Aims & follow-up degree programmes
Aims & follow-up degree programmes
English Language and Culture and American Studies
English Language and Culture track
American Studies track
Objectives of the degree programme English Language and Culture
Final qualifications of the degree programme English Language and Culture
English Language and Culture track-specific final qualifications
American Studies track-specific final qualifications
English Language and Culture and American Studies
British and American language and culture have a significant international influence on culture, politics, and language. This means there is a great need for academically-skilled specialists who have an in-depth understanding of the historical and contemporary developments of the language and culture and who can explain them in light of the international situation. The academic importance of the programme lies in the fact that you receive a thorough English or American-focused education, during which you can immerse yourself in the English language and linguistics, English or American culture and literature, and American politics and history.
This programme allows you to gain a large amount of knowledge regarding all aspects of English. You will accumulate a full range of academic skills, concentrating on English (reading, text comprehension, analysis, oral and written presentation of complex ideas), and you will acquire the ability to identify and resolve problems in the field of English and/or American studies independently and professionally. You will acquire a professional English language proficiency level. We view this as essential for your starting position in the labour market. By choosing to study English at the Radboud University Nijmegen, you demonstrate that you are interested in the cultural differences between the Netherlands, on the one hand, and Great Britain and North America on the other. For this reason, you will familiarise yourself with a wide variety of aspects of society, history and culture of Great Britain and North America during the programme. An important part is the opportunity to study and/or do an internship in England, America, or Canada. Since students end up in a wide variety of occupations, you will not only gain knowledge and insight, but you will also acquire additional skills in the fields of speaking, writing, and research during the programme.
The Bachelor’s programme in English Language and Culture has a duration of three years and has two specialisations: (1) English Language and Culture and (2) American studies. You choose which specialisation you want to take at the start of your studies. Depending on your chosen specialisation, you will receive instruction in British or American English. The courses in phonetics and oral communication skills are therefore separated into groups for British and American. Be aware that the choice for the British or American variant automatically means a choice for the study of either English Language and Culture or American Studies.
English Language and Culture specialisation
As a student with a British focus, you will study the literature that has been written in English throughout the centuries from a broad cultural context. We do not limit ourselves to Great Britain, rather the United States, Ireland, and the former British colonies, for example, are also addressed. You will learn to utilise an academic approach to the English language and attention will be given to the development of English and the different variations spoken around the world.
The first year of the programme, also known as ‘B1’, will introduce you to the main aspects of English Language and Culture as an academic field: you will receive training in British-English language proficiency, grammar and linguistics and study British culture and history as well as British and American literature. This will provide you with an introduction to the components of the rest of the Bachelor's phase. At the end of the foundation year, you will receive a binding study advice.
Once you have passed the first year, you will have two more years (120 ECTS credits) to go. In addition to your Major, you will also choose a Minor. An overview of available Minors can be found in the Minors Guide. The Major of the specialisation in English Language and Culture covers the following topics: British-English language proficiency, modern linguistics, and Mediaeval, Early-Modern and Modern British literature.
Once you have completed all courses in the Bachelor’s programme, including your thesis, you will be awarded a Bachelor’s degree. You may then follow on to the Master’s phase and further specialise in the field of English linguistics or literature, or North-American Studies. More information about your relevant Master’s programme can be found in the Master’s Study Guide for Transatlantic Studies: History, Culture and Politics, Linguistics or Letterkunde . Each of the disciplines - North American Studies, Linguistics and British Literature - offers a coherent set of courses. In addition, you will conduct research, which should culminate in a Master’s thesis. Both your Bachelor’s and your Master’s phase may also include an internship and/or study period abroad.
American Studies specialisation
As a student with an American focus, you will study the culture and society of the United States from different angles and will not only gain insight into the American language and literature, but also into American popular culture, American domestic and foreign policy, and many other aspects of this influential world power.
In the first year of the programme you will be introduced to the main aspects of the academic approach of American Studies: you will be trained in American-English language proficiency, in grammar and linguistics, and you will study American literature, culture, history, and politics. This will provide you with an introduction to the components of the rest of the Bachelor's phase. At the end of the first year, you will receive a binding study advice.
Once you have passed the first year, you will have two more years (120 ECTS credits) to go. In addition to your Major, you will also choose a Minor. An overview of available Minors can be found in the Minors Guide. The Major of the specialisation in American Studies covers the following fields: American-English language proficiency, American politics and history, American literature and culture of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, American popular culture (film, music, TV), American art, the American political system, American foreign politics and methodology, and American cultural studies as an academic discipline. The third year of the programme will include several interdisciplinary research seminars on varying themes (for example American diversity and identity, New York as an international city, or themes in the field of sociolinguistics).
Once you have completed all courses in the Bachelor’s programme, including your thesis, you will be awarded a Bachelor’s degree. You may then follow on to the Master’s phase and further specialise in the field of English linguistics or literature, or North-American Studies. More information about your relevant Master’s programme can be found in the Master’s Study Guide for Transatlantic Studies: History, Culture and Politics, Linguistics or Letterkunde . Each of the disciplines – North American Studies, Linguistics and British Literature - offers a coherent set of courses. In addition, you will conduct research, which should culminate in a Master’s thesis. Both your Bachelor’s and your Master’s phase may also include an internship and/or study period abroad.
Objectives of the degree programme in English Language and Culture
You will acquire knowledge and insight in the field of English Language and Culture or American Studies. You will also acquire an academic level of thinking and working, whereby you will be able to find information quickly, assess it critically, and clarify your findings to others with logical arguments, both verbally and in writing. You will also develop self-discipline and self-control: the ability to independently plan and carry out a large task (in particular, the Bachelor’s thesis). Furthermore, you will develop an academic attitude with an eye for detail and for broad contexts and an analytical capacity enabling you to academically and critically assess existing views and insights into your own specialisation based on their long-term potential and value.
Final qualifications for the degree programme English Language and Culture
The English Language and Culture programme at Radboud University has two specialisations: (1) English Language and Culture and (2) American Studies, which each have a separate curriculum. These programmes consist of common and track-specific major courses and work towards six final qualifications, including four common and two specialisation specific ones.
- Your language skill is at the professional level. You can adequately express yourself verbally and in writing in different registers. You are aware of common style conventions and can apply them in written work. You have knowledge of the descriptive grammar and phonetics of English, you can apply theories of grammar analysis to English. You have the competencies to assess your own language knowledge and to improve your own learning process.
- You can analyse relevant issues from within the English language, literature and culture/American studies with a large degree of autonomy. Analysis and reasoning bear witness to an inquisitive attitude and an ability to methodically and critically process the basic knowledge of the subject area. In addition, you are able to research, with supervision, a specific issue from the field of English/American studies using field-appropriate research methods. You are capable of defining a problem, formulating sub-questions, and conducting theoretical or empirical research using relevant sources. You can report the research results verbally and in writing, in excellent English and in a clearly structured, academic style.
- You can organise your own work, both individually and as a team, and judge it partly on the basis of feedback from others. You can identify gaps in your own expertise.
- Using examples, you can identify the relationship between developments in your field of study and developments within related disciplines (in Humanities and Social Sciences); You will also be able to reflect on your own development as a student with a focus on British or American studies. You are able to make informed choices for your study and career (minors, studying abroad, subsequent Master’s programme, field of work).
English Language and Culture specialisation specific final qualifications
- You gain academic-based knowledge and understanding of the most important aspects of the English language. You can place the development of English - from old English to Modern English - in a historic-linguistic framework and name the main variants of English worldwide. You can explain the status of English as an international “language of the world” and are familiar with issues of first and second language acquisition of English.
- You have academically-founded knowledge and understanding of the main English-language literary works from different periods, genres and regions. You are familiar with medieval English literature, you have an overview of English literature and culture from Shakespeare to the Romance era, and you have detailed knowledge of the North American literature, English literature, and culture from the 19th to 21st century. You can recognise and characterise literary movements as well as analyse English literature on a textual level and place it within a cultural-historical context.
American Studies specialisation specific final qualifications
- You will have academically founded knowledge and understanding of the complexity and diversity of North America from a variety of academic disciplines, including social and political history, literary history, culture (including popular culture), art and foreign politics. You are able to name and describe historical, social, political, literary, and cultural developments and events within their disciplinary context. You are also able to bring insights from different disciplines together in an interdisciplinary way.
- You are familiar with the development of (North) American Studies as an academic discipline both within and outside the United States, and can name, describe, and apply the key concepts associated with the field. You are familiar with the methods of multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary research and can apply them yourself.