Applied Languages BA (Hons)
BA Hons Applied Languages
The world’s more connected than ever, so speaking multiple languages unlocks opportunities across a number of fields.
This practical BA (Hons) Applied Languages degree course harnesses your talent for learning languages and turns it into professional skills for an exciting career in multilingual communication.
Whatever career you’re pursuing, from translation to teaching, you’ll develop expertise in at least 2 languages and learn to apply your skills to whatever multilingual field you’re most interested in.
95% Graduates in work or further study (HESA Graduate Outcomes Survey conducted in 2019)
BA (Hons) Applied Languages degree entry requirements
- A levels – BBB–BBC
- UCAS points – 112–120 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent, to include 32 points from a Modern Foreign Language (French, German, Spanish, or English as a Foreign Language) (calculate your UCAS points)
- International Baccalaureate – 26
English language requirements
- English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.
We also accept other standard English tests and qualifications, as long as they meet the minimum requirements of your course.
If you don't meet the English language requirements yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.
I lived and studied in France and Spain during my third year of the course. An amazing experience allowing me to put my language skills into practice, meet lots of people and experience a different culture. I grew as a person, improved my language skills -- and now I'm putting my skills to work.
What you'll experience
On this Applied Languages degree course, you'll:
- Study two languages, choosing between:
A: Two core languages at advanced level (chosen from French, German, Spanish and English as a foreign language)
B: One language at advanced level (chosen from French, German, Spanish or English as a foreign language) plus a different language at beginner’s level (chosen from French, German, Italian, Mandarin or Spanish.)
- Apply your foreign language skills to professional fields such as translation, interpreting or initial teacher training
- Study, teach or work abroad in 2 countries, immersing yourself in the languages you’re learning
- Put your language skills into practice in our language labs, where you’ll manipulate video, sound and text
- Use our professional Interpreter Training Suite, the best kit to develop your interpreting skills
You can also:
- Enhance your degree with an internationally recognised qualification in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages: the Trinity College London Cert TESOL. This opportunity is conditional on a successful performance in an entry test and interview, as places are limited
- Study a 3rd language from Arabic, British Sign Language, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese or Spanish
- Do Initial Teacher Training (ITT), which will entitle you to a bursary of £9,000 in the final year of your degree
Careers and opportunities
What can you do with an Applied Languages degree?
You’ll emerge from this Applied Languages degree course as a skilled multi-linguist, ready to take on roles across a range of fields. Previous graduates have secured positions in areas such as:
- customer relations
Work experience and career planning
To give you the best chance of securing a great job using your language skills, 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 use your skills.
We'll also be available to help, advise and support you for up to 5 years as you advance in your career.
What you'll study on this BA (Hons) Applied Languages degree
Each module on this Applied Languages degree course is worth a certain number of credits.
In years 1, 2 and 4, you need to study modules worth a total of 120 credits. For example, 4 modules worth 20 credits and 1 module worth 40 credits.
Core modules in this year include:
- 2 foreign languages (from Mandarin Chinese, French, German, Italian, Spanish, or English as a Foreign Language) – 20 credits
- Language Project – 20 credits
- Language, Learning and Teaching – 20 credits
- Researching Language And Professional Practice – 40 credits
- Academic Enrichment Programme – 20 credits
- Option to start a 3rd foreign language via the Institution-Wide Language Programme (IWLP), in Arabic, British Sign Language, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, or Spanish – 20 credits
Core modules in this year include:
- Year Abroad preparation
- Academic Enrichment Programme
Optional modules in this year currently include:
- Analysing Media Discourse – 20 credits
- Clinical Linguistics – 20 credits
- Forensic Linguistics – 20 credits
- Intercultural Perspectives On Communication – 20 credits
- Introduction To Teaching – 20 credits
- Introduction To Translation – 20 credits
- A third foreign language via IWLP (Arabic, British Sign Language, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, or Spanish) – 20 credits
- Language For Professional Communication 1 – 20 credits
- Learning From Experience / Teaching Placement – 20 credits
- Managing Across Cultures – 20 credits
- Second Language Acquisition – 20 credits
- TESOL (Teaching English To Speakers Of Other Languages) – 20 credits
- Trinity Certificate Teaching Practice – 20 credits
On this degree course, you'll spend your third year in 2 countries where your chosen languages are spoken.
Optional modules in this year currently include:
- Communication Theory – 20 credits
- Creative Activities in the Language Classroom – 20 credits
- Gender, Language and Sexuality – 20 credits
- Interpreting – 20 credits
- Language and Social Media – 20 credits
- Learning from Experience – 20 credits
- Professional Development: Recruiters and Candidates – 20 credits
- Professional Practice in MFL Teaching & Research Project – 40 credits
- Research Project – 20 credits
- Translation Theory & Practice – 20 credits
- Workplace Discourse – 20 credits
- Writing to Persuade – 20 credits
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 modules may not run every year. If a module doesn’t run, we’ll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.
How you're assessed
You’ll be assessed through:
- oral presentations
- language portfolio
- written essays and reports
- case studies
- book reviews
- magazine production
- group and individual projects
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.
The way you’re assessed will depend on the modules you select throughout your course. Here's an example from a previous year of how students on this course were typically assessed:
- Year 1 students: 23% by written exams, 16% by practical exams and 61% by coursework
- Year 2 students: 38% by written exams, 7% by practical exams and 55% by coursework
- Year 3 students: 100% by coursework
- Year 4 students: 7% by written exams, 3% by practical exams and 90% by coursework
You'll spend your 3rd year studying in 2 countries where your chosen languages are spoken. Our global links mean we have partnerships with universities and employers across the world, including in:
- Latin America
We also have partnerships with NGOs in Africa, which provide opportunities for work placements on your year abroad. You could also become an English Language Assistant abroad, with the British Council.
We’ll help you secure a work or study placement that fits your aspirations. You’ll get mentoring and support throughout the year.
Teaching methods on this course include:
- one-on-one tutorials
- a year abroad studying or a work placement
You can access all teaching resources on Moodle, our virtual learning environment, from anywhere with a Web connection.
For more about the teaching activities for specific modules, see the module list above.
How you'll spend your time
One of the main differences between school or college and university is how much control you have over your learning.
We're planning for most of your learning to be supported by timetabled face-to-face teaching with some elements of online provision. Please be aware, the balance between face-to-face teaching and online provision may change depending on Government restrictions. You'll also do lots of independent study with support from staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle. Find out more about how our teaching has transformed to best support your learning.
We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your BA Hons Applied Languages degree. In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and workshops for about 10 hours a week. The rest of the time you’ll do independent study such as research, reading, coursework and project work, alone or in a group with others from your course. You'll probably do more independent study and have less scheduled teaching in years 2 and 3, but this depends on which modules you choose.
I really like the availability of the teaching staff – they all have set office hours where you can drop by and discuss your progress.
The academic year runs from September to June. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter.
Supporting your learning
The amount of timetabled teaching you'll get on your degree might be less than what you're used to at school or college, but you'll also get support via video, phone and face-to-face from teaching and support staff when you need it. These include the following people and services:
Your personal tutor helps you make the transition to independent study and gives you academic and personal support throughout your time at university.
As well as regular scheduled meetings with your personal tutor, they're also available at set times during the week if you want to chat with them about anything that can't wait until your next scheduled meeting.
Learning development tutors
You'll have help from a team of faculty learning development tutors. They can help you improve and develop your academic skills and support you in any area of your study.
They can help with:
- Improving your academic writing (for example, essays, reports, dissertations)
- Delivering presentations (including observing and filming presentations)
- Understanding and using assignment feedback
- Managing your time and workload
- Revision and exam techniques
Academic skills support
As well as support from faculty 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
- working in groups
- revision, memory and exam techniques
If you have a disability or need extra support, the Additional Support and Disability Centre (ASDAC) will give you help, support and advice.
Library staff are available in person or by email, phone or online chat to help you make the most of the University’s library resources. You can also request one-to-one appointments and get support from a librarian who specialises in your subject area.
The library is open 24 hours a day, every day, in term time.
Support with English
If English isn't your first language, you can do one of our English language courses to improve your written and spoken English language skills before starting your degree. Once you're here, you can take part in our free In-Sessional English (ISE) programme to improve your English further.
Course costs and funding
Tuition fees (2022 start)
- UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £9,250 per year (may be subject to annual increase)
- EU students – £9,250 a year (including Transition Scholarship – may be subject to annual increase)
- International (non-EU) students – £16,200 per year (subject to annual increase)
Funding your studies
Applying from outside the UK? Find out about funding options for international students.
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.
Our accommodation section shows your accommodation options and highlights how much it costs to live in Portsmouth.
You’ll study up to 6 modules a year. You may have to read several recommended books or textbooks for each module.
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.
In your third year for your placement abroad, you’ll need to fund the costs of travel, transport and accommodation. The exact costs will depend on the destination. If you're studying at one of our partner universities, you won't need to pay fees at your host institution, but there may be other costs such as visa, insurance or extra tuition. If you choose to work abroad, can help you find an internship, which may be paid or unpaid.
During your placement year, you’ll be eligible for a discounted rate on your tuition fees. Currently, this discount amounts to 90% of the year’s fees.
The costs associated with your specific destination will be discussed during your second year, as well as possible sources of additional funding.
You’ll have the option to take the Trinity College London Certificate in TESOL, which costs £335.
How to apply
To start this course in 2022, apply through UCAS. You'll need:
- the UCAS course code – Q140
- our institution code – P80
If you'd prefer to apply directly, use our online application form.
You can also sign up to an Open Day to:
- Tour our campus, facilities and halls of residence
- Speak with lecturers and chat with our students
- Get information about where to live, how to fund your studies and which clubs and societies to join
If you're new to the application process, read our guide on applying for an undergraduate course.
How to apply from outside the UK
See the 'How to apply' section above for details of how to apply. You can also 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.
If you don't meet the English language requirements for this course yet, you can achieve the level you need by successfully completing a pre-sessional English programme before you start your course.
Admissions terms and conditions
When you accept an offer to study at the University of Portsmouth, you also agree to abide by our Student Contract (which includes the University's relevant policies, rules and regulations). You should read and consider these before you apply.