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Undergraduate English



Tradition, Innovation and Creativity

Our courses cover the span of English literature. Your journey could take you from Old English riddles, Middle English romances, and the rich poetry and theatre of the Renaissance to the wit and politics of the eighteenth century; from Romantic verse to the radical novels of the Victorians; from the complexities of modernism to world literatures, American literature, and the latest contemporary writing.

In the second and third year, we have no required course options: it is for individual students to chose options that best fit their interests, and allow them to increasingly specialise in topics of their own choice. 

We are have the advantages of a vibrant department (over 30 staff members), with the large range of choice that brings. This year there are more than 25 options available in year 2, and over 40 options in year 3, in genres from medieval poetry to contemporary children's literature. For examples, see our course options list. (The list of varies from year to year)

Creativity is important to us, and all students (not just those taking our BA English & Creative Writing) can take some creative writing modules in years 2 and 3 of their degree.

Your Teaching

Our department has world-class scholars and creative writers who are also award-winning teachers. We offer small-group teaching and individual tuition to develop your writing, as well as help with research and presentation skills that contribute to your weekly seminars and tutorials.

Our Community

Close relations with students are at the core of what we do.  Our proximity to London means we have many trips to theatre and galleries. English students are active in the English Society; drama and the arts; student journalism and radio; and volunteering, all supported by the department.

Year Abroad

You can apply for an additional year abroad, for a year abroad as an integrated part of the degree, with places on offer at a wide range of universities in the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Europe and elsewhere.

From Degree to Workplace

The skills you acquire here will help you enter the job market with confidence. We have an award-winning job placements scheme that sends students out into the workplace in summer; an employability 'Passport' scheme; and each year we take students to the South Bank to hear from and meet alumni in the creative industries, journalism, marketing and other areas of work.


Course Structure

The first year of undergraduate study for Single Honours English is a foundation year; in the second year you broaden your focus within key periods; and in the third year you explore specialised options.

The structure combines wide exploration with the opportunity to follow your passions. Students who choose to combine English with another discipline, for instance Creative Writing, American Literature, Drama, Film or History, enjoy the same progression from foundation to specialisation.

Courses in other Departments

Students in years 2 and 3 of the degree also have the opportunity to take an option in another department (e.g. a film course in Media Arts, a History or Philosophy or Drama course).

You join a rich culture of Joint Honors students

Many students choose to combine English Literature with another discipline and at Royal Holloway we offer an exciting range of options including:

English and Creative Writing, English and American Literature, and American Literature and Creative Writing are Joint Honours programmes housed exclusively within the English Department. For all other combinations students belong to two departments and participate fully in the life of each.

All students take four units (or equivalent in whole and half-units) in each year of study. If you opt for a Joint Honours degree, you will normally take two course units or equivalent in English and two units from the partner department.

Click on the list above, or see the menu breakdown on the left-hand side of the screen for a full listing of the Joint Honours courses we currently offer - some of which are taken over four years, with the third year spent studying abroad.












Our graduates

Click for information on some of our graduates.



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