English Language and Literature with a Foundation Year - BA (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Q30B
Attendance:
Full Time (4 years)
Starting:
September 2018
Campus:

The BA (Hons) English Language and Literature programme will support you in developing interdisciplinary skills in both areas, as well as the wider field of humanities.

You will have a unique opportunity to strengthen your critical skills in informed reading and analysis, whilst deepening your appreciation for language and literature. You will develop your writing, close-reading and research skills, and learn to express your arguments coherently and persuasively.

Your language studies will be applied to everyday and professional settings, allowing you to strengthen your understanding of communicative processes, while your literature studies will provide an opportunity to examine literature from all of the major periods, movements and genres. Your degree will allow you to tailor your studies to your individual interests.

About foundation courses

This diverse and creative course incorporating a Foundation Year is a must for anyone passionate about English, whether that be language, literature, drama or creative writing.

As part of the foundation year you will develop essential skills and knowledge which will help you succeed in your future degree level studies and which will be transferable to your future career.

You will study a variety of subjects, including language and literature, drama and creative writing, and will learn how these different aspects of English study interact with one another.

Alongside this you will develop core skills in research, critical analysis, planning and evaluation, creativity and effective communication. Understanding how English is studied in context, developing that knowledge and applying it through a range of assignments and assessments, will provide you with a strong foundation upon which to progress to degree-level study at the School of English.

Why study a degree with a foundation year?

Foundation years are a great option if you have the talent, ambition and potential to thrive at Birmingham City University, but do not meet the entry requirements for your preferred course. It’s ideal if:

  • You want the flexibility of a year’s study on a more general course to find out the best degree choice for you.
  • You have changed your mind about your career since you chose your A-levels or BTECs and need to improve your skills in a different subject area.
  • You would like extra time and support to help you build your knowledge, skills and confidence before starting a full degree.

What's covered in the course?

English as a discipline continues to be relevant to the lives we lead and is central to a wide range of contemporary and social contexts. It is this fact on which the School has built its philosophy and approach to English as a subject with interdisciplinary reach beyond its own boundaries.

Understanding how language works in practice, engaging with multiple forms of communication, and examining how language and literature engage with societies and cultures in the past and present, are all vital aspects in understanding how the discipline connects with the wider world, enabling you to focus on the production, interpretation and negotiation of meaning and to understand the world from a variety of perspectives.

You will benefit from student-focused and research-informed teaching in a friendly and supportive learning environment. Our graduates are characterised by their extensive subject knowledge, critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, reflected in the skills and abilities that enables them to adapt to a wide range of career paths and employment opportunities.

The School contributes to the cultural life of Birmingham and the wider West Midlands by: working closely with partner colleges and schools; maintaining close links with cultural institutions such as the Birmingham and Midland Institute (BMI) and Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (BMAG); and working with agencies such as Writing West Midlands. The aim is to provide opportunities for the community to engage with the discipline and the University.

Why Choose Us?

  • You will be taught by world-leading academics and expert practitioners who encourage a community of experimentation, innovation and inclusivity and create an environment in which your learning can flourish.
  • The programme offers multiple opportunities for you to collaborate across disciplines in order to gain new perspectives on the relevance of your study in the wider world.
  • English is a subject highly-prized by employers for the range of transferable skills it develops. Equipped with a strong subject knowledge, you will develop the ability to work as an independent researcher, to communicate effectively in spoken and written forms, to critically evaluate the work of others, and to respond imaginatively to original briefs.
  • English is a global language; its culture has an international reach. Understanding the effects of this and how English has been shaped and reshaped by its engagement with the world at large is a key principle of the programme. You will not only have the opportunity to contextualise English in this way as part of the taught programme but also to take advantage of the study abroad semester offered through the Erasmus scheme in your second year.
This course is not open to International students

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work in jobs such as:

  • Authors, writers and translators
  • Marketing associate professionals
  • Primary and nursery education teaching professionals

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

UK students
Essential

At the point of application, you must have GCSE at Grade 4 or above in English Language. Equivalent qualifications can be considered in lieu as long as the required subject is covered.

80 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level

Typical Offers
A level  CDD. A minimum of 2 A Levels required (must include English A-Level) although other 6-unit qualifications can be considered in lieu of one A-level subject. Applicants with 2 A Level qualifications or equivalent can combine with AS levels to achieve required points.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma

MMP
Access to HE Diploma 60 credits overall. Minimum of 45 credits at level 3. In a relevant pathway.

Scottish Advanced Higher

DDD. Must include English Language.

International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme

Obtain a total of 10 points or above from three higher level subjects. Students who do not complete the IB Diploma will be considered on the basis of their IB Certificate.
Students must have grade 5 in Maths (Standard Level) and English Group A – Grade 4 or above or English Group B and Ab initio – grade 5.
A combination of GCSEs, A-levels and IB certificates will be considered on a case by case basis.

OCR Cambridge Technical Certificate

Must be offered along with either A-levels, AS-levels or BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/BTEC 90 credit diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification/Foundation Diploma in Art and Design/ UAL extended diploma to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma

DM will be considered in combination with either A-level, AS-levels or BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/BTEC 90 credit diploma/ OCR Cambridge Technical Introductory Diploma qualification/Foundation Diploma in Art and Design/ UAL extended diploma to achieve a minimum of 80 tariff points.
Other qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2018 FT 4 years £9,250 per year Apply via UCAS

International Students

Sorry, this course is not available to international students.

The University reserves the right to increase fees in line with inflation based on the Retail Prices Index or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament up to a maximum of five per cent.

Guidance for UK/EU students

UCAS

UK and EU students applying for most undergraduate degree courses in the UK will need to apply through UCAS.

The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) is a UK organisation responsible for managing applications to university and college.

Applying through UCAS
 Register with UCAS
 Login to UCAS
 Complete your details
 Select your course
 Write a personal statement
 Get a reference
 Pay your application fee
 Send UCAS your application

Portfolio Guidance

You are not required to submit a portfolio for this course.

Additional costs

Our courses include activities such as performance, exhibitions, field trips and production of works or artefacts which may require you to purchase specific equipment, instruments, books, materials, hire of venues and accommodation, or other items. Many of these activities are essential and compulsory parts of your learning experience.

The link below gives you an estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on your course. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

View additional costs for this course

Foundation year

During your foundation year you will be taught in small classes where active participation is part of the teaching methodology. Your study will involve reading and analysis, discussion and debate, and practical activities which allow you to test and implement your skills and knowledge. In addition to attending classes you will be required to complete preparation and follow-up tasks and activities to support your learning.

Literature In Time
20 credits

You will study a range of texts which will provide you with a broad knowledge of how they literature responds to their its own time period and to the literary movements specific to that age. As you will study literature from different time periods you will also be able to draw connections between different literary movements and discuss their relationship to one another. You will also focus on different literary genres, for example plays, novels, poems and nonfiction, and be able to identify their specific formal features and discuss their creative use.

Language and Texts
20 credits

This module is designed as a gentle introduction to English Language study. Instead of looking at abstract theories about language rules, you will learn through the close analysis of real texts, including literary texts such as novels and non-literary texts such as newspaper articles, advertising and social media. You will examine these texts in terms of their structure, the words used within them, and their impact on the reader. In doing this you will develop core skills in data collection and analysis, and in summarising and evaluating key findings.

Researching in English
20 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to identify appropriate research methods and material for the study of English. You will learn how to select research material, discriminate between sources, evaluate their relevance and summarise and explain key ideas. You will do this by developing skills which are integral to the study of English at university-level, such as close reading, critical analysis and data compilation and evaluation.

Literature in the World
20 credits

You will be provided with the knowledge and skills to identify and discuss examples of literature which are drawn from different cultural contexts. You will study a range of texts which will provide you with a broad knowledge of the relationship between literature and culture and you will identify and discuss the ways in which literary form has been adapted and appropriated to accommodate different cultural contexts. and the retelling of canonical tales. You will do this by studying a range of paired texts which offer contrasting and often competing viewpoints and which reflect upon both literature’s place within the world and its power to shape the world.

Language and Creativity
20 credits

This module builds upon the knowledge gained in the Language & Texts module. In Language & Creativity you will use your knowledge of linguistic theory to produce your own texts across a range of forms and genres. You will consider topics including persuasive language, metaphor and parody, as well as humour, puns and other wordplay. You will also explore language change over time: how new words are formed and how existing words develop new meanings. You will study and create literary texts as well as non-literary texts, such as advertisements, political speeches, newspaper headlines, comedy sketches, song lyrics, graffiti and memes.

Writing Development
20 credits

During this module, you will develop the research skills acquired in the semester 1 module ‘Researching in English’ by focusing on the practical application of your knowledge and ideas through the production of a series of formative pieces of academic writing, which will culminate in the submission of a longer-length piece of written work. You will develop core subject skills in the effective communication of ideas and will progress from writing about concrete objects to discussing abstract ideas. To do this you will focus on integral steps such as planning and ordering ideas, prioritising points, developing ideas, relating points to evidence and formulating and communicating clear arguments. You will also develop your knowledge of scholarly conventions and matters of presentation.

Year one

Literature, Drama and Origin (semester one)
20 credits

This module introduces you to the study of literature through the examination of authorship, literary history, origins of form, and influence and allusion. You will also learn about the principles of dramaturgy and be encouraged to apply your knowledge in the practical explorations of plays.

Foundations of Language (semester one)
20 credits

This module introduces you to a number of core topics in contemporary language studies, including pragmatics, sociolinguistics, and psycholinguistics. You will also learn about key linguistic concepts and terminology and will develop your skills in critical thinking, analysing data, and identifying and synthesising complex information.

Foundations of Creative Writing (semester one)
20 credits

By experimenting with different ways of gathering source material and generating new writing in response to stimuli, you will shape and craft that writing into prose and poetry. You will develop a rigorous, inventive and sustainable writing practice, in weekly creative writing tasks that will serve as the foundation for your assessment.

Key Critical Concepts (semester two)
20 credits

This module introduces you critical concepts fundamental to undergraduate-level English studies, In order to analyse literary, linguistic, dramatic and media texts. Lectures and seminars will develop your understanding of the key theories of meaning, critical distance and representation, and how these can be applied to texts.

Language in Action (semester two)
20 credits

This module further develops your understanding of language studies and covers a variety of topics, including phonetics, grammar, and corpus linguistics. You will learn how to identify and analyse the phonetic and grammatical features of English in context and will develop your ability to critically evaluate data, construct clear arguments and integrate scholarly research into your writing.

In your second semester you will also have a choice of one of the following modules:

Literature and Conflict (semester two)
20 credits

You will examine the idea of conflict in poetry, the short story and novel. From war and revolution to social class and gender, and also at a psychological level, conflict creates dramatic interest in narrative, and you will consider how a historical understanding of conflict is important in our contemporary world.

Modern Drama (semester two)
20 credits

This module introduces you to dramaturgical styles associated with ‘modernism’ through the exploration of key playwrights and practitioners from the late nineteenth century. You will examine seminal works from this era, both as written texts and in performance, concluding with your own practical interpretation of a chosen play informed by historical and critical research.

Craft of Writing (semester two)
20 credits

This module introduces you to a range of techniques used in creative writing, such as showing, telling, detail, and description. Through exploring different literary formats, such as screenplay and poetry, you will learn about key elements of effective writing and how to apply these techniques to enhance your own work.

Year two

Key Critical Traditions (semester one)
20 credits

This module introduces you to the most influential twentieth-century schools of thought within English. You will employ different critical perspectives for thinking about literature and related art forms, using tools of analysis to reveal the unexpected and exciting possibilities of critical thought. You will explore theoretical works in their own right, and gain insight into how criticism has developed historically.

Grammar and Sounds (semester one)
40 credits

The core foundations of the English language will be explored focusing on the description of English grammar, morphology, phonetics and phonology. Analysing linguistics phenomena in context, you will develop analytical and linguistics skills through using methodological approaches, deepening reflective and critical ability when synthesising complex information.

20 credit module option (semester two)
20 credits

During semester two you will study two 20 credit English modules totalling 40 credits. Choose any two 20 credit modules from the blue button below:

Year 2, 20 credit modules

In your second semester you will also take either the Collaborative Practice module or the Work Placement module (see below).

Collaborative Practice (semester two)
20 credits

The module is an opportunity to learn and critically reflect on the skills of collaboration by enabling you to create an interdisciplinary project with students from complementary disciplines, or with academic staff. Collaboration is a vital employability skill within the Creative Industries and this module allows you to develop these skills, making use of University facilities and with the support of academic staff. Within this module framework, several kinds of collaborative opportunities are available. For example, with the approval of your supervisor, you can determine a project based on your own interests; your supervisor may set you a predetermined project to enable you to work with other students in a way that is appropriate to your subject area; or there may be opportunities for you to collaborate with staff on research projects. In all cases, you must apply your subject skills to an interdisciplinary project which will be agreed in advance with your supervisor.

Work Placement (semester two)
20 credits

The purpose of this module is to enable you to develop professional attributes and subject skills through experience in the work place, and to critically reflect upon your learning in that context. You will normally be expected to arrange your own placement, with support from academic staff and BCU Careers. Typically, the placement duration is 70 hours. This can be achieved in one block, or can be dispersed over a longer period of time, if required. It is also possible to fulfil this module via a shorter placement of 35 hours duration and a linked ‘live’ project set by the employer.

Alternatively, you may choose to take the Study Abroad option which will allow you to achieve all 60 credits needed for semester two:

Study Abroad (semester two)
60 credits

Find out more about studying abroad on our Erasmus page

Year three

Applied Sociolinguistics (semester one)
40 credits

This module will introduce you to the field of Applied Sociolinguistics and how sociolinguistic research can contribute to improving human well-being. You will learn to critically evaluate the role of sociolinguistics in addressing linguistic and social inequalities and how language shapes all aspects of social life. You will work with an external partner and investigate the application of sociolinguistic research to the solution of practical, educational and social problems of all types. You will learn how evidence-led sociolinguistic research can be applied in a variety of settings, including healthcare, law, tourism, the workplace, and other non-academic contexts. The module will develop your skills in leveraging sociolinguistic research to produce demonstrable changes in practice and teach you to how to engage a variety of external stakeholders and end-users in your research.

20 credit module option (semester one)
20 credits

Modules will run in either semester one or semester two and are selected from the list below. While we aim to run the majority of modules please note that availability is dependent on student uptake.

Year 3, 20 credit modules

In your second semester you will also complete one of the major project modules which include: Dissertation, Advanced Poetry, Drama Workshop, and Undergraduate Conference (see below).

Dissertation (semester two)
40 credits

The purpose of the module is to enable you to undertake a sustained, in-depth and theoretically informed research project exploring an area of personal interest. The research outcome is individually negotiated with your supervisor and will take the form of a written piece. Your area of study must be relevant to your programme and you are actively encouraged to choose a topic relevant to their future academic or professional development.

The focus of the module is independent learning, with one to one sessions from a supervisor who is familiar with the selected topic. (In addition, you will be supported by group seminars, workshops and online materials relevant to the discipline.)

Advanced Poetry (semester two)
40 credits

This module will enable you to build upon your current reading and writing of poetry, and to develop your range, technique and sophistication as a contemporary poet and thinker on poetry. As well as cultivating your ability to read poetry sympathetically and critically, you will learn how to nurture the poetic imagination and what Ted Hughes called its ‘psychic disciplines’, with a view to strengthening and emboldening the intuition and sensitivity upon which poetic technique depends. You also will acquire practical knowledge of publishing and performing your own work. In composing, designing and producing a volume of your own poetry, you will initiate, manage and complete an independent creative project, and in writing an author statement to accompany it, you will describe and justify your own ideas concerning poetry, and the relationship between your work and the intellectual and poetic traditions in which it participates.

Drama Workshop (semester two)
40 credits

This module will provide you with the skills to undertake a sustained, in-depth and research-informed practical project as part of a group. You will work collaboratively to identify, stage and perform a play, extracts of more than one play, or alternative type of dramatic text. This task will enable you to explore an area of theatre production or performance that is of personal interest. You will be offered guidance on your choice of text(s) on the basis of the composition and interests of the group, and logistical and technical considerations including performance space. By keeping a production log throughout the rehearsal process, you will record and self-evaluate your developing practice in relation to relevant research. This will enable you to reflect critically on your work, and contextualise it within Drama and English studies.

Undergraduate Conference (semester two)
40 credits

This module will provide you with the knowledge and skills to undertake a sustained, in-depth and theoretically informed independent research project while working collaboratively with other students to stage an undergraduate conference. As a group you will be given a broad theme (for example, ‘Contemporary Identities’, ‘Making History’ or ‘Modern Myths’) decided by your module tutor in advance. You will interpret that theme to produce a focused, 10 minute, oral research paper in one of the following areas: language, literature, drama or creative writing.

You will examine different ways of interpreting the brief based on subject discipline and practice the skills necessary to work collaboratively with others in the running of an academic conference. You will be able to identify a relevant topic and develop it to produce an evaluative and theoretically or creatively-informed response to the initial brief. The conference itself will be supported by a micro-site and twitter feed. Here you will have to create a professional online presence and participate in the marketing and effective communication of the conference proceedings and publicity.

20 credit module option (semester two)
20 credits

Modules will run in either semester one or semester two and are selected from the list below. While we aim to run the majority of modules please note that availability is dependent on student uptake.

Year 3, 20 credit modules

Course Structure

The programme combines traditional teaching and learning approaches with innovative, multi-platform learning support, grounded in a student-partnership model which will encourage engagement beyond the scope of the course and ensure that you develop key transferable skills to enhance your employment. The modules you study will help you develop skills in critical analysis, investigative approach and imaginative thinking.

In Year one, you will focus on developing core knowledge, including theory and practice-based elements, across English Studies. In the second half of Year one, you will be able to specialise further in your chosen area of study, and expand that in your Year two and Year three modules.


Hours in the classroom

In your first year, you will spend a cumulative total of 216 hours in taught class time. In your second year, you will spend a cumulative total of 180 hours in taught class time. In your final year, you will spend a cumulative total of 144 hours in taught class time.

The exact pattern of this will vary depending on which modules you select and when these modules run. Overall, you will usually spend 8 to 10 hours per week in the classroom.

Teaching breakdown

valuelabelcolor
37 Time in lectures, seminars and similar MidnightBlue
63 Time in independent study RoyalBlue

Assessment breakdown

valuelabelcolor
12 Written exams DarkOrange
85 Coursework FireBrick
3 Practical exams #fece5a

Teaching and learning activities

Teaching and learning activities may include lectures, seminars, workshops, field trips and guided independent study. You will also have access to a wide range of extracurricular opportunities, including seminars by prestigious guest speakers and published authors and a programme of scholarly and creative events. Online facilities, such as the University’s Virtual Learning Environment, Moodle, are used to guide, support and enhance your learning experience.

You will benefit from tutorial support and spoken or written feedback on your learning and preliminary work to help you in preparing for and reflecting on your assignments. A wide range of assessment methods are used in the programme, including essays, presentations, exhibitions, conferences and creative portfolios, giving you the opportunity to develop a wide range of skills. 

77 per cent of research undertaken by lecturers from the School of English, classed as world-leading or internationally excellent.
The Research Excellence Framework (REF2014)


Links

The School maintains close links with cultural institutions such as the Birmingham and Midland Institute (BMI) and Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (BMAG) and works with agencies such as Writing West Midlands.

View more examples of student work...

Overseas Opportunities  

We encourage you to consider taking the opportunity provided by the Erasmus scheme during your time with us. Recent graduate, Charlotte Keogh, studied for a semester in Austria as part of her undergraduate degree.

Charlotte said: "Going to live and study in Austria was the single most terrifying and tremendous experience of my life. I left England with a self-taught basic knowledge of German (meaning I could say “hello”, “goodbye” and “can I have a glass of water please?”) and left being able to hold conversations with the gorgeous old ladies who shared my tram journeys through the city every morning."

Read Charlotte's story

Further Study

For further information on courses contact Birmingham City University Choices - Tel: 0121 331 5595 Email: choices@bcu.ac.uk.

students on the grass in front of Curzon

School of English Blog 

A blog that offers you an insight into life as a student at the School of English at Birmingham City University.

Visit the blog 

Enhancing Employability skills

Employability is embedded across our programme, from sector- and industry-specific skills in creative writing, drama, linguistics and literature, through to transferable skills that hold real value regardless of your employment direction, including literacy and numeracy, time management and organisation, oral and written communication, team work, initiative and enterprise, creative and analytical thinking, self-direction and discipline, independence, information gathering and interpersonal skills.

You will have multiple opportunities to engage in problem solving and problem-based learning, particularly through individual assessments and collaborative practice modules, and to reflect on your own career development needs through participating in the Graduate+ scheme and other employability schemes over the course of your degree.

95 per cent of our English graduates are in work or continuing their studies.
(2015/16 DLHE statistics)

Placements

The School is committed to developing strong links with employers in Birmingham and the West Midlands. Several language and Creative Writing modules have explicit employer and industry engagement, where you work in collaboration with employer and external partners over the course of the semester and are encouraged to adopt industry-standard practices to facilitate connections and links independently with external partners.

In the case of the Work Placement module, you will have the opportunity to develop skills and abilities in a sector-specific context, while ensuring that academic aims and objectives are met as part of your wider learning journey.

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

Links to Industry

We regularly seek out opportunities to build further links with partner organisations in the region, including Creative Black Country, Birmingham Literary Festival, Birmingham Museums Trust (including Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery), Black Country Museum Trust, Arvon Creative Writing Foundation, Flatpack Film Festival, West Midlands Screenwriters' Forum, and other Schools within the University, in addition to publishers, charities, third sector organisations, and more, in Birmingham and beyond.


Learn from industry experts

The school regularly organises talks and visits that will provide you with the chance to learn from industry experts with guest masterclasses and visiting authors.

Novelist Jim Crace delivered a series of workshops with students, giving feedback on their work and an insight into the world of professional writing and the publishing industry. Student Nabiyah Saddique said: "It was beneficial to students like me who want to write and be an author by career, to see how his experiences have shaped him and how he has created such beautiful pieces of work from these experiences."

Jim also enjoyed the chance to work with the students: "Everybody tried their hands at pitching an idea, writing the opening paragraphs of a novel, and line editing. It was testing and daunting but nobody fell short. The level of commitment and ability was astounding. London publishers should be beating a path to the School of English; it houses writing talent in abundance."

Graduate Jobs

Our graduates are characterised by their extensive subject knowledge, critical thinking and intellectual curiosity, reflected in the skills and abilities that will enable them to adapt to a wide range of career paths, employment opportunities, or further study at Master’s or PhD level. Graduates go on to careers in writing, teaching, librarianship, marketing, journalism and public relations.

Parkside and Curzon Buildings

Our Facilities

When you join Birmingham City University, the first thing you will notice is the high standard of our campuses. With an investment of £260 million across our buildings and facilities, we are committed to giving you the very best learning environment to help shape your experience.

The Curzon Building

Our School of English is housed in the Curzon Building, a £63 million development, located on our City Centre campus, in the vibrant second city that is Birmingham.

Discover your bright and open learning spaces, your 24 hour (during term time) library, drama, media and radio studios, along with state of the art lecture theatres, and a variety of sociable break-out areas, all adding to your unique learning experience.

The Curzon Building
Curzon Building entrance
Lecture theatre in The Curzon Building.
ADM English Discussions
ADM English Discussions 2
Curzon Building - Social space
Entrance to Curzon Library, which is open 24 hours a day during term time.
A selection of books in our six storey library.
English Drama Workshop 3
English Drama Workshop 1
English Drama Workshop 2
English Drama Workshop 4
Drama room controls 1
Drama room controls 2
The ASK desk – your first point of contact for all queries related to university life.
The light filled atrium leads into the café and restaurant.
The restaurant has a diverse menu with affordable and high quality food.
Curzon Building - Eagle and Ball bar
Eastside Park

Our Staff

As you have a great deal of choice throughout your degree, it’s likely you’ll come into contact with a whole host of our inspiring, research-active staff, including: Dr Robert Lawson, Course Director of the BA (Hons) English programme, sociolinguistics specialist and former recipient of the prestigious Fulbright Award; Dr Sarah Wood, Head of School and a specialist in children’s literature, speculative fiction and women's writing; Dr Tatiana Tkacukova, Subject Lead for Language, who specialises in courtroom communication and forensic linguistics and the recipient of the prestigious EU-funded award Marie Curie Fellowship; Dr and Serena Trowbridge, Subject Lead for Literature, whose expertise is in Gothic literature, nineteenth century poetry and theology, and Pre-Raphaelitism in Art and Literature.

Dr Robert Lawson

Associate Professor

Robert completed his PhD in 2009 at the University of Glasgow, Scotland, where he examined the language use of Glaswegian adolescent males, focusing on fine-grained phonetic variation and the linguistic construction of social identity in interaction. During the course of his PhD, he studied at the University of Arizona for a year, teaching a range of undergraduate courses at the University of Glasgow and University of Stirling, and present at a number of international conferences.

In 2009, Robert took up a post as lecturer in English Language at Birmingham City University, where he continues to research language use in Scotland and the UK. In the academic year 2012/13, he was seconded to the University of Pittsburgh as the recipient of the Fulbright Scholar's Award in Scottish Studies. During this time, he completed a major edited volume about sociolinguistic research in Scotland, as well as a number of peer-reviewed journal articles.

In 2013, he was promoted to Senior Lecturer in Sociolinguistics and BA Course Director, with responsibility for the administration and organisation of the undergraduate BA course. More recently, his research has been on two main areas. The first is language in the media, where him and his colleagues have been looking at gender, interruption and turn-taking in the television show Mock the Week and the broader issue of institutional sexism in the entertainment industry. The second area is language in the public eye and the application of sociolinguistic research beyond academia. This programme of research has resulted in a landmark volume which examines the different ways in which sociolinguistic research can be leveraged for the improvement of human wellbeingand has been a key part of growing the field of applied sociolinguistics.

Read Robert's full profile

Dr Tatiana Tkacukova

Senior Lecturer and MA English Linguistics Course Director
Dr Tatiana Tkacukova has been working as a Lecturer in English Language at Birmingham City University since September 2015. Prior to joining the School of English, she was a Marie Curie Research Fellow working on the EU-funded project on communication challenges of self-represented litigants at the Centre for Forensic Linguistics, Aston University.

Read Tatiana's full profile

Dr Mark McGlashan

Lecturer and BA Course Director

Dr Mark McGlashan is Lecturer in English Language in the School of English. He holds several postgraduate research degrees in language and linguistics from Lancaster University. His interests predominantly centre on Corpus-based (Critical) Discourse Studies and the application of corpus methods to the analysis of a wide range of social issues including nationalism, racism, sexism, and homophobia.

Read Mark's full profile