Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture (MLitt) 2016 entry
The MLitt in Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture enhances students' knowledge and thinking about the key texts, contexts and theories that have shaped literature and culture from 1900 to the present.
Postgraduate; leading to a Master of Letters (MLitt)
One year full time
A good 2.1 Honours undergraduate degree in a subject-related area. If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements.
English language proficiency. See English language tests and qualifications.
UK and EU: £6,800
- Supplementary application to School of English (Word)
- two academic references
- academic transcripts
- degree certificates (where available)
- sample of academic writing on a modern or contemporary topic (approx 2,000 words)
- English language requirements certificate, where applicable (e.g. IELTS 8.0 minimum)
For more guidance, see supporting documents and references for postgraduate taught programmes.
If you are looking to start this programme in 2017, you can find information about 2017 entry on the 2017 Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture MLitt page. Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in our archive.
- Study the interdisciplinary dimension of modernism through topics which explore cultural production across the arts, music, film and literature.
- Explore the key developments in modern and contemporary literary studies in dialogue with leading scholars in the fields of Modernism, Scottish literature, war writing, modern and contemporary poetry, postcolonialism and literature of the 1940s.
- Focus on the key literary and cultural theories of the contemporary period alongside a global range of modern and contemporary texts.
- Develop your skills as a researcher within a specific area of study by taking special topic modules.
The MLitt in Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture is an intensive one-year taught programme which aims to enhance students’ textual knowledge and promote thinking about the interconnections between modern and contemporary literature and its historical, cultural and theoretical contexts.
In each semester students take one module that concentrates on the literature of the period and one module that engages with the period’s theoretical, cultural and historical developments. Students are encouraged to develop their own, individual interests via the 20 credits left free for an optional module.
Taught modules comprise of weekly seminars, with class sizes typically ranging from three to ten students. Modules are assessed through coursework essays.
During the course of the year, but with particular focus during the last four months, students will research and write a 15,000-word dissertation on a topic of their choosing.
The modules in this programme have varying methods of delivery and assessment. For more details of each module, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue.
- Literary Research: Skills and Resources: trains students in the understanding and use of the essential skills and resources of research in English Studies; it also provides preparation for the MLitt dissertation.
- Contextualising the Modern: an exploration of the radical literary experiments following the First World War in context of the wider movements in culture and society that informed literary modernism in the first decades of the twentieth century.
- Reading the Modern: an exploration of influential British, American and French modernists' pursuit to develop modes of representation compatible with a newly urban, industrialised and mass-oriented age.
- Theorising the Contemporary: an introduction to key literary and cultural theories within the contemporary period via the close study of selected theoretical texts.
- Contemporary Literature and Culture: exposes students to a range of contemporary authors, poets and playwrights, moving between a detailed focus on highlighted key works and a wider perspective on individual writer’s oeuvres.
Students will choose one optional module out of the following three choices:
- Special Topic in English Studies: a directed reading programme which allows students to explore topics in greater depth than is possible in compulsory modules.
- a compulsory module from another English MLitt programme (see module catalogue)
- an approved postgraduate-level module outwith the School of English (arranged independently with another school such as Classics, Modern Languages, Divinity or Philosophical, Anthropological and Film Studies).
The modules listed ran in the academic year 2015-2016 and are indicative of this course. There is no guarantee that these modules will run for 2016 entry.
Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.
Student dissertations will be supervised by members of the teaching staff who will advise on the choice of subject and provide guidance throughout the research process. The completed dissertation of not more than 15,000 words must be submitted by a date specified in August.
If students choose not to complete the dissertation requirement for the MLitt, there is an exit award available that allows suitably qualified candidates to receive a Postgraduate Diploma. By choosing an exit award, you will finish your degree at the end of the second semester of study and receive a PGDip instead of an MLitt.
The staff teaching on the programme will vary in any one year, but will always include some of the following:
Conferences and events
Events are open to all members of the School and to the public, unless explicitly restricted, and there is an active student-run Literary Society and the Postgraduate Forum, where postgraduates meet to present and discuss their on-going work. Each semester, the School invites distinguished visiting academics and creative writers to lead seminars, lectures and workshops as part of our regular research events.
The School of English will award at least two scholarships to MLitt (Masters level) entrants in 2016-2017.
All School of English study applicants will receive a unique email link to the postgraduate scholarship and funding catalogue, providing an online portal through which you can apply for all available relevant awards.
Recent Graduate Discount
The University of St Andrews offers a 10% reduction in postgraduate tuition fees for students who have graduated during the last three years and are now starting a postgraduate programme.
After the MLitt
Many of our graduates continue their education by enrolling in PhD programmes at St Andrews.
In addition to the MLitt, the School offers a two-year Master of Philosophy (MPhil) degree option in Modern and Contemporary Literature and Culture.
Graduates of the course go on to pursue careers in a range of sectors including journalism, marketing, publishing and teaching.
The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students on a taught postgraduate course and offers a programme of events to assist students to build their employability skills.
Admission to the University of St Andrews is governed by our Admissions policy.
As a research intensive institution, the University ensures that its teaching references the research interests of its staff, which may change from time to time. As a result, programmes are regularly reviewed with the aim of enhancing students' learning experience. Our approach to course revision is described online. (PDF, 72 KB).
The University will clarify compulsory fees and charges it requires any student to pay at the time of offer. The offer will also clarify conditions for any variation of fees. The University’s approach to fee setting is described online. (PDF, 84 KB).