Humanities Shoot; 17th June 2019

Language Studies BA (Hons)

Learn one or two languages and immerse yourself in intercultural communication and awareness, to prepare for a career working in the international community.

University of Portsmouth Connected Degree - 3 year course with 4th year placement

Key information

UCAS code:


Typical offer:

96-104 UCAS points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent

See full entry requirements
Study mode and duration
Start date

Showing content for section Overview


On this BA (Hons) Language Studies degree course, you'll develop the skills to communicate professionally in one or two languages. Immerse yourself in intercultural communication and awareness, and graduate with the confidence to pursue a career in the international community.

Begin your studies as a complete novice, or with some knowledge of the language, and successfully complete your studies to a professional level – C1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) – without being required to spend a whole year abroad.

You'll have the choice to study either:

  • One language in-depth: French, German or Spanish at an advanced or beginner level, or Mandarin Chinese at a beginner level
  • Two languages at advanced level: chosen from French, German, Spanish and/or English as a foreign language
  • Two languages at different levels: one language at advanced level (chosen from French, German, Spanish or English as a foreign language) and one language at beginner level (chosen from French, German, Mandarin Chinese or Spanish)

When you complete this course, you'll be well prepared to begin work that showcases your intercultural awareness and language skills – such as an international English language teacher, a translator for a multinational corporation in any sector, a tour guide for an international travel agent, or a bilingual language editor or publisher.

Course highlights

  • Put your language skills into practice in simulations, scenario exercises, television broadcasts and debates, so you’re ready to thrive in the wide world of work
  • Develop multilingual IT skills including the use of desktop publishing and podcast recording software
  • Immerse yourself in learning a language (or two) to fluency without needing to spend a year abroad - although you'll have the option to study abroad if you want to
  • Choose to mix and match optional modules, or tailor your course by selecting modules specifically within one of four specialisms:
  • teaching and education
  • translation and interpreting
  • culture and linguistics
  • business and industry

Choose your language course

Studying languages at university can open up the world to you, but how do you decide which course is best for you? Meet some of our students and academics, and learn more about our three undergraduate language degrees.

Illijana: Languages, I believe are an essential skill in today's world. We live in an increasingly globalised society, and the more you travel, the more you realise that just one language isn't enough.

Maxine: The three different language courses at the University of Portsmouth are Modern Languages, Applied Languages and Language Studies.

For modern languages, if I was doing Spain, I could learn about South American countries and Franco's dictatorship, so I got a lot more background knowledge.

Illijana: It introduces you to all the skills that are involved with languages such as translation, interpreting, teaching and general cultural knowledge.

DeAvyon: It's called Applied Languages, everything that languages would be applied to, you learn how to function in that world.

We get to learn how we would apply in the workplace, how to function as a foreigner in another country, as well as focusing on the languages and the cultures themselves.

Jack: The course that I'm studying is Language Studies, and in that I'm looking at multiple different modules, looking at written discourse, spoken discourse, different types of English and different aspects of language.

Marjorie Huet-Martin: Students on the course can choose to specialise in different areas.

They can choose to specialise in teaching and education, in translation and interpreting, linguistics and culture, but also in business and industry.

DeAvyon: The thing I love most would most likely be the lecturers themselves.

They're so accommodating and so welcoming.

They provide so much extra information that you wouldn't think that you would need until you hear it.

Sasha Barron:

We're not only teaching students from the book, but we're also immersed in culture, history, business, social affairs, and also music.

Jack: We have things such as the language café.

There's language exchanges within the uni, but also, I think the plethora of literature that the university has available to you to learn about these subjects.

Illijana: As a mature student, I was initially worried about my experience, but it was really inclusive and a friendly environment.

Everyone is definitely very welcoming.

Marjorie: Students on the course have the opportunity to spend a period of time abroad.

DeAvyon: Going on a year abroad is so important. You get to be fully immersed in the culture and the chance to be able to do that as part of my degree is just amazing.

If you put on your CV that you've studied or worked abroad, it just boosts you up above everybody else in the country so much.

If anyone gets the opportunity, you have to take it.

Jack: There are so many career options that have become available to me through doing a language degree.

Marjorie: We have students who have gone into obviously the teaching and the translation and interpreting, but we also have students who go into banking, into fraud investigation.

Some of them become recruitment consultants, education consultants.

They might work in marketing, in digital media, or social media.

Jack: The melting pot that is this degree in terms of module choice really does help you with those careers.

DeAvyon: One of the biggest reasons to come and study at Portsmouth is the amount of socialisation.

I've not really ever felt alone in Portsmouth, which is really nice.

Just as a uni as well, they offer so much to do and so many opportunities as well, which I really love. Portsmouth really gets you involved.

Customise your degree

If you're interested in a career in teaching, you can choose to enhance your degree with additional, widely recognised qualifications.

Qualification options

Take steps to become a teacher while developing your passion for languages.

You can combine your language studies with teacher training and school teaching placements by taking the Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) pathway.

If successful, you'll save an extra year of study, get a £9,000 bursary in your final year of study and gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), which will enable you to teach languages in secondary schools in England and Wales after you graduate.

If you’re interested in teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) you can upgrade your qualifications with the Trinity College London Certificate – an internationally recognised TESOL qualification.

You’ll need to pass an additional entry test and interview to add the Trinity Certificate to your studies.

Contact information


+44 (0) 23 9284 5566

Contact Admissions

Entry requirements

BA (Hons) Language Studies degree entry requirements

Typical offers

  • A levels - BCC-CCC
  • UCAS points - 96-104 points to include a minimum of 2 A levels, or equivalent (calculate your UCAS points)
  • T-levels - Merit
  • BTECs (Extended Diplomas) - DMM-MMM
  • International Baccalaureate - 25

You may need to have studied specific subjects – find full entry requirements and other qualifications we accept

English language requirements

  • English language proficiency at a minimum of IELTS band 6.0 with no component score below 5.5.

See alternative English language qualifications

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.

We look at more than just your grades

While we consider your grades when making an offer, we also carefully look at your circumstances and other factors to assess your potential. These include whether you live and work in the region and your personal and family circumstances which we assess using established data.

Explore more about how we make your offer

What skills and qualities do I need for this BA (Hons) Language Studies degree course?

As well as meeting the entry requirements, you'll need an interest in language learning and a desire to learn about other languages and cultures.

Alternative language courses

Explore all our language undergraduate courses, so you can compare your options and apply for the best course for you.

  BA (Hons) Applied Languages BA (Hons) Modern Languages BA (Hons) Language Studies
Languages you'll study 2 (both at advanced level, or 1 at advanced and 1 as a beginner) 1 (at either advanced or beginner level) 1 or 2 (both at advanced level, or 1 at advanced and 1 as a beginner)
Duration 4 years 4 years 3 or 4 years
Study abroad Optional
Language A Level required    
Find out more Go to course page Go to course page  
Interpreting Training Suite

Take our quiz

Which language degree is your best fit?

Unsure which language degree to choose? Take our quick and easy quiz to find out which of our language courses is best suited to you.


Take the quiz 

Facilities and specialist equipment

Digital language laboratories

Perfect your listening and comprehension skills in a rich, multi-media language learning environment. Find out how to integrate and manipulate video, sound, text and internet sources in different languages.

digital language lab
Explore the laboratories

Interpreter training suite

Develop the skills needed as an interpreter or translator in our Conference Interpreter Suite – equipped with the same technology used in the European Parliament. Get experience of diverse simulated environments – from meetings and conferences to courtrooms.

Interpreter training
Learn more
This course will allow you to develop high language proficiency in your chosen language(s), alongside expert intercultural awareness and competence. It's ideally suited to those who do not wish to spend a period abroad, but do want to develop the practical and professional skills to progress into a rewarding career.

Marjorie Huet-Martin, Course Leader - BA (Hons) Language Studies

Careers and opportunities

Having the ability to communicate effectively with people from different cultures in different contexts can lead to a rewarding career in areas such as tourism, teaching, journalism and marketing, in the UK and internationally.

The additional skills that knowing a language brings can also make you more employable in an increasingly global workforce. The growing use of tools such as video conferencing means you're more likely to work with colleagues in other countries, regardless of whether your own role is mobile or not. In fact, 16% of companies worldwide are completely remote, and 85% of managers believe their future teams will include remote workers (Findstack).

The language skills, intercultural awareness and proficiency in communication you gain from studying this course are especially sought after by businesses and organisations that operate across national borders and cultures.

What jobs can you do with a language studies degree?

You'll graduate with the skills and understanding to take up roles in many fields including:

  • teacher – modern foreign languages or English as a foreign language
  • international journalist or editor
  • translator/interpreter
  • tourist guide
  • bilingual consultant
  • publishing assistant
  • market analyst

What areas can you work in with a language studies degree?

This degree broadens your options so you can pursue almost any career. Learning a second language is useful in all sectors, including:

  • international management
  • translation and interpreting
  • marketing
  • journalism and the media
  • teaching
  • tourism
  • finance

You could also continue your studies at postgraduate level with a Master's in a subject such as Translation Studies or Applied Linguistics and TESOL.

Female student at computer

Ongoing career support – up to 5 years after you graduate

Get experience while you study, with support to find part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities, and work experience.

Towards the end of your degree and for up to five years after graduation, you’ll receive one-to-one support from our Graduate Recruitment Consultancy to help you find your perfect role.

Study abroad (optional)

You can successfully complete this degree course without studying abroad.

If you do choose to take a short-term study abroad experience, you'll build on your language skills in a country where your chosen language(s) is spoken. You can take advantage of our links with universities and employers worldwide, including Germany, Spain, China, Taiwan, Latin America and Senegal.


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

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

What you'll study

Core modules – post-A level route

  • 1 or 2 modern foreign language(s) (from Mandarin Chinese, French, German, Spanish, or English as a Foreign Language) – 20/40 credits
  • French/German/Spanish Language Project – 20 credits
  • Investigating Language Practices  – 40 credits
  • Language, Learning and Teaching – 20 credits

Core modules – post-A level route (if only 1 modern foreign language is studied)

  • Nation, Language and Identity  – 20 credits

Core modules – beginner route

  • 1 or 2 modern foreign language(s) (from Mandarin Chinese, French, German, Spanish, or English as a Foreign Language) – 20/40 credits
  • Investigating Language Practices  – 40 credits
  • Language, Learning and Teaching – 20 credits

Core modules – beginner route (if only 1 modern foreign language is studied)

  • Nation, Language and Identity  – 20 credits

Core modules – post-A level route

  • French/German/Spanish General Language Grade 4 – 20 credits
  • Language for Professional Communication 1 (French/German/Spanish) – 20 credits

Core modules – beginner route

  • French/German/Mandarin/Spanish General Language Grade 3 and 4 – part 1 – 20 credits
  • French/German/Mandarin/Spanish General Language Grade 3 and 4 – part 2 – 20 credits
  • French/German/Mandarin/Spanish Language Project – 20 credits

QTS pathway

If you do the Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) pathway, these modules are also core in year 2:

  • Learning from Experience Teaching Placement - 20 credits

Optional modules

  • Business and Markets in a Global Environment - 20 credits
  • Clinical Linguistics - 20 credits
  • Comparative European Politics - 20 credits
  • Development and Democracy in Latin America - 20 credits
  • East Asian States and Societies - 20 credits
  • Empire and Its Afterlives in Britain, Europe, and Africa – 20 credits
  • Engaged Citizenship in Humanities and Social Sciences - 20 credits
  • English Forms and Functions - 20 credits
  • Forensic Linguistics - 20 credits
  • France in the World: Global Actor or Global Maverick? – 20 credits
  • Global Security - 20 credits
  • Intercultural Perspectives on Communication – 20 credits
  • Introduction to Professional Language Services - 20 credits
  • Introduction to Teaching – 20 credits
  • Introduction to Translation – 20 credits
  • Language in Literature: Stylistics - 2- credits
  • Language of Human Resource Management - 20 credits
  • Managing Across Cultures – 20 credits
  • Marketing and Communication - 20 credits
  • Modern Foreign Language via the Institution-Wide Language Programme (IWLP) – 20 credits
  • Modernity and Globalisation - 20 credits
  • Nationalism and Migration: Chaos, Crisis and the Everyday - 20 credits
  • News, Discourse and Media - 20 credits
  • Politics and Culture of the Hispanic World in 20th Century Literature and Film - 20 credits 
  • Principles of Economic Crime Investigation - 20 credits
  • Professional Communication in a Global Workplace - 20 credits
  • Professional Experience L5 - 20 credits
  • Rethinking Nazi Germany: Politics, History, Society – 20 credits
  • Second Language Acquisition – 20 credits
  • Space, Place and Being - 20 credits
  • TESOL (Teaching English To Speakers Of Other Languages) – 20 credits
  • The Making of the German Nation - 20 credits
  • Transitional Justice and Human Rights - 20 credits
  • Trinity Certificate Teaching Practice – 20 credits
  • Wildlife Crime: Threats and Response - 20 credits
  • World and Transnational Cinema - 20 credits

Core modules

  • Dissertation, Major Project, or Professional Practice in MFL Teaching and Research Project – 40 credits
  • Exploring Language and Culture 1 (French/German/Spanish) – you won't take this module if you spend a semester abroad
  • Exploring Language and Culture 2 (French/German/Spanish)
  • Professional Practice in MFL Teaching and Research Project (QTS pathway only)

Optional modules

  • Communication Theory – 20 credits
  • Creativity in the Language Classroom – 20 credits
  • Englishes in the World – 20 credits
  • Exploring Language and Culture 1 – 20 credits
  • Gender, Language and Sexuality – 20 credits
  • Introduction to Teaching – 20 credits
  • Language and Social Media – 20 credits
  • Modern Foreign Language – 20 credits
  • Professional Development: Recruiters and Candidates – 20 credits
  • Professional Experience L6 - 20 credits
  • Research Project – 20 credits
  • Researching English Vocabulary – 20 credits
  • Spoken Discourse in the Workplace - 20 credits
  • Study Abroad – 40 credits
  • Written Discourse in the Workplace – 20 credits

On this course, you can do an optional work placement year after your second or third year to get valuable experience working in industry.

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

Changes to course content

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. If a module doesn't run, we'll let you know as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.


Teaching methods on this course include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • one-to-one tutorials
  • group tutorials

You'll also have skill development sessions and workshops with learning development tutors.

Teaching staff profiles

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Miss Sara Gomez Villa

Senior Teaching Fellow

Read more
Marjorie Huet-Martin Portrait

Mrs Marjorie Huet-Martin

Associate Head (Global Engagement)

School of Education, Languages and Linguistics

Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

Read more

How you're assessed

You’ll be assessed through:

  • oral presentations
  • essays
  • written work, including reports, articles, case studies, book or film reviews
  • group and individual projects
  • translations and commentaries
  • interviews
  • examinations
  • use of software (desktop publishing, podcasts, vlogs)

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.

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 use a blended learning approach to teaching, which means you’ll take part in both face-to-face and online activities during your studies.  As well as attending your timetabled classes you'll study independently in your free time, supported by staff and our virtual learning environment, Moodle.

A typical week

We recommend you spend at least 35 hours a week studying for your Language Studies degree. In your first year, you’ll be in timetabled teaching activities such as lectures, seminars and workshops for about 12 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.

Term dates

The academic year runs from September to June. There are breaks at Christmas and Easter.

See term dates

Supporting you

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 to enhance your learning experience and help you succeed. You can build your personalised network of support from the following people and services:

Types of support

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 meeting.

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

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
  • Referencing
  • 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.

Our online Learning Well mini-course will help you plan for managing the challenges of learning and student life, so you can fulfil your potential and have a great student experience.

You can get personal, emotional and mental health support from our Student Wellbeing Service, in person and online. This includes 1–2–1 support as well as courses and workshops that help you better manage stress, anxiety or depression.

If you require extra support because of a disability or additional learning need our specialist team can help you.

They'll help you to

  • discuss and agree on reasonable adjustments
  • liaise with other University services and facilities, such as the library
  • access specialist study skills and strategies tutors, and assistive technology tutors, on a 1-to-1 basis or in groups
  • liaise with external services

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.

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.

Global cafe

Global Café

You can meet students from all over the world at the Global Café on Wednesday afternoons. Learn about other's cultures and practise speaking in each other's languages while making new friends and getting to share your own culture.

Language corner

Language Corner

Meet with a language tutor, get help with specific challenges and practise your skills with proficient speakers of your chosen language in this optional weekly drop-in session.

Course costs and funding

Tuition fees

  • UK/EU/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 students – £18,100 per year (subject to annual increase)

Funding your studies

Find out how to fund your studies, including the scholarships and bursaries you could get. You can also find more about tuition fees and living costs, including what your tuition fees cover.

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.

Additional costs accordian

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.

During your placement or study abroad semester, you’ll be eligible for a discounted rate on your tuition fees.

Tuition fees for that year are:

  • UK/Channel Islands and Isle of Man students – £925 a year (may be subject to annual increase)
  • EU students – £925 a year, including Transition Scholarship (may be subject to annual increase)
  • International students – £1,800 a year (subject to annual increase)

The costs associated with your specific destination will be discussed during your second year, as well as possible sources of additional funding.

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 in order to fulfil professional requirements.

There's no cost if you take the Trinity College London Teaching Practice module as one of your options.

If you choose to take this module outside your planned curriculum, there's a fee of £355.

If you opt-out of the QTS pathway, you'll need to carry out a summer school placement in June–July, in both the second and final years of your degree. You'll need to budget for accommodation, travel and subsistence during this period.


How to apply

To start this course in 2024, apply through UCAS. You'll need:

  • the UCAS course code – R905
  • 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.

Applying from outside the UK

As an international student you'll apply using the same process as UK students, but you’ll need to consider a few extra things. 

You can get an agent to help with your application. Check your country page for details of agents in your region.

Find out what additional information you need in 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.