The study of the English Language and Literature is a very popular course, not only in the English speaking world, but also in third world countries that were formerly under the colonial rule as well as among students who wish to take up teaching as a career. There is plenty of research opportunities as well as openings for obtaining a post graduate as well as doctorate degrees. The subject could be comparatively easier for those with a well ingrained reading habit. The course in English Language and Literature, English Literature is also a very interesting and absorbing subject for those intending to take up writing.
First Year Main Subject's
During the first year the main subject of study is, of course Shakespeare’s works, including his plays, both tragedies and comedies and his poems. Some of the plays and poems are selected to be studied in detail while some others are discussed and studied more generally. The sonnets of Shakespeare are also included for detailed study.
Choice of Subjects in Second Year
A choice of subjects in the second year of the course is provided by most university curricula by grouping the writings of classical authors into sections based on the years when they were written. For instance, the students could choose five subjects out of four time modules that include literature spanning the years from 1500 to 1700, those from 1688 to 1847, the modern literature starting from the year 1830 up to the present and Early Medieval Literature spanning the years from 1066 to 1350, and other important subjects such as Practical Criticism and Critical Practice, European Languages and Literatures and English Language for Literature.
Course Work Paper
Course work can also be opted in the place of one or two of these subjects. One course work paper would be about four thousand five hundred to six thousand words long while the other around five thousand words. If the student wishes, they can also opt for a paper from the Anglo–Saxon, Norse or Celtic course.
Third Year Agenda
In the third year, these subjects are again discussed with more depth and new areas that were not previously covered are explored using wider questions. There may be two compulsory papers that all students are expected to study: the first one on Practical Criticism and the second one on Tragedy.
Other than these subjects of study a compulsory dissertation of about six thousand to seven thousand words is expected to be written and submitted. A second dissertation of the same length could also be written in lieu of one of the two optional subjects. The optional subjects for this year could be selected from: Dreams and Visions spanning the years 1066 to 1500, Literature, Culture and Crisis between the years 1631 and 1637, Lyric Poetry, Modernism and the Short Story, Moralists that discuss philosophy from Plato to today, American Literature, Postcolonial Literature, History and Theory of Literary Criticism, Literature and Visual Culture and Contemporary Writing in English. Two of these subjects and the dissertation or one subject and two dissertations are usually the required course work. In this year too, taking papers from the Anglo–Saxon, Norse, and Celtic; Classics; or Modern and Medieval Language courses are allowed.
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