This joint honours course in Comparative Literature and Culture and Drama allows you to combine the study of a wide spectrum of international literature and culture alongside drama and theatre. Choosing to study these complementary subjects at Royal Holloway means you will develop as a culturally-aware, creative and adaptable thinker, with impressive communication and presentation skills.
Comparative Literature and Culture offers you the opportunity to study a fascinating breadth of material with a focus on contexts – places, periods, and genres – to explore how key cultural shifts transform how we see, represent, and make sense of our changing world.
You can choose from an exceptionally wide range of fascinating options, spanning continents and centuries, from antiquity to the present day, covering novels, poetry, philosophy, cinema and art. You will read, watch, and compare texts from Ancient Greece to contemporary New York, from Cuba to Korea, from epics to crime fiction, and from tragedy to the avant-garde. Comparative Literature and Culture also enables you to study a varety of foreign texts originally written in many languages, all translated into English.
Choosing to study Drama at Royal Holloway will put you at the centre of one of the largest and most influential Drama and Theatre departments in the world. You'll create performances, analyse texts, and bring together a range of critical ideas to bear on both. On this course, the text and the body, thinking and doing, work together. There's no barrier between theory and practice: theory helps you understand and make the most of practice, while practice sheds light on theory. By moving between the two, you'll find your place as an informed theatre-maker, and by studying a variety of practices, by yourself and with others, you'll gain knowledge of the industry as a whole, and identify how your interests could fit into wider picture.
We are top-rated for teaching and research, with a campus community recognised for its creativity (rated 14th in the world, and 6th in the UK, for Performing Arts in the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2016). Our staff cover a huge range of theatre and performance studies, but we're particularly strong in contemporary British theatre, international and intercultural performance, theatre history, dance and physical theatre, and contemporary performance practices.
You will be taught by world-class experts who genuinely want to get to know you. We create a supportive environment, often using group work so you can try out new ideas and participate in lively discussions. Throughout your studies, you will receive personal guidance to ensure your course is aligned to your strengths, interests and career plans. As part of our close-knit international community you will be able to get involved with an array of cultural initiatives that take place on campus, and make the most of being within easy reach of London and its many events and attractions.
Our flexible degree programmes enable you to apply to take a Placement Year, which can be spent studying abroad, working or carrying out voluntary work. You can even do all three if you want to (minimum of three months each)! To recognise the importance of this additional skills development and university experience, your Placement Year will be formally recognised on your degree certificate and will contribute to your overall result. Please note conditions may apply if your degree already includes an integrated year out, please contact the Careers & Employability Service for more information. Find out more
Teaching & assessment
In Comparative Literature and Culture, you'll be taught through a combination of lectures and small seminar groups, where you'll be able to try out new ideas by giving presentations and taking part in lively discussions. You'll have access to online resources and the University’s comprehensive e-learning facility, Moodle, for your own study time. You'll be assessed in different ways, from online comprehension tests and individual and group presentations, to coursework and examinations.
Our drama courses are 50% critical work and 50% creative/practical work. For most course units in Drama, you'll be assessed on two pieces of coursework, one of which is usually an academic essay or a research presentation, and the other an assignment like a performance or installation. You'll always hear back from us on how you've done.
- You'll work individually and as part of a team.
- You'll gasin practical skills working on model box set design, lighting design, acting, directing and stage management tasks, physical theatre and movement work, and work with schools and other community groups.
- You'll get more work-related skills in research, thinking and communication (written and verbal).
- In your first year, you'll take a study skills course to equip you with the writing skills you'll need to make your degree count. Though the course doesn't count towards your final degree, you'll need to take it to pass on to your second year. In your final year, you will write a research-led dissertation.
A Levels: AAB-ABB
- At least five GCSEs at grade A*-C or 9-4 including English and Mathematics.
Where an applicant is taking the EPQ alongside A - levels, the EPQ will be taken into consideration and result in lower A-level grades being required. Socio - economic factors which may have impacted an applicant's education will be taken into consideration and alternative offers may be made to these applicants.
Other UK and Ireland Qualifications
International & EU requirements
English language requirements
All teaching at Royal Holloway (apart from some language courses) is in English. You will therefore need to have good enough written and spoken English to cope with your studies right from the start.
The scores we require
- IELTS: 6.5 overall. Writing 7.0. No other subscore lower than 5.5.
- Pearson Test of English: 61 overall. Writing 69. No other subscore lower than 51.
- Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English (ISE): ISE III.
- Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) grade C.
For more information about country-specific entry requirements for your country please visit here.
For international students who do not meet the direct entry requirements, we offer an International Foundation Year, run by Study Group at the Royal Holloway International Study Centre. Upon successful completion, you may progress on to selected undergraduate degree programmes at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Your future career
On completion of your Comparative Literature and Culture and Drama degree at Royal Holloway you will have proven analytical skills and be an adaptable thinker with impressive communication and leadership skills. Having made the most of the performance opportunities, you’ll have considerable experience, be confident in performance situations and have technical, intellectual, imaginative, and practical skills. All of these skills and the experience gained will appeal to future employers.
Your degree not only gives you the directly relevant knowledge to enter the creative, media and arts sectors, but also a range of valuable transferable skills, thereby lending itself to roles in a diverse range of careers. You may also choose to continue your studies by means of a postgraduate degree.
We’re committed to helping you enhance your employment and prepare for the choices ahead. Opportunities available to you include work placements, specialist training workshops, networking events and our annual festival of culture. Our industry links will help you to pursue work experience with theatres and creative arts agencies.
- Recent Comparative Literature and Culture graduates have launched careers in diverse roles such as content writing, photographic editorial, journalism, sales and marketing, teaching, publishing and retail buying.
- Recent graduates in the Department of Drama, Theatre and Dance have gone into careers in acting, writing, broadcasting (including at the BBC), literary agency, arts management, sound design, marketing/PR, teaching and community theatre work, as well as postgraduate study in a range of fields. Many of our graduates also start their own performing arts companies.
Fees & funding
Home and EU students tuition fee per year*: £9,250
International students tuition fee per year**: £17,300
Other essential costs***: There are no single associated costs greater than £50 per item on this course. Students stuying Drama, Theatre and Dance are required to purchase a pair of safety boots in the first year, for which a range of costs are available. Ticket costs for mandatory theatre trips are capped at £10.
How do I pay for it? Find out more about funding options, including loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students who have already taken out a tuition fee loan for undergraduate study should check their eligibility for additional funding directly with the relevant awards body.
*The tuition fee for UK undergraduates is controlled by Government regulations. For students starting a degree in the academic year 2020/21, the fee will be £9,250 for that year. The Government has also confirmed that EU nationals starting a degree in 2020/21 will pay the same fee as UK students for the duration of their course.
**Fees for international students may increase year-on-year in line with the rate of inflation. The policy at Royal Holloway is that any increases in fees will not exceed 5% for continuing students. For further information see fees and funding and our terms and conditions.
***These estimated costs relate to studying this particular degree programme at Royal Holloway. Costs, such as accommodation, food, books and other learning materials and printing etc., have not been included.