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BA World Literatures

Year of entry: 2020

Overview

Degree awarded
Bachelor of Arts with Honours
Duration
3 years
Typical A-level offer

AAA-AAB to include A in English Literature, or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies.

See Entry Requirements tab for full information.

Typical contextual A-level offer (what is this?)
AAB to include Grade A in English Literature, or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies.
Typical International Baccalaureate offer

36 points overall. 6,6,6 in Higher Level subjects

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply through UCAS .

Course overview

  • Engage with an immense range of literatures - from ancient to contemporary, and from Asia, the Americas, Africa and the Middle East, as well as Europe.
  • Develop your research, time management, written and oral communication skills on a course that prepares you for a wide range of careers.
  • Enjoy literary events through our Literature Live series and the Manchester Literature Festival, all in a UNESCO City of Literature.
  • Learn at a top 10 UK university for English language and literature (QS World University Rankings 2019).

Open days

The University holds open days regularly (usually in June, September and October) where you have the opportunity to tour the campus and find out more about the facilities and courses we offer.

On this day, you will find out more about the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures and our resources, and meet members of academic and admissions staff who will be able to answer any questions you have.

Find out more about open days on the School website .

Fees

Tuition fees for home/EU students commencing their studies in September 2020 will be £9,250 per annum. Tuition fees for international students will be £19,000 per annum. For general information please see the undergraduate finance pages.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Contact details

School/Faculty
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Telephone
+44 (0)161 306 1252
Email
Website
https://www.alc.manchester.ac.uk/english/
School/Faculty overview

See: About us

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Compare this course

Entry requirements

A-level

AAA-AAB to include A in English Literature, or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies.

We recognise that applicants often achieve higher than their predicted grades, so we will consider applicants who are predicted to achieve one grade below our standard offer of AAA. The standard offer will be made in all cases, unless the applicant is studying for an Extended Project Qualification (EPQ). These applicants will be made an offer one grade below the standard offer with the condition they must achieve a Grade A in the EPQ.  

Applicants who are eligible for a contextual offer will be made an offer one grade below the standard offer applicants. Applicants who are also studying the EPQ and achieve a Grade A will receive an offer two grades below the standard entry requirements.

If your predicted grades are at the lower end of our advertised range and you are not studying the EPQ please contact the School to discuss your application as the School considers all applications holistically.

AS-level

AS level results are not considered as part of the standard admissions process at The University of Manchester.

Unit grade information

The University of Manchester welcomes the provision of unit information where available.  Like all other information provided by applicants this may be taken into consideration when assessing your application.  Unit grades will not normally form part of an offer conditions.

GCSE

Applicants must demonstrate a broad general education including acceptable levels of Literacy and Numeracy, equivalent to at least Grade C or 4 in GCSE/iGCSE English Language and Mathematics. GCSE/iGCSE English Literature will not be accepted in lieu of GCSE/iGCSE English Language.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

International Baccalaureate

36 points overall. 6,6,6 in Higher Level subjects

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see Accepted entry qualifications from your country

Scottish requirements

Before reading this, please consult the A-level requirements for this programme and note any subject requirements.

For applicants who have studied under the new Scottish qualification system, the following will apply.

For programmes which have no pre-requisite subject , we require (in all cases, at least 3 Hrs should be achieved by the end of S5):

  • A*AA at A-level :  Hrs of AAAAAB or AAAB plus Adv Hr Gr A
  • AAA at A-level   :  Hrs of AAAABB or AABB plus Adv Hr Gr A
  • AAB at A-level   :  Hrs of AAABBB or ABBB plus Adv Hr Gr A
  • ABB at A-level   :  Hrs of AAABBB or ABBB plus Adv Hr at min. Gr B

Where pre-requisite subjects are cited in our A-level requirements , we require (in all cases, at least 3 Hrs should be achieved by the end of S5 AND Grade A should be achieved at Adv Hr in the required subject):

  • A*AA at A-level : Hrs of AAA plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs AA, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs AA
  • AAA at A-level   : Hrs of AAB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs AA, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs AA
  • AAB at A-level   : Hrs of ABB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs AB, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs AB
  • ABB at A-level   : Hrs of BBB plus either two Adv Hrs at Grs AB, or one Adv Hr and two Hrs at Grs AB

For applicants who have studied under the old Scottish qualification system , Highers are welcomed but will not be accepted alone.  The minimum requirement is 3 Adv Highers, the grades of which will be the same as our stated A-level grades for the course in question.  Any subjects (or other qualifications) required for A-level will also be required for the Adv Highers, at the equivalent grade.

All applicants must have achieved National 5 English at Grade B.

Welsh Baccalaureate

The University welcomes and recognises the value of the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma/Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and usually requires two A Levels or equivalent to be included within this.

The minimum grade required will normally be the same as the lowest grade listed in the A Level entry requirements.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

European Baccalaureate

The University of Manchester welcomes applicants with the European Baccalaureate. Acceptable on its own or in combination with other qualifications, applications from students studying for this qualification are welcome and all applicants will be considered on an individual basis.

We normally require 85% with a mark of at least 8.0 in English Lit (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies).

AQA Baccalaureate

The University recognises the benefits of the AQA Baccalaureate and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills.

In making offers, the University will focus on the three A Levels taken within the AQA Baccalaureate. Students need to check the standard A Level requirements for their chosen course.

The units of broader study, enrichment activities and the Extended Project are considered to be valuable elements of the AQA Baccalaureate and we would therefore strongly encourage students to draw upon these experiences within their personal statement.

Pearson BTEC qualifications

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma: we require Distinction / Distinction / Distinction, plus one A-level at grade A in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies).

BTEC Level 3 National Diploma: we require Distinction / Distinction, plus one A-level at Grade A in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies).

BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma: we require Distinction plus an A-level at min. Grade A in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies), plus an EPQ or AS at Grade B.     

BTEC National Extended Certificate: we require a Distinction, plus two A-levels at Grades AA; one of these A-levels must be in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies).

OCR Cambridge Technical qualifications

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Diploma (CTEC): We do not consider the Technical Extended Diploma for entry to this course, as pre-requisite subjects are required.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Diploma (CTEC): Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Diploma with grades DD plus an A Level at grade A in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies).

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Foundation Diploma (CTEC): Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Foundation Diploma with grades D*D plus an A-level at min. Grade A in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies), plus an EPQ or AS at Grade B.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC): Entry requirements are based on achievement of EITHER the full Technical Extended Certificate with grade D plus two A Levels at grades AA, OR full Tech Ext Cert Grade D* plus two A-levels at Grades AB.  In both cases, A-level Grade A is required in English Literature (or other subject with an emphasis on literary studies).

Access to HE Diploma

We require a QAA-recognised Access to HE Diploma (a minimum of 60 credits overall with at least 45 at Level 3), with merit or distinction in a subject area relevant to the chosen course.

The specific course requirements are either GCSEs in both English and Mathematics (at Grade B/6 or higher), or achievement at Level 2 (GCSE-equivalent) by, for example, having six credits each in English and Maths. We also consider other factors such as additional educational achievements, life experience and skills on an individual basis.

We also require a minimum of 45 credits with a Distinction grade, all in a Humanities-related subject. 15 of these credits should be in the pre-requisite subject required for A-levels.

Cambridge Pre-U

We consider applicants offering Pre-U Principal Subjects, or a mix of Pre-U and A Level subjects, provided a minimum of three distinct subjects overall is taken.

Candidates taking Pre-U principal subjects in conjunction with A levels are expected to achieve a combination of D3, D3, D3 in the Pre-U and AAA at A level in three distinct subjects.

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

The University recognises the benefits of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. We strongly encourage you to provide information about the EPQ in your personal statement (and at interview, if  relevant).  We may also choose to take your performance in the EPQ into account, should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.

For this programme, you will be made the standard offer plus an alternative one, if you are studying for an EPQ.  The alternative offer will be one grade below the standard offer but you will also be asked to achieve a Grade A in your EPQ.

Core Maths

The University welcomes and recognises the value of Level 3 core mathematics qualifications (e.g. AQA Certificate in Mathematical Studies). 

Core Mathematics is not a compulsory element of post-16 study and as a result we will not normally include it in the conditions of any offer made to the student. However, if a student chooses to undertake a core mathematics qualification this may be taken into account when we consider their application, particularly for certain non-science courses with a distinct mathematical or statistical element.

We advise students to contact the academic School, who will clarify whether their specific portfolio of qualifications is acceptable for entry on to their chosen course.

Home-schooled applicants

If you are a student who has followed a non-standard educational route, e.g. you have been educated at home; your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course for which you are applying. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the specified academic entry requirements of the course. We will also require a reference from somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. If you are a home schooled student and would like further information or advice please contact the academic School for your chosen course who will be able to help you. 

Non-standard educational routes

Mature students are some of our most well-equipped learners, bringing skills and attributes gained from work, family and other life experiences.  Students come from a whole array of backgrounds, study every kind of course, undertake full-time and part-time learning and are motivated by career intentions as well as personal interest.  There is no such thing as a typical mature student at Manchester.  The application process is the same as for other prospective undergraduates.  If you require further clarification about the acceptability of the qualifications you hold please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.  Further information for mature students can be found here ( http://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/mature-students/ )

English language

All applicants to the University (from the UK and Overseas) are required to show evidence of English Language proficiency.  The minimum English Language requirement for this course is either:

  • GCSE English Language grade C  /  4, or;
  • IELTS 7.0, or;
  • An acceptable equivalent qualification.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of  our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications  or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires that every student from outside the UK and the EU must show evidence of a minimum level of English Language in order to be granted a UK visa (Tier 4 visa) to study at undergraduate or postgraduate level. This level is often referred to as the 'B2 level'.

Additionally, our individual Schools may ask for specific English Language proficiency levels that are necessary for their academic programmes. In most cases these requirements are likely to be higher than the B2 level. Further information about our English Language policy, including a list of some of the English Language qualifications we accept, can be found  here .

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Apply through UCAS .

How your application is considered

We view all applications to check predicted/achieved grades and any other circumstances that need to be taken into account. Decisions will be based not only on grades but also on your personal statement and reference.

We like to see evidence of transferable skills, for example:

  • time management
  • team work
  • independent work
  • critical and analytical abilities.

Interview requirements

We only interview students studying alternative qualifications to the A-level syllabus, for example, students studying Access courses and students who may have been out of education for some time.

Returning to education

We welcome applications from mature candidates. Where appropriate, mature applicants are called for interview and/or invited to submit written work.  Your qualifications to date will be considered, along with the length of time since you were last studying for a qualification - applicants need to have been in education within the last five years.  If it is any longer than five years since you were last in education we may require you to take an Access Qualification and invite you along for interview.

If you are on an Access course, you will be considered individually and we will ask to see some of your recent written work.

If you have other qualifications (eg Vocational A-levels, Open University) you will be considered on an individual basis and you are recommended to contact our Admissions Administrator.

Overseas (non-UK) applicants

Overseas applications are welcomed and we will assess whether your qualification is of an equivalent standard for entry to our degree programme.  Applicants who are made an offer may be invited to a visit day, but this is not mandatory. We are also happy to arrange an optional Skype interview for overseas applicants as an alternative to the visit day.

Deferrals

All deferred applications are assessed on the same basis as applications for the current year of entry.

We do ask applicants to let us know as early as possible if they are intending to defer.  This helps us to adjust the number of offers we make, in order to achieve the required number of students in a given year.

Policy for applicants who resit their qualifications

The University will consider applicants who have re-sat their final examinations but we may require further information in order to make an informed academic judgment on your application.

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry.  In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved.  We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course. If you are applying for a place for the same year of entry through UCAS Extra, you should provide additional evidence of your suitability for the course. If you are applying through clearing you are required to meet the clearing requirements. In both UCAS Extra and clearing the places will be subject to availability.

Transfers

We will consider transfers from other degree programmes on a case-by-case basis, but applicants must have met the programme entry requirements outlined above.

Course details

Course description

Our BA World Literatures course gives you access to an immense range of texts - from ancient to contemporary literature, and from Asia, the Americas, Africa and the Middle East, as well as Europe.

Alongside English literature from the Anglo-Saxon period to the present day, and from all periods from continental Europe, you can study post-colonial literatures, cultural theory, creative writing and film.

In Year 1, you'll sample a wide selection of literature and critical theory, and develop a solid basis of knowledge and skills on which you'll build in Years 2 and 3.

Three course units in World Literatures (60 credits) are mandatory in Year 1, along with 20 to 60 further credits from a range of literature options.

In Years 2 and 3, you will select courses from a range of options. There's a mandatory 40-credit thesis in the final year, on which you'll work closely with an academic supervisor to develop a topic of your choosing.

Flexible Honours may allow you to study an additional arts, languages or cultures subject alongside World Literatures. You can also apply to spend one or two semesters studying abroad during the second year of your degree.

Aims

We aim to:

  • encourage you to engage with a significant range of literary genres, as well as film, song, and other forms of expression from a wide range of cultures, nations and historical periods;
  • enable you to study texts in their historical and cultural contexts, and develop an appreciation of the specific conditions that affect the representation of ideas, beliefs and experiences;
  • help you appreciate how our own historical and cultural location affects our understanding of literature;
  • familiarise you with and enable you to apply traditional and modern theories of literary and cultural criticism;
  • develop your powers of critical and analytical thinking alongside an appreciation of the craft of writing and the relationships between different texts and genres;
  • encourage you to respond imaginatively, intellectually and independently to the written word, and to carry this quality of response into future reading experiences;
  • develop your enthusiasm for literature and appreciation of its importance in the world, in earlier periods as well as the present day;
  • help you to foster sophisticated literacy skills and appropriate disciplinary forms of presentation and referencing;
  • enable you to develop fluency and clarity in discussion and in oral and written presentation;
  • encourage continuous, developing reflection, enabling both responsibility for personal learning and the ability to make informed choices for future development;
  • develop your skills for employment and/or further study, both discipline-related and transferable to other contexts;
  • sustain and enhance your knowledge and critical appreciation of literature and other cultural forms in preparation for postgraduate study or professional careers.

Special features

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals and build your external networks.

Study abroad

You may apply to spend one or two semesters studying abroad during the second year of your degree. Exchange partners are offered in Europe through the Erasmus Exchange scheme, or in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong or Singapore via the Worldwide Exchange scheme.

Explore another subject

Flexible Honours may allow you to study an additional arts, languages or cultures subject alongside World Literatures.

Meet like-minded students

Join a society or write for the student magazine to meet fellow students and discuss shared interests.

Teaching and learning

During Year 1 and 2, you will be taught mainly through a combination of lectures and tutor-led seminars by our literature experts .

Seminars give you the opportunity to consider the same texts and topics as the lectures but with a more interactive, participatory approach. Seminar groups meet at least once a week, and numbers are kept as low as possible so that you get to know one another and share your ideas.

Course units in the final year take the form of a weekly seminar taken by a specialist member of staff. A required final-year thesis gives you experience in independent research and allows you to develop a personal project over an extended period.

For some course units, you may take part in group work and other forms of collaborative learning. Throughout your degree, you will also use web-based and other online resources to support your learning.

Coursework and assessment

We use a variety of forms of assessment, including:

  • written examinations
  • coursework essays
  • research reports
  • practical tests
  • learning logs
  • web contributions
  • oral presentations
  • a final-year thesis.

Course content for year 1

Sample a wide range of literature and critical theory, develop a solid basis of knowledge and analytical and research skills. Study three core units exploring forms of literature, the epic, and debates in World Literature, along with units from a range of options in Classics, English, and Modern Languages.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Forms of Literature WRLD10011 20 Mandatory
Epic Traditions WRLD10022 20 Mandatory
World Literatures: Definitions and Debates WRLD10032 20 Mandatory
Introduction to American Literature to 1900 AMER10021 20 Optional
Stories and Storytelling in the Ancient Greek and Roman Worlds CAHE10211 20 Optional
The Odyssey CLAH10101 20 Optional
Mapping the Medieval ENGL10051 20 Optional
Theory and Text ENGL10062 20 Optional
Revolution and Reaction in German Culture GERM10350 20 Optional
Italian Cultural Studies ITAL10300 20 Optional
Standing on The Shoulders of Giants: Foundations for Study in The Arts SALC10002 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 11 course units for year 1

Course content for year 2

Two core units focus on The Novel and Modernism in a global context. You can then tailor your degree by selecting from an array of options in Classics, English, and Modern Languages - from ancient to contemporary, and from gender studies to postcolonial theory.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
The Novel in the World WRLD20011 20 Mandatory
International Modernisms WRLD20022 20 Mandatory
Screen, Culture and Society DRAM20041 20 Optional
Gender, Sexuality and the Body: Theories and Histories ENGL20482 20 Optional
Writing, Identity and Nation ENGL20491 20 Optional
Making of the Modern Mind: European Intellectual History in a Global Context HIST20181 20 Optional
Introduction to Post Colonial Arabic Literature MEST20002 20 Optional
Hispanic Cinemas SPLA20841 20 Optional

Course content for year 3

Complete a 40-credit dissertation on a topic of your choice, working closely with an academic supervisor. Complement this with units from a diverse range of options, from the ancient to the postmodern, and from poetry to fiction and film studies.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Greek Epic Poetry CLAH31042 20 Optional
Transnational Shakespeare: Texts, Places, Identities ENGL31211 20 Optional
Exoticism & Orientalism in C19th France: French Romantics and Local Colour FREN30871 20 Optional
Screening the Holocaust GERM30481 20 Optional
Arabic Literature in Translation MEST30121 20 Optional
Transnational Identities in Latin American Literature SPLA30011 20 Optional

Facilities

Students in library
The University of Manchester Library is one of only five National Research Libraries.

You can attend lectures and exhibitions at the internationally-renowned John Rylands Library , Manchester Museum and Whitworth Art Gallery , as well as a wealth of talks, films, and other events sponsored by the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures.

The John Rylands Library also offers the rare opportunity to see a Gutenberg Bible, Shakespeare folios, medieval and modern literary manuscripts, and other archival treasures.

The Manchester Centre for New Writing hosts a regular public event series, Literature Live , which brings contemporary novelists and poets to the University to read and engage in conversation.

Find out more by visiting our Facilities page.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

Studying World Literatures will help you to develop versatile skills including the ability to:

  • manage your time effectively;
  • communicate ideas clearly in spoken and written forms;
  • articulate a knowledge of concepts and theories;
  • work and think independently, critically and creatively.

You can enjoy career opportunities in a wide range of professions as a graduate of our course, as well as going on to postgraduate study.

Careers in publishing, journalism, media, teaching, civil service and librarianship are obviously suitable for graduates of World Literatures.

However, surveys of recent graduates from all of our literature courses have revealed that Manchester graduates also pursue an impressive variety of careers in such fields as law, banking, fashion, advertising, accountancy, business management, commerce, new media, computing and archive studies.

Our award-winning Careers Service provides a wealth of tools, advice, development opportunities, and industry links specific to your subject. You'll have access to dedicated support throughout your studies and up to two years after graduation.

Visit the  Careers and employability  page for more information.