September 2023

English BA (Hons)

Honours Degree, Undergraduate, September 2023

Key Details

  • Q300 Course Code
  • 3-4.5* Years
  • 96 Typical UCAS Tariff
English lecture

BA (Hons) English at Newman University invites you to think about how literature and language shape the world around you and discover your place within a complex and ever-changing society. You will study a range of texts from different cultures, perspectives, and periods, with particular emphasis on modern and contemporary writing. You will receive excellent support throughout your time at Newman, with a personal tutor to help answer questions and guide you in your studies. The course will give the skills and advice you need to succeed in a range of different careers from teaching to publishing to marketing, with practical, real-world opportunities to gain valuable experience.

  • A combination of Literature and Language modules, with options to specialise in your area of interest
  • 96% student satisfaction in the 2020 National Student Survey
  • Dedicated support for exploring careers in a range of fields
  • Superb digital resources and innovative e-learning facilities to also allow for virtual workshops
  • A close-knit community of students and staff.
During your first year, you’ll work on creative writing, language, and literature modules, introducing you to a broad range of texts and topics to build your skills and confidence. You will study time and space in literature, think about how identities are shaped by textual and cultural representation, learn about ‘reading’ film, and consider how the classics of literature have been rewritten from alternative perspectives.

In the second year you will study cultural theory, undertake a work placement which may be in a subject-specific area such as archives, libraries, marketing or museums, or you may want to diversify into other professions such as teaching, law or management. You will also have the opportunity to study modules of your choice, including studying film, specialist language modules, and short fiction.

In the final year you will do a dissertation on a topic of your choice, and have the opportunity to study specialist modules in diverse areas such as gender and sexuality in literature, postcolonial literature, the contemporary literary scene, language, media and the internet, neo-Victorianism, and American literature and film.

Assessment is largely through coursework and takes a variety of forms, including presentations, data analysis, essays and portfolios. Coursework assignments allow you to focus on areas that are of particular interest to you.

Students from the English course enjoy a wide range of successful careers. Our emphasis on employability comes not just from the work placements but also from our innovative approach to teaching with an emphasis on preparing you for the work place. Students progress to careers in teaching, publishing, library and archive services, marketing, journalism, and the professions such as law, health and human resources management.

It is clear Newman’s English programme is successful in developing strong and confident students
External Examiner

Newman University is located in Britain’s second city – Birmingham. With one of the youngest city populations in Europe, it is a vibrant and dynamic place to study.

Studying at Newman University, you have the advantage of being near to the city, but living in, or commuting to peaceful and comfortable surroundings on campus.

Dining out

Birmingham has lots of wonderful places to dine out with a range of different cuisines. Places where you can dine out include; Brindley Place, Mailbox and Hagley Road (just 10 minutes’ from Newman).


Whether you like to go to; the theatre, gigs or clubs, or enjoy: sports, shopping visiting art galleries or exhibitions – Birmingham will not disappoint and you will be spoilt for choice!


Getting around Birmingham is easy via train, bus or by car. Birmingham has excellent transport links to the rest of Britain, making it easy for those weekend getaways!

Why not explore the city for yourself by visiting one of our Open Days?

Want to find out more about Birmingham? Then take a look at some Birmingham City Secrets.

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Entry Requirements

You must achieve at least 96 UCAS points including a minimum of CC at A level or equivalent (e.g.MM at BTEC Diploma; MPP at BTEC Extended Diploma) towards the total tariff.

Access Students can achieve the requirements with the following combination of Distinction, Merit and/ or Pass grades at level 3 achieved from a completed Access course. 96 UCAS Points: D21-M3-P21; D18-M9-P18; D15-M15-P15; D12-M21-P12; D9-M27-P9; D6-M33-P6; D3-M39-P3; D0-M45-P0.

You must have an A Level or equivalent in a humanities/social sciences related subject.

For applicants who are unsure that they will achieve the above UCAS tariff, Newman University offers English (with Foundation Year) which enables such applicants to access a university degree via a four year route. Upon successful completion of their foundation year, students will progress to Year 1 of a named degree. Whilst not a condition of entry onto the Foundation Year, students wishing to follow particular named routes with additional entry requirements, will need to meet these requirements before they make the transition from their foundation year to year 1.

International Students
The University is not licensed by the UK Government to sponsor migrant students under the Student route and is therefore unable to accept applications from international students at present.

Applying Direct Option

You can apply direct to Newman University for the full-time route for this course if you have not previously applied to Newman University through UCAS and you are not applying to any other universities.

September 2023 Direct Application Link

September 2023 Direct Application Link (part-time)

N.B. will need to enter ‘New User’ account details when first accessing this portal.

If you have any questions regarding entry onto this course please contact our friendly and helpful admissions team via our Admissions Enquiry Form

Course Fees

The full-time course fee for September 2023 is £9,250.

The University will review tuition fees and increase fees in line with any inflationary uplift as determined by the UK Government, if permitted by law or government policy, in subsequent years of your course. It is anticipated that such increases would be linked to RPI (the Retail Price Index excluding mortgage interest payments).

Additional Costs

ENU615 (The Literary Scene).  If you choose to study this module you will be expected to attend events run as part of the Birmingham Literature Festival (as well as other festivals and events).  Students will incur costs such as travel and possibly an entrance fee.

Cost: depends on the event you attend. Students had previously been reimbursed £10 (based on 2017/18)



Please be aware that, as with any course, there may be changes to the modules delivered, for information view our Changes to Programmes of Module Changes page.

*As a part-time undergraduate student, you choose how many modules to study each year (up to a maximum of 6). To qualify for a student tuition fee loan you will need to choose at least 4 modules. A normal 3-year degree will take 4.5 years (if you take 4 modules per year) up to a maximum of 8 years to complete. You will be taught alongside full-time undergraduate students.

Timetables: find out when information is available to students


  1. This module will consider how time and space operate in literary texts. It takes New Criticism as its starting point: a critical method that insisted on divorcing literary texts from their temporal and spatial contexts. Students will explore the necessity of placing texts within their contexts of production, so that they can understand them within a critical and ethical framework.
  2. This module provides students with foundational understanding of Linguistics as an academic discipline. The module covers key areas of study, which may include Phonetics and Phonology, Morphology, Grammar, Semantics, Pragmatics, Sociolinguistics, Cohesion, and the methods employed to study language in each of these areas.
  3. This module will introduce students to the basic concepts, terminology, and politics of exploring identity in cultural texts. Through studying excerpts from popular critical commentaries on theories of gender, sexuality, race, disability, and class, students will develop skills in textual and cultural analysis, establishing an introductory critical vocabulary that will be developed and refined in subsequent levels of the programme
  4. This module introduces students to the notion of canonical literature and then considers the ways in which contemporary authors have ‘written back’ to specific canonical works and to what effect.
  5. This module aims to equip students with the knowledge and self-management skills to make informed choices in preparing for work placement and the transition to employment or further study on graduation.  Learners will be provided with the opportunities to develop awareness of the workplace, identify different career and study options, recognise and articulate their own experience, accomplishments and talents and plan and implement career management strategies for the short and long term.
  6. This module covers theories and methods for doing discourse analysis of written and spoken texts. The historical circumstances of different theories and methods as well as key empirical studies employing them will be covered, with an emphasis on understanding how different text types and circumstances require different methods.
  7. This module will introduce critical skills in reading visual texts, undertaking formal and stylistic interpretations, and beginning to make social and theoretical analyses of films. It will develop skills in interpreting visual texts and applications of theories of cultural identity in ENU419.
  1. This year-long module offers learners the opportunity to apply and explore knowledge within a work-based context, through the mode of work place learning. The placement supervisor in the work place will negotiate the focus for the learner’s role on placement, with the learner. Students complete 100 hours in the work setting. The learner will reflect critically on different dimensions of the work place setting. This module provides an opportunity for students wishing to attain National Professional recognition with the Teaching and Learning Academy (TLA) to complete an AMTLA project.  
  2. This module, alongside its semester two companion module, ‘the perils of reading and writing’, will enable students to develop their reading and writing practices in various forms and for various purposes and audiences. Using Helen Sword’s ‘BASE’ model, students will consider the behavioural, artisanal, social and emotional aspects of reading and writing.
  3. This module develops students’ understanding of modern critical and theoretical approaches to studying literature, building on the introduction to literary and cultural theory in relation to identity on the level 4 module ENU419, and the introduction to modern critical approaches in studying literature on ENU415, ENU416, and ENU406.
  4. This module introduces students to topics in Stylistics, the application of linguistic analysis to literature, broadly defined. These topics may include Metaphor, Cohesion, Narrative, Functional Grammar, Conversation Analysis, Feminist Stylistics, and Translation. This module focuses on giving a theoretical and practical knowledge background in Stylistics by presenting linguistically-orientated approaches to the literary texts.
  5. On this module, students will undertake a contextual, thematic and theoretical study of Victorian novels and poetry and film adaptations of Victorian fictional sources. The module will begin with an exploration of the nineteenth-century context: industry and the idea of progress, empire and slavery, gender role and performance, domestic life, science, technology and medicine, and religious faith.
  6. This module, alongside its semester one companion module, ‘the pleasures of reading and writing’, will enable students to develop their reading and writing practices in various forms and for various purposes and audiences. Using Helen Sword’s ‘BASE’ model, students will consider the behavioural, artisanal, social and emotional aspects of reading and writing. The module’s trajectory is towards more risk, moving from a secure basis of competence into original research and stylish writing.
  7. This module is a specialist subject module that asks students to enact a literary intervention into a critical issue at this specific contemporary socio-political ‘conjuncture’. The precise content of the module will depend on the research area of the module leader and its application to a relevant moment of contemporary crisis.
  8. This module introduces the key concepts and methods in the field of Sociolinguistics. In particular, students will learn how variations in language use relate to race, class, and gender and how these variations have been theorised and studied. Key sociolinguistic studies will be examined and discussed, helping students understand how the study of language has influenced and been influenced by sociological theory and how these theories have been adapted over time.
  9. This module will allow students to explore a range of short fiction and various key approaches to studying the form. Students will consider the short story in terms of: its history; its form and structure; genre; cycles/sequences; how they are collected and presented; critical contexts; social and historical contexts. Students will read stories from the nineteenth century to the present, including flash/micro fictional forms. The module will expect students to perform detailed close textual analyses of the stories; analyses will be informed by students’ knowledge of specific critical approaches, form, and specific social and historical contexts.
  1. The dissertation allows students to undertake a sustained piece of independent research into a topic of their own choosing, and to apply the concepts, theories and methodologies (as relevant) that they have learnt about during their degree. Students can choose to work in the areas of Creative Writing, English literature, English language, Film Studies or Literature and Film; their research should show a grounding in current research and establish clear lines of original enquiry.
  2. This module offers students the opportunity to build on their level 5 work placement through the more developed application of a negotiated work-based research project. Students will agree with their placement tutor and workplace mentor a brief for a project which addresses a need within the organisation. Learners should complete a minimum of 100 hours in the work place. It is in the spirit of this module that wherever possible, the focus will be on social or community / sustainable development.
  3. This module will engage students in a socio-historical and gender-political study of a number of 20th century texts pre-World War II. They will examine developments in literary form during the modern period and explore the relationship of these emerging forms with the social, cultural and historical context in which texts were produced and received.
  4. This module asks students to examine literary and cultural representations of sex, gender, sexuality, and sexual transgression through the lens of relevant modern critical theories, such as: feminism; queer theory; transgender studies; masculinity studies; poststructuralism; psychoanalysis; postcolonialism
  5. Students on this module will be introduced to various agents in the literary field through lectures, readings and seminars. Alongside the taught element, students will be pursuing their own understanding and actively in engaging in the literary scene through attending local literary events, running their own book clubs, and working on an assessed group project to set up and populate a literary ezine.
  6. This module explores the varieties of discourses utilised in mass and social/new media and how these discourses contribute to the representation of individuals, groups, events and nations. Links between discourse and ideology will be explored, with a particular focus on the ways in which aspects of gender, class, and race are represented through various media and online.
  7. Students will be introduced to a range of British literary texts from the period 1945-1970. Students will place texts within historical, social and cultural contexts and examine the texts’ engagement with pertinent contemporary issues, such as: class, social mobility, education, the welfare state, national identity, gender inequality, second-wave feminism, race, immigration, the move from austerity to affluence, advances in science and technology, the aftermath of the Second World War, and the Cold War.
  8. This module will begin by exploring how the mythologisation of American history in relation to concepts of manifest destiny, American exceptionalism and the Western frontier have created imaginative conceptions of heroic masculinity in culture, folklore, literature and film which, since the Vietnam war have been increasingly challenged and deconstructed. This exploration of key American myths will involve discussions about the ‘American Dream’, from its original inception in pioneer culture as a faith in social, religious and spiritual utopian possibility to its transformation into a material and individualist beacon of capitalist ideology in the twentieth and twenty-first century.
  9. This module will explore contemporary Black and Asian British literature using the paradigms of postcolonial theory, for example race, hybridity, diaspora, language and nation. Students will be encouraged to make connections between these texts, the history of imperialism and cultural discourses around immigration since the 1950s. The module will encourage students to discuss and explore topics in relation to set readings, their own experiences, and their own research. Formative assessment will be in the form of a presentation on part of the portfolio for which students will get feedback from their peers and the tutor.