BA (Hons) English Literature


Course code Q300

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Course code Q300

Key course details

Location Ambleside
Duration Full-time, 3 Years
Start date September 2020
Entry Requirements Programme Specification

At the University of Cumbria’s beautiful Ambleside campus you will study English Literature surrounded by the iconic scenery which inspired some of Britain’s greatest writers – including Wordsworth, Ransome, Potter and Ruskin.

You’ll explore the development of English Literature from the Renaissance to the present in global and regional contexts, in a landscape which has been a source of inspiration to generations of poets and writers, and which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

This is not your average English Literature course – it’s much more. You will consider how literature helps us reflect on key contemporary concerns, including the current environmental crisis.

You’ll write essays and a dissertation, just as you would on any other English Literature degree, but in addition you’ll also develop the skills required for the contemporary workplace by scripting and recording a mock radio programme, designing a webpage, and even submitting a ‘job application’ assessed by academic and careers staff.

Why choose University of Cumbria

  • Unique opportunity to study a rich body of literary and non-literary texts within the geographical landscape which inspired them
  • Excellent working relationships with literary and cultural organisations such as Brantwood and the Wordsworth Trust
  • Your studies are enriched by field trips to places which inspired some of Britain's greatest writers
  • Opportunities to design and implement real world projects to boost your CV
  • Taught by tutors who all research and publish in their specialist areas
  • Small class sizes enable us to guide and work closely with you throughout your studies
  • Opportunities to get involved with local literary festivals and Cumbria’s rich cultural scene
  • Boost your job prospects by developing contemporary communication skills

You’ll study at the University of Cumbria's Ambleside campus in the heart of the Lake District National Park. Here you will explore critical ideas about the relationship between the creative imagination and place, and about literature and the environment. You’ll have the opportunity to visit some of the specific locations which have inspired and which continue to inspire writers, as well as to engage with cultural heritage organisations and work with unique literary resources.

On our course, your passion for literature will be embraced and empowered while you develop strong and relevant employment skills that will bolster your CV and help you stand out from the crowd to future employers. Follow @CumbriaEnglish on Twitter to find out more about what we offer.

Postgraduate Loyalty Award

Progress to postgraduate for free

We’ve waived the fees for many postgraduate courses* for students like you planning to start an undergraduate degree with us to help you extend your education.

Graduate destinations

A degree in English Literature suits a range of careers demanding high-level analytical, interpretative, written and oral communication skills. Recent graduates have gone into teaching, lecturing, the cultural heritage sector, and work with major national organisations and companies. 

Many English Literature graduates use their degree as the basis for further study and training in order to pursue high level ‘graduate’ work in a wide variety of fields. For the latest on what English graduates do, see the publication ‘What do graduates do?'.

How my Cumbria English degree helped land me my dream job

English Graduate Chandni Asher's story

After leaving, I went straight onto a Graduate Scheme with Network Rail entitled MSc Project and Programme Management. It is specially designed by Network Rail to prepare their candidates for entering the business after a year long Masters Course in a Project Management capacity. The Scheme is open to any graduate in any discipline from any UK university – they don’t usually take English graduates!

When looking at the job specification, I first identified the core skills from my time at university: time management, research, analysis and application. But it wasn’t just the skills I gained from the degree that helped me. The opportunities you have being a part of the department and the university are invaluable. Whilst with UoC, I took on extra responsibilities to gain experience. Being a cohort student rep, for example, can present you with unusual communication tasks that you may have never come across before since your role is to act as a go-between/buffer for students and tutors and, sometimes, university staff.

What’s important about this English degree is that it doesn’t just develop essential skills in for your work life. The tutors make the effort to push you (gently) out of your comfort zone to show you exactly how much you can do. That is why when doing modules such Literature in Media and English in the World is so important: it will challenge you and help you understand your own personal skill set. It was through the English in the World module that I found myself being good at project management!

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Postgraduate Open Day

Sat 2 Nov 2019

Experience living and learning on a super-friendly campus with talented creatives - An awesome place to find your calling and kick-start your creative career. Tackle a design brief, have a go at a life drawing or enjoy a live performance.

Undergraduate Open Day

Sat 2 Nov 2019

Experience living and learning on a super-friendly campus with talented creatives - An awesome place to find your calling and kick-start your creative career. Tackle a design brief, have a go at a life drawing or enjoy a live performance.