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BA (Hons) English and Applied Psychology

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West Suffolk College


Three years full-time.

Four and a half to nine years part-time.

Typical Offer: 

112 UCAS tariff points (or above)

BBC (A-Level), DMM (BTEC).

Please see Entry Requirements below.

This course is delivered at the University of Suffolk at West Suffolk College in Bury St Edmunds.


English and Applied Psychology have different theoretical underpinnings, methodologies and academic conventions but human behaviour is the common ground between these subjects.  Whether studying individual or group psychology, deviant behaviour or the psychology of emotion, literature offers examples to illustrate concepts and theories in Psychology.  Psychology, in turn, provides models of behaviour and analytical methods which can be applied in the study of literary characters and scenarios.  In these and other ways, this combination provides a valuable opportunity to develop versatile skills and flexible intellectual perspectives in two mutually complementary subjects.

The English element of the course introduces students to the three major genres of poetry, prose fiction and drama in the first year.  In the second and third years modules offered include, among others, Shakespeare, The Gothic Novel, Modernism, Postwar Literature and Twentieth Century Fiction.  Traditional and contemporary theoretical approaches and relevant intellectual movements and background are also covered.  The English modules are designed to provide breadth in their coverage of literature, enriched understanding through inter-disciplinary connections and thorough training in skills such as independent critical thinking, oral and written communication, research and teamwork. 

The Applied Psychology element of the course prepares students for the diverse career opportunities within psychology as a discipline, the methods employed by psychologists to advance knowledge and understanding of the human condition and a comprehensive theoretical understanding of human behaviour.  In the second and third years, specialised modules on Criminality, Psychopathology and Deviance; Cyberpsychology, Health Psychology and Individual Differences in the Workplace, enable a real world understanding of the application of psychology today.

Extra-curricular activities                                                                                                                           

The study of English is enriched by organised visits to the theatre and also to museums, galleries and conferences when appropriate.  There is an annual trip to Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London and there are occasional foreign residential visits.  These have included trips to Berlin and Paris in recent years. Guest speakers are often invited to deliver a lecture and there is an annual student conference. 

The study of Applied Psychology is enriched by organised visits to research laboratories as well as other important and relevant locations. 

Visiting speakers

Enrichment is also provided by academics from other universities who are regularly invited to give guest lectures.  This is enormously stimulating for students who gain new perspectives on the theme or period being studied. 

Among comments from students are the following:

‘A brilliant experience all round; it has really changed my life by giving me confidence in my abilities as well as introducing me to some fascinating books.’

‘The course is very interesting and challenging.  The lecturers are always enthusiastic and very well-informed about their subjects.  There is always a lot of very helpful feedback on essays.’

‘Extremely well-organised.  The learning builds upon itself to the point where you feel confident in tackling the next part of the course.’


Course modules

Full downloadable information regarding all University of Suffolk courses, including Key Facts, Course Aims, Course Structure and Assessment, is available in the Definitive Course Record.

Introduction to the Study of Drama

You should try to have read all the following by the time the course begins:

Sophocles, Antigone, translated by Reginald Gibbons and Charles Segal (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007). ISBN 9780195143102

Shakespeare, W. Macbeth ed., by Sandra Clark and Pamela Mason (London: The Arden Shakespeare, 2014). ISBN 9781904271413

Ibsen, H. A Doll’s House (1879) translated by Michael Meyer (London: Methuen Drama, 2008). ISBN 9781408106020

Williams, T. The Glass Menagerie, 1945 (London: Penguin Modern Classics, 2009) ISBN 978-0141190266

Approaches to Fiction

Reading the following texts will prepare you for the module.

Brontë, Charlotte. Jane Eyre. 1847. Oxford World’s Classics (Oxford: OUP, 2008)  ISBN: 9780199535590

A Module Booklet containing materials on analysing prose fiction, short stories, essays/secondary critical materials will be supplied by tutors.

Reading Poetry

Jonathan Wordsworth. (ed). The New Penguin Book of Romantic Poetry (London: Penguin Classics, 2005)  ISBN 978-014-0435689 (We will study a selection of poems from Sections 4 and 10 only. You do not need to have read these before the course begins.)

Martin Amis (ed), Philip Larkin: Poems (London: Faber and Faber, 2013) ISBN-13: 978-0571258116

Students may prepare themselves generally by dipping into

 T.Furniss and M.Bath, Reading Poetry: An Introduction (London: Harvester Wheatsheaf, 2007).  Copies are in the library.

Introduction to Applied Psychology
Psychology in Action
Psychology and Society
Dissertation/Project Preparation (Mandatory)

This is a mandatory module pre-requisite for the final year undergraduate Dissertation. For the remaining modules at Level 5, choose two modules from one subject and three modules from the other.

Weird Fiction: The Gothic Genre 1760-1900 (Optional)
Late-Victorian Literature (Optional)
Challenging Shakespeare (Optional)
Methodology for Social Science: Applied Psychology (Mandatory)
Criminality, Psychopathology and Deviance (Optional)
Cyber Psychology (Optional)
Undergraduate Dissertation/Project (Mandatory)

If Dissertation/Project is to be in Applied Psychology, choose one Applied Psychology module and all three English modules

If Dissertation/Project is to be interdisciplinary, i.e. in English and Applied Psychology, choose both Applied Psychology modules and any two English modules

Modernism and the City (Optional)
Writing Rebellion: Literature 1956-70 (Optional)
Monsters, Madness and Modernity (Optional)
Psychology of Health (Optional)
Individual differences in the Workplace (Optional)

Career opportunities

Graduates in English and Applied Psychology may develop careers in fields such as forensic psychology, counselling and occupational psychology.  They are also well-prepared to enter careers such as teaching, administration and management, the civil service, journalism, librarianship, media and marketing.  Some of these routes will require a postgraduate qualification and suitably qualified candidates may progress to MA or PhD study.

Fees and finance


  • Full-time tuition fee: £9,250 p.a.
  • Part-time tuition fee: £1,454 per 20 credits (Please contact the Infozone for further information)
  • International tuition fee: £11,790 p.a.

Further Information                                                       

  • Detailed information about Tuition Fees.
  • Find out more about Financial Support eligibility.
  • Also see Loans and Grants.
  • At University of Suffolk, your tuition fees provide access to all the usual teaching and learning facilities that you would expect. However, there may be additional costs associated with your course that you will need to budget for. See Course Costs.

Entry requirements

Academic Requirements

112 UCAS tariff points (or above), BBC (A-Level), DMM (BTEC).

All applicants are required to hold GCSE English and Maths at Grade C/4 or above. Applicants who do not hold these qualifications may be considered on an individual basis based upon their overall application and the course applied for.

If you do not hold these qualifications please contact Admissions directly on 01473 338348 to discuss.

Also see How to Apply.

International Requirements

IELTS 6.0 overall (minimum 5.5 in all components) where English is not the students' first language.

Also see International and EU.             

Transferring Credit

If you have previously studied at higher education level before you may be able to transfer credits to a related course at the University of Suffolk and reduce the period of study time necessary to achieve your degree.