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  • Join a community passionate about the study of literature and the broad subject of English
  • English Literature achieved 90% overall satisfaction as rated by final-year undergraduate students in the 2017 National Student Survey
  • Tailor a programme to your interests from a diverse range of writers and movements
  • Attend the University of Winchester Writers' Festival and Winchester Reading Series — an opportunity to meet authors, publishers and agents
  • Add an extra string to your bow by teaching on the Japan Exchange and gaining a Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language.

English Literature at Winchester pushes the boundaries of the discipline, giving you the opportunities to enjoy a thought-provoking mix of traditional and modern materials.

From Chaucer to rap poetry, you can choose from almost 800 years of the best writing in English on a course that fires your imagination, sharpens your own written and communication skills and allows you to think critically and creatively about literature and much more beside.

Guided by our supportive teaching staff, who are all part of the university’s thriving literary research culture, you study the ideas of the most exciting critical thinkers in contemporary cultural debate, using innovative learning and teaching methods. And there’s the flexibility to add to your study of literary texts with modules in English Language, Creative Writing and/or American Studies.

Year 1 provides an awareness of the range of different  approaches to understanding texts and develops skills of critical analysis, research and writing. This is achieved through the study of an assortment of texts from various periods in history across the genres of prose fiction, poetry and drama.

After the first year, the majority of modules are optional, allowing you to engage with the writers and movements that most inspire you.

In Year 2, you can choose from all the major literary figures and movements, from Chaucer to modern fiction. Modules examining American literature, Postcolonial Fictions and Literary Adaptations for Film and TV are also available.

In Year 3, a specific collection of writing, a particular theme or critical theory is considered in detail and a wide variety of topics exist. These include Crime and Englishness, Literature and Psychoanalysis and African American Literatures and Cultures. Modules here tend to be closely related to the research interests of teaching staff and engage with cutting-edge developments in the discipline.

A degree in English Literature opens many doors. A range of highly transferable qualities, including analytical thinking, evaluative and research skills, self-discipline, and effective written and spoken communication, enables you to excel in a variety of fields not just confined to the arts. Graduates have gone on to become teachers, lecturers, journalists, writers, actors, publishers and producers.


Graduates have gone on to become teachers, lecturers, journalists, writers, actors, publishers and producers.

94.4% of our 2015/16 graduates (first degree and other undergraduate courses) were in employment and/or further study six months after completing their course (Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey).

Pre-approved for a Masters

If you study a Bachelor Honours degree with us, you will be pre-approved to start a Masters degree at Winchester. To be eligible, you will need to apply by the end of March in the final year of your degree and meet the entry requirements of your chosen Masters degree.


90% Student Satisfaction

As rated by final year undergraduate students in the 2017 National Student Survey, English Literature achieved greater than 90% overall satisfaction.

Suitable for applicants from:

UK, EU, World

Work placements

There is the chance to join The Japan Exchange, which involves teaching English and gaining a Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language.

Study abroad

Our BA (Hons) English Literature course provides an opportunity for you to study abroad in the United States of America (USA), Japan and Europe via Erasmus.

For more information see our Study Abroad section.

Learning and teaching

Our aim is to shape 'confident learners' by enabling you to develop the skills needed to excel in your studies here and as well as onto further studies or the employment market. 

You are taught primarily through a combination of lectures and seminars, allowing opportunities to discuss and develop your understanding of topics covered in lectures in smaller groups.

In addition to the formally scheduled contact time such as lectures and seminars etc.), you are encouraged to access academic support from staff within the course team, your personal tutor and the wide range of services available to you within the University.

Independent learning

Over the duration of your course, you will be expected to develop independent and critical learning, progressively building confidence and expertise through independent and collaborative research, problem-solving and analysis with the support of staff. You take responsibility for your own learning and are encouraged to make use of the wide range of available learning resources available.

Overall workload

Your overall workload consists of class contact hours, independent learning and assessment activity.

While your actual contact hours may depend on the optional modules you select, the following information gives an indication of how much time you will need to allocate to different activities at each level of the course.

Year 1 (Level 4): Timetabled teaching and learning activity*

Teaching, learning and assessment: 216 hours
Independent learning: 984 hours

Year 2 (Level 5): Timetabled teaching and learning activity*

Teaching, learning and assessment: 192 hours
Independent learning: 1008 hours

Year 3 (Level 6): Timetabled teaching and learning activity*

Teaching, learning and assessment: 156 hours
Independent learning: 1044 hours

*Please note these are indicative hours for the course. 


Taught elements of the course take place on our King Alfred Campus or at West Downs, Winchester.


Our validated courses may adopt a range of means of assessing your learning. An indicative, and not necessarily comprehensive, list of assessment types you might encounter includes essays, portfolios, supervised independent work, presentations, written exams, or practical performances.

We ensure all students have an equal opportunity to achieve module learning outcomes. As such, where appropriate and necessary, students with recognised disabilities may have alternative assignments set that continue to test how successfully they have met the module's learning outcomes. Further details on assessment types used on the course you are interested in can be found on the course page, by attending an Open Day or Open Evening, or contacting our teaching staff.

Percentage of the course assessed by coursework

The assessment balance between examination and coursework depends to some extent on the optional modules you choose. The approximate percentage of the course assessed by different assessment modes is as follows:

Year 1 (Level 4)*:

81% coursework
13% written exams
6% practical exams

Year 2 (Level 5)*:

69% coursework
25% written exams
6% practical exams

Year 3 (Level 6)*:

94% coursework
0% written exams
6% practical exams

*Please note these are indicative percentages and modes for the programme.


We are committed to providing timely and appropriate feedback to you on your academic progress and achievement in order to enable you to reflect on your progress and plan your academic and skills development effectively. You are also encouraged to seek additional feedback from your course tutors.

Further information

For more information about our regulations for this course, please see our Academic Regulations, Policies and Procedures.


2018 Entry: 104-120 points

An A level A*-C pass is required in an English subject. This can be in English Literature, English Language, English Language and Literature, or Creative Writing.

A GCSE A*-C or 9-4 pass in English Language is required.

International baccalaureate: 26 points including 5 points at Higher Level

If English is not your first language: Year 1/Level 4: IELTS 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in writing or equivalent

Course enquiries and applications

Telephone: +44 (0) 1962 827234
Send us a message

International students

If you are living outside of the UK or Europe, you can find out more about how to join this course by emailing our International Recruitment Team at or calling +44 (0)1962 827023

Visit us

Explore our campus and find out more about studying at Winchester by coming to one of our Open Days.


Year 1 (Level 4)

Modules Credits

Early English Texts and Contexts 15

This module is designed to introduce students to a range of literary texts and genres from the medieval period up to the eighteenth century, opening consideration of the advantages and disadvantages of understanding these texts in relation to their historical contexts. This will include consideration of the following: the changing practices of publication and composition of audience; the historical, political and cultural contexts; contemporary conceptualisations of genre, gender roles and sexual identity; treatment of issues of colonialism, national identity, ethnic difference and religious affiliation. By tracing these topics across texts from different periods comparison and contrast in relation to historical change will be highlighted. Students will be encouraged to draw from the theoretical materials studied in Critical Reading 1 and 2 to develop their interpretations of these texts. The use of texts that have already received considerable critical attention will enable students to engage with existing critical discussion in these areas. 

Introduction to English Studies 15

This module offers students an opportunity to negotiate the transition to undergraduate study of English in a small group environment that will promote interaction with fellow students and the module tutor. Students will be involved in detailed discussion of their interpretations of fictional texts and will share their experience in the location and evaluation of relevant critical writing. There will be opportunities to share and compare essay-writing strategies and research methods and to ensure the referencing requirements and conventions of degree-level work are understood. The iterative essay, where a draft will receive feedback before final submission, will promote reflection on research, essay writing, and understanding of marking criteria. There will also be an opportunity to have an initial experience of assessed oral presentation before a relatively small audience and to use a range of relevant web-based resources.

Critical Reading 2 15

This is the second of two related modules which together form a foundational introduction to the critical reading of literary texts. This module will build upon the first by giving students an opportunity to engage with selected literary, critical and theoretical texts, brought together in order to demonstrate the application of major critical theories to literature from different genres and periods. Students will acquire from this module the critical and theoretical basis for the remainder of their undergraduate work in English. It will follow a chronological scheme in order to show how literary criticism has changed through debate and controversy in relation to changes within society and the academy. It will incorporate the most recent developments in criticism, introducing students to key critical extracts alongside literary texts in order to familiarize them with the most significant ideas of the most influential thinkers for the study of literature.

Critical Reading 1 15

This is the first of two related modules which together form a broad introduction to critical reading of literary texts. This first module is designed to build upon reading skills developed at pre-degree level and to introduce more advanced reading skills, drawing upon developments in undergraduate English. It will focus on key aspects of engagement with literature: the role of the reader; the authority of the author; text, context and intertextuality; canon-formation; genre and generic expectation; literature and identity politics; nation and narration. Students will develop their reading skills with a wide range of texts, including fiction, poetry and short stories, both canonical and non-canonical.  Students will be made aware of the history of the discipline as it has moved through different kinds of reading practice since its first appearance in English universities. This will provide a context in which to place the discipline’s development through the so-called ‘theory revolution’ and its aftermath.

Optional Credits

Optional Modules

Introduction to Poetry 15 Credits
Transatlantic Narratives 15 Credits
America and Americanisation 15 Credits
The Literatures and Cultures of the Black Atlantic 15 Credits
American Genres 15 Credits
Fictional Writing 15 Credits
Scriptwriting 15 Credits
Creative Non-Fiction 15 Credits
Poetry and Poetic Expression 15 Credits
Approaches to Language Study 15 Credits
Understanding Language I: Syntax and Morphology 15 Credits
Understanding Language II: Semantics, Phonetics and Phonology 15 Credits
Understanding Language 3: Semantics and Pragmatics 15 Credits
History of the English Language 15 Credits
Intertextuality 15 Credits

Year 2 (Level 5)

Optional Credits

Optional Modules

Shakespeare and Early Modern Drama 15 Credits
Seventeenth-Century Literature and Revolution 15 Credits
Nineteenth-Century Romanticism 15 Credits
The Modern Age 15 Credits
Chaucer and His World 15 Credits
Shakespeare and Seventeenth-Century Drama 15 Credits
Eighteenth-Century Romanticism 15 Credits
Victorian Fictions 15 Credits
Sex and Sensibility in Eighteenth-Century Print Culture 15 Credits
Eighteenth Century Performance and Censorship 15 Credits
Gothic and Romantic Fiction 15 Credits
Postcolonial Fictions 15 Credits
The Postmodern Age 15 Credits
Individual Project 15 Credits
Literary Adaptations for Film and Television 15 Credits
Contemporary Children’s Literature 15 Credits
Volunteering for BA English 15 Credits
American Gothic 15 Credits
American Science Fiction 15 Credits
Writing America 15 Credits
Work and Money in American Literature 15 Credits
Middle English Texts in Context 15 Credits
Old English 1 15 Credits
Textual Editing and Theory and Practice 15 Credits
Children’s Literature and Young Adult Fiction 15 Credits

Year 3 (Level 6)

Modules Credits

Creative and Critical Extended Study 30

A project that incorporates some Creative Writing is available to students who have studied a Creative Writing module at level 2.

The Creative and Critical Extended Study consists of:

  • A piece of creative writing of between 4,000 and 5,000 words (with word count exceptions such as those in a poetry collection to be agreed by supervising tutor)
  • A supporting Rationale of 4-5,000 words that demonstrates a substantial engagement with a particular critical issue relevant to the creative piece
  • A supporting Bibliography

Study is primarily student-directed, with supervision supplied by tutors teaching/researching in the subject area. There will be a small number of general lectures to further provide guidance through the process.

Dissertation 30

The dissertation is an extended treatment of between 8,000 and 10,000 words of a subject of the student’s choice (subject to approval). Study is primarily student-directed, with supervision supplied by tutors teaching/researching in the subject area.  There will be a small number of general lectures to further provide guidance through the process.

Optional Credits

Optional Modules

The Shakespeare Phenomenon 15 Credits
Crime and Englishness 15 Credits
Women's Writing in the Long Eighteenth Century 15 Credits
Biography and the Body 15 Credits
William Blake: Poet of Jerusalem 15 Credits
Twentieth Century Dramatic Texts: Brecht and Beckett 15 Credits
Consumer Culture 15 Credits
Jewish Identities 15 Credits
Keywords 15 Credits
Literature, Sexuality and Morality 15 Credits
The City in American Literature 1868-1925 15 Credits
Renaissance Poetry at the Court of Elizabeth I 15 Credits
Romantic Celebrity Culture 15 Credits
Globalization and Contemporary Fiction 15 Credits
Literature and Psychoanalysis 15 Credits
Contemporary Young Adult Fiction 15 Credits
The Figure of the Law in Literature 15 Credits
Post-Structuralism: Theory, Text, Culture 15 Credits
African American Literatures and Cultures 15 Credits
Civil Rights Immersive Study 15 Credits
The Contemporary American Novel 15 Credits
American Crime Fiction 15 Credits
Sex and the City and Beyond 15 Credits
Chick Lit/Womens Writing before Sex and the City 15 Credits
Women’s Culture in the Nineteenth Century 15 Credits
Old English 2 15 Credits
Utopian and Dystopian Fiction 15 Credits
The Victorian Art of Murder 15 Credits

Please note the modules listed are correct at the time of publishing, for full-time students entering the programme in Year 1. Optional modules are listed where applicable. Please note the University cannot guarantee the availability of all modules listed and modules may be subject to change. For further information please refer to the terms and conditions at
The University will notify applicants of any changes made to the core modules listed above.

Course Tuition Fees 

UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man

If you are a UK or EU student starting your degree in September 2018, the first year will cost you £9,250. Based on this fee level, the indicative fees for a three-year degree would be £27,750 for UK and EU students. Remember, you don't have to pay any of this upfront if you are able to get a tuition fee loan from the UK Government to cover the full cost of your fees each year. If finance is a worry for you, we are here to help. Take a look at the range of support we have on offer. This is a great investment you are making in your future, so make sure you know what is on offer to support you.

Full-time £9,250 p/a

Total Cost: £27,750 (3 years) | £28,450 (sandwich option)

UK/EU Part-Time fees are calculated on a pro rata basis of the full-time fee for a 120 credit course. The fee for a single credit is £77.08 and a 15 credit module is £1,156. Part-time students can take up to a maximum 90 credits per year, so the maximum fee in a given year will be the government permitted maximum fee of £6,938

International Students

Full-time £12,950** p/a
Total Cost: £38,850** (3 years) | £39,550** (sandwich option)

International part-time fees are calculated on a pro rata basis of the full-time fee for a 120 credit course. The fee for a single credit is £107.92 and a 15 credit module is £1,620. Fees for students from Vestfold University College in Norway (who receive a 10% reduction) and NLA are £11,655.


Additional costs

As one of our students all of your teaching and assessments are included in your tuition fees, including, lectures/guest lectures and tutorials, seminars, laboratory sessions and specialist teaching facilities. You will also have access to a wide range of student support and IT services.

There might be additional costs you may encounter whilst studying. The following highlights the mandatory and optional costs for this course:


Core texts

Multiple copies of core text are held within the library and e-books are identified where possible, however due the nature of the course students are recommended to purchase a copy for their own use. It is also possible for students purchase second hand copies. Cost £50-200 per academic year.

Field trip

Third year students have the option to go on a day trip to London with the chance to visit an exhibition. The cost of this trip will depend on the entry price of any exhibitions visited. Cost £48 - £63.

Printing and binding

Students are required to pay for the costs of dissertation printing and binding. Cost £2.50 apx. 

Scholarships, Bursaries and Awards

We have a variety of scholarship and bursaries available to support you financially with the cost of your course. To see if you’re eligible, please see our Scholarships and Awards page. 

Key course details

UCAS code
3 years full-time; 6 years part-time
Typical offer
104-120 points (2018 Entry)
King Alfred Campus or at West Downs, Winchester