Crossways in Cultural Narratives – (MLitt) 2017 entry

The MLitt in Crossways in Cultural Narratives is a two year programme delivered by a consortium of ten international universities. At St Andrews, study in this degree focuses on the areas of cultural identities and comparative literature.

Applications for 2017 entry for this course have now closed, see which courses are available for the upcoming academic year.

Course type

Postgraduate; leading to an Master of Letters (MLitt)

Course duration

Two years full time

Entry requirements

A good 2.1 Honours undergraduate degree in the field of arts, languages or social sciences. If you studied your first degree outside the UK, see the international entry requirements

Also proficiency in two of the following European languages: English, French, Portuguese, Polish and Spanish together with a basic knowledge or willingness to acquire a third European language. The minimum language requirement is B2 on the European language certification standards, although a C1 equivalent is preferable.

The qualifications listed are indicative minimum requirements for entry. Some academic Schools will ask applicants to achieve significantly higher marks than the minimum. Obtaining the listed entry requirements will not guarantee you a place, as the University considers all aspects of every application including, where applicable, the writing sample, personal statement, and supporting documents.

Tuition fees

Programme countries: 28 EU Member States, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Turkey and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).

Application deadline

Applications for 2017 entry for this course have now closed, see which courses are available for the upcoming academic year.

Application requirements

  • CV
  • letter of intent
  • academic transcripts and degree certificates
  • sample of academic written work (2000 words)
  • original signed academic references
  • proof of your language proficiency in two European languages.

If you started this programme in 2016, you can find information about 2016 entry on the 2016 Crossways in Cultural Narratives MLitt page. Information about all programmes from previous years of entry can be found in our archive.

Course information

The MLitt in Crossways in Cultural Narratives is a two-year taught postgraduate programme open to both European and non-European students. It is run by an international consortium of the following universities:

  • Bergamo, Italy
  • Nova Lisboa, Portugal
  • Poznan, Poland
  • Perpignan, France
  • Santiago de Compostela, Spain
  • St Andrews, Scotland
  • Sheffield, England
  • Guelph, Canada
  • Entre Ríos, Argentina
  • Mexico City, Mexico.

The programme centres on the theme of crossways and cultural hybridisation. Its major discipline is literature with a comparative approach, but it includes modules in aesthetics, history of ideas, semiotics, linguistics and communication. Study at St Andrews focuses on the areas of cultural identities and comparative literature.


  • The truly international programme offers students the ability to study three languages at three different institutions.
  • Students plan their own mobility track, or course of study, across two years.

Teaching format

The course is divided into four semesters. Students spend Semesters 2 and 3 at the same university, and Semesters 1 and 4 at two different universities. Please note that students may not choose a mobility track comprising both St Andrews and Sheffield, and they may not spend the same academic year in both Canada and the UK.

Students may choose their modules (subject to final approval by the Crossways Academic Council), or they may choose a preselected pathway of modules.

During the programme, students participate in courses delivered through lectures and seminars which are graded by either continuous assessment, the preparation of a researched dossier or examinations at the end of the semester. At the end of the course, students work autonomously on a final dissertation under supervision by members of the consortium's teaching staff.


Below are the modules which are compulsory for study at the University of St Andrews.

For more details of modules offered at St Andrews, including weekly contact hours, teaching methods and assessment, please see the latest module catalogue which is for the 2016–2017 academic year; some elements may be subject to change for 2017 entry.

Semester 1

  • Literary and Cultural Theory 1: provides research training by exploring a range of literary and cultural theories through which texts may be conceptualised, criticised and analysed.
  • undergraduate language module chosen from French, Italian or Spanish
  • one optional module

Semesters 2 and 3

  • four optional modules
  • Dissertation Report (an extended scholarly essay of approximately 10,000 words) or Short Dissertation Report (an extended scholarly essay of 6,000 words) and Work-Related Project (a placement or project designed to explore the application of academic and intellectual skills with the world of employment).
  • Dissertation Progress: a series of one-to-one meetings with the supervisor in which specific areas and issues of the topic of your dissertation are explored.

Semester 4

  • one optional module
  • Mundus Dissertation: 20,000-word dissertation on an approved topic.

Optional modules

This is a sample of the optional modules available for Crossways in Cultural Narratives. Optional modules are subject to change each year, and attendance may be limited (see the University’s position on curriculum development).

  • Literary and Cultural Theory 1
  • Literary and Cultural Theory 2
  • Middle Eastern Literary Cultural Contexts
  • Specialised Research in Middle Eastern Literatures and Cultures, French Studies, German Studies, Italian Studies, Russian Studies or Spanish and Latin American Studies
  • Apples and Oranges: Issues in Comparative Literature
  • The Contemporary Canon: Why Books Sell
  • French Literary Revolutions
  • German Literary and Cultural Contexts
  • Italian Literary and Cultural Contexts
  • Research and Professional Skills
  • Problems of Culture and Identity 1
  • Problems of Culture and Identity 2
  • Europe and America: Dialogues and Identity Formation in Text, Film and Theory
  • Generations in Russian Literature and Culture
  • Patterns in Hispanic Literature and Film

The modules listed ran in the academic year 2016–2017 and are indicative of this course. There is no guarantee that these modules will run for 2017 entry. Take a look at the most up-to-date modules in the module catalogue.


You will write the dissertation in one of the principal languages of your study, but it does not necessarily need to be in the language of the country of study during Semester 4.

Dissertation are supervised by a principal and a support supervisor from two universities of the consortium. These supervisors will provide topic guidance and support throughout the research and writing process.

Work placement

Students who study at St Andrews for Semester 2 and 3 have the option of going on a work placement during their second semester or between their second and third semesters. Those on a work placement will write a short 6,000-word dissertation report as well as a 4,000-word academic essay reflecting on their placement.

Students are encouraged to arrange their own work placements at an organisation of their choice. All work placements are conditional upon the approval of the local coordinator.

Conferences and events

There is a mailing list for Crossways in Cultural Narratives which distributes calls for papers and announcements that may be relevant to the research activities of the consortium. To subscribe to the mailing list, email


All students may qualify for EU scholarships.

Students who have been unsuccessful in their application for an EU scholarship will automatically be considered for one of the following awards:

Santander Universities scholarships
The School of Modern Languages is offering two £5,000 scholarships, awarded on the basis academic merit and financial need, to those applying for an MLitt programme in Modern Languages.

After the MLitt

Research degrees

Many of our graduates continue their education by enrolling in PhD programmes at St Andrews. 

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.

The Arts and Humanities Research Council offers scholarships which cover fees and stipend at RCUK rates for students applying for research degrees in the Arts and Humanities in Scotland.

PhD in Modern Languages


The MLitt in Crossways in Cultural Narratives develops in students capacities of conceptualisation, synthesis and analysis. They will have the opportunity to network on a European scale and will learn how to integrate knowledge management.

Students are prepared for leadership roles in a variety of international careers, including:

  • cultural dimension of marketing strategies
  • cultural management
  • higher education
  • parliamentary research
  • professional criticism
  • specialised journalism
  • strategic planning.

The Careers Centre at St Andrews 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. 


School of Modern Languages
Buchanan Building
Union Street
St Andrews
KY16 9PH

Phone: +44 (0)1334 46 3670

Modern Languages website

Admission to the University of St Andrews is governed by our Admissions policy.

Curriculum development

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).

Tuition fees

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)