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Comparative Literature and Linguistics

Entry Year: 2021

2 study options

Comparative Literature and Linguistics BA (Hons)


Key information

BA (Hons)
3 years
September 2021
UCAS code
Institution code
Clearing entry requirements *
A-levels: BBC.
IB: HL 27 points / 544 at Higher Level.
BTECs may be accepted - call the Clearing hotline for further information. BTEC entry requirements
* Clearing entry requirements are indicative only and subject to change. Please check this page regularly for updates.
UK fees
International fees
Funding information
Paying your fees
EU/EEA/Swiss students

Comparative Literature and Linguistics with Year Abroad BA (Hons)


Key information

BA (Hons)
4 years
September 2021
UCAS code
Institution code
Clearing entry requirements *
A-levels: BBC.
IB: HL 28 points / 544 at Higher Level.
* Clearing entry requirements are indicative only and subject to change. Please check this page regularly for updates.
UK fees
International fees
Funding information
Paying your fees
EU/EEA/Swiss students


Expand your literary and cultural horizons while also exploring language in all its aspects.

Comparative literature makes comparisons and connections between literatures and cultures. You’ll study a range of genres, time periods, and national literatures, as well as cross-cutting themes.

Linguistics complements the study of literature, focusing on how language works and how we communicate. You’ll develop systematic ways of looking at examples as diverse as youth language in our multilingual cities, or the English used in the media and politics. You’ll consider how new technologies shape the form of English and whether the spread of English is changing or even killing other languages.

In your first year, you’ll take modules introducing you to various aspects of linguistic and literary theory. The exciting range of optional modules in your second and third years means you can tailor your studies to concentrate on the areas of literature and linguistics that interest you most. You can also extend your degree by studying abroad for a year.

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You can complete your Comparative Literature and Linguistics degree in three or four years. If you choose to study abroad for a year, this will take place in Year 3 and Year 3 modules will instead be studied in Year 4.

Year 1


  • Culture and Language
  • Foundations of Linguistics
  • Introduction to Literature: Texts and Contexts
  • The Scene of Learning
  • Understanding Culture: An Introduction to Cultural Theory

Choose two from

  • English in Use
  • Introduction to English Syntax
  • Introduction to Phonology
  • Language Acquisition
  • Language in the UK
  • Languages of the World
  • Sounds of English

Please note that all modules are subject to change.

Year 2


  • The Scene of Reading

Choose seven from

  • Aspects of Meaning
  • Colonial Literatures, Post-Colonial Perspectives
  • Describing Prosody
  • Experiments in contemporary Women’s Writing
  • Explaining Grammatical Structure
  • Fairy Tales in the Modern World
  • History of English
  • Homeward Bound: From the Odyssey to O Brother Where Art Thou?
  • Language and Ethnicity
  • Language and Mind
  • Language and the Media
  • Linguistic Typology and Grammatical Theory
  • Literature and Philosophy
  • Madness, Past and Present
  • Migration through Photography
  • Photography and Narrative
  • Presentations of London in Modern European Literature and Film
  • Sociolinguistic Variation and Change
  • Why Belgium? Identities, Cultures, Narratives

Please note that all modules are subject to change.

Year 3


  • The Scene of Writing

Choose seven from

  • Bilingualism and Multilingualism
  • Comparative Literature Research Project
  • Comparative Modernisms: the Case of China and India
  • Constellations: Online Anthology Group Project
  • Faust in Legend, Literature and the Arts
  • First World War Literatures
  • Formal Semantics
  • Grand Tours: 19th century Adventure Stories for Young Readers and their 20th century Afterlives
  • Lost in Translation?
  • On the Subject of Sex II: Queen to Queer
  • Philosophy of Language
  • Photography: The Self and its Image
  • Structures of Spoken English
  • Syntactic Theory
  • The East in the West
  • Unfamiliar Languages

Please note that all modules are subject to change.

Study options

Apply for this degree with any of the following options. Take care to use the correct UCAS code - it may not be possible to change your selection later.

Year abroad

Go global and study abroad as part of your degree – apply for our Comparative Literature and Linguistics BA with a Year Abroad. Queen Mary has links with universities in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia (partnerships vary for each degree programme).

Find out more about study abroad opportunities at Queen Mary and what the progression requirements are.


Teaching and learning

You’ll receive approximately eight hours of weekly contact time, in the form of lectures led by academic staff, seminar groups and workshops.

For every hour spent in class, you’ll complete a further two to three hours of independent study.


Assessment typically includes a combination of exams and coursework, or coursework only. Assessment of linguistics may take different forms, such as research diaries or poster presentations.

Resources and facilities

The School offers excellent on-campus resources to aid your studies, including:

  • the Queen Mary library
  • a phonetics laboratory, including a soundproof recording studio
  • Ling Lunch talks and departmental guest speaker seminars, which allow you to hear from Queen Mary academics, researchers and experts from institutions in Europe and North America
  • events throughout the year, such as public debates, film nights and book launches, which attract diverse audiences and offer networking opportunities.

Learn another language

If you’re interested in learning another language, you can sign up for a course at Queen Mary’s Language Centre, where you can choose from Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Japanese or Spanish.


Loans and grants

UK students accepted onto this course are eligible to apply for tuition fee and maintenance loans from Student Finance England or other government bodies.

Scholarships and bursaries

Queen Mary offers a generous package of scholarships and bursaries, which currently benefits around 50 per cent of our undergraduates.

Scholarships are available for home, EU and international students. Specific funding is also available for students from the local area. International students may be eligible for a fee reduction. We offer means-tested funding, as well as subject-specific funding for many degrees.

Find out what scholarships and bursaries are available to you.

Support from Queen Mary

We offer specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.

Take a look at our Student Advice Guides which cover ways to finance your degree, including:

  • additional sources of funding
  • planning your budget and cutting costs
  • part-time and vacation work
  • money for lone parents.


Comparative Literature and Linguistics graduates have a broad range of skills that can take them through to successful careers, such as analytical and critical thinking, broad cultural understanding and data analysis.

Some apply their degree knowledge directly, entering careers such as education and the arts, whilst others have transferred their skills into areas such as public relations.

Recent graduates have been hired by:

  • Celebrity Chef Consortium
  • ESI International
  • Mandani Girls School
  • Nationwide
  • Tate Modern Project, BBC
  • Weekly Times Newspaper.

Career support

The School of Languages Linguistics and Film offers support to students interested in working during their year abroad. Over the years, we have developed relationships with employers around the world and are able to share a number of interesting roles with our students.

Our careers team can also offer:

  • specialist advice on choosing a career path
  • support with finding work experience, internships and graduate jobs
  • feedback on CVs, cover letters and application forms
  • interview coaching.

Learn more about career support and development at Queen Mary.

Unistats data for these courses

Comparative Literature and Linguistics - BA (Hons)

Comparative Literature and Linguistics with Year Abroad - BA (Hons)

About the School

The School of Languages, Linguistics and Film is friendly and collaborative, bringing a vibrant range of disciplines together. We teach and research on subjects from practical filmmaking to postmodern literature, and from experimental neurolinguistics to Brazilian Portuguese.

This year, Russian and French students have produced plays in their language, linguistics students have presented their research at conferences and film students have directed, shot and edited many short films.

Our work engages the local community through workshops, research projects and public events. We are visited by poets, novelists and outside experts, and we make the most of our location, forging strong links with London’s cultural institutions.

In the 2017 National Student Survey, French and Hispanic Studies received overall satisfaction ratings of 100 per cent – top in the UK. Satisfaction among linguistics students was at 92 per cent. German was ranked first in London and Hispanic Studies and Russian in the top five by the Complete University Guide 2018.


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