Undergraduate 

Scottish Literature MA

Scottish Literature student

Scottish literature is the study of the poetry, drama, fiction and prose of Scotland from the 14th century to the most contemporary work.

The University hosts the only academic unit in the UK exclusively dedicated to the teaching of, and research into, Scottish literature. We are home to the Centre for Robert Burns Studies, which is engaged in the production of a new, multi-volume, scholarly edition of the works of Scotland’s national poet.

  • September start
  • Session dates
  • Scottish Literature MA (Hons): Q201 4 year degree

What our students say

“A broadness of eras and topics give a huge amount of insight into not only Scotland’s literary history, but also help students learn about the nation’s political and social history. I also think that the teaching staff that are part of the Scottish Literature department are some of the most friendly and helpful that I have encountered throughout my time at uni and this improves my learning exponentially.”

“I have loved every moment of my studies so far! I have found a passion for Scottish Literature that I didn’t realise I had and would more than happily recommend the course to younger students!”

Programme structure

Year 1

You will study a wide range of texts from the past 250 years of Scottish literary history. They will range from eerie ballads, through historical epics, Gothic thrillers and radical contemporary works. You will survey the work of many of the nation’s best-known writers within the context of key historical and cultural themes, while also delving into key genres in literary study, including novels and plays, poems and songs. 

Year 2

You will explore the rich variety of Scottish literature from the medieval period until the end of the 18th century, including Scotland’s earliest play, c1550, by David Lyndsay; the great medieval “Makars” (poets) Dunbar and Henryson; Allan Ramsay and Robert Burns from the 18th century “Vernacular Revival”; and the early novel, as well as the ballad throughout the centuries.

You will also study other subjects in years 1 and 2: see flexible degrees.

Years 3 and 4

If you progress to Honours (years 3 and 4) you will explore in depth fresh approaches to Scottish literature. You will have the opportunity to take innovative courses which include online delivery in our award-winning Robert Burns course, or special student placements in libraries, museums and other institutions as part of our Memorialising Scottish culture course. You can choose to specialise in different genres and periods from medieval literature to the contemporary scene.

Topics offered include beginnings to early modern, alternative Renaissances, history of Scots, history of the Scottish book, popular literary enlightenment, textual editing, Scottish crime fiction, Scottish journeys, modern Scottish poetry, Scottish fiction under late capitalism, contemporary Scottish literature and Scottish literature: theory and criticism.

Course details

Year 1

In Year 1, you will study two courses from Scottish Literature with courses from two other subjects. See .

Scottish Literature Single Honours

If you intend to study Scottish Literature as a Single Honours degree, you will need to study Level 1 English Language and Linguistics in either Year 1 or Year 2.

Year 2

In Year 2, you will study two courses from Scottish Literature with courses from two other subjects. See

Scottish Literature Single Honours

If you intend to study Scottish Literature as a Single Honours degree, you will need to study Level 1 English Language and Linguistics in either Year 1 or Year 2.

Years 3 and 4

You will take courses making up 120 credits each year in years 3 and 4 in Single Honours Scottish Literature. For Joint Honours, you will take 60 credits in Scottish Literature each year, alongside 60 credits from your other degree subject. See Flexible degrees.

Example courses

These are examples of courses you may study in Years 3 and 4. Courses may not run every academic year due to staff research interests, student interest, timetabling etc.


Programme alteration or discontinuation
The University of Glasgow endeavours to run all programmes as advertised. In exceptional circumstances, however, the University may withdraw or alter a programme. For more information, please see: Student contract.

Our international links

You can spend up to a year of your degree studying abroad, normally in your third year. Glasgow is partnered with many universities in Europe; Scottish Literature students have recently studied in Canada, Australia and Lausanne (Switzerland), and we have exchange links with Mainz (Germany) and Verona (Italy). See Study abroad.

Entry requirements

for entry in 2023

Applicants to subject-combinations with Psychology must meet the Psychology degree programme entry requirements.

Summary of entry requirements for Scottish Literature

SQA Higher Entry Requirements (by end of S6)

  • AAAAA Higher or AAAA Higher+B Advanced Higher (BBBB S5 minimum for consideration)Additional requirements: Higher English and a Higher Humanities subject.

SQA Higher Adjusted Entry Requirements* (by end of S5 or S6)

  • MD20: BBBB (also other target groups*)
  • MD40: AABB*
  • Additional requirements: Higher English and a Higher Humanities subject. Successful completion of Top-Up or one of our Summer Schools.

* See Access Glasgow for eligibility.

A-level Standard Entry Requirements

  • AAB – BBB
  • Additional requirements: one A-level Humanities subject.

IB Standard Entry Requirements

  • 36 (6,6,5 HL) – 32 (6,5,5 HL)
  • Additional requirements: HL English and HL Humanities subject.

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • 6.5 with no sub-test under 6.0.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission to this programme:

TOEFL (ib, my best or athome)

  • 90 with minimum R 20, L 19, S 19, W 23.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

PTE (Academic)

  • 60 with minimum 59 in all sub-tests.
  • Tests must have been taken within 4 years 5 months of start date. Combined scores from two tests taken within 6 months of each other can be considered.

Glasgow International College English Language (and other foundation providers)

  • 65%.
  • Tests are accepted for academic year following sitting.

University of Glasgow Pre-sessional courses

  • Tests are accepted for academic year following sitting.

Cambridge English Qualifications

  • Cambridge Advanced English (CAE): 176 overall, no subtest less than 169
  • Cambridge Proficiency in English (CPE): 176 overall, no subtest less than 169

School Qualifications

  • iGCSE English or ESOL 0522/0500, grade C
  • International Baccalaureate English A SL5 or HL5
  • International Baccalaureate English B SL6 or HL5
  • SQA National 5 English or ESOL, grade B
  • SQA Higher English or ESOL, grade C
  • Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education, English Language grade 4
  • West African Examination Council, Senior Secondary School Certificate, English grade C6

Alternatives to English Language qualification

  • Undergraduate degree from English speaking country (including Canada if taught in English)
  • Undergraduate 2+2 degree from English speaking country
  • Undergraduate 2+2 TNE degree taught in English in non-English speaking country
  • Masters degree from English speaking country
  • Masters degree (equivalent on NARIC to UK masters degree) taught in English in non-English speaking country.

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses

The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:

FAQs

What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's School of Modern Languages and Cultures offers a range of Pre-sessional courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact External Relations

If you require a Tier 4 student visa, your qualification must be one of the secure English language tests accepted by UK Border Agency:


Visa requirements and proof of English language level

It is a visa requirement to provide information on your level of English based on an internationally recognised and secure English language test. All test reports must be no more than 2 years old. A list of these can be found on the UK Border Agency website. If you have never taken one of these tests before, you can get an initial idea of your level by using the Common European Framework self-assessment grid which gives you a level for each skill (e.g. listening B1/writing B2 etc.) However, please note that this is not a secure English language test and it is not sufficient evidence of your level of English for visa requirements.

For further information about English language, please see School of Modern Languages and Cultures: English for Academic Study.


Career prospects

This degree equips you with skills valuable to many employers, including skills of critical and creative thinking that set arts and humanities graduates apart. Our graduates have gone into careers in media, journalism, teaching, research, education and heritage sector, taking jobs with the BBC, the Herald newspaper, the National Library of Scotland, national publishers and TV production companies.

Degrees and UCAS codes

When applying you will need to know the UCAS code for the subject or subject-combination that you wish to apply to:

MA (Hons)

Scottish Literature: Q201 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Celtic Civilisation: QQF5 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Celtic Studies: QQ25 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Central & East European Studies: RQR2 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Comparative Literature: Q291 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/English Language & Linguistics: QQ2J (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/English Literature: QQ2H (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Film & Television Studies: QW26 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Geography: LQ72 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/History: QV21 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/History of Art: QV23 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Latin: QQ26 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Mathematics: GQ12 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Music: QW23 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Politics: LQ22 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Portuguese: R642 (5 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Psychology: CQ82 (4 years)
KIS
Apply to CQ82
Applicants must meet the Psychology requirements
Scottish Literature/Russian: QR27 (5 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Scottish History: QVF2 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Sociology: LQ32 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Spanish: RQ4M (5 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Theatre Studies: QW24 (4 years)
KIS
Scottish Literature/Theology & Religious Studies: QV26 (4 years)
KIS

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

How and when you pay tuition fees depends on where you’re from: see Tuition fees for details.

Scholarships

The University is committed to supporting students and rewarding academic excellence. That's why we've invested more than £1m in additional scholarship funding in recent years.

The scholarships above are specific to this programme. For more funding opportunities search the scholarships database

How to apply

Full-time students must apply through the Universities & Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS). 

SQA applicants who are eligible for our Widening Participation programmes are encouraged to participate in one or more of these programmes, including Summer School, to support your application and the transition to higher education.

International students to Arts, Engineering, Law, Nursing, Science, and Social Sciences can also apply using The Common Application: however, if applying to more than one UK university, we recommend using UCAS. Applications to Dentistry, Education, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine must be made through UCAS.

Application deadlines

  • 15 October: if including Dentistry, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine or also applying to Oxford or Cambridge
  • 26 January: all other UK applicants (unless otherwise stated on the UCAS website)
  • 30 June: international students.

We do not usually accept any applications after these deadlines.

It's your responsibility to ensure the accuracy of your application before submission. Requests to correct application content, change degree programme or change college of entry, will not be accepted after these deadlines. This policy is in place to ensure fairness and consistency to all applicants, and no exceptions will be made.

How to apply for Advanced Entry

Apply for year 2 (Y2) on your UCAS application. If the specific subject is unavailable for Advanced Entry or your application for year 2 entry is unsuccessful, you will be automatically considered for year 1 entry. You do not have to submit a separate UCAS application.

Apply via UCAS

More information about this programme

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