English Language and Literature BA
Year of entry 20242023 course information
- UCAS code
- Start date
- September 2024
- Delivery type
- On campus
- 3 years full time
- Work placement
- Study abroad
- Typical A-level offer
- AAB (specific subject requirements)
- Typical Access to Leeds offer
- BBB including English (Language, Literature or Language and Literature) at A Level and pass Access to Leeds.
Full entry requirements
Explore the English language, its literary heritage, significance and future in a diverse and research-intensive learning environment. Learn how words work to shape the world around us and express human experience.
Throughout this course, you’ll explore richly diverse literary texts across different genres, including fiction, poetry and drama, and will see these in the context of a variety of historical periods, places and cultures. You’ll consider how and why these texts are produced, read, and understood and analyse the impact of their creativity and power.
You’ll select topics from various modules covering language and literary topics in English from the Middle Ages to today. In addition, you’ll have the opportunity to work with expert tutors with a wide range of research interests and develop your digital and communication skills.
The School of English supports a vibrant community of researchers and creative practitioners. It is home to the Leeds Poetry Centre, and we regularly host readings and talks by well-known and emerging contemporary writers.
The School also produces a literary magazine, Stand, and publishes the best in new creative writing.
The world-class Brotherton Library has an array of archive, manuscript and early printed material in its Special Collections, including extensive archives of original materials from writers old and new, from the Brontë family to Tony Harrison.
You’ll also have opportunities to learn traditional printing and typesetting techniques, using our period printing presses, and learn more about print and publishing history.
Take a look around our libraries:
Edward Boyle Library
The University also has four performance and rehearsal spaces, fully equipped with lighting and sound, as part of our impressive theatre offering.
In your first year, core modules will allow you to develop the skills you need to study language and literature at a university level. You’ll cover the foundations of literary studies, learn to think about the English language in its historical and social contexts and choose from a range of modules, including Discovery options in other Schools.
You’ll build your knowledge and skills from this foundation in the following year, and study modules that will give you a sense of how literature in English has evolved and how it varies between writers and cultures. You’ll also explore the function and power of language and its role in society. In addition, you have to opportunity to tailor your degree to your interests by choosing from an extensive range of optional and Discovery modules (detailed below).
In your third year, alongside a choice of modules, you’ll start work on your final year project. Based on a topic of your design, this individual project will showcase your development as a critical thinker and researcher and demonstrate your ability to manage a large project and communicate effectively.
Year 1 compulsory modules
Key Concepts of English Language Study: One (20 credits) - This module provides an exciting introduction to the study of the English language from the smallest element of sound, through syntax and style, to the analysis of different text types, including, for example, newspaper articles, advertising, poetry, narrative, and courtroom discourse. Students are introduced to a wide range of ways of approaching the description, analysis, and interpretation of texts, including use of the IPA, quantitative, qualitative, and computational approaches, and transcription of speeches. It gives students opportunities for formative feedback on their analytical skills and oral presentation of their ideas, as well as group discussion and live lectures. In this module students are given access to a range of issues and approaches developed in English Language modules available at Levels 2 and 3. The module is founded on the individual expertise of colleagues in English language and builds on the tradition of excellence at Leeds.
Key Concepts of English Language Study: Two (20 credits) - This module introduces the fascinating breadth and diversity to be found within the English language. It offers insights into different geographic, historical, social and stylistic variations – where they come from, their characteristics, how and why they are used. The module is founded on the individual expertise of colleagues in English language and builds on the tradition of excellence at Leeds.
Writing Matters (20 credits) - Writing and communication skills are vital to most professional careers, but they are especially valuable in the field of English studies. This module explores debates around a canonical literary text, examining theoretical approaches and rhetorical strategies used to write about literature. Students will hone their own writing skills by engaging ethically with the text and the ideas of others, developing structured arguments, expressing ideas clearly and concisely, working with feedback, and practising writing as a process. As a result, students will cultivate a deeper understanding of how writing works, learn how to share insights with greater efficacy and sophistication, and practice how to transfer this knowledge to future workplace contexts.
Reading Between the Lines (20 credits) - This module equips students with a critical vocabulary for sophisticated literary study, introducing the creative, argumentative and exciting discipline of ‘English Studies’. Through close analysis of specific texts across a range of periods and forms, students will encounter some of the varied theories that have shaped and continue to underpin the discipline. Students will find out how an English degree might change the way we read and see the world, while developing their academic skills through guided critical reading, collaboration with peers in group presentations and seminar discussions, and a variety of assignments designed to introduce them to the different formats of assessment required throughout the degree.
Year 1 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)
Poetry: Reading and Interpretation (20 credits)
Drama: Text and Performance (20 credits)
Modern Fictions in English (20 credits)
Race, Writing and Decolonization (20 credits)
Drama: Text and Performance (20 credits)
Language Projects (20 credits)
Language: Meaning and Use (20 credits)
Year 2 compulsory modules
Power of Language (20 credits) - This module aims to familiarise students with the linguistic means by which a whole range of persuasive texts can be analysed. We will also be considering the use of English language as a powerful tool in itself. We will investigate a range of discourse types and theoretical approaches including but not restricted to analysis of: advertising, journalistic and political texts, consideration of stylistic and rhetorical features, examination of linguistic creativity and language 'play', techniques for revealing a text's underlying ideological stance and bias, sociolinguistic examination of power relationships and the effect this has on language.
Language in Society (20 credits) - In this module students will engage critically with topics, theories and research methodologies in the field of sociolinguistics, which is concerned with the complex relationship between language and society. Focusing on language in its social context, we will ask about linguistic variation (how small scale patterns of language use correlate with social categories such as class, gender and age) and the role of language in social life (including its relationships to power, national identity and ideology).
Writing Environments: Literature, Nature, Culture (20 credits) - This module examines what it means to live as human beings on a more-than-human planet. We’ll investigate how literary texts from different times and places have understood the relationship between nature and culture. We’ll address human impacts on the environment in relation to historical phenomena such as colonialism. And we’ll explore the insights that literature can offer at a time of concern about climate change and other environmental issues.
Body Language: Literature and Embodiment (20 credits) - This module explores the relationship between embodiment, language and representation across a range of literary forms, genres, and periods, addressing questions such as: what does it mean to be ‘human’? Can technology change who we are? How do we navigate the relationship between the body and the mind? It examines how critical theorists and creative writers and life writers have treated and imagined this relationship between material bodies and literary representation, in order to better understand both the possibilities and limitations of literary expression.
Year 2 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)
Style and Authorship (20 credits)
Dialect and Heritage (20 credits)
Contemporary Literature (20 credits)
Renaissance Literature (20 credits)
Medieval and Tudor Literature (20 credits)
Modern Literature (20 credits)
Postcolonial Literature (20 credits)
The World Before Us: Literature 1660-1830 (20 credits)
Other Voices: Rethinking Nineteenth-Century Literature (20 credits)
American Words, American Worlds (20 credits)
Year 3 compulsory modules
Final Year Project (40 credits) - This module encourages independent, self-directed learning, providing a culmination to the research strand emphasised in other modules. It fosters a wide variety of responses to the challenges it offers students, since any final year project might take one of a number of forms. Most importantly, it promotes academic creativity and the exploration of individual intellectual interests.
Year 3 optional modules (selection of typical options shown below)
American Words, American Worlds, 1900-Present (20 credits)
Victoria's Secrets: Secrecy in Nineteenth-Century Literature and Culture (20 credits)
The Politics of Language (20 credits)
Tragedy: Classical to Neo-Classical (20 credits)
Imagining Posthuman Futures (20 credits)
Angry Young Men and Women: Literature of the Mid-Twentieth Century (20 credits)
Lost in Fiction: The Metafictional Novel from 'Don Quixote' to 'House of Leaves' (20 credits)
Millennial Fictions (20 credits)
Theatricalities: Beckett, Pinter, Kane (20 credits)
Telling Lives: Reading and Writing Family Memoir (20 credits)
Fictions of the End: Apocalypse and After (20 credits)
Medical Humanities: Representing Illness, Disability, and Care (20 credits)
Throughout your degree you will benefit from a range of opportunities to expand your intellectual horizons outside or within your subject area.
This course gives you the opportunity to choose from a range of discovery modules. They’re a great way to tailor your study around your interests or career aspirations and help you stand out from the crowd when you graduate. Find out more about discovery modules on our Broadening webpages.
Learning and teaching
We use various teaching and learning methods to help you benefit from our tutors’ expertise.
Group seminars are at the heart of this degree, but you’ll also encounter:
- One-to-one tutorials and supervisions
- Group work
- Online learning through Minerva, our Virtual Learning Environment.
In addition, independent study is a vital element of this course since it enables you to develop your research and critical skills and form your ideas.
Our globally recognised research feeds directly into your course and shapes what you learn at Leeds with the latest thinking. You’ll be taught by inspirational academics who are experts in their field and share your passion for your subject. Some may even have written textbooks and research articles you’ll use on your course.
On this course you’ll be taught by our expert academics, from lecturers through to professors. You may also be taught by industry professionals with years of experience, as well as trained postgraduate researchers, connecting you to some of the brightest minds on campus.
English Language and Literature modules are assessed using various methods, including essays and shorter written assignments.
Some modules will also include wikis, podcasts, research exercises or oral presentations.
This range of assessments will help you develop your communication skills, improve your digital literacy, and enhance your ability to deliver different projects.
A-level: AAB including A in English (Language, Literature or Language and Literature).
Other course specific tests:
Where an applicant is taking the EPQ in a relevant subject this might be considered alongside other Level 3 qualifications and may attract an alternative offer in addition to the standard offer. If you are taking A Levels, this would be ABB at A Level including A in English (Language, Literature, or Language and Literature) and grade A in the EPQ.
Access to HE Diploma
D3, M1, M2 including D3 in English.
35 points overall with 16 at Higher Level including 6 in English at Higher Level.
Irish Leaving Certificate (higher Level)
H2 H2 H2 H2 H3 H3 including H2 in English.
Scottish Highers / Advanced Highers
AB in Advanced Highers (including English) and AABBB in Highers, or A in English Advanced Highers and AABBB in Highers.
Read more about UK and Republic of Ireland accepted qualifications or contact the Schools Undergraduate Admissions Team.
Were committed to identifying the best possible applicants, regardless of personal circumstances or background.
Access to Leeds is an alternative admissions scheme which accepts applications from individuals who might be from low income households, in the first generation of their immediate family to apply to higher education, or have had their studies disrupted.
Find out more about Access to Leeds and alternative admissions.
Typical Access to Leeds offer: BBB including English (Language, Literature or Language and Literature) at A Level and pass Access to Leeds.
Arts and Humanities with Foundation Year
If you would like to study arts, humanities, and cultures at university, but don't currently meet the typical entry requirements for direct entry to a degree, you might be eligible to apply for the Arts and Humanities with Foundation Year course.
We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. Contact the Undergraduate Admissions Office for more information.
International Foundation Year
International students who do not meet the academic requirements for undergraduate study may be able to study the University of Leeds International Foundation Year. This gives you the opportunity to study on campus, be taught by University of Leeds academics and progress onto a wide range of Leeds undergraduate courses. Find out more about International Foundation Year programmes.
English language requirements
IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.
Improve your English
If you're an international student and you don't meet the English language requirements for this programme, you may be able to study our undergraduate pre-sessional English course, to help improve your English language level.
UK: To be confirmed
International: To be confirmed
Tuition fees for UK undergraduate students starting in 2023/24 and 2024/25
Tuition fees for UK full-time undergraduate students are set by the UK Government and will remain capped at £9,250 for 2023/24 and 2024/25. The fee may increase in future years of your course in line with inflation only as a consequence of future changes in Government legislation and as permitted by law.
Tuition fees for international undergraduate students starting in 2023/24
Tuition fees for international students for 2023/24 are available on individual course pages.
Tuition fees for international undergraduate students starting in 2024/25
Tuition fees for international students for 2024/25 will be available on individual course pages from September 2023.
Tuition fees for a study abroad or work placement year
If you take a study abroad or work placement year, you’ll pay a reduced tuition fee during this period. For more information, see Study abroad and work placement tuition fees and loans.
Read more about paying fees and charges.
There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs.
Scholarships and financial support
If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government. Find out more in our Undergraduate funding overview.
Apply to this course through UCAS. Check the deadline for applications on the UCAS website.
Read our guidance about applying.
International students apply through UCAS in the same way as UK students. Our network of international representatives can help you with your application. If you’re unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.
Read about visas, immigration and other information in International students. We recommend that international students apply as early as possible to ensure that they have time to apply for their visa.
University of Leeds Taught Admissions Policy 2023
This course is taught by
School of English Undergraduate Admissions
A degree in English Language and Literature gives you a range of valuable skills and attributes. Our graduates have gone on to find success in areas such as the creative industries, marketing, education, journalism, law, publishing, media, business charity work, civil service, management consultancy and leadership.
Many have also progressed to postgraduate study. On this course, you’ll develop your abilities as an excellent communicator who can present well-reasoned arguments and conclusions.
Learning in groups with others and reading about human problems and social situations will develop your interpersonal skills and understanding of ethical and cultural complexities. You’ll have strong organisational and time management skills.
You’ll be able to conduct research, interpret complex information, think critically and express yourself clearly. Employers are always looking out for people with these critical skills.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. Thats one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
Leeds for Life is our unique approach to helping you make the most of University by supporting your academic and personal development. Find out more at the Leeds for Life website.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
Study abroad and work placements
On this course you have the opportunity to apply to spend time abroad, usually as an extra academic year. We have over 300 University partners worldwide and popular destinations for our students include Europe, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Africa and Latin America.
Find out more at the Study Abroad website.
Practical work experience can help you decide on your career and improve your employability. On this course you have the option to apply to take a placement year module with organisations across the public, private and voluntary sectors in the UK, or overseas.
Find out more about work experience on the Careers website.
Student profile: Noah Hughes
My personal tutor is a valuable source of wisdom on all things academic and personal - my module leaders/seminar tutors have also always been interested and willing to help in any situation they can.Find out more about Noah Hughes's time at Leeds