combined).

IB contextual offer

We welcome applications from candidates who meet the contextual eligibility criteria and whose predicted grades are close to, or slightly below, the contextual offer level. The typical contextual offer is 32 including 6 at Higher Level in English Literature or English Language and Literature (combined). See if you're eligible.

General GCSE requirements

Unless specified differently above, you will also need a minimum of GCSE grade 4 or C (or an equivalent qualification) in English Language and either Mathematics or a Science subject. Find out more about our entry requirements and the qualifications we accept. We advise that you also check the English Language requirements for your course which may specify a higher GCSE English requirement. Please find the information about this below.

We welcome applications from students taking BTECs alongside A level English Literature or English Language and Literature (combined).

General GCSE requirements

Unless specified differently above, you will also need a minimum of GCSE grade 4 or C (or an equivalent qualification) in English Language and either Mathematics or a Science subject. Find out more about our entry requirements and the qualifications we accept. We advise that you also check the English Language requirements for your course which may specify a higher GCSE English requirement. Please find the information about this below.


International qualifications


English Language requirements

All applicants have to meet our English Language requirements. If you cannot demonstrate that you meet these, you may be invited to take part in our Pre-sessional English course at WarwickLink opens in a new window.

This course requires: Band B

Learn more about our English Language requirementsLink opens in a new window


Frequently asked questions

Warwick may make differential offers to students in a number of circumstances. These include students participating in a Widening Participation programme or who meet the contextual data criteria.

Differential offers will usually be one or two grades below Warwick’s standard offer.

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).

Find out more about standard offers and conditions for the IFP.

We welcome applications for deferred entry.

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.

Course overview

What inspires you? Is it the stories left behind by history’s witnesses, or the ideas that define modern society? Is it the cultures that surround you every day, or the life of distant places - even other, imagined worlds?

Are you interested in 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 Literature at Warwick will spark the passion for reading and writing you’ve had all your life and develop it into an expert knowledge of literary culture.

In your second and third years you will build your historical and theoretical knowledge of literature whilst also choosing from one of the widest and most innovative range of modules anywhere in the country.

Whether you prefer ancient texts or the very modern, or what lies in between, you will have the freedom to create a degree that reflects your interests and motivations. Our undergraduates enter the workplace as confident, ethical, and compassionate thinkers with exceptional writing and communication skills.


Study abroad

As a student on our English degrees, you will have the opportunity to spend your third year at one of our partner institutions in the USA, Europe, China, Australia or Japan.

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.

Core modules

You will begin with the foundations of literary studies, reading work from the ancient past to the present, from Homer and Virgil to Mary Shelley and Chris Kraus.

Your critical thinking and grasp of literary theory will develop in Modes of Reading, while in Medieval and Early Modern Literature you’ll explore Chaucer, Sidney, Spenser, and Shakespeare. Epic into Novel will give you an understanding of some of the most celebrated literary forms of classical and modern times, while you will tackle the literature and politics that define contemporary life in Modern World Literatures (though if you’d prefer to learn a language instead, that option is open to you too). You will also take our Academic Enrichment program in which we guide your development as a literary critic and researcher on your other first-year modules.

In your second year you can choose from an array of modules on all periods alongside our core module, Literature in Theory, and a module of your choice on pre-1900 literature.

In your final year, you have free choice of four modules, inclusive of one from our many Global literature modules. You will undertake research across these modules supported by our Academic Research workshops and have the option to write a Dissertation on a topic of your choice.


Year One

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.

Read more about the Modes of Reading moduleLink opens in a new window, including the methods of teaching and assessment (content applies to 2022/23 year of study).

Medieval and Early Modern 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.

Read more about the Medieval and Early Modern Literature moduleLink opens in a new window, including the methods of teaching and assessment (content applies to 2022/23 year of study).

Epic into Novel

Tracking the transition from the epics of the ancient world to their incarnation as texts 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 Gilgamesh, Homer’s Iliad, Virgil’s Aeneid, and Catullus; ancient epics from India and Africa; Milton’s Paradise Lost; as well as responses to ancient epic by Tennyson, Margaret Atwood, Seamus Heaney, and Maria Dahvana Headley. Reading across history and cultures, between languages and genres, you will develop the skills to analyse narrative, character, and style.

Read more about the Epic into Novel moduleLink opens in a new window, including the methods of teaching and assessment (content applies to 2022/23 year of study).

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.

Read more about the Modern World Literatures moduleLink opens in a new window, including the methods of teaching and assessment (content applies to 2021/22 year of study).

Year Two

Literature in Theory

In your second year, you will study our core module, ‘Literature in Theory’, in which you develop the ideas you explored in ‘Modes of Reading’. This interdisciplinary module asks why and how we study literature. Readings, lectures, and seminars focus on specific themes such as authorship, the literary marketplace, literature in relation to politics, power, data, and the environment, and the relationship of race, gender, sexuality, and class to our study of texts and knowledge. Teaching juxtaposes short theoretical texts with literary and cultural readings, including visual and media texts, such as Maggie Nelson’s The Argonauts, Booker T. Washington’s Up from Slavery, and Amitav Ghost’s In An Antique Land.

Read more about the Literature in Theory moduleLink opens in a new window, including the methods of teaching and assessment (content applies to 2021/22 year of study).

Choose an option on pre-1900 literature

To give your degree historical breadth and depth, we invite students to take one of our many options on pre-1900 literature. The range of modules varies each year, and examples include Romantic and Victorian Poetry, The Nineteenth-Century Novel, Crime Fiction: Nation and Empire, Britain 1850-1947, American Horror Story: US Gothic Cultures 1790-present, Eighteenth-Century Literature, Seventeenth-Century Literature, Austen in Theory, George Eliot and Sociology, Literature and Revolution 1640-1660, Literature and Empire: Britain and the Caribbean to 1900, English Literature and Feminisms 1790-1899, The Classical Tradition in English Translations, Arthurian Literature, Asia and the Victorians.

Your choice

Alongside Literature in Theory and a pre-1900 module, you can choose two further modules from the department on anything you're interested in; and one of these modules can be taken from another department. Our students often enjoy modules in History, Film and Television Studies, Philosophy, Theatre and Performance Studies, the Warwick Writing Programme, Warwick Business School, Politics and International Studies, and beyond.

Year Three

Independent Research

In your final year, you will undertake independent research on your modules. Alongside one option in Global Literature (see below), you have free choice of three further modules from the department on anything you're interested in, including our Dissertation module. One of these modules can be taken from another department. Our students often enjoy modules in History, Film and Television Studies, Philosophy, Theatre and Performance Studies, the Warwick Writing Programme, Warwick Business School, Politics and International Studies, and beyond. Throughout your final year, you will be supported in your research by our Academic Research workshops that will guide you through the process of identifying your argument, working with sources, and writing essays.

Choose an option on global literature

To ensure your degree covers literature written in English from all over the world, we invite students to take one of our many options on global literature. The range of modules varies each year, and examples include The Global Novel, New Literatures in English, Commodity Fictions: World Literature and World Ecology, Literature and Empire: Britain and the Caribbean to 1900, Twentieth-Century Avant Gardes, Yiddish Literature in Translation, Asia and the Victorians, American Horror Story: US Gothic Cultures 1790-present, Alternative Lifeworlds Fiction: Science Fiction, Fantasy and the Weird, Disasters and the British Contemporary, Devolutionary British Fiction, The Novel Now.


Optional modules

Optional modules can vary from year to year. Example optional modules may include:

  • American Horror Story
  • The English Nineteenth Century Novel
  • Literature, Environment, Ecology
  • Tales of Terror: Gothic and the Short Form
  • US Writing and Culture, 1780-1920
  • Romantic and Victorian Poetry
  • Queering the Literary Landscape
  • Devolutionary British Fiction
  • Ecopoetics
  • Shakespeare and Selected Dramatists of his Time
  • Alternative Lifeworlds Fiction
  • Literature and Empire
  • American Poetry
  • Jane Austen
  • Early Modern Drama
  • Women and Writing
  • The Classical Tradition

Assessment

Many modules allow you to choose your preferred form of assessment from traditional essays and written examinations to creative projects, portfolios, video-essays, blogs, and films. Student work regularly includes the production of film and radio adaptations, musical compositions, painting, sculpture, photography, as well as essays and close readings.

Teaching

Teaching and assessment is also distinctive. You will write essays, deliver presentations and take exams, but you also might make a short film, a wiki page or compose 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 comprise short lectures and a longer seminar, or one seminar. Workshops on academic writing, employability, and personal development are also available throughout your degree.


Class sizes

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


Typical contact hours

Guided learning of typically eight contact hours per week, plus extra-curricular workshops and reading groups. Seminars are usually 1, 1.5 or 2 hours each; lectures are an hour.

Tuition fees

Tuition fees cover the majority of the costs of your study, including teaching and assessment. Fees are charged at the start of each academic year. If you pay your fees directly to the University, you can choose to pay in instalments.

Undergraduate fees

If you are a home student enrolling in 2022, your annual tuition fees will be £9,250. In the future, these fees might change for new and continuing students.


2+2 course fees

If you are a home student enrolling in 2022 for a 2+2 course through the Centre for Lifelong Learning, your annual tuition fees will be £6,750. In the future, these fees might change for new and continuing students.


How are fees set?

The British Government sets tuition fee rates.

Learn more about fees from UCASLink opens in a new window.

Undergraduate fees

If you are an EU student enrolling in 2022, the tuition fee will be charged in line with government policy and therefore the same as Overseas Tuition Fee rates.

For details please see Overseas students section below.

Undergraduate fees

If you are an overseas or EU student enrolling in 2022, your annual tuition fees will be as follows:

  • Band 1 – £22,280 per year (classroom-based courses, including Humanities and most Social Science courses)
  • Band 2 – £28,410 per year (laboratory-based courses, plus Theatre and Performance Studies, Economics, and courses provided by Warwick Business School, with exceptions)

Fees for 2023 entry have not been set. We will publish updated information here as soon as it becomes available, so please check back for updates about 2023 fee rates before you apply.

Find out more about undergraduate fees and funding.


Fee status guidance

We carry out an initial fee status assessment based on the information you provide in your application. Students from 2021 entry will be classified as Home or EU/Overseas fee status. Your fee status determines tuition fees, and what financial support and scholarships may be available. If you receive an offer, your fee status will be clearly stated alongside the tuition fee information.

Do you need your fee classification to be reviewed?

If you believe that your fee status has been classified incorrectly, you can complete a fee status assessment questionnaire. Please follow the instructions in your offer information and provide the documents needed to reassess your status.

Find out more about how universities assess fee status.


Additional course costs

As well as tuition fees and living expenses, some courses may require you to cover the cost of field trips or costs associated with travel abroad. Information about department specific costs should be considered in conjunction with the more general costs below:

  • Core text books
  • Printer credits
  • Dissertation binding
  • Robe hire for your degree ceremony

Further information

Find out more about tuition fees from our Student Finance team.


Scholarships and bursaries

Learn about scholarships and bursaries available to undergraduate students.

We offer a number of undergraduate scholarships and bursaries to full-time undergraduate students. These include sporting and musical bursaries, and scholarships offered by commercial organisations.

Find out more about funding opportunities for full-time students.

If you are an international student, a limited number of scholarships may be available.

Find out more information on our international scholarship pages.


You may be eligible for financial help from your own government, from the British Council or from other funding agencies. You can usually request information on scholarships from the Ministry of Education in your home country, or from the local British Council office.


Warwick Undergraduate Global Excellence Scholarship 2022

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.

Find out more about the Warwick Undergraduate Global Excellence Scholarship 2022.

We provide extra financial support for qualifying students from lower income families. The Warwick Undergraduate Bursary is an annual award of up to £3,000 per annum. It is intended to help with course-related costs and you do not have to pay it back.

Find out more about your eligibility for the Warwick Undergraduate Bursary.

As part of the 'City of Sanctuary' movement, we are committed to building a culture of hospitality and welcome, especially for those seeking sanctuary from war and persecution. We provide a range of scholarships to enable people seeking sanctuary or asylum to progress to access university education.

Find out more about the Warwick Undergraduate Sanctuary Scholarships for asylum seekers.

Further information

Find out more about Warwick undergraduate bursaries and scholarships.

Eligibility for student loans

Your eligibility for student finance will depend on certain criteria, such as your nationality and residency status, your course, and previous study at higher education level.

Check if you're eligible for student finance.

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan to cover your tuition fees. It is non-means tested, which means the amount you can receive is not based on your household income. The Loan is paid directly to the University so, if you choose to take the full Tuition Fee Loan, you won’t have to set up any payments.

Maintenance Loan for living costs

You can apply for a Maintenance Loan towards your living costs such as accommodation, food and bills. This loan is means-tested, so the amount you receive is partially based on your household income and whether you choose to live at home or in student accommodation.

Find out more about government student loans for home students residing in England.

Tuition Fee Loan

For the 2022 academic year, you may be able to get a Tuition Fee Loan to cover your tuition fees if you’re from an EU country. It is non-means tested, which means the amount you may receive is not based on your household income. The Loan is paid directly to the University so, if you choose to take the full Tuition Fee Loan, you won't have to set up any payments.

Help with living costs

For the 2022 academic year, you may be eligible for help with your living costs if both of the following apply:

  • You have lived in the UK for more than 3 years before the first day of the first academic year of your course

And

If you are starting a course on or after 1st August 2021, you must have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme to get student finance.

  • If you are coming to the UK from 1st January 2021, you may need to apply for a visa to studyhere
  • Irish citizens do not need to apply for a visa or to the EU Settlement Scheme

Find out more about government student loans for EU students

Repaying your loans

You will repay your loan or loans gradually once you are working and earning above a certain amount (from April 2021 the repayment threshold is £27,295 and is expected to rise each year). Repayments will be taken directly from your salary if you are an employee. If your income falls below the earnings threshold, your repayments will stop until your income goes back up above this figure.

Find out more about repaying your student loan.

Your career

Graduates from these courses have gone on to work for employers including:

  • Archant
  • Barclays
  • Bloomsbury
  • British Council
  • Civil Service
  • Maidstone Borough Council
  • Newsquest Media Group
  • Pan Macmillan
  • Royal Opera House
  • The Sunday Times
  • Teach First
  • Tesco
  • Weber Shandwick

They have pursued roles such as:

  • Journalists
  • Newspaper and periodical editors
  • Publishers
  • Creative directors
  • Arts officers, producers and directors
  • Authors, writers and translators
  • Musicians and composers
  • Teachers
  • Advertising accounts managers
  • Business sales executives
  • Solicitors and legal associate professionals
  • Management consultants and business analysts
  • Marketing associate professionals
  • Academics and researchers

Helping you find the right career

In addition to a dedicated professionally qualified Senior Careers Consultant to support students studying English Literature, students also take an Academic Enrichment Programme in their first year focused on career skills, academic writing, and how to prepare for a future career while studying. Our Careers consultant also offers impartial advice and guidance, together with workshops and events throughout the year. Previous examples of workshops and events include:

  • Careers following your English and Comparative Literary Studies Degree
  • Discovering Careers in the Creative Industries
  • Careers in Publishing and Journalism
  • Freelancing
  • Careers in the Public Sector
  • Warwick careers fairs throughout the year

Find out more about careers support at Warwick.

English and Comparative Literary Studies at Warwick

Have the freedom to follow your own path

We’re fond of freedom at Warwick. Freedom to learn, through an enormous array of modules to suit your interests, and through a range of innovative assessment techniques. You’re also free to explore the award-winning Warwick Arts Centre on campus or you can travel further afield and visit the home of Shakespeare in Stratford or immerse yourself in the poetry scene in Leamington Spa and Birmingham.

We were ranked first in the UK for our research in the latest Research Excellence Framework 2014, which means you’ll feel well connected and ahead of the game.

Find out more about us on our websiteLink opens in a new window


Explore our new Faculty of Arts building

The department recently moved into the brand new £57.5 million Faculty of Arts building.

This means, as an Arts student at Warwick, you’ll find your home amongst brand new teaching, learning and social spaces, including specialist facilities, all designed to support collaborative working and to enable your creativity and innovation to flourish.

The sustainably built, eight-storey building is located next to the newly refurbished Warwick Arts Centre in the heart of the University’s creative and cultural arts quarter.

Explore our new Faculty of Arts building further.


Our courses


Related degrees

Life at Warwick

Within a close-knit community of staff and students from all over the world, discover a campus alive with possibilities. A place where all the elements of your student experience come together in one place. Our supportive, energising, welcoming space creates the ideal environment for forging new connections, having fun and finding inspiration.

Keep exploring life at Warwick

Find out how to apply to us, ask your questions, and find out more.

Warwick Accommodation

Finding the right accommodation is key to helping you settle in quickly.

We have 12 self-catering undergraduate halls of residence on campus.

Our student property management and lettings agency manages more than 8,000 rooms both on and off campus, and provides advice to all full-time undergraduates.

Explore Warwick Accommodation

Our campus

You won't be short of ways to spend your time on campus - whether it's visiting Warwick Arts Centre, using our incredible new sports facilities, socialising in our bars, nightclub and cafés, or enjoying an open-air event. Or if you need some peace and quiet, you can explore lakes, woodland and green spaces just a few minutes’ walk from central campus.

Explore our campus

Food and drink

We have lots of cafés, restaurants and shops on campus. You can enjoy great quality food and drink, with plenty of choice for all tastes and budgets. There is a convenience store on central campus, as well as two supermarkets and a small shopping centre in the nearby Cannon Park Retail Park. Several of them offer delivery services to help you stay stocked up.

And don't miss our regular food market day on the Piazza with tempting, fresh and delicious street food. Soak up the atmosphere and try something new, with mouth-watering food for all tastes.

Explore food and shops

Explore Students' Union venues

Clubs and societies

We currently have more than 300 student-run societies.

So whether you’re into films, martial arts, astronomy, gaming or musical theatre, you can instantly connect with people with similar interests.

Or you could try something new, or even form your own society.

Explore our societies

Sports and fitness

Staying active at Warwick is no sweat, thanks to our amazing new Sports and Wellness Hub, indoor and outdoor tennis centre, 60 acres of sports pitches, and more than 60 sports clubs.

Whether you want to compete, relax or just have fun, you can achieve your fitness goals.

Explore sports at Warwick

Studying on campus

Our campus is designed to cater for all of your learning needs.

You will benefit from a variety of flexible, well-equipped study spaces and teaching facilities across the University.

  • The Oculus, our outstanding learning hub, houses state-of-the-art lecture theatres and innovative social learning and network areas.
  • The University Library provides access to over one million printed works and tens of thousands of electronic journals
  • Three Learning Grids offering you flexible individual and group study spaces.

Studying at Warwick

Travel and local area

Our campus is in Coventry, a modern city with high street shops, restaurants, nightclubs and bars sitting alongside medieval monuments. The Warwickshire towns of Leamington Spa and Kenilworth are also nearby.

The University is close to major road, rail and air links. London is just an hour by direct train from Coventry, with Birmingham a 20-minute trip. Birmingham International Airport is nearby (a 20-minute drive).

Travelling from campus

Wellbeing support and faith provision

Our continuous support network is here to help you adjust to student life and to ensure you can easily access advice on many different issues. These may include managing your finances and workload, and settling into shared accommodation. We also have specialist disability and mental health support teams.

Our Chaplaincy is home to Chaplains from the Christian, Jewish and Muslim faiths. We provide regular services for all Christian denominations and a Shabbat meal every Friday for our Jewish students. There is also an Islamic prayer hall, halal kitchen and ablution facilities.

Student support

Chaplaincy

How to apply

Learn more about our application process.

Key dates

Key dates for your application to Warwick.

Writing your personal statement

Make an impression and demonstrate your passion for your course.

After you've applied

Find out how we process your application.

3 ways to connect

Talk to us

Join us at a live event. You can ask about courses, applying to Warwick, life at Warwick, visas and immigration, and more.

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Warwick Experience

Take a virtual, student-led campus tour. Then join an interactive panel session, where you can hear from and chat to our current students and staff.

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Student blogs

Explore our student blogs in OurWarwick. You can read about campus life from students themselves, and register to post questions directly to students.

Ask a student

Explore campus with our virtual tour

Our 360 tour lets you:

  • Watch student videos
  • View 360 photography and drone footage
  • Learn about facilities and landmarks

Explore our campus virtually through our 360 campus tour now

Come to an Open Day

Don’t just take it from us, come and see for yourself what Warwick is all about. Whether it's a virtual visit or in-person, our University Open Days give you the chance to meet staff and students, visit academic departments, tour the campus and get a real feel for life at Warwick.

Open Days at Warwick

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