This degree allows you to explore the English language, its literary heritage and future in a diverse and research-intensive learning environment.
Core modules allow you to explore poetry, prose and drama in different historical periods, while thinking about language in context and the role that it plays in society. On top of this, you'll select topics that interest you from an impressive variety of optional modules, covering language and literary topics in English from the Anglo-Saxon period to today.
Our School of English is large and diverse, home to expert tutors with a wide range of research interests. As a result, we offer flexible degrees that you can shape to suit your interests. You could study medieval Scandinavian literature, folklore and mythology, American fiction, creative writing, world theatre or post-apartheid narratives to name a few. You'll gain an understanding of English and literature in English while developing valuable transferable skills.
Leeds has fantastic facilities for literature students. The world-class Brotherton Library has an array of archive, manuscript and early printed material in its Special Collections, alongside other extensive library resources. All of this will be valuable for your independent research, and the University Library offers training programmes to help you make the most of our resources.
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 university level. You'll choose from core modules exploring poetry, prose and drama as well as literary theory and criticism, and learn to think about English in its historical and social context.
From this foundation, you'll build your knowledge and skills in the following year. You'll choose from core modules covering specific literary periods to give you a sense of how literature in English has evolved over time, while core modules will explore the function of language and the role it plays in society. You'll also choose from a range of optional modules, from Arthurian legend to stylistics and African literature.
You'll bring this balanced approach into the final year, when you'll choose from more period-based core modules and then specialise through your optional modules. You'll have an even bigger range to choose from such as seventeenth-century women's writing, the language of the media or Victorian fiction. You'll also apply the knowledge and skills you've acquired to an independently researched dissertation, which gives you the opportunity to research a topic of your choice in depth.
These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.
In Years 2 and 3, you'll select three core modules focusing on different literary periods. You can also choose additional core modules to complete your programme or take specialist optional modules. Follow the links to the Programme Catalogue for more example optional modules.
Entry requirements, fees and applying
A-level: AAA-AAB including A in English (Literature, Language, or Language and Literature) and not including General Studies or Critical Thinking.
A degree in English equips you with a range of transferable skills in addition to your subject knowledge.
You'll be an excellent communicator who can present and defend your views clearly, whether verbally or in writing, and be confident working independently or in a group. You'll have strong organisational and time management skills from managing your own workload. Crucially, you'll be able to conduct thorough research, interpret and analyse complex information and then think critically about what you find to draw your own conclusions.
All of these qualities are very attractive to employers, and our graduates have gone on to find success in diverse careers within and beyond the arts. They include the creative industries, advertising and marketing, education, journalism, law, publishing, radio and television as well as administration, business and finance, charity work, the civil service, management, management consultancy and social welfare. Many have also progressed to postgraduate study.
Read more about Employability and careers in the School of English
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That's 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. The University has partnerships with more than 400 universities 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.