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Q302 - English Language

English Language

BA Honours

  • UCAS code: Q302
  • Full time
  • 3 years
  • Next start date: September 2020

Indulge your passion for English by exploring the nature of human language in an inspiring city with a vibrant literary scene.

Fees (per year)

  • UK/EU: £9250
  • International: £18000

Entry requirements

  • A Level: AAB-ABB
  • IB: 34-35 points

UCAS Institution name and code:

  • NEWC / N21
Work placement opportunity Study abroad opportunity

Course overview

This three-year English Language BA Honours degree encourages you to explore language. You'll investigate how English has developed over time and how it's used to mark social, regional and stylistic distinctions. 

You will learn from subject experts, world-leading researchers in literary and linguistic studies and internationally acclaimed writers throughout your degree. 

You'll be able to immerse yourself in local culture at venues such as Seven Stories, The Wordsworth Trust and the Literary and Philosophical Society, while your degree study examines: 

  • how English is acquired and develops in the mind
  • the grammatical structure of English and general phonetics/phonology
  • social and historical context of variation in English
  • methodologies for studying the human language faculty

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Quality and ranking

  • 7th in the UK – The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 (Linguistics category)
  • 10th in the UK – The Times/Sunday Times Good University Guide 2020 (English Studies category)
  • top 20 in the UK – The Complete University Guide 2020 (English category)
  • ranked 5th in the UK with a 94% overall student satisfaction score – National Student Survey 2019 (Linguistics category)
  • 92% overall student satisfaction score – National Student Survey 2019 (English Studies category)
  • top 150 – English Language & Literature category – QS World University Rankings by Subject 2019
  • 3rd in the UK for research – Research Excellence Framework 2014 (English Language and Literature category)
  • top 200 – Arts and Humanities category – Times Higher Education World University Rankings by Subject 2018

Modules and learning

Modules

The information below is intended to provide an example of what you will study.

Most degrees are divided into stages. Each stage lasts for one academic year, and you'll complete modules totalling 120 credits by the end of each stage. 

Our teaching is informed by research, and course content changes periodically to reflect developments in the discipline, the requirements of external bodies and partners, student feedback, or insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module.

Full details of the modules on offer will be published through the Programme Regulations and Specifications ahead of each academic year. This usually happens in May.

To find out more please see our terms and conditions.

You'll build a foundation of knowledge for analysing and describing the English language and focus on word and sentence structure.

You'll also explore general phonetics/phonology, incorporating an understanding of differences in English across time and regional space. You explore the nature of language and ways of collecting, evaluating and displaying data about them.

Modules

Compulsory Modules Credits
The Nature of Language 20
Introduction to the Structure of Language 1: Syntax and Phonology 20
Introduction to the Structure of Language 2: Morphology and Meaning 20
Language Variation and Change: Dealing with Data 20
Optional Modules Credits
Level B (HE Intermediate) French 20
Level B (HE Intermediate) German 20
Introduction to Linguistics 20
Level B (HE Intermediate) Spanish 20

You will work to develop your own interests, choosing from topics linked to the research specialisms of your lecturers. These may include: child language acquisition; discourse analysis; language origins and evolution; the acquisition of English as a first or second language; language and ethnicity; advanced phonology or grammar; and the history of English grammar.

There are extended study and dissertation modules that give you the chance to investigate in greater depth a topic that you are passionate about.

Modules

Optional Modules Credits
Career Development for final year students 20
Advanced Career Development module 20
Phonological Theory 20
Introduction to Child and Adult Language Acquisition 20
Syntactic Theory 20
Sociolinguistics and the Sociology of Language 20
Early English: Texts, Patterns and Varieties 20
Monsters, Misery & Miracles: Heroic Life in Old English Poetry 20
Speakers as Wordsmiths: the creation of new words in present-day English 20
Multilingualism 20
Immigrant Second Language & Literacy Acquisition 20
The Structure of a Language 20
English Grammar through Time 20
Advanced Sociolinguistics 20
Accents of English 20
Extended Study 1: Linguistics and English Language 20
Extended Study 2: Linguistics and English Language 20
Dissertation: Linguistics and English Language 40
Old English: Texts and Translations 20
The History of Linguistic Ideas 20
Language development:Cross-disciplinary approaches 20
Language and ethnicity in twenty-first century Britain 20
Special Topic in Linguistic Theory 20

Teaching and assessment

Teaching methods

You can normally expect to spend around 10 hours per week attending lectures, seminars, workshops and film screenings. You also spend around 25 hours per week on class preparation, reading, writing, and other kinds of independent research recommended by your tutor.

Assessment methods

You'll be assessed through a combination of:

  • Assessments

  • Assignments – written or fieldwork

  • Coursework

  • Dissertation or research project

  • Essays

  • Examinations – practical or online

  • Group work

  • Presentations

Skills and experience

Practical skills

Studying English at Newcastle means you will benefit from regular field trips organised by the School. These include visits to:

  • Lindisfarne
  • The Wordsworth Trust (Dove Cottage)
  • theatres
  • Seven Stories (the National Centre for Children's Book)
  • Beamish Museum
  • the Great North Museum

Research skills

In the final year of your degree, you'll undertake a dissertation which allows you to carry out an extensive investigation into a topic you're interested in.

Chat to a student

After travelling for two years unsure if university was the right step for me, I chose Newcastle after coming to an open day and instantly feeling welcomed and at home on campus. The course was perfect for me and I couldn’t wait to get started!

Katy, English Language student

Opportunities

Study abroad

You have the opportunity to study abroad for one semester in your second year. We have links with:

  • Leiden in the Netherlands
  • Peter Pazmany in Budapest, Hungary
  • Gdansk in Poland
  • Ghent in Belgium

We also have study abroad links with three universities in Canada – Dalhousie, McGill and New Brunswick – available through our Non-EU Study Abroad exchange programme.

Find out more about Study Abroad

Work placement

In the third year of your degree you can apply to undertake a work placement in a cultural industry. This is an opportunity for you to relate the knowledge and skills you have learned throughout your degree and apply them to real-world scenarios.

Your placement will be an integrated part of your degree which will last for one day per week for about 10 weeks. It will be assessed through the submission of a Project Work Diary and a Final Report which together form the Placement Portfolio.

In addition you'll also have the opportunity to spend 9 to 12 months working in any organisation in the world, and receive University support from our dedicated team to secure your dream placement. Work placements take place between stages 2 and 3.

You'll gain first-hand experience of working in the sector, putting your learning into practice and developing your professional expertise.

If you choose to take a work placement, it will extend your degree by a year. Placements are subject to availability.

Find out more about work placements

Facilities and environment

Facilities

You'll be based in the School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics, which is at the heart of our city-centre campus, in the Percy Building. You'll join a lively community of students, academics, authors and professionals.

You'll have access to a digital media lab – for students with documentary and film-making modules – a PC cluster, a student-led cafe, and plenty of spaces to work and socialise, all based in the School.

You will have exceptional library provision from our award-winning Library Service, which houses over one million books and a huge range of electronic resources.

Newcastle University Students' Union is home to the award-winning student newspaper, The Courier, giving you the opportunity to develop your creative writing and journalism skills. 

Our teaching is closely linked to the programme of the Newcastle Centre for the Literary Arts (NCLA), giving you regular contact with leading creative artists. You'll also have access to the diverse programme of events organised by NCLA throughout the year, including spoken-word events and creative writing courses. 

Support

You'll have the support of an academic member of staff as a personal tutor throughout your degree to help with academic and personal issues.

Peer mentors will help you in your first year. They are fellow students who can help you settle in and answer any questions you have when starting university.

Visiting speakers

The School hosts an annual visiting speakers' programme and poetry readings and film screenings also take place during the year, organised by students or staff.

Your future

96% of English Language graduates were in work or further study within six months of graduating*.

*Destinations of (undergraduate, UK and EU) Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2016/17 

English students acquire a range of valuable skills, which they can transfer to many different employment situations. Your literary and linguistic training can be used in journalism, librarianship, teaching and the highly competitive fields of writing, acting and directing.

You will gain other skills such as:

  • analysis and summarising
  • communication
  • time-keeping
  • arguing and debating
  • independent and collaborative work
  • critical thinking

This is excellent preparation for a wide number of professions and as such, our graduates have gone into a variety of career areas including editorial, marketing, PR and other forms of media. Others have gone to work in law, politics, HR, teaching and supporting specialist learning.

Make a difference

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Careers support

Our award-winning Careers Service is one of the largest and best in the country, and we have strong links with employers. We provide an extensive range of opportunities to all students through our ncl+ inititiative.

Visit our Careers Service website

Entry requirements

All candidates are considered on an individual basis and we accept a broad range of qualifications. The entrance requirements below apply to 2020 entry.

A Level

AAB-ABB

International Baccalaureate

34-35 points

Other UK qualifications (and PARTNERS)

Qualifications from outside the UK

English Language requirements

PARTNERS

The PARTNERS Programme is Newcastle University’s supported entry route for students from schools and colleges in England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. 

Visit the PARTNERS website

Entrance courses (INTO)

International Pathway Courses are specialist programmes designed for international students who want to study in the UK. We provide a range of study options for international students in partnership with INTO. 

Find out more about International Pathway Courses

Admissions policy

This policy applies to all undergraduate and postgraduate admissions at Newcastle University, including Newcastle University London. It is intended to provide information about our admissions policies and procedures to applicants and potential applicants, to their advisors and family members, and to staff of the University.

Tuition fees and scholarships

Tuition fees for 2020 entry (per year)

UK Students

£9250

International Students

£18000

The maximum fee that we are permitted to charge for UK students is set by the UK government.

As a general principle, you should expect the tuition fee to increase in each subsequent academic year of your course, subject to government regulations on fee increases and in line with inflation.

Read more about fees and funding

You will be charged tuition fees for each year of your degree programme (unless you are on a shorter exchange programme).

The tuition fee amount you will pay may increase slightly year on year as a result of inflation.

Read more about fees and funding

Year abroad and additional costs

For programmes where you can spend a year on a work placement or studying abroad, you will receive a significant fee reduction for that year. 

Some of our degrees involve additional costs which are not covered by your tuition fees.

Find out more about:

Scholarships

Find out more about:

Open days and events

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

To apply for undergraduate study at Newcastle University, you must use the online application system managed by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). All UK schools and colleges, and a small number of EU and international establishments, are registered with UCAS. You will need:

  • the UCAS name and institution codes for Newcastle University (NEWC/N21)
  • the UCAS code for the course you want to apply for
  • the UCAS 'buzzword' for your school or college

If you are applying independently, or are applying from a school or college which is not registered to manage applications, you will still use the Apply system. You will not need a buzzword.

Apply through UCAS

Apply through an agent

International students often apply to us through an agent. Have a look at our recommended agents and get in touch with them.

Visit our International pages

Get in touch

By Phone

Contact us on +44 (0) 191 208 3333. We're open 9.00 to 17.00 every week day except Wednesday (10.00 to 17.00).

Online

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