BA (Hons) English

Our BA degree in English is a respected and long-running programme in the Northwest, taught by supportive, highly qualified tutors in the field of literature. We’ll work to cultivate your interests in the exciting worlds of fiction, poetry, and drama and help you to develop your written and oral communication skills.

Key information


BA (Hons)

Mode of Study:



3 years


University of Bolton

UCAS points:


UCAS code:


Start date:


Course Details

The study of literature is the study of the representation of life, a metaphor for understanding how the world works. Our BA in English aims to broaden your life experience, by introducing you to a wide variety of literary texts – fiction, non-fiction, drama, poetry, historical, contemporary, from near and far. Through close study, you’ll develop your critical skills, and learn to consider texts from many different perspectives.

We want foremost to expand your understanding of literature and its relation to society – how books have informed, persuaded, shocked and delighted their readers over the centuries and up to the modern day. We’ll support you as you develop your written, oral and critical abilities in a challenging and supportive study environment.

We offer small classes full of big ideas. Our lecturers are renowned scholars and award-winning teachers, who will work to meet your individual learning needs. Through research, discussion, argument and analysis, we offer opportunities for you to learn about the workings of the world around you and to use language effectively and powerfully to achieve your goals.

  • Our English courses are top in the UK for teaching quality and student experience, according to The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.
  • You can benefit from our strong links with external creative organisations, including the nationally acclaimed Octagon Theatre, Bolton, where you can gain behind-the-scenes access and workshop experience.
  • You’ll have access to reduced-price tickets for Octagon performances and other events related to your course, including poetry readings.
  • We’ll encourage you to submit your work to our recognised literary magazine The Bolton Review so you can gain publishing experience.
Key Features
  • We offer popular options in women’s writing, Gothic fiction, children’s literature, film adaptation and contemporary poetry, in addition to a range of exciting core modules that build on our close links with the Creative Writing team.
  • Our English tutors actively research the three core areas of poetry, prose and drama, feeding their knowledge back into the curriculum so you can benefit from the latest thinking and discoveries.
  • We work to help you develop a range of skills that are highly valued by employers, such as written and verbal communication, presenting information and ideas, argument and persuasion, working to deadlines, research and critical analysis, listening, IT, cultural awareness, and lifelong learning.
  • You’ll be encouraged to attend guest lectures from literary scholars, and to hear contemporary writers read at the University’s regular, well-established “Live Literature” events.

  • 96 UCAS points. Please see our guide to the UCAS Tariff for examples of how to achieve these points.
  • Your Level 3 subjects should normally include English; for instance, A-level English Language and Literature or Access to HE Diploma in a relevant subject.
  • You should also have five GCSEs at grade C or above or grade 4 to 9 (or equivalent) including English.
  • If you don't have the above qualifications but have a strong portfolio of relevant work then we encourage you to apply.
  • You may be required to attend an interview and/or provide a portfolio of work.
  • If English isn’t your first language you’ll also need IELTS 6.0 with no less than 5.5 in any band (or equivalent). We also accept a range of other English language qualifications – please visit our English Language Requirements web page for more details.

Where changes are made to material information contained in this course description or a decision is taken to suspend a course between the offer of admissions and enrolment, we will inform applicants at the earliest possible opportunity and will outline the various options available to the applicant.

The skills you gain by undertaking an English degree are marketable in most career areas. As an English student you’ll be encouraged to lead and participate in discussions, work with others when presenting information and ideas, and effectively convey arguments and opinions, using your judgement to weigh up different options and perspectives. In addition, you’ll be encouraged to develop comprehensive written and spoken communication skills.

As English is a non-vocational course, extracurricular skills are vital in developing your employability. Many undergraduates write for student newspapers or volunteer in a range of different areas to enhance their transferable skills.

What can I do with this qualification?

English graduates are found in most industries, filling a variety of roles. They are often found where strong communication and written English skills are top priorities; for example, in media, publishing, journalism, teaching, advertising, marketing and PR. These roles combine high levels of creativity with excellent communication skills.

As one of the principal humanities subjects on the National Curriculum an English degree is an excellent starting point for entry into the teaching profession. To teach at primary or secondary level you’ll need a professional teaching qualification and experience of working with young people. To work at University level you’ll be required to gain at least a Master’s degree (in the field in which you wish to teach) and often a PhD.

Some English graduates choose to continue their academic studies by doing more vocational postgraduate courses in areas such as journalism, librarianship or law.

Alternative career options

Graduates can use their qualification in English to enter a range of other careers including law, business, accountancy and finance, retail management, youth work, probation work, recruitment and sales. For some of these roles, both relevant experience and postgraduate study is required. Other possible options include:

  • Libraries
  • Information, research and records management
  • Police and Fire Service
  • Market Research
  • Housing
  • Events management
  • Careers guidance
  • Local and national government
  • Heritage and culture
  • Arts administration
  • Teaching abroad
  • Research and consultancy
  • Voluntary and charitable organisations
  • Tourism

Course fees
Home Fees Year of study Total
Entry year2021/222022/232023/242024/25
International Year of study Total
Entry year2021/222022/232023/242024/25

Important note regarding tuition fees for the 2021-2022 academic year: EU nationals who meet residency requirements (have settled or pre-settled status) may be eligible for ‘Home’ fee status. If you do not meet these residency requirements, overseas fees will apply. Irish citizens living in the UK or Ireland will be eligible for ‘Home’ fee status under the Common Travel Area arrangement. Please read the student finance eligibility 2021-2022 policy on for information.

The fees for a student’s course of study will be set for the normal duration of that course subject only to inflationary increases – measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI) recorded in March each year to take effect for subsequent start dates.

For 2021-2022 entry, the maximum government approved undergraduate tuition fee for UK students is £9,250 per year. The University is able to charge this fee subject to an approved Access and Participation Plan for 2021-2022 and its current rating in the Teaching Excellence Framework.


Click here for more information about the scholarships and bursaries available to University of Bolton undergraduate students.

For details of how to apply for this course, please choose your status from the options below:

September start

Please apply through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service) for September entry.

The online application form and guidance notes are available on the UCAS website.

You can apply for up to 5 courses through UCAS (at the same or different institutions) for a fee of £24. Alternatively, if you only wish to apply for a single course at a single institution then a reduced applicant's fee of £13 is applicable.

You will need the following information to complete your UCAS application form:

  • Institution Code Name: BOLTN

  • Institution Code Number: B44

UCAS - Universities and Colleges Admissions Service

Tel: 0870 1122211

January and other start dates

Applications for start dates other than September are made directly to the university via our online application process. Please click on your preferred start date below.

The University welcomes applications from international students from all over the world. We try to make the application process as simple and as fast as possible for our international applicants.

How you apply is determined by your current location and what you are choosing to study:

  1. Apply direct to the University. Links for the next available intakes of this course are shown below. Please click the link which will direct you to the online application form. Please read the user guidance before completing this.
  2. Apply via one of our approved in-country referral partners. A list of our partners may be found on the International pages of this website.
  3. Apply via UCAS for courses starting in September only – visit

Should you have any queries please contact the International Team on +44 (0) 1204 903110 or email

University of Bolton Group Partners

Bolton College
University Technical College
University of Bolton

The University welcomes applications from our group partners and progressing students so we try to make our application process as simple and as fast as possible. By selecting the link for your chosen course from the list shown below you will be taken directly to our online application form. Please read the user guidance before completing this and ensure you upload all supporting documents such as certificates and your personal statement when you apply.

Please ensure when you are asked to add a contact email address you add your college/university email account address as well as your personal address. If you do not add your college address as your contact address we will be unable to identify you as a partner and you will be referred to apply via UCAS, which incurs a cost.

We look forward to receiving your application and you continuing your academic journey with us!

We use a variety of teaching and learning methods to help you achieve your potential. Lectures are used to introduce the literary works being studied. Here we open up concepts and make connections to critical, theoretical and historical information to help enrich your understanding of the texts. Seminars allow you to explore subjects in greater detail and incorporate small group work and whole group discussion.

One-to-one tutorials offer space for you to ask any questions you have, ensuring you understand the topics covered in the lectures and seminars. You can discuss assignments and receive feedback on your work. You’ll also undertake guided independent study; for instance, library research and background reading, preparing for seminar and tutorial activities and working on assignments.

The University’s e-learning portal Moodle will support your learning online by offering additional resources for each module. Guest lectures and readings by a variety of visiting speakers from the literary and theatre worlds will offer you the chance to further develop your knowledge and understanding.

In terms of formal assessment, you can expect essays of varying lengths, notebooks, reviews, presentations, portfolios and exams. These contribute to your final module mark and allow you to demonstrate that you have met the learning outcomes.

We also use other forms of assessment to help you learn, provide you with feedback and inform your development, though these do not count towards your final module mark. You’ll also receive feedback on assessment drafts. This will help to identify any areas which would benefit from extra attention on your part, or where you need more support from your tutor.


The modules listed below may be a mixture of compulsory and optional. You may not have the opportunity to study all the modules shown as part of the course.

  • Scholarship
  • Off the Page
  • Stories and Narrative
  • Classics of American Literature
  • Introduction to Literature: Form and Genre
  • Introduction to Literature: Text and Context
  • Future Directions
  • Critical Dialogues
  • The Literature of Love
  • Perspectives on Poetry
  • Aspects of Prose Fiction
  • Approaches to Drama
  • Gothic Narratives
  • Adaptation
  • Ambivalent Intimacies: Reading Contemporary British Fiction
  • Virtual Victorians
  • Children's Literature
  • Narrative Representations of Female Desire
  • Special Authors
  • Renaissance Drama
  • Contemporary Poetry
  • Dissertation and Research Skills
Assessment methods
LevelAssesment method
Level oneCoursework 91%, Practical exams 9%
Level twoCoursework 74%, Practical exams 9%, Written exams 17%
Level threeCoursework 87%, Practical exams 13%
Learning activities
LevelLearning activity
Level oneGuided independent study 66%, Scheduled learning and teaching activities 34%
Level twoGuided independent study 75%, Placement/study abroad 3%, Scheduled learning and teaching activities 22%
Level threeGuided independent study 80%, Scheduled learning and teaching activities 20%


The university will use all reasonable endeavours to deliver your course as described in its published material and the programme specification for the academic year in which you begin your course. The university considers changes to courses very carefully and the university will minimise any changes. Please be aware that our courses are subject to review on an ongoing basis and changes may be necessary due to legitimate staffing, financial, regulatory and academic reasons. The content of course modules and mode of associated assessments may be updated on an annual basis. This is to ensure that all modules are up-to-date and responsive to employment and sector needs. The published course material and the programme specification contain indicative ‘optional modules’ that may be subject to change due to circumstances outside of our control. For this reason, we cannot guarantee to run any specific optional module.

The academic staff detailed above teach across a range of courses in this subject area and may not teach on this course specifically.

Programme Contacts

Jill Marsden
Programme Leader

+44 (0)1204 903238

Enquiry Team
University of Bolton

+44 (0)1204 903903

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Help Centre

We have the answers to your questions, find all the advice and support in one place.

Part of the University of Bolton Group

Bolton college
Alliance learning
Anderton centre2
RiSE pos rgb logo
TEF Silver QQA Scheme Participant