Course options

There are other course options available which may have a different vacancy status or entry requirements – view the full list of options

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Course summary

Our new BA English and Linguistics gives you the opportunity to discover key theories in linguistics and literary studies, develop critical thinking, and acquire unique tools to examine and understand the role of the English language in our globalised, interconnected world. This undergraduate degree comprises modules in English and linguistics allowing you to tailor your degree based on your interests and career path. The English modules give you the chance to gain knowledge and understanding of a breadth of literature from various historical periods from the early Middle Ages to the present day. You will:

  • develop skills in the analysis of literature in its cultural and intellectual contexts
  • hone your abilities in critical thinking using key theoretical frameworks, such as feminism, postcolonialism and psychoanalysis.
In this way, we provide you with a toolkit to further identify and deconstruct hierarchies and systems shaping the world today. The linguistics modules develop your understanding of how the English language is acquired, structured and used in social situations and contexts (spoken/written), in literature and the media. You will:
  • identify and examine complex psychological processes involved in language production/perception
  • analyse varieties of English that emerged from colonial rule alongside contemporary urban linguistic landscapes and issues of intercultural communication
  • consider how to successfully apply this knowledge when teaching English.
By focusing on aspects such as language and ethnicity, race, gender and sexuality, you will acquire the skills you need to formulate original research questions and apply principles of global linguistic citizenship in practice. If you opt for the Foundation Year route, this will fully prepare you for undergraduate study. It is ideal if you are returning to study after a gap, or if you have not previously studied the relevant subjects, or if you didn't achieve the grades you need for a place on your chosen undergraduate degree. Highlights
  • You will be taught by specialists from our departments of Languages, Cultures and Applied Linguistics and English, Theatre and Creative Writing, both centres of teaching and research excellence, where you will be studying with a wide variety of students from all over the world.
  • Our flexible evening study allows you to achieve your educational goals alongside your professional and personal ones.
  • Birkbeck was ranked 2nd in the UK for its English Language and Literature research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.
  • You could be studying in a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and frequented by members of the Bloomsbury Group - now home to our School of Arts - and be taught by leading novelists, dramatists and artists. The building houses our own creative hub which includes the Peltz Gallery, the Gordon Square Cinema and a theatre and performance space.
  • Based at the heart of one of the world's most exciting cities, we combine lectures, seminars and workshops with visits to theatres and other cultural and artistic institutions, and we frequently collaborate with leading arts, cultural, theatre and dance and performing arts organisations, allowing you to ground your studies in real-world practice.
Careers and employability Graduates of this degree can pursue career paths in:
  • the arts
  • editing
  • education
  • international organisations and businesses
  • journalism
  • languages
  • media
  • research
  • translation
  • writing.


For information about course structure and the modules you will be studying, please visit Birkbeck’s online prospectus.

Assessment method

English modules are assessed by essays. There is also the option of a final year dissertation. Linguistics modules are assessed entirely by coursework, mainly in the form of essays.

How to apply

Application codes

Please select a course option – you will then see the application code you need to use to apply for the course.

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Foundation

International applicants

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests. We also accept other English language tests.

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

We welcome applicants without traditional entry qualifications as we base decisions on our own assessment of qualifications, knowledge and previous work experience. We may waive formal entry requirements based on judgement of academic potential.

Unistats information

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Student satisfaction
Employment after 15 months (Most common jobs)
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The student satisfaction data is from students surveyed during the Covid-19 pandemic. The number of student respondents and response rates can be important in interpreting the data – it is important to note your experience may be different from theirs. This data will be based on the subject area rather than the specific course. Read more about this data on the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
International £16020 Year 1

Additional fee information

Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases.
English and Linguistics with Foundation Year at Birkbeck, University of London - UCAS