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BAEnglish & Creative Writing & French

Why this course?

English & Creative Writing

Our approach to the English & Creative writing course is innovative, modern and friendly, giving you a comprehensive understanding of English literature as a core basis for your creative work.

The emphasis is on helping you develop a range of skills to grow your future career, including textual analysis and interpretation. With us, you can study everything from poetry, the novel and drama (stage, screen, and radio) as you would expect on an English and Creative Writing degree, but in addition, at Strathclyde, we offer the opportunity to use creative writing skills as part of your approach to literary criticism.

As part of your experience, you’ll get the chance to work with award-winning scholars and creative writers. We have a reputation for getting to know students as individuals. We also offer a wide range of options, many of them unique in the UK, reflecting our staff interests and expertise.

What you’ll study

All students take one English & Creative Writing class in each semester of the first year. These classes introduce the advanced study of literature and include a focus on research methods and techniques for writing essays – with the option of using a creative as well as critical approach.

Texts studied currently include Shakespeare, Othello; Bronte, Jane Eyre; Rhys, Wide Sargasso Sea; Woolf, Flush; Kay, Trumpet; Defoe, Robinson Crusoe, and a range of poetry from the Renaissance to contemporary slam and rap.

In the second year students take two core classes:

  • Writing Through Time 1 (semester one) 
  • Writing Through Time 2 (semester two)

You then have a choice of one or two interdisciplinary electives:

  • The Construction of Scotland: Text and Context (semester one)
  • Making the Modern Human (semester two)

Writing Through Time 1 and 2, our core classes, give you the confidence to discuss the historical range of English literature, which will include poetry, drama, the novel, and a screenplay. The interdisciplinary elective classes will open out a variety of different ways of thinking about literary Studies in a broader context.

In the third year, you choose (single honours) six option classes (a minimum of two, of which must be in creative writing), or (joint honours) three option classes (one of which must be a creative writing class). Current options offered by staff include:

  • From Greek Theatre to the National Theatre of Scotland
  • Sin in Renaissance Drama
  • The Glasgow Novel
  • Language in Business
  • International Influences
  • Writing War
  • Detective Fiction
  • Directing in the Theatre
  • Scottish Literature: 1770-1914
  • Children’s Literature
  • Reading Poetry
  • Writing Short Fiction and Poetry
  • Dramatic Writing

In Honours year, Single Honours students take five options and the dissertation in either English or Creative Writing (three classes must be from each of English and Creative Writing). Joint Honours students either take two options and the dissertation in either English or Creative Writing or write their dissertation in their other subject and take three English and Creative Writing options (one class must be from English). Current examples of our Honours options include:

  • Dramatic Work in Performance
  • Sixties Britain: Literature, Culture, Counterculture
  • Literature, Mind, and Brain
  • Creative Economies and the Culture Industry
  • Songs: Music and Literature
  • The 1930s: Literature and Culture
  • Victorian Gothic
  • Wild in the Renaissance
  • New Narratives
  • Creative Writing Portfolio

French

French is a major international language. It is the first language of more than 100 million people across the world, while more than 60 million people speak French as a second language.

Studying with us will give you the chance to become a fluent linguist and, with our year abroad programme, an opportunity to experience living, working and/or studying in another country.

What you'll study

Year 1

Two streams are offered in first-year: one for students with Higher French or an equivalent qualification and another for those without. Students in both classes study contemporary French language and aspects of the country’s culture and society.

Years 2 & 3

You’ll continue to develop your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. In cultural classes, you’ll learn more about the history and politics of France and French-speaking countries through literature and film.

Year 4

In your final year, you’ll concentrate on translation, written and oral language and interpreting. Cultural classes – reflecting the research expertise of our staff – are currently offered in areas such as the occupation and how it is reflected in film.

Major projects

In your final year, you’ll build on your project work from previous years and write a dissertation. 

Year abroad

This is a central highlight of the course and a major formative experience for students not just in terms of language but on many different levels, personal as well as professional.

Outreach

We're committed to working with people from other disciplines and walks of life. Each year, we welcome distinguished creative writers and academics to speak about their work and encourage students to come and meet them. The Faculty has hosted numerous international conferences on topics ranging from texts and architecture to cyberculture. We currently host internationally recognised networks on Animal Studies and Stories in Scotland which involve other universities and organisations.

Students who study Modern Languages have the opportunity to join The Language Ambassador Programme, which provides student role models to promote modern languages to young people and encourage them to choose languages as part of their high school curriculum. As role models, the ambassadors will share their experiences and their success, they will also be honest about the challenges they face studying a modern language.

Work placement

A third-year option class on which a student can set up and fulfill a placement as part of their degree is currently in development.  This will allow you to take the skills you have gained from your study at Strathclyde out into the wider world.

Research-based teaching

You will be taught by researchers with international reputations. All of our staff not only teach but write books, articles, drama and poetry and appear in the media and on radio programmes. This keeps our students in touch with the latest ideas in the subject.

Course content

Year 1

English & Creative Writing

English 1A & 1B

These first-year classes offer an introduction to the study of English at university level.

In the course of these classes you will study a range of texts in the three main genres of creative literature - poetry, prose, and drama – and will learn to engage with the critical materials that analyse them, and have the option in assessment to respond creatively to some of these work as well.

Across this year you will also have an opportunity to understand how particular historical and social contexts shape literature, and to discuss ways in which historical literature continues to live and have relevance to the contemporary reader. Current texts studied in this class include Othello, Robinson Crusoe, Jane Eyre, and some contemporary song lyrics and Renaissance poetry.

French

Year 1

Students take two combined classes: French 1A (semester 1), French 1B (semester 2). These courses are mainly organised around a linguistic progression towards level B1 in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. There is a regular input of cultural background which takes the form of three lectures in semester 1 and two in semester 2 covering the following topics:

    • The Making of Modern France
    • France in a Global Context
    • Understanding the French Republic
    • French Identities
    • Contemporary French Society 

In addition, there is an introductory lecture in semester 2 entitled ‘What is translation about?’

Year 2

English & Creative Writing

Writing Through Time

These classes develop your understanding of literary criticism from our first-year classes by engaging with the question of the historical situatedness of literary production, offering an overview of key ideas, debates and literary texts from the Renaissance to the present. Once again our focus is on different genres of writing: this time, poetry, drama, long and short prose fiction, and a screenplay. Through these texts, you will engage with distinct modes of analysis, with literary critical approaches sitting alongside more innovative creative approaches.

Elective

The Construction of Scotland 1

This class offers a wide variety of ways of thinking about 'Scottishness' and Scottish national identity. The main aim of the class it to challenge assumptions of national identity as something that is coherent and fixed by exploring the many complexities, subtleties, and contradictions in Scottish identity. Focusing on issues of language, gender, and place, the class will encourage students to deepen their understanding of 'Scottishness' and the constructed nature of national identity through a literary and cultural lens.

Making the Modern Human

The class aims to introduce you to changing ideas about the human in relation to two key moments in history: the concept of the idea of the beast within from the age of Shakespeare, and the emergence of Darwin's theory of evolution in the mid-nineteenth century. The class will look at shifts in understanding the boundary between humans and animals and at what that meant for how people understood themselves at two very different moments in the past. Core to the class will be how scientific, philosophical and literary materials contemplate the same ideas.

French

L’Économie

Cultural focus: the French economy (role of the state, …), marketing à la française

Linguistic focus: equivalent of –ing in French.

In addition, students specialising in French take the French Culture and History 2 class. This class focuses on the Occupation and French Colonialism/Decolonisation. The historical context for each topic is first set, and documents from the two periods studied, before discussion moves on to the cultural domain, via analysis of the following texts and films:

  • Au Revoir les Enfants (film, Malle)
  • Stupeur et Tremblements (text, Nothomb)
  • L'Étranger (text, Camus)
  • Le Samourai (film, Melville)
  • Anthology of historical texts relating to the Second World War
  • Anthology of historical texts relating to French Colonialism/Immigration
Les Régions

Cultural focus: decentralisation, importance of regions in France.

Linguistic focus: the passive voice.

Les Femmes en Politique

Cultural focus: a further look (after first year) at French politics, concentrating on topical issues.

Linguistic focus: modal verbs.

Le Monde du Travail

Cultural focus: time (35 hour week, RTT and ‘ponts’, paternity/maternity leave, …) & ‘human resources’ (hierarchical organisation, discrimination, unions, relocation,…)

Linguistic focus: the negation, asking questions, using pronouns.

Immigration & Nationalité

Cultural focus: a historical view of immigration in France and a look at the specificity of the French ‘integration’ system.

Linguistic focus: the system of tenses in French (concentrating on past tenses).

La France et L'Europe

Cultural focus: the origins of the European ideal, Europe and the EU viewed from France.

Linguistic focus: subjunctive mood.

Year 3

English & Creative Writing

Writing Short Fiction and Poetry

An introduction to two key genres of creative writing.

Dramatic Writing

An introduction to writing drama for radio, stage, and screen

In addition, students will select additional classes from a range of available options. In the past these have included: 

  • Victorian Literature
  • Language in Business
  • Shakespeare
  • Greek Theatre to National Theatre
  • The Sexed Self
  • International Influences
  • Theories of Literature and Wellbeing
  • Writing War
  • Reading Poetry
  • Directing in the Theatre

French

Les Nouvelles Façons de Consommer

Cultural focus: the impact of consumerism on the environment.

Linguistic focus: adjectives and comparative, hypothesis, conditional mood.

L’Esclavage Moderne

Cultural focus: a historical review of slavery and a look at modern forms of slavery.

Linguistic focus: reinforcement work on subjunctive mood, passive voice and negative forms.

L’Année à l’Étranger

Cultural focus: practical module aiming at preparing students for the year abroad.

There is also a French Studies 3 class: Freedom and Identity in France and the Francophone world. This class is based on the study of the following texts and films as examples of the treatment of the class’s twin themes:

  • Milou en mai (film, Malle)
  • Poverty (various texts)
  • The Dreyfus Affair (various historical texts)
  • Monsieur Klein (film, Losey)
  • Rue des Boutiques Obscures (text, Modiano)
  • National Identity in the Third Republic (various historical texts)
Le Système Éducatif

Cultural focus: a look at current issues in the French education system.

Linguistic focus: reported speech, imperative mood, a further look at pronouns.

Year abroad

Year abroad
This is the year abroad, spent either studying at a foreign university or working as a language assistant or on a work placement. This year is compulsory to gain entry into Honours.

Year 4

English & Creative Writing

Dissertation

This individual project involves original academic research under one-on-one supervision with a member of staff. 

In the past option classes in year 4 have included:

  • Literature, Mind and Brain
  • Wild in the Renaissance
  • Songs: Music and Literature
  • Studio Theatre Performance
  • The Sixties in Britain
  • Creative Economies & Culture Industry
  • The Nineteen Thirties
  • Victorian Gothic
  • Writing Fiction
  • New Narratives
  • Creative Writing Portfolio

French

French

The language course is based on a series of thematic dossiers dealing with current issues in France and the Francophone world. The focus of the class is on reinforcing and developing key professional language skills, such as translation into English, translation into French, liaison interpreting, and 'exposé' (formal oral presentation).

Students in Joint Honours French will additionally have one or more French Studies 4 classes. Everyone will take the Core Class, Images of Women, which considers the changing portrayal of women over the centuries, using the following texts as the basis of discussion:

  • Madame Bovary (novel, Flaubert)
  • Fatale (novel, Manchette)
  • L’événement (Ernaux, novel)
  • Women in the Paris Commune of 1871 (various historical documents)

Joint Honours students not writing a dissertation in French will take these two further classes:

  • The Occupation and its portrayal in French films
  • France since 1945

Assessment

English & Creative Writing

Most classes are assessed by a mixture of essays or other written work and by exams. For some classes, there are no exams and in some cases, oral work is assessed. The approximate coursework/exam split for the majority of classes is as follows: 75/25% (Year 1) 75/25% (Years 2 and 3) 50%/50% (Year 4)

French

Written examinations include translations from and into French, writing for a specific purpose and essay questions. Continuous assessment includes online grammar tests and group projects, allowing you to conduct research, prepare a presentation and produce a poster.

In your final year, you'll write a dissertation. Oral and aural tests are also an important part of assessment at all levels and include listening comprehension exercises, presentations in French followed by discussion and interpreting.

Learning & teaching

English & Creative Writing

In Year 1 you'll have two lectures and one workshop per week. The rest of your teaching is in your other two subjects.

In Year 2, you will have three lectures and two workshops a week and in Years 3 and 4, you will have between two and four lectures and workshops a week, depending on whether you are undertaking joint or single Honours.

A large part of your week will be spent reading in preparation for classes.

French

We focus on the four important language skills:

  • reading
  • writing
  • speaking
  • listening

We make great use of technology in the classroom – interactive lectures and digital language laboratories – and outside, through the use of web-based learning and streamed French television.

In later years, you'll perform presentations, write reports and interpret into English, which prepares you for potential future careers.

Scholars from French universities visit regularly to give guest lectures and lead workshops, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level.

Entry requirements

Minimum grades

Required subjects are indicated following minimum accepted grades.

Highers

1st sitting: AAAA (Higher English plus one from the list below, Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 B, or equivalent)
2nd sitting: AAAABB (Higher English plus one from the list below, Maths/Lifeskills Maths National 5 B, or equivalent)

Higher subjects

  • Classical Studies
  • Drama
  • Economics
  • French
  • Gaelic
  • Geography
  • German
  • History
  • Italian
  • Modern Studies
  • Philosophy
  • Politics
  • Psychology
  • Religious Moral & Philosophical Studies
  • Sociology
  • Spanish

We recognise a wide range of Highers, however, your profile must reflect a good grounding in essay-based subjects.

A Levels

Year 1 entry

Typical entry requirement: ABB (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Minimum entry requirement: BBB (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)

Year 2

Typical entry requirement: AAA (two core subjects required; GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)
Minimum entry requirement: ABB (two core subjects at AB; (GCSE English Language 6/B or English Literature 6/B, GCSE Maths 4/C)

International Baccalaureate

36 (Maths SL5)

HNC/HND

Year 1 entry

HNC Social Sciences: A in Graded Unit; Maths National 5 B or equivalent

Irish Leaving Certificate

Subjects and grades as for Highers

Additional information

Personal statement

It is important to take care over your personal statement. We look for information about your academic and career interests, and your range of skills, abilities, and relevant experience. Your personal statement should show evidence you have a strong awareness and interest in the subject you are applying to.

Deferred entry

Deferred entry normally not accepted.

Applicants with Highers

Due to the high level of competition for the number of available places, it is unlikely that Conditional Offers will be made to anyone attaining less than AAB at the first sitting of Highers.

Second-year entry

Second-year entry for A Level/Advanced Higher candidates is possible with AA/AB in the two subjects you are planning to study.

Admission to Honours

All students will be admitted as potential Honours students. Students may exit with a Bachelor of Arts degree at the end of Year 3 of the programme if they have accumulated at least 360 credits and satisfied the appropriate specialisation requirements. For admission to the final year of the Honours course, a student must have achieved an approved standard of performance.

Widening access

We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

International students

Find out entry requirements for your country.

Degree preparation course for international students

We offer international students (non-EU/UK) who do not meet the entry requirements for an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde. 

Widening access

We want to increase opportunities for people from every background. Strathclyde selects our students based on merit, potential and the ability to benefit from the education we offer. We look for more than just your grades. We consider the circumstances of your education and will make lower offers to certain applicants as a result.

Find out if you can benefit from this type of offer.

International students

Find out entry requirements for your country.

Degree preparation course for international students

We offer international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for an undergraduate degree at Strathclyde the option of completing an Undergraduate Foundation year programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

Fees & funding

How much will my course cost?

2019/20

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU
  • tbc
Rest of UK
  • £9,250

Assuming no change in Rest of UK fees policy over the period, the total amount payable by undergraduate students will be capped. For students commencing study in 2017/18, this is capped at £27,750 (with the exception of the MPharm and Integrated Masters courses); MPharm students pay £9,250 for each of the four years. Students studying on Integrated Masters degree programmes pay an additional £9,250 for the Masters year with the exception of those undertaking a full-year industrial placement where a separate placement fee will apply.

International
  • £14,650

University preparation programme fees

International students can find out more about the costs and payments of studying a university preparation programme at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre.

Please note: All fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my studies?

Students from Scotland and the EU

If you're a Scottish or EU student, you may be able to apply to the Student Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) to have your tuition fees paid by the Scottish government. Scottish students may also be eligible for a bursary and loan to help cover living costs while at University.

For more information on funding your studies have a look at our University Funding page.

Students from England, Wales & Northern Ireland

We have a generous package of bursaries on offer for students from England, Northern Ireland and Wales

You don’t need to make a separate application for these. When your place is confirmed at Strathclyde, we’ll assess your eligibility. Have a look at our scholarship search for any more funding opportunities.

International Students (Non UK, EEA)

We have a number of scholarships available to international students. Take a look at our scholarship search to find out more.

Available scholarships

We have a wide range of scholarships available. Have a look at our scholarship search to find a scholarship.

Contact us

Apply

How to apply – 10 things you need to know

  1. All undergraduate applications are made through UCAS
    Go to the UCAS website to apply – you can apply for up to five courses.
  2. It costs £12 to apply for a course
    The cost is £23 for two to five courses.
  3. The deadline is 15 January each year
    This is the application deadline for most courses. However, please check the details for your particular course. View a full list of UCAS key dates.
  4. You might be asked to attend an interview
    Most of our courses make offers based on the UCAS application. However some might ask you to attend an interview or for a portfolio of work. If this is the case, this will be stated in the prospectus entry requirements.
  5. It’s possible to apply directly to Year 2
    Depending on your qualifications, you might be able to apply directly to Year 2 - or even Year 3 - of a course. Speak to the named contact for your course if you want to discuss this.
  6. There’s three types of decision
    • unconditional – you’ve already met our entry requirements
    • conditional – we’ll offer you a place if you meet certain conditions, usually based on your exams
    • unsuccessful – we’ve decided not to offer you a place
  7. You need to contact UCAS to accept your offer
    Once you’ve decided which course you’d like to accept, you must let UCAS know. You don’t need to decide until you’ve received all offers. UCAS will give you a deadline you must respond by.

    You’ll choose one as your firm choice. If the offer is unconditional or if you meet the conditions, this is the course you’ll study.

    You’ll also have an insurance choice. This is a back-up option if you don’t meet the conditions of your first choice.
  8. You don’t need to send us your exam results (Scotland, England & Wales)
    If you’re studying in Scotland, England or Wales, we receive a copy of your Higher/Advanced Higher/A Level results directly from the awarding body. However, if you are studying a different qualification, then please contact us to arrange to send your results directly.
  9. We welcome applications from international students

    Find out further information about our entry and English language requirements.

    International students who don’t meet the entry requirements, can apply for our pre-undergraduate programmes.

    There’s also an online application form.

    For further information:
  10. Here’s a really useful video to help you apply

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