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Why choose the School of Education


Our English courses rank 1st in their subject field for continuation, where students are happy to carry on with their studies after the first year (Complete University Guide, 2024).

You have the opportunity to gain TEFLi status, which will help you start a career in language schools in the UK and worldwide.

Embedded employability skills prepare you for your future graduate career.

About the course

Explore English language, linguistics and literature on a flexible course that allows you to follow your own interests in the field. There is also the option to study for the TEFLi, opening up a career teaching English in language schools across the UK and worldwide.

If you are fascinated by English language, linguistics, literature and creative writing, this course provides you with a wealth of opportunities to explore a wide variety of approaches to English. You’ll discover key linguistic frameworks as well as exciting and varied forms of literature, and have the flexibility to design your studies to fit your strengths, learning style and areas of interest.

In your first year, you are introduced to the core skills you need for the degree: an introduction to ways of reading prose, poetry and drama as well as key concepts in linguistics and phonetics. In your second and third years, you build on these core skills while also choosing from a range of optional units that will really capture your imagination.

Why choose this course?

  • Develop your subject knowledge as well as your skills in analysis, critical thinking and communication, creating a portfolio of work and a skill-set that will help you begin your graduate career
  • Benefit from being taught by enthusiastic, highly experienced subject specialists who are nationally recognised for their research, at a University with roots in teacher training going back to 1882
  • You have the option to study for the TEFLi, an important qualification should you wish to teach English in language schools across the UK and worldwide
  • Employability skills are embedded throughout the course and, in your third year, you take a work experience unit which allows you to develop as a professional in your preferred field
  • Learn research methods in your second year which will prepare you for your dissertation in the third year

with Professional Practice Year

This course has the option to be taken over four years which includes a year placement in industry. Undertaking a year in industry has many benefits. You gain practical experience and build your CV, as well as being a great opportunity to sample a profession and network with potential future employers.

There is no tuition fee for the placement year enabling you to gain an extra year of experience for free.

*Only available to UK/EU students.

with Foundation Year

A Degree with a Foundation Year gives you guaranteed entry to an Undergraduate course.

Whether you’re returning to learning and require additional help and support to up-skill, or if you didn’t quite meet the grades to pursue an Undergraduate course, our Degrees with Foundation Year provide a fantastic entry route for you to work towards a degree level qualification.

With our guidance and support you’ll get up to speed within one year, and will be ready to seamlessly progress on to undergraduate study at Bedfordshire.

The Foundation Year provides an opportunity to build up your academic writing skills and numeracy, and will also cover a range of subject specific content to fully prepare you for entry to an Undergraduate degree.

This is an integrated four-year degree, with the foundation year as a key part of the course. You will need to successfully complete the Foundation Year to progress on to the first year of your bachelor’s degree.

Why study a degree with a Foundation Year?

  • Broad-based yet enough depth to give you credible vocational skills
  • Coverage of a variety of areas typically delivered by an expert in this area
  • Gain an understanding of a subject before choosing which route you wish to specialise in
  • Great introduction to further study, and guaranteed progression on to one of our Undergraduate degrees

The degrees offering a Foundation Year provide excellent preparation for your future studies.

During your Foundation Year you will get the opportunity to talk to tutors about your degree study and future career aspirations, and receive guidance on the most appropriate Undergraduate course to help you achieve this; providing you meet the entry requirements and pass the Foundation Year.

 

Course Leader - Dr Nicola Darwood

I graduated with a PhD in English Literature in 2007, and I've been working at the University of Bedfordshire since 2009, teaching across all years of undergraduate study and supervising research degrees. I teach on a range of units, introducing students to literary theory, poetry, prose and plays from the medieval period to the twenty-first century, through to more specialist units such as Modern Irish Literature. I'm the course coordinator for the undergraduate English provision, and really enjoy working with students as they make their transition into higher education, helping them to achieve their full potential during their time at the university.

My own field of research focuses on women writers of the twentieth century and the literature of Bedfordshire, and I've published work on Elizabeth Bowen, Stella Benson and Nancy Spain. I'm also the co-editor for a journal dedicated to the work of Elizabeth Bowen. I'm currently working on an edited collection of essays on women writers of the interwar period, and the University's Literary Bedfordshire project which brings to life writers who have lived or worked in Bedfordshire.

I also enjoy working with our local secondary schools as part of the University's outreach programme, helping to enthuse students and encourage engagement with literature and language.

Course Leader - Dr Nicola Darwood

I graduated with a PhD in English Literature in 2007, and I've been working at the University of Bedfordshire since 2009, teaching across all years of undergraduate study and supervising research degrees. I teach on a range of units, introducing students to literary theory, poetry, prose and plays from the medieval period to the twenty-first century, through to more specialist units such as Modern Irish Literature. I'm the course coordinator for the undergraduate English provision, and really enjoy working with students as they make their transition into higher education, helping them to achieve their full potential during their time at the university.

My own field of research focuses on women writers of the twentieth century and the literature of Bedfordshire, and I've published work on Elizabeth Bowen, Stella Benson and Nancy Spain. I'm also the co-editor for a journal dedicated to the work of Elizabeth Bowen. I'm currently working on an edited collection of essays on women writers of the interwar period, and the University's Literary Bedfordshire project which brings to life writers who have lived or worked in Bedfordshire.

I also enjoy working with our local secondary schools as part of the University's outreach programme, helping to enthuse students and encourage engagement with literature and language.

What will you study?


Studying our English BA (Hons) course will equip you with a solid foundation in the combined fields of English language, linguistics and literature. You will begin with an Introduction to Linguistics and Phonetics where you will learn how speech and language works by exploring the anatomy of the vocal tract to understand how speech is produced. Similarly, you will engage in the study of semantics in The Meaning of Meaning unit that will allow you to explore the nature of language interpretation from a cognitive perspective. Language is also heavily influenced by cultural and societal conventions; therefore, our Forensic Linguistics unit will allow you to understand how language can provide useful insights into an individual’s background and subsequently use this to solve problems in legal and investigative scenarios. Delving further into linguistics, you will be introduced to key concepts of literary Style and Stylistics by examining linguistic practices of poems, plays and prose as well as how this deepens our understanding and enjoyment of literature. As an English student, you will also be introduced to a range of literary genres including poetry, drama and fiction in our Approaching Literature unit.

Building on this, our Radical Change in the Long Nineteenth Century unit will expose you to how literature has contributed to ideas around religion, gender, science and the arts in the long nineteenth century. Through examining poetry, prose and plays, you will also consider Modern and Postmodern Literary Practices around popular culture from the early twentieth century to the present day. In core areas of English study, our unit in Describing Language aims to introduce you to the main structures of English language while also familiarising you with the anatomy of the vocal tract and how sounds are produced. You will then build on key elements of English grammar, descriptive and communication skills in our English Sentence Structure unit while also looking at speech in The Sounds of English unit where you will study the relationship between phonology and grammar, speech and accent variation. This is discussed further in our Exploring Language unit where you will identify aspects of language and its value in specific career fields. Similarly, you will learn How Talk Works and How Text Works by focusing on the rules of conversation, its patterns and norms, and how it varies between people and situations. You will do the same with the written word by examining how texts are produced to help build your language interpretation skills.

Furthermore, you will explore how language is developed and realised by the human mind and brain in our Psycholinguistics - Language and the Brain unit. You will then link this to how language systems and patterns can be useful to various fields and careers in our Exploring Language Professions unit. In other areas of English study, you will study plays in our The Play’s The Thing unit to understand the philosophical, cultural and political conditions under which they were produced. The course also offers a range of optional units from the works of Chaucer to cultural and traditional texts in our Telling Tales: Early Modern Literature and World Literature: Crossing Borders units. You can also engage in critical language study in our Discourse and Ideology unit. In areas of teaching, you will be exposed to research in second-language learning in our Language Teaching, Learning and Assessment unit. Similarly, our TESOL Teaching Practice unit will allow you to apply current theoretical issues in language teaching and methodology to practice by providing you with the skills to design and deliver your own lessons and materials using various teaching techniques.

Another key skill as an educational professional is writing, and this is where our Creative Writing unit will introduce you to writing short stories and poetry that you will share in small group workshops. To aid with this, our Children’s and Young Adult Fiction unit will familiarise you with a range of fictional genres written for children, including film adaptations, fairy tales, and other popular fiction. Moreover, you will get the chance to explore various types of Gothic Literature as well as how contemporary readers respond to the fictional genre. Finally, you will complete a Dissertation where you will choose a topic of interest relevant to your course and apply your academic and practical skills under the guidance of a supervisor. As a useful skill set, our unit in Investigating the Social World will equip you with an understanding of quantitative and qualitative research methods, data collection, analysis and reporting. Additionally, you can also undertake a Professional Practice Year (Education and English Language) to develop your employability skills.

How will you be assessed?


The course takes an incremental and varied approach to the assessment of the course content, culminating in the Dissertation (a substantial piece of original research whose precise focus is determined by each student, according to their anticipated career plans). Here, the ability to plan, execute and evaluate linguistic data and/or literary sources (both primary and secondary sources) is assessed and represents the apex of a student's undergraduate studies.

Other assignments include essays, oral presentations, close readings, reviews, research proposals, a range of phase tests and seen and unseen exams. As you progress from Level 4 to Level 5 to Level 6, it is expected your response to assessment tasks will become more sophisticated as your skills and subject knowledge develop. The level of study is reflected in the level of response required by assessment criteria.

Careers


Upon graduation, possible career pathways include teaching English as a second language; teaching in a primary or secondary school setting; speech and language therapy; forensic linguistics; research; public relations; librarianship; arts administration; journalism; and publishing. (Some careers require further qualifications)

You can also progress to one of our Master’s degrees in English Literature, Applied Linguistics (TESOL) or Master’s by Research, all of which expand your career opportunities or enable you to study for a doctorate.

Entry Requirements

104 UCAS tariff points including 80 from at least 3 A-levels or equivalent

Entry Requirements

48 UCAS tariff points including 32 from at least 1 A-level or equivalent

Fees for this course

UK 2024/25

The full-time standard undergraduate tuition fee for the Academic Year 2024/25 is £9,250 per year. You can apply for a loan from the Government to help pay for your tuition fees. You can also apply for a maintenance loan from the Government to help cover your living costs. See www.gov.uk/student-finance

Merit Scholarship

We offer a Merit Scholarship to UK students, worth £2,400* over three academic years, which is awarded to those who can demonstrate a high level of academic achievement, through scoring 120 UCAS tariff points or more.

Bedfordshire Bursary

If you aren’t eligible for the Merit Scholarship, this Bursary is there to help UK students with aspects of student living such as course costs. The Bursary will give you £1,000* over three academic years, or £1,300* if you are taking your course over four academic years (including those with a Foundation Year).

Full terms and conditions can be found here.

Alternatively if you have any questions around fees and funding please email admission@beds.ac.uk

International

The full-time standard undergraduate tuition fee for the academic year 2024/25 is £15,500 per year.

There are range of Scholarships available to help support you through your studies with us.

A full list of scholarships can be found here.

Alternatively if you have any questions around fees and funding, please email admission@beds.ac.uk

Fees for this course

UK 2024/25

The full-time standard undergraduate tuition fee for the Academic Year 2024/25 is £9,250 per year. You can apply for a loan from the Government to help pay for your tuition fees. You can also apply for a maintenance loan from the Government to help cover your living costs. See www.gov.uk/student-finance

Merit Scholarship

We offer a Merit Scholarship to UK students, worth £2,400* over three academic years, which is awarded to those who can demonstrate a high level of academic achievement, through scoring 120 UCAS tariff points or more.

Bedfordshire Bursary

If you aren’t eligible for the Merit Scholarship, this Bursary is there to help UK students with aspects of student living such as course costs. The Bursary will give you £1,000* over three academic years, or £1,300* if you are taking your course over four academic years (including those with a Foundation Year).

Full terms and conditions can be found here.

Alternatively if you have any questions around fees and funding please email admission@beds.ac.uk

International

The full-time standard undergraduate tuition fee for the academic year 2024/25 is £15,500 per year.

There are range of Scholarships available to help support you through your studies with us.

A full list of scholarships can be found here.

Alternatively if you have any questions around fees and funding, please email admission@beds.ac.uk

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