Durham University

Liberal Arts Durham University Degree level: Undergraduate


Course options

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

Course summary

TEF Gold

Durham University has opted into the TEF and received a Gold award.

Find out more about the TEF.

Liberal Arts offers you the opportunity to design your own programme of study. The Liberal Arts programme complements Durham University’s Single and Joint Honours programmes, enabling you to study modules in up to four subjects in, and beyond, the Faculty of Arts and Humanities. If you are looking for the freedom to follow your intellectual interests, wherever these might take you, then Liberal Arts might be the right programme for you.

In Liberal Arts, it is not only possible to study any subject in the Arts and Humanities, but also most subjects in the Social Sciences. It is possible, therefore, for students to combine History and Politics, for example, but also to study subjects in combinations less likely to be available in a Joint Honours programme, such as Theology and Anthropology, or Music and Sociology, or Philosophy and Geography.

If the subject which you regard as your primary interest is in the Social Sciences, you should apply for the Combined Honours in Social Sciences programme (LMV0).

If your principal subjects include one or more modern languages – French, German, Spanish, Italian, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, or Japanese – then, at the end of your first year, you would transfer to the four-year version of your programme, and spend your third year abroad, either studying at university, or teaching English, or undertaking internships in companies and other organisations. If, however, you do not wish to take any subject other than modern languages, you should apply for the Modern Languages and Cultures programme (R002).

If you are offered a place in one of the University’s international exchange programmes, then, during your second year, you would also transfer to the four-year version of your programme.

Liberal Arts, like its predecessor, Combined Honours in Arts, appeals to highly-qualified, self-motivated, and independent-minded students, who are seeking to make creative connections between their subjects. It offers exceptional flexibility, and the opportunity to study in some of the UK’s most prestigious departments in the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences.

Year 1
In your first year, you will study six modules, in three or four subjects.

Year 2
In your second year, you will study six modules, in two, three, or four subjects.

Year 3 (Year 4 if undertaking a Year Abroad)
In your final year, you will complete a research project in your primary subject, and study four other modules, in two or three subjects.

As a Liberal Arts student, you will be focusing on subjects in the Arts and Humanities, but you will be able to take up to half of your modules each year in subjects in the Social Sciences.

In the Arts and Humanities, the subjects currently available are as follows: Classics and Ancient History / English Literature / History / Music / Philosophy / Theology and Religious Studies / History of Art / Arabic / Chinese / French / German / Italian / Japanese / Russian / Spanish

In the Social Sciences, the subjects currently available are as follows: Anthropology / Archaeology / Business / Economics / Education / Geography / Politics and International Relations / Sociology

Study Abroad
If, in the first year, you are studying Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Russian, or Spanish, and you are planning to continue studying one or more languages throughout your degree, you will include a Year Abroad between the second and final year of your programme of study. The Year Abroad offers you an opportunity to study at a university, or to teach English in a secondary school, or to undertake an internship, in a wide variety of locations in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, or Latin America. You will be transferred from the three-year to the four-year version of your degree programme at the end of your first year, giving you over a year in which to plan the Year Abroad, in consultation with your advisers in the School of Modern Languages and Cultures.

Course details

Subject options

This course offers the following subject options:

  • Anthropology
  • Arabic (Beginners)
  • Archaeology
  • Business
  • Chinese Studies
  • Classics and Ancient History
  • Economics
  • Education
  • English Literature
  • French (post-A level)
  • Geography
  • German (Beginners)
  • German (post-A level only)
  • History
  • History of Art
  • Italian (Beginners)
  • Italian (post-A level)
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Politics and International Relations
  • Russian (Beginners)
  • Russian (post-A level)
  • Sociology
  • Spanish (Beginners)
  • Spanish (post-A level)
  • Theology and Religious Studies


For more information on the content of this course, including module details, please see our website.

How to apply

Application deadlines

If your application is completed by the following date, it’s guaranteed to be considered:

15 January

*If you apply after this deadline, universities or colleges don’t have to consider your application if they’ve filled their spaces, so the sooner you apply, the better!

Application codes

You will need these codes when you add a choice to your application.

You are viewing a course summary page, please select a course option to see the application codes

Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Qualification Offer Further information
UCAS Tariff Not accepted
A level A*AA Please see our website for requirements around specific subjects.
Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (first teaching from September 2016) D*DD To include subject specific A-levels (or equivalent) where required. Please see our website for requirements around specific subjects.
Access to HE Diploma D: 30 credits
M: 15 credits
We require 60 credits with a minimum of 45 credits at level 3 (or equivalent). Applicants may be required to meet additional subject-specific requirements for particular courses at Durham.
Scottish Higher AAAAA Departments will normally make offers based on Advanced Highers. In the absence of 3 Advanced Highers, where these are not offered by the applicant’s school, offers comprising of Advanced Highers and Highers or a number of Highers may be made on a case by case basis.
Cambridge International Pre-U Certificate - Principal D2, D3, D3 Please see our website for requirements around specific subjects.
Extended Project Not accepted
International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme 38 points To include Higher Level subjects at 6, 6, 6. Please see our website for requirements around specific subjects.
Leaving Certificate - Higher Level (Ireland) (first awarded in 2017) H1, H2, H2, H2, H2 Please see our website for requirements around specific subjects.
Scottish Advanced Higher AAA Please see our website for requirements around specific subjects.
Welsh Baccalaureate - Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate (first teaching September 2015) Not accepted

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £9,250 Year 1
International £20,500 Year 1
England £9,250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9,250 Year 1
Scotland £9,250 Year 1
Wales £9,250 Year 1

Additional fee information

No additional fees or cost information has been supplied for this course, please contact the provider directly.

Provider information

Visit our website

Durham University
The Palatine Centre
Stockton Road

Course contact details

Visit our course page
Recruitment and Admissions Office

0191 334 1000