European Studies

BA, 4 years

This is for you if... you want to combine the in-depth study of French, Spanish, or Italian language and culture with contemporary European politics.

Course Description

European Studies is a degree designed for students who enjoy learning a language and want to explore their abilities while expanding their knowledge of a wide range of other disciplines including European politics. You can choose to specialise in French and Francophone Studies, Italian Studies, or Spanish and Latin American Studies, or a combination of two of these languages and subject areas. If you choose to study two languages, only one language can be taken at beginners level. When you study a language at beginners level you will receive an intensive language course that brings you up to A-level standard within a year. The other language must be taken at post A-level standard.

The course is designed to be very flexible, letting you tailor your programme to your individual interests. There are three main elements to the European Studies degree:

  • Language skills
  • Contemporary European Politics
  • Option modules related to your chosen language, or a second language.

Our language classes are taught predominantly by native speakers with colloquial insight into the languages they teach and the cultures they represent. Meanwhile, the wide range of cultural studies modules you can choose from are taught by tutors who are experts in their respective areas of knowledge.

Developing your foreign language skills gives you a powerful advantage in business and opens up a wide and exciting range of careers. You will be able to immerse yourself in a rich culture of learning-led experience in a supportive learning environment and you will be supported by our team of personal tutors to help you make the best of your time here.

You will study abroad for a year, during which time you can live as a student or work as a teaching assistant, with tutors on hand to help throughout the year. We have links with universities in Belgium, France, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Canada, and Latin America. Alternatively, you can take up an approved work placement. It is even possible to split the year between study abroad and work placement, giving you the best of both worlds. However, it is possible, in exceptional cases, to complete this degree in three years, without a year abroad.

Here at Modern Languages at Leicester, we offer a rich and diverse learning experience, with great facilities, knowledgeable staff who are experts in their fields, and a unique chance to study abroad and build your international communication skills.

Key Facts
Typical offer
ABB
UCAS code
RL99
Start date
September 2017
Department
Modern Languages
Contact

Admissions enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 5281
ahladmissions@le.ac.uk

Course enquiries
+44 (0)116 252 2620
modernlang@le.ac.uk

Modern Languages website



View Key Information Sets

Why Leicester?

We are ranked 8th for Modern Languages by the Guardian University Guide 2017.

Our small group teaching means you will have a greater opportunity to participate in debates and receive more personal feedback on your progress.

Our Modern Languages Society organises academic and social events including film screenings, nights out, guest speakers, language-themed nights, sports events and a weekend in Paris.

Languages at Leicester is an in-house, extracurricular scheme teaching a wide range of languages at different levels including Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, Latin, Russian and Arabic.

Course Structure

Year 1

Year 1

Alongside developing your language skills, you will explore contemporary social issues and the history and culture of the countries of your chosen language. Additionally, you will build a political understanding of modern Europe. Alternatively, you may choose to study a second language to intermediate or full degree level.

Core modules

  • Language modules (in either one or two languages)
  • International Relations Since 1945
  • Politics, Power and Ethics (only if you are studying one language rather than two)
  • Core Skills for Language Learners (only if you are taking a language at advanced level)

Option modules

Choose your option modules from the following lists:

French option modules

    Italian option modules

    Spanish option modules

      Politics option modules

      • Politics, Power and Ethics
      • Current Issues in International Relations
      • Introduction to Political Systems

      An additional feature of the degree is the Summer School during the summer vacation at the end of the first year, consisting of a three-week course in the country of your beginners level language. Students studying two languages at Advanced level may choose which of those countries to visit. The Summer School is fully funded by the University.

       


       

      Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

      Year 2

      Year 2

      In your second year, you will continue to develop your skills in your chosen language(s). You will also have a choice of a wide variety of politics and international relations, cultural, linguistic and literary modules. In the second semester all students take the European Union Politics module to ensure a good grounding in European politics.

      Core modules

      • Language modules (in either one or two languages)

      Option modules

      Choose your option modules from the following lists:

      French option modules

      Italian option modules

      Spanish option modules

      Politics option modules

      Choose at least two option modules from this list:

      • Political Ideas
      • Political Parties in Contemporary Britain
      • Political Analysis (required if you would like to complete a Politics dissertation)
      • European Union Politics


      Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

      Year 3

      Year 3

      The Year Abroad is a fundamental element of our Modern Languages degrees, giving you the chance to study or work in one or two countries related to your course. Alternatively, you can apply to spend a year working as a British Council language-teaching assistant or on some other work placement of your choice, subject to approval. It is even possible to split the year between study abroad and work placement, giving you the best of both worlds. However, it is possible, in exceptional cases, to complete this degree in three years, without a year abroad.

      Studying abroad is central to what makes our graduates stand out. You will acquire life skills that are becoming increasingly significant for a wide range of jobs in our modern globalised society. You will have the chance to perfect your spoken and written language and engage with new societies, whilst all the time building your independence and becoming more employable. Whether you go on to work in the private sector, the state sector, a non-governmental organisation, or become self-employed you will find the experience invaluable. Find out more from our International Office.

      Please note that a year spent abroad still incurs a tuition fee, but this is much lower than for a normal year at Leicester. See our Fees and Funding section for details.

      Modern Languages at Leicester has links with several European universities, administered through the European Erasmus scheme. If you attend one of these, you may be eligible for an Erasmus grant if you comply with European Commission rules and regulations. In addition, if you are eligible for a loan from Student Finance you can apply for a travel grant from them.

      • For the latest information on the future of the Erasmus scheme at UK universities please see our Brexit microsite 

      We have links with the following universities:

      France

      Belgium

      Spain

      Italy

      We also have links with some universities outside Europe and the EU. There is no monthly grant when you attend one of these universities, however if you are receiving financial assistance from Student Finance your support will continue and you may also be eligible to apply for additional travel grants or scholarships. We have links with the following universities:

      Canada

      Colombia

      Mexico

      Switzerland

      Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

      Year 4

      Year 4

      In the final year, you will be given a choice of Politics options with a European focus. You will also continue to develop written and spoken skills in your chosen language(s) through advanced language tuition, and you will have a choice of options that allow you to specialise in areas of particular interest to you, such as film, popular culture, contemporary literature, historical and social issues, and specialist aspects of language.

      Core modules

      • Language modules (in either one or two languages)

      Option modules

      Choose your option modules from the following lists:

      French option modules

      Italian option modules

        Spanish option modules

        Politics option modules

        • Politics Dissertation
        • The Politics of War and Peace: Northern Ireland after 1972
        • Political Participation in Britain
        • British Politics and European Integration
        • The Politics of Contemporary British Foreign Policy
        • Parliamentary Studies
        • The Political Legacies of Conflict in Northern Ireland
        • The Conservatives: Crisis and Recovery
        • Political Parties in Western Democracies
        • Democratisation and EU Enlargement in Post-Communist Europe
        • Gender Power and Representation

        Modules shown represent choices available to current students. The range of modules available and the content of any individual module may change in future years.

        Additional Information

        Fully-funded Summer School

        When you take one of our Modern Languages courses, you’ll spend three weeks in one of our fully-funded summer schools during the summer vacation at the end of your first year, which is an integral part of your degree.

        Whether you study in Montpellier (France), Massa Marittima or Florence (Italy), or Santiago de Compostela (Spain), you will live with selected local families and hosts and enjoy language tuition in small groups each morning. In the afternoons, and some evenings and weekends, you’ll take part in cultural and social activities for a complete immersion in the heart of the society, country and region you are visiting.

        The benefits you’ll gain are invaluable - you’ll build your confidence in your chosen spoken and written language, gain crucial transferable skills (on completion of the summer school you will receive a HEAR certificate), discover new cultures, and build life-long friendships.

        Major/Minor Degrees

        Major/Minor options allow you to create your own degree. You can concentrate on one subject as your Major (75% of your course) while broadening your knowledge with a Minor subject (25% of your course).

        Why not complement your Major with a subject that you enjoyed before, or which has vocational elements that can boost your career prospects? Alternatively, you may want to try something completely new that you’ve always been interested in, like a language.

        Find Out More

        Teaching and Assessment

        Teaching

        Language skills are taught in small groups, mostly by native speakers. Our courses stress the importance of communicative ability as well as linguistic accuracy, and oral skills are highly valued.

        Cultural studies modules are taught through a mixture of lectures and seminars, which encourage discussion and debate around prepared topics and texts.

        The use of online tutorials and exercises on Blackboard, the University’s virtual learning environment, allows us to include interactive training in our courses and to facilitate learning in specific areas such as essay writing and grammatical terminology.

        Assessment

        You will be assessed throughout each year by a combination of continuous assessment, seminar presentations, essays, and formal exams at the end of each semester. While final year work is most heavily weighted in determining the degree class, your achievements during your second year and your year abroad are also taken into account.

        You will have regular meetings with your personal tutor to discuss progress in your studies. Your personal tutor will also provide a sympathetic ear for all matters of personal concern, whether academic, financial, housing, career or social.

        Research Stories

        Entry Requirements

        • A/AS-levels: ABB with grade B in French, Italian, or Spanish. Two AS-levels considered in place of one A-level. General Studies accepted.
        • EPQ with A-levels: BBB + EPQ at grade B. A-level subjects to include either French, Italian or Spanish. Two AS-levels considered in place of one A-level. General Studies accepted.
        • Access to HE Diploma: Pass with at least 45 credits at level 3, including some at distinction. Plus A-Level (or equivalent) in French, Italian or Spanish.
        • International Baccalaureate: Pass Diploma with 30 points including 6 at Higher Level in French, Italian, or Spanish.
        • BTEC Nationals: Pass Diploma at DDM, plus any subject requirements.

        Other national and international qualifications considered. If you do not meet the entry requirements for this course, you can apply for the International Foundation Year run by our dedicated International Study Centre. The ISC provides academic and English language support to help you progress to your chosen undergraduate degree at the University of Leicester.

        Second Year Entry may be possible with suitable qualifications.

        Selection Process

        Applicants are not normally interviewed. If you receive an offer you will be invited to visit the department.

        Native Speakers

        If your native language is French, Italian or Spanish, and you wish to study this language at Leicester, you will normally be required, in the first year of study, to take English language modules in lieu of the foreign language modules in your native tongue. If you have native speaker fluency in both English and your chosen foreign language(s), you will normally be required to substitute content modules for the relevant language modules.

        English Language Requirements

        IELTS 6.5 or equivalent. If your first language is not English, you may need to provide evidence of your English language ability. If you do not yet meet our requirements, our English Language Teaching Unit (ELTU) offers a range of courses to help you to improve your English to the necessary standard.

        International Qualifications

        Find your country in this list to check equivalent qualifications, scholarships and additional requirements.

        Countries list

        Fees and Funding

        • Starting in 2016

          • £9,000 per year
          • The fee for a year abroad is £1,250, rather than £9,000.

          Starting in 2017

          An inflationary increase (2.8% based on RPIX*) in tuition fees and student support loans have been announced by the Government for 2017. This is still subject to formal parliamentary approval however, if approved, fees for 2017/18 entry could rise to £9,250 in 2017/18.
           
          After 2017/18, the tuition fee you pay may increase annually in line with inflation (RPIX) and is subject to government regulations.
           
          (*RPIX is a measure of inflation in the UK, equivalent to all items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.)


        • Starting in 2017

          • £15,290 in your first year
          • Year abroad: your fee will be 15% of the full-time tuition fee that applies in that year.
          • Year in industry: your fee will be 25% of the full-time tuition fee that applies in that year.

          After the 2017/18 academic year, the tuition fee you pay may increase annually in line with inflation (based on RPIX - a measure of inflation in the UK, equivalent to all items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments) and is subject to government regulations. 

        Career Opportunities

        In most cases your Year Abroad can include a year-long teaching assistantship or you could spend one or two semesters on a work placement approved by the University.

        Our annual Careers Week includes seminars exploring diverse career paths. Speakers have come from European embassies and the EU.

         

        Careers

        Our Career Development Service is here to support you, with advice on interviews, CVs, work experience, volunteering, and more. From Freshers’ Week to Graduation and beyond, they are here to help you reach your professional goals.

        Course Qualification Duration UCAS Code Availability
        European Studies BA 4 years full-time RL99 Apply Now
        Course
        European Studies
        Qualification
        BA
        Duration
        4 years full-time
        UCAS Code
        RL99
        Availability

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