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What makes English Literature at Worcester special?

Our English Literature BA is a diverse and stimulating degree in which you will encounter a range of different kinds of writing, from the Early Modern period to the present day. 

We emphasise an ethical approach to the subject, relating the study of literature to significant contemporary themes such as environmentalism, social justice, gender equality and disability inclusion.      



Key features

  • Available as a Single Honours degree or as part of a Joint Honours degree with subjects including Creative Writing, English Language, Media & Cultural Studies, and History
  • Guest lectures from literary figures such as Owen Sheers, Carol Ann Duffy and Patience Agbabi
  • Develop expertise suited to a range of careers, from teaching to marketing. You will also be well prepared for postgraduate study
  • Through our work project module and numerous internship opportunities, you can enhance your employability whilst you study
  • Excellent industry links, including partnerships with Worcester Cathedral and Hay Festival        


English Literature degree at the University of Worcester.

Throughout my studies I always felt supported by academic staff who were encouraging, responsive and passionate about their subjects.

Toni Brookes, Graduate

Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?


UCAS tariff points

Entry requirements

Applicants who are offered a place on the BA (Hons) in English Literature most commonly satisfy one of the following requirements:

  • 112 UCAS tariff points (single and joint honours), including a minimum grade C at A2 English
  • Accredited Access and Foundation Courses
  • Mature Entry Route


Other information

We consider applications on an individual basis, so please contact the Admissions Tutor for English Literature, Dr Sharon Young (, if you are unsure about your qualifications.

If you are an international student who does not have the relevant entry requirements for direct entry onto this course, our pathway courses at University of Worcester International College could be the right option for you and enable you to still graduate with this degree. To find out more visit the Art and Design & Creative Media pathway page.

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Course content

What will you study?

Here is an overview of current modules validated for this course. Regular updates may mean that exact module titles may differ.

Year 1


  • Literary Forms and Genres
  • Exploring the Canon
  • Ways of Reading, Ways of Writing   


  • Places and Spaces 
  • Bodies and Beings
  • Writing Worcester Past and Present

Year 2


  • Exploring the Canon: Theory and Practice
  • Movement and Migration


  • Politics, Sex and Identity in the Early Modern World
  • Shakespeare: Stage, Page and Screen
  • Gothic and Romantic Literature
  • Spaces of Modernity
  • Children's Literature 
  • Work Project         


    Year 3


    • Independent Research Project (Single Honours)     


    • Justice and Revenge: from Tragedy to the Western 
    • Postcolonial Encounters
    • Writing and the Environment
    • War and Conflict
    • Gendering Voices
    • Partnerships and Rivalries
    • Literatures and Cultures: International Explorations
    • Queer Bodies, Queer Texts           

    Year 1 provides a foundation for your degree, consolidating your understanding of literary forms and genres, providing practice in the important skills of critical reading and writing, and introducing you to some key themes.  

    In Year 2 you will deepen your understanding of literary movements and contexts, and develop your critical skills by applying literary theories. You will also have the chance to broaden your experience of literary studies, by taking specialist modules or studying abroad. A Work Project module is also available.

    By Year 3 you will be ready to undertake your individual research project, supported by a specialist tutor, and pursue your own interests in Literature through a range of themed, optional modules.

    Meet the team

    Here are a few members of the department who currently teach on this course:

    • david-arnold-university-worcester

      Dr David Arnold

      David Arnold trained as a Classicist before moving on to doctoral work on twentieth-century American poetry. His research and teaching interests lie in poetry, American literature, ecocriticism and narrative criticism.

      David has published articles on the literary improvisations of William Carlos Williams and a book on American poetry: Poetry and Language Writing: Objective and Surreal (Liverpool University Press, 2007). His recent work focuses on ecophenomenological readings of modernist writing, and Buddhist American Poetry.

    • michael-bradshaw-humanities

      Professor Michael Bradshaw

      Prof. Michael Bradshaw is Head of the Institute of Humanities. He is a specialist in Romanticism, particularly poetry and drama of the later Romantics. He has taught most periods and genres of literature, but tended to concentrate on pre-1900 poetry and drama.

      His published critical work includes authors such as:  Thomas Lovell Beddoes, John Clare, George Darley, Thomas Hood, John Keats, Letitia Elizabeth Landon, Walter Savage Landor, Mary Shelley, and Percy Shelley, and themes such as Romantic drama, Romantic generations’, Romantic fragment poems, and the periodical press in the 1820s. He recently edited the first ever collection of essays on Romanticism and disability.

    • Dr Nicoleta Cinpoes Senior Lecturer in English

      Dr Nicoleta Cinpoes

      Nicoleta is the author of Shakespeare’s Hamlet in Romania 1778-2008: A Study in Translation, Performance and Cultural Appropriation (Mellen, 2010) and of the open-access website The Jacobethans. Her work has appeared in Theatrical Blends, Shakespeare Bulletin, Studia Dramatica and Shakespeare in Europe: History and Memory.

      In the theatre, she has worked in several capacities – from that of dramaturge to assistant director and translator. 

    • tricia-connell-institute-of-humanities

      Dr Tricia Connell

      Tricia Connell’s academic background is in English literature and language, and education. Her doctoral research was on the poetry of Carol Ann Duffy. Her current research interests are in twentieth-century and contemporary poetry, gender and feminism and in intersections between critical and creative writing.

      In recent years, Tricia has been responsible for poetry perfomances and readings at Worcester by poets Patience Agbabi, Malika Booker, U.A Fanthorpe, Gillian Hanscombe and Suniti Namjoshi, among many others. She is a committed teacher intent on bringing innovative approaches to her work with students; she is currently researching students’ use of learning journals, and undergraduate teaching and the use of critical reflection in student self-assessment.

    • jean-webb-humanities-university-worcester

      Prof Jean Webb

      Jean is Director of the International Forum for Research in Children’s Literature which provides a focus for literary, cultural and socio-historical scholarly enquiry into writing for children, internationally. She teaches a broad range of undergraduate modules on nineteenth and twentieth century literature, and is responsible for specialist modules in children’s literature.

    • Dr Lucy Arnold

      Dr Lucy Arnold is a specialist in Contemporary literature, with particular research interests in contemporary gothic, narratives of haunting, contemporary women’s writing and psychoanalytic criticism. Her teaching experience spans a wide range of periods and genres but focusses on twentieth and twenty-first century literature. Her published work to date has concerned the writing of Booker Prize winning novelist Hilary Mantel, with her monograph, Hilary Mantel: Haunted Decades forthcoming with Bloomsbury in 2019.

    • Dr Sharon Young

      Dr Sharon Young’s teaching interests include, Renaissance, Restoration and eighteenth-century literature, women’s poetry, and literary theory. Her research focuses mainly on women’s poetry of the early modern period, Renaissance revenge tragedy and women’s manuscript culture. She has published on female poets and the critical debates of the early eighteenth century and Mary Leapor.

    I was impressed by the variety of genres and periods that I studied throughout the three years.

    Claire Shipman

    Teaching and Assessment

    How will you be taught?

    Teaching and Learning

    The University places emphasis on enabling students to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement.  A mixture of independent study, teaching and academic support through the personal academic tutoring system enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will enable you to flourish and be successful.


    You are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars, small and large group discussions, online forums and workshops

    In addition, meetings with personal academic tutors are scheduled on at least 4 occasions in the first year and three occasions in each of the other years of a course.

    You have an opportunity to undertake a semester long placement in the third year of the course, supervised for agreed projects by a University tutor.

    You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team includes senior academics and professional practitioners.

    All lecturers in the subject have obtained their PhDs in a relevant area of expertise or are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy. Collectively, their subject knowledge and research ranges widely, with particular emphasis on the following:

    • Shakespeare in Performance
    • Romantic Poetry and Drama
    • English and American Contemporary Poetry
    • Contemporary Gothic Writing
    • Psychoanalytic Criticism
    • Children’s Literature
    • Environmental Writing
    • Critical Disability Studies     

    Contact time

    In a typical week you will have around 12 contact hours of teaching. The precise contact hours will depend on the optional modules selected and in the final year you will normally have slightly less contact time in order to do more independent study.

    Typically class contact time will be structured around:

    • 4 hours of (large and small group) lectures
    • 8 hours of seminars


    Each module has one or more formal or ‘summative’ assessments which are graded and count towards the overall module grade. Some modules also provide opportunities to test understanding and learning informally through the completion of practice or ‘formative’ assignments.

    Assessment methods include a range of coursework assessments such as essays, exercises in critical reading, and portfolios. Some assessments provide opportunities to write creative pieces of work.

    The precise assessment requirements for an individual student in an academic year will vary according to the mandatory and optional modules taken, but a typical formal summative assessment pattern for each year of the course is:

    Year 1
    8 essays
    2 portfolios
    5 critical readings  
    1 creative response

    Year 2  
    8 essays
    4 portfolios 
    1 reflective piece 
    1 critical anthology  
    4 critical readings

    Year 3
    1 extended research project 
    6 essays
    4 critical readings
    2 portfolios


    You will receive feedback on practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to support learning and you are encouraged to discuss it with personal academic tutors and module tutors as appropriate.

    We aim to provide you with feedback on formal course work assessments within 20 working days of hand-in.

    • Case study

      Toni Brookes, Graduate

      “Studying English at Worcester undoubtedly provided me with three of the most academically stimulating years I’ve had so far. I was given the opportunity to study literature from the 16th century through to the contemporary, with the chance to focus on specific research interests through the final year dissertation project. We covered a diverse range of periods and genres, with assessment including traditional academic essays, creative portfolios, reflective journals and group presentations. Throughout my studies I always felt supported, both personally and professionally, by academic staff who were encouraging, responsive and passionate about their subjects.

      "Since graduating from the University of Worcester I have held professional roles in copywriting, marketing more generally, and currently, higher education. Having enjoyed my final year dissertation so much, I also decided to pursue postgraduate study and recently graduated with a Master’s degree in Contemporary Literature and Culture, obtaining a distinction classification. There is no doubt that the skills in critical thinking and analysis I developed throughout my degree were fundamental to successfully completing postgraduate work, and I often find myself thinking about the wonderfully transformative environment I was able to study in as an undergraduate.”


    Where could it take you?

    After our English Literature degree, many of our graduates take a fourth year postgraduate Certificate in Education before entering the teaching profession. Other students will take a certificate in TEFL and become teachers of English as a second language at home or abroad.

    Throughout the course, there is a focus on developing employability for careers in English Literature. This includes work experience opportunities, a credited work project module, and a career and professional development module. Students also have the opportunity to study abroad for a semester.

    Many students progress to careers requiring good communication skills such as Public Relations, or develop research careers with media or publishing companies. Those graduates who achieve particularly good results in their first degree may choose to progress to a Masters course. This then often leads to a career as a researcher or further study to PhD.

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    How much will it cost?

    Full-time tuition fees

    UK and EU students

    The standard tuition fee for full-time UK and EU students registering in the academic year 2019/20 will be £9,250 per year.

    For more details, please visit our course fees page.

    International students

    The standard tuition fee for full-time international (non-EU) students registering in the academic year 2019/20 will be £12,400 per year.

    For more details, please visit our course fees page.

    Part-time tuition fees

    UK and EU students

    The standard tuition fees for part-time UK and EU students registering on this course in the academic year 2019/20 will be £1,156 per 15-credit module, £1,542 per 20 credit module and £2,313 per 30-credit module.

    For more details, please visit our course fees page.

    Additional costs

    Every course has day-to-day costs for basic books, stationery, printing and photocopying.  The amounts vary between courses.

    We recommend budgeting an estimated £320 per year for course related books.


    Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience, and our welcoming student communities are great places to live and study.

    We have over 1,000 rooms across our halls of residence. With rooms to suit every budget and need, from our 'Traditional Hall' at £102 per week to 'En-suite Extra' at £165 per week (2019/20 prices).

    For full details visit our accommodation page


    How do you apply?

    Applying through UCAS

    Single Honours:
    English Literature BA (Hons) - Q300


    Joint Honours:
    See our English Literature degrees page for Joint Honours options.


    UCAS is the central organisation through which applications are processed for entry onto full-time undergraduate courses in Higher Education in the UK.


    Read our How to apply pages for more information on applying and to find out what happens to your application.



    Apply now via UCAS

    Get in touch

    If you have any questions, please get in touch. We're here to help you every step of the way.

    Admissions office

    01905 855111

    Admissions tutor

    Dr Sharon Young
    01905 542428

    Course Administrator

    Joanne Henderson
    01905 542417