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The English Literature MA pathway is ideal if you don’t wish to be confined to a specific period or disciplinary area. It asks fundamental questions about our ideas of literature and how these might have changed over time.

The pathway’s compulsory module, ‘The Production of Texts in Contexts’, opens up these questions by looking at a broad array of literature from a variety of historic periods. It considers how innovations in printing and publishing have affected writing, and asks to what extent political and social change conditions and defines authorial identities and practices.

Apart from the compulsory core module briefly described below, students taking the generic English Literature pathway can freely choose their remaining three modules from all the other existing pathways and thus sample different topics from different periods. Below are additional links to those pathways that allow you to see the rich variety of staff research interests and specialisms.


The English Literature pathway is currently available for one year full-time study, or two years part-time study.

You take two compulsory modules and three optional modules, as well as the 15,000-word dissertation.

Modules are taught in weekly two-hour seminars. The research-training module will involve visits to archives and galleries which may each take up an afternoon. The dissertation is supervised through sessions with a specially designated supervisor. In addition to the timetabled sessions, you will be asked to attend meetings with your adviser and course tutor. You will also need to undertake many hours of independent learning and research in order to progress at the required level. When coursework deadlines are approaching independent learning hours may need to increase significantly.


You take four modules (two in each semester) and one non-assessed research training module before proceeding to the 15,000-word dissertation.


We understand the need for flexibility for part-time students. In your first year, part-time students take two compulsory modules, a research skills module and one optional module. You are encouraged to begin work on your dissertation at the end of the first year (you submit it in August of your second year). Second year part-time students take two optional modules and the dissertation. Teaching takes place during the day.

All students take these compulsory modules:

Compulsory modules:

You also choose one of the following

Researching Modern CultureLondon Panoramas: Research, Culture and the Long Eighteenth Century, or The Material Text, 1300-1700

Option modules:

You choose three modules from a wide-ranging list of options that changes from year to year. 

In 2017-2018 we hope to offer the following. If members of our specialist research staff win research funding it will mean that their module won’t run, so for that reason this list is indicative only. 

You may, subject to availability and the approval of the School, take one of your option modules from across a range offered by other Schools in the Humanities and Social Science Faculty, or from other Colleges of the University of London.

Learning and teaching

As a student at Queen Mary, you will play an active part in your acquisition of skills and knowledge. Teaching is primarily by small group seminars complemented, where relevant, with visits to museums, galleries, and archives in London. The seminars are designed to generate informed discussion around set topics, and will involve you discussing with your peers your reflections on a range of primary and secondary materials.


English modules are typically assessed via 4,000-word essays, although some modules offer alternative modes of assessment. You will also prepare a dissertation of 15,000 words following the completion of your taught modules. The module essays make up 67% of your overall mark, while the dissertation is worth 33%. Some modules ask you to complete a shorter piece of writing of 1,000; these pieces don't contribute to your overall grade but do allow us to provide formative feedback on your progress.


Tuition fees for Home and EU students

2019/20 Academic Year

Full time £9,150

Part time £4,575

Tuition fees for International students

2019/20 Academic Year

Full time £16,350

Part time £8,175

Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships

We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.

Find out more about QMUL bursaries and scholarships.

Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary

We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:

Visit the MA English Literature: English Literature page on the Queen Mary University of London website for more details!




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