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Course content

Offering a range of approaches and subjects from the medieval to the contemporary, together with the opportunity to specialise in a particular area, this programme engages creatively with the key cultural, theoretical, historical and political contexts informing the latest literary research.

Overview

English Literature at Cardiff is taught by staff with an international reputation for innovative and influential research. Our passion for the subject and the strength and range of our scholarship enable us to offer a degree which is:

  • Inclusive. We teach across the whole chronological span of English Literature, from Middle English to literature of the twenty-first century. We offer modules in a range of critical approaches, from bibliography and textual studies to contemporary women’s writing, and from Barthesian semiotics and postcolonial ways of reading, to theories of gender and queer studies. We are intrigued by the connections between literature and popular culture and literature and theory, and our teaching reflects these interests.
  • Challenging. Staff offer modules on their research areas of expertise. This means that students engage with new, up-to-date ideas that are helping to shape and define the future of the discipline.
  • Diverse. There are no compulsory modules. You have the freedom to use any critical, theoretical perspective to analyse any type of (aesthetic, cultural, historical) material.
  • Engaged. The MA in English Literature is a successful programme of study that has a strong reputation for offering a comprehensive range of modules from all periods and genres that bring the latest developments in literary and critical theory to bear upon the reading of literary and cultural texts.

Distinctive features

  • A wide-ranging programme of research-led modules taught by specialists in the field
  • A series of dedicated research pathways, including Medieval and Renaissance Studies; Romantic and Victorian Studies; Modern and Contemporary Literature; Gender and Sexuality Studies; Cultural and Critical Theory
  • Access to skills training and various research activities
  • The freedom to assemble a programme of study tailored to personal and professional interests
  • High-level training in the latest research methods, critical theory and scholarly writing and presentation skills in a non-assessed core module
  • Popular two-day residential conference and workshop at Gregynog Hall, where you will present short 15-minute papers in a supportive and lively atmosphere
  • One-day symposium dedicated to increasing your employability skills
  • Opportunities to take part in a series of dynamic research seminar series 
  • Access to specialist library collections

Learning and assessment

Teaching is delivered in seminar groups for all modules. The teaching for each module is text-based and revolves around the exploration of concepts and ideas from a range of literary, historical, and theoretical perspectives within the broad field of English Literature.

The learning activities vary from module to module as appropriate, but will include such as activities as interactive discussions of prepared texts/topics and, in some cases, student-led presentations. 

Encouraged to explore our excellent library resources, you are expected to undertake preparation including wide-ranging reading to enable full participation. 

Career prospects

Postgraduate study is a gateway to many careers within and beyond academia.

Many of our alumni enter (or return to) various professions including academia, primary and secondary education, journalism, publishing, archival and library work, the Civil Service, arts administration and the creative industries.

In addition to taught modules and academic workshops, we also offer dedicated sessions to increase your transferable skills and employability prospects. We also encourage all students on the programme to work closely with the University’s Careers and Employability office. 


Visit the English Literature - MA page on the Cardiff University website for more details!

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