English BA (Hons)

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Course starts: 17 September 2018Apply now

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Follow a Pathway in either: Language, Literature or Creative Writing. Develop your own razor-sharp writing skills. Graduate with a life-long love for language and literature, and a highly respected degree.

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Overview

BA (Hons) English at Sunderland is a wide-ranging and innovative degree. In the first year, all students follow a common curriculum covering the three main branches of contemporary English studies: English Language, English Literature and Creative Writing. In the second year you will choose to specialise in one of these branches while taking modules from other areas.

You will graduate with one of three named degrees depending on your choice of pathway: BA (Hons) English: LanguageBA (Hons) English: Literature, or BA (Hons) English: Creative Writing.

Why us?

  • 94.2% of our graduates are in employment or further study within six months of graduating, according to DLHE 2015/16 (based on UK undergraduate students)
  • 'World-leading' research in English Language and Literature, according to the latest Research Excellence Framework (REF)

Course structure

A typical week for you will include lectures, seminars and group work, as well as independent study. Your progress will be assessed mainly through coursework, such as written assignments and presentations, and you will also have the opportunity to carry out a more extended piece in your third year in our ‘English Advanced Study’ module. The best work from this module will be published in Codex – the School of Culture’s online undergraduate academic journal. Throughout your studies our lecturers will be on hand to provide you with one-to-one support when you need it.

All pathways

Year 1 (national level 4):

Core modules (120 credits):

  • The Writer’s Journey: Monomyth (20 credits)
  • The Writer’s Craft: Developing your Skills (20 credits)
  • Order from Chaos: Narrative and Poetry (20 credits)
  • Stages and Pages: Drama and Criticism (20 credits)
  • Language in the 21st century (20 credits)
  • Describing Modern English (20 credits)

 

Some modules have prerequisites. Read more about what this means in our Help and Advice article.

English Literature pathway

Year 2 (national level 5):

Core modules (40 credits)

  • Questioning Literature: History and Theory (20 credits)
  • Refocusing Literature: Applying Literary Theory to Texts (20 credits)

Designated English Literature pathway modules (40 credits)

Students are to choose two modules from the list below;

  • Exploring the City and the World in Eighteenth Century Literature (20 credits)
  • Literature of the Victorian Age (20 credits)
  • Literature from the Inferno to Paradise: The Renaissance (20 credits)
  • Romanticism (20 credits)

In addition, students on all pathways will take an additional 40 credits from a combination of any core or designated modules above, or from our range of option modules.

Example option modules

  • X-Raying Narrative Fiction (20 credits)
  • The Writing of American Freedom and Slavery (20 credits)
  • Under the Red, White and Blue: American Literature, 1920-2020 (20 credits)
  • Genres of Poetry (20 credits)
  • Reading and Writing the Short Story (20 credits)


Year 3 (national level 6):

Students are to choose 4 modules from the list below. An extended piece of supervised research from an advanced module will provide the final 40 credits.

  • ‘The Play’s the Thing’: Shakespeare’s Dramatic Genres (20 credits)
  • Troubles: 100 Years of Irish Poetry 1916-2016 (20 credits)
  • Modern Fiction: Gender, Sexuality and Experimentation (20 credits)
  • Monster, Madness and Murder: Gothic Literature (20 credits)
  • Chaucer’s Genres: The Canterbury Tales (20 credits)
  • The Art of the US Story 1960-2016 (20 credits)
  • Women’s Autobiography (20 credits)
  • Jane Austen: Text, Context, and Adaptation (20 credits)
  • Representations of Totalitarianism and the Holocaust (20 credits)
  • World Englishes in Fiction (20 credits)

English Language pathway

Year 2 (national level 5):

Core modules (40 credits)    

  • Language in Education (20 credits)
  • Contemporary Sociolinguistics (20 credits)

Designated English Language and Literature pathway modules (40 credits)

  • Introduction to Media Language (20 credits)
  • Language and Childhood (20 credits)
  • Language and Power (20 credits)
  • Language, Literature and Computers (20 credits)
  • Writing Works (20 credits)

In addition, students on all pathways will take an additional 40 credits from a combination of any core or designated modules above, or from our range of option modules.

Example option modules

  • X-Raying Narrative Fiction (20 credits)
  • The Writing of American Freedom and Slavery (20 credits)
  • Under the Red, White and Blue: American Literature, 1920-2020 (20 credits)
  • Genres of Poetry (20 credits)
  • Reading and Writing the Short Story (20 credits)


Year 3 (national level 6):

Students must achieve 40 credits from the following modules (choices might vary from year to year):

  • World Englishes in Fiction (20 credits)
  • Broadcast Talk (20 credits)
  • Language and Gender (20 credits)
  • English in the Northeast (20 credits)
  • Reading and Writing Children’s Fictions (20 credits)

Students must achieve an additional 40 credits from two other final year modules, and 40 credits from the ‘English Advanced Study’ module – an opportunity to do an extended piece of research or to produce a creative portfolio.

English: Creative Writing pathway

Year 2 (national level 5):

Core modules (40 credits)

  • Creative Writing and Critical Thinking (20 credits)
  • Creative Writing and Therapy (20 credits)

Designated English: Creative Writing pathway modules (40 credits)

  • Explorations in Prose Fiction (20 credits)
  • Writing for Stage (20 credits)
  • Performance, Poetry and Song (20 credits)
  • How to Write like Tolkien: Reading and Writing Mythic Literature (20 credits)

In addition, students on all pathways will take an additional 40 credits from a combination of any core or designated modules above, or from our range of option modules.

Example option modules

  • X-Raying Narrative Fiction (20 credits)
  • The Writing of American Freedom and Slavery (20 credits)
  • Under the Red, White and Blue: American Literature, 1920-2020 (20 credits)
  • Genres of Poetry (20 credits)
  • Reading and Writing the Short Story (20 credits)


Year 3 (national level 6):

Students must achieve 40 credits from the following modules (choices might vary from year to year):

  • Genre Fiction (20 credits)
  • Creative Writing and Publishing (20 credits)
  • Writing the Novel (20 credits)

Students must achieve an additional 40 credits from two other final year modules, and 40 credits from the ‘English Advanced Study’ module – an opportunity to do an extended piece of research or to produce a creative portfolio.

The Reg Vardy Centre,
Sir Tom Cowie Campus,
Sunderland,
SR6 0DD

54.912052,-1.374524

  • You can access free Wi-Fi throughout the University campus, so you can work from anywhere. If you don't want to carry a laptop around, just use one of the University’s PCs or Apple Macs. We have hundreds of computers for you to use in the Murray Library, St Peter's Library, and the David Goldman Informatics Centre. If you ever have any technical problems, just ask the friendly helpdesk team.

    IT provision
  • We’ve got thousands of books and e-books, with many more titles available through the inter-library loan service. We also subscribe to a comprehensive range of print and electronic journals so you can access the most reliable and up-to-date academic and industry articles.

    Library resources which you might find particularly useful include:

    • The MLA International Bibliography, an online database of scholarly material in modern languages, literature and linguistics
    • JSTOR, an online 'digital library' of academic journal articles and scholarly content across a diverse range of fields
    • Early English Books Online, which provides digital images of virtually every work printed in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and British North America during 1473-1800
    • Eighteenth Century Collections Online, which provides 136,000 full-text publications from 1701-1800
    • Periodicals Archive Online, which provides digitised literary journals
    • Project Muse, which provides over 180 full-text humanities and social sciences journals
    Library Services - English BA

Facilities

You'll be based at The Reg Vardy Centre, situated on the award-winning St Peter's riverside campus. The location benefits from dedicated library services and has superb transport links with the city centre and City Campus.

Entry requirements

Our typical offer is 112 UCAS points from a minimum of two A Levels or equivalent (e.g. 1 x AVCE double award).

We accept a maximum of 6 points from Level 3 Key Skills qualifications.

We also require three passes at GCSE grade C or above, which must include Mathematics and English Language, or a minimum of Level 2 Key Skills in Communication and Application of Number. If you have studied for a GCSE which has a numerical grade then you will need to achieve a grade 4 or above.

If English is not your first language, please see our English language requirements.

Fees and finance

The annual fee for this course is:

  • £9,250 if you are from the UK or EU and studying full-time
  • £5,000 per 120 credits if you are from the UK or EU and studying part-time
  • £10,750 if you are from outside the EU and studying full-time (part-time is not available to international students)

If you are not sure whether you qualify as a UK, EU or international student, find out more in our Help and Advice article.

Take a look at the Your Finances section to find out about the scholarships and bursaries that may be available to you.

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This information was correct at the time of publication.

The Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter's by night

Employment

BA (Hons) English is an extremely well-respected degree. Your highly developed skills in communication, research and analysis will make you a perfect fit for a wide range of organisations, including graduate training schemes.

Many of our graduates progress to careers in teaching, journalism, business and publishing.

Spectral Visions Press

Spectral Visions Press is a publishing house located at the University of Sunderland, which specialises in creative writing inspired by Gothic literature.

In its first month, Spectral Visions Press received close to 100 submissions from around the globe for its creative writing collection 'Spectral Visions: Grim Fairy Tales', and for its Gothic studies-centred academic journal ‘Monstrum’.

As well as offering opportunities to publish your creative writing, Spectral Visions Press can also provide you with valuable experience of the publishing industry. You will gain a work-reference in addition to your academic reference – a huge advantage when applying for popular publishing jobs.

  • It’s utterly enthralling to learn from people who love their subjects.
    Amy McLean, English graduate

    Amy McLean

Meet our academics