American Studies with English BA (Hons)

american studies with english student smiles while studying
UCAS Code
T700
Mode of Study
Full-time, Full-time sandwich with work placement
Duration
3 years full-time, 4 years sandwich with work placement
Start Date
September 2018, September 2019

Overview

If you’re excited by the history, politics and culture of the Americas and have an interest in English literature, this BA (Hons) American Studies with English Literature degree is a great choice.

From their nation-states and peoples to their diverse cultures, you’ll get a deep understanding of all things North and South America. You'll combine it with a study of literature from classics to the contemporary, and become an expert in reading, analysing and discussing the written works that inspire you.

The course will prepare you for a range of careers, from library and archival work to journalism, teaching and local government positions. 

What you'll experience

On this degree course, you'll:

  • Explore the Americas, from Canada to Chile, and satisfy your interest in these diverse continents
  • Examine US foreign policy and explore important topics such as the impact of race, slavery and emancipation of the Americas
  • Pull apart the influence of Hollywood, gender and cinema on culture, and learn about the civil rights movements that shaped the future of the United States
  • Tailor your studies to the areas of the Americas and literature that excite you the most, choosing units that match your interests
  • Get the opportunity to study abroad in locations such as New York State, Minnesota, North Carolina or the University of Chile and immerse yourself in the culture you’re learning about
  • Develop analytical reading, presentation and team-work skills that’ll serve you in your future career
  • Have the chance to meet high-profile figures in the literary world and attend a reception at our annual Literary Prizes and Public Acclaim event

Work experience and career planning

To give you the best chance of securing a great job when you graduate, our Careers and Employability service can help you find relevant work experience during your course.

We can help you identify placements, internships, voluntary roles and freelancing opportunities that will complement your studies and build your CV.

This course allows you to take the Learning From Experience (LiFE) option. This means you can earn credits towards your degree for work, volunteer and research placements that you do alongside your study.

Placement year

After your second year, you can do an optional work placement year to get valuable longer-term work experience in the industry.

Previous students have completed work placements with organisations such as the British Council, Hays Recruitment and local schools.

You could also take advantage of our international partnerships on your placement year:

  • Make the most of the Brockport Washington Intern Program, offering unique work experience and learning opportunities
  • Gain valuable experience and contacts from time spent working for US Senators or at leading Washington based lobby groups

We’ll help you secure a work placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.

Careers and opportunities

This course prepares you for a wide range of careers in the US, the UK or further afield. You'll get a broadened worldview that will help you apply your skills in any role that demands analysis, argument or communication, while your knowledge of English literature is a great foundation for a career in the arts.

After the course, you could work in areas such as:

  • advertising
  • journalism
  • arts and media
  • public relations
  • copywriting
  • teaching
  • research

Roles our graduates have gone on to include:

  • editor
  • copywriter
  • archivist
  • government administrator
  • journalist

You could also study at postgraduate level.

Our Careers and Employability service can help you find a job or course that puts your skills to work. After you leave the University, you can get help, advice and support for up to 5 years as you advance in your career.

Entry requirements​

To do this degree, you need to apply for the BA (Hons) American Studies course. This is because it's a 'pathway' degree.

You’ll study American Studies in depth and add English as a complementary subject in years 2 and 3. You’ll graduate with a BA (Hons) American Studies with English degree when you finish the course.

These are the entry requirements for the BA (Hons) American Studies course.

Entry requirements for this course may be more flexible during Clearing.
Entry requirements

​Course costs

Tuition fees (2018 start)

  • UK/EU/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year per year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £13,200 per year (subject to annual increase)

Additional course costs

These course-related costs aren’t included in the tuition fees. So you’ll need to budget for them when you plan your spending.

Additional costs

Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.

You’ll study up to 6 units a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each unit.

You can borrow most of these from the Library. If you buy these, they may cost up to £60 each.

We recommend that you budget £75 a year for photocopying, memory sticks, DVDs and CDs, printing charges, binding and specialist printing.

If your final year includes a major project, there could be cost for transport or accommodation related to your research activities. The amount will depend on the project you choose.

You’ll need to pay the costs associated with studying abroad and or doing an overseas placement, these costs are usually around £1000.

You’ll also need to meet any additional tuition costs for units of study you take outside of your agreed study abroad programme. This normally costs around £200.

​What you'll study

Each unit on this course is worth a certain number of credits.

In each year, you need to study units worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 units worth 20 credits and 1 unit is worth 40 credits.

Units currently being studied

Core units in this year include:

  • Introduction to Latin American History
  • Introduction to North American History
  • Introduction to Literature & Culture in the Americas
  • Spectacular Hollywood
  • Studying at University (American Studies)
  • Working Life Today (in the USA)

There are no optional units in this year.

Core units in this year include:

  • Race, Slavery & Emancipation in Americas
  • Civil Rights USA

Optional units in this year include:

  • Puritans to Post-Modernists: American Literature
  • Women's Writing in the Americas
  • Magical Realism
  • US Masculinities
  • Home and Away: USA Foreign and Domestic Policy
  • From Revolution to Reconstruction: US History from 1750-1877
  • Democratisation in Latin America
  • Critical Hollywood
  • Managing Across Cultures
  • IWLP Language
  • Introduction to Teaching

Core units in this year include:

  • Dissertation

Optional units in this year include:

  • Thomas Jefferson and American Republic
  • African American History and Culture
  • Hispanic World in Literature & Film
  • Transitional Justice and Human Rights
  • Gender, Sexuality and Cinema
  • Introduction to Teaching
  • Study Abroad USA
  • Crime Writing
  • Anglo-American Spiritualism
  • Magical Realism
  • US Masculinities

We use the best and most current research and professional practice alongside feedback from our students to make sure course content is relevant to your future career or further studies.

Therefore, some course content may change over time to reflect changes in the discipline or industry and some optional units may not run every year. If a unit doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative unit.

Learning support

As well as support by faculty teaching staff and your personal tutor, you can use the University’s Academic Skills Unit (ASK).

ASK provides one-to-one support in areas such as:

  • academic writing
  • note taking
  • time management
  • critical thinking
  • presentation skills
  • referencing
  • working in groups
  • revision, memory and exam techniques

Teaching​

Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • workshops
  • seminars
  • tutorials

How you'll spend your time

Each academic year is divided into 2 teaching blocks and an assessment period:

  • Autumn teaching block – September to December
  • Spring teaching block – January to Easter
  • Assessment period – Easter to June

Most teaching takes place during the day, Monday to Friday. There's no teaching on Wednesday afternoons. You may occasionally need to go to University and course events in the evenings and at weekends.

How you're assessed​

You’ll be assessed through:

  • essays
  • textual analysis
  • presentations
  • a dissertation

You’ll be able to test your skills and knowledge informally before you do assessments that count towards your final mark.

You can get feedback on all practice and formal assessments so you can improve in the future.

Admissions terms and conditions

When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to our terms and conditions as well as the University’s policies, rules and regulations. You should read and consider these before you apply.

Apply

You need to choose BA (Hons) American Studies when you apply for this course, because this is a ‘pathway’ course. This is where you study American Studies in depth and add English as a complementary subject in years 2 and 3. You’ll then graduate with a BA (Hons) American Studies with English degree when you complete the course. 

If you change your mind after you apply, you can choose not to study English in years 2 and 3. You’ll then graduate with a BA (Hons) American Studies degree when you complete the course. 
How to apply from outside the UK

If you're from outside of the UK, you can apply for this course through UCAS (see the 'How to apply' section above for details). You can also apply directly to us or you can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

To find out what to include in your application, head to the how to apply page of our international students section. 

How to apply

Want to start this course this year?

There are still a few places available. To discuss your options and secure your place, give us a call on +44 (0)23 9284 8090 or ask us to call you back.

Want to start this course in 2019?

To start in 2019 you need to apply through UCAS. You can start your application now and submit it from 5 September. You’ll need:

  • the UCAS course code – T700
  • our institution code – P80

Not quite ready to apply?

Come to an Open Day to explore our course facilities, tour the campus and have a look around our halls of residence.

If you’re new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.

Contact information
  • Admissions
  • +44 (0) 23 9284 5566

Get in touch

Programme specification
Subject Area
History politics and international relations
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