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The English team at Canterbury Christ Church University is based in the School of Humanities and has a proven track record of excellent supervision by active and internationally acclaimed academic researchers. It has an established and vibrant postgraduate community.

An MA in English is increasingly regarded as a valuable extension of undergraduate study in that it:

  • offers you an anticipated edge in the professional job market;
  • enhances applications for teacher training where advanced specialist knowledge can be an asset. The PGCE English team in the Education department at Canterbury Christ Church University strongly encourages students to gain an MA before applying for the PGCE;
  • provides essential postgraduate experience for you if you intend to continue your study of literature at MPhil/PhD level;
  • provides a period of literary study if you wish to take a career break.

Intended to meet the needs of students who wish to engage in fast-track further study leading to a Master's qualification, our MA is offered full-time (one calendar year). If you'd prefer to study part-time it can also be taken over two years.

The timetable has been designed with concentration of seminars within two days (Mondays and Tuesdays) to offer flexibility with your other commitments.


The MA in English Literature is aimed at anyone interested in studying literature in depth. Our students usually include recent graduates wishing to continue their studies and mature students returning to literary studies after a longer or shorter time of pursuing other interests.


The course offers opportunities to those who wish to pursue an eclectic generalist programme of modules and to those who seek specialisation in particular areas of literary study. You'll therefore enrol on one of four pathways:

  • MA in English Literature
  • MA in English (Literatures of Childhood)
  • MA in English (Literatures Victorian and Modern)
  • MA in English (Literatures Medieval and Early Modern)

For more details on pathways please contact the School of Humanities.


This programme is a significant qualification in its own right, but if you wish to pursue further study it will also give you an opportunity to progress to an MPhil/ PhD or take a PGCE.

The research and writing skills you'll gain, together with the specialist disciplinary knowledge developed during the course, will enhance your employability and can provide an invaluable grounding for careers in teaching, media and journalism, publishing and marketing.

Option Modules

Full-time students choose 5 option modules from the list below: 2 in Term One and 3 in Term Two.

Part-time students choose 1 option module in Term One and 2 in Term Two of their first year and 1 in Term One and 1 in Term Two of their second year.

(Please note: modules may sometimes run in a different term depending on staff availability).

Term one

  • Imagining England: Landscape and Identity in Medieval and Early Modern Literature (20 credits) ^
  • Modern and Contemporary Literature of Childhood (20 credits) * #
  • Victorian Crime Fiction (20 credits) #

Term two

  • Case Studies in Early Modern Literature (20 credits) ^
  • Classic Children’s Literature (20 credits) * #
  • Literature of the Fin de Siècle (20 credits) #
  • Literature and War from 1914 to the Present (20 credits) #

Pathway Requirements

Students taking the MA in English Literature pathway may choose any five options and may write their dissertation on an approved topic in any area of English literature for which a supervisor is available.

Students taking the MA in English (Literatures of Childhood) pathway must include the two option modules marked * and write their dissertation on an approved topic in children’s literature.

Students taking the MA in English (Literatures Victorian and Modern) pathway must include at least two of the modules marked # and write their dissertation on an approved topic in Victorian and/or Modern literature.

Students taking the MA in English (Literatures Medieval and Early Modern) pathway must include the two modules marked ^ and write their dissertation on an approved topic in Medieval and/or Early Modern literature.


Learning and teaching is predominantly by two-hour seminars designed to facilitate scholarly debate on specific topics and texts. Individual tutorials are also offered to students in all modules, and individual supervision forms an essential part of work on the dissertation.


Assessment is mainly by a range of written coursework including research essays and a 15,000-word dissertation.

There are no exams.


Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

Government loans of up to £10,609 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2018. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can   or call 01227 923 948.

Read more about  postgraduate masters student loans.

Visit the English Literature - MA page on the Canterbury Christ Church University website for more details!




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