This course allows you to study the historical and cultural aspects of the English language, while improving your range of productive skills and awareness of English as a linguistic system and a literary medium. It also recognises that the study of English is deepened and extended by a thorough knowledge of the structure, meaning and sound systems of language in general. The course provides a rare opportunity to study in depth a formal approach to language alongside the way in which the English language is used.
The course will appeal to you if you enjoy the study of language for its own sake, but it also includes practical modules that make it ideal for those who are interested in a language-oriented career such as teaching English, speech therapy, editing, journalism or advertising. You will also gain the transferable and cognitive skills necessary for lifelong personal and professional development.
Depending on whether the course is taken as a joint Honours or a major/minor combination, the balance of the two subject areas varies.
In general, this degree combination will develop your knowledge and understanding of how the English language works in terms of its structure, how it has changed over time, and the ways in which it is employed in different spoken and written contexts. Your knowledge of English will be informed and contextualised by your wider study of language as a human faculty. In linguistics, you examine what human languages have in common and how they vary in formal terms.
The degree will particularly help to develop your skills of data analysis and the critical evaluation of theories of language. You can study an elective module from across the University in each year.
In Year 3 you can complete a Dissertation in English language or linguistics, and there is also the opportunity to take an internship module during that year. The main modes of teaching are through seminars, lectures and workshops, but much of your learning is independent, conducted beyond the classroom (individually and in groups) in the library, at home, and via online learning.
Assessment is particularly varied in linguistics and English language, from small analytic exercises of language data through to the preparation and execution of your own research project for your dissertation. Different modules include small written reports, individual and group presentations, essays and exams.