English with Computing, Philosophy or Theology (BA, DipHE and CertHE)


For students who prefer a broader educational choice than a single honours permits

This combined degree programme will appeal to those who are interested in studying in English, but would also like to learn more about a different discipline. You can choose to study Theology, Philosophy or Computing as minor options.

Your degree is comprised of 75 per cent English courses, and 25 per cent from your minor option.

Key dates
Application deadline 15 September
Registration deadline 9 October*
Start studying Study materials are usually available from mid-August
Examinations take place May/June
*Please note that students registering for English Level 4 courses should ensure they complete their registration by 9 October in time for the commencement of VLE Tutor Groups on 15 October.

Why study English?

Studying English gives you the opportunity to enjoy some of the great literature of the world, immersing yourself in a range of works from the Middle Ages to the present day. You can also try your hand at Creative Writing and take specialist courses such as Language and Gender and Language and the Media.

Your study experience is enriched by online support through tutor groups, e-seminars and formative assessment.

Programme combinations

English with Theology: This combined programme enables you to study subjects fundamental to human societies the world over: language, literature and theology. An understanding of theological ideas will provide insights into the many works of literature which are informed or inspired by Christianity and other religions. Combining English with Theology will also enhance your analysis of the subjects studied as both require you to read, understand, and debate the meaning of texts.

English with Philosophy: Philosophical themes and questions can be found in almost any work of literature. Many early literary works were actually works of philosophy. Aristotle’s Poetics forms the basis of literary theory and is still key to our understanding of modern works of literature, particularly the concept of a beginning, middle and end. This combined degree will help you to better understand this symbiotic relationship between literature and philosophy. You will be better positioned to ask why the Romantic poets explored Longinus’s concept of the sublime, how American literature derived its ‘Transcendental’ school from Kantian philosophy, and how Sartre could help your understanding of Samuel Beckett’s plays. If you choose to take English language options, Philosophy of Language will give you even greater insight into language and meaning.

English with Computing: There are three subject-specific pathways within the Computing minor programme, which are reflected in your qualification.

  • English with Computing (Computer Science): Studying Computer Science will help to enhance your employability as computing skills are valued in many jobs. The computer science courses cover topics such as algorithms and data compression, which will appeal to those with an interest in mathematics and computation.
  • English with Computing (Computing and Cognition): Computing and Cognition emphasises the cognitive aspects of computing. Cognitive science is a subject area that takes human cognition as its starting point, and looks at how knowledge in this area can be applied to computing, and vice versa. Creativity and artificial intelligence are part of this broad area of study, and the courses offered on this pathway come from creative computing and artificial intelligence.
  • English with Computing (Computing Information Systems): Computing Information Systems offers subjects that are broadly related to electronic commerce and information technology. Having a practical knowledge of information systems, as well as the analytical skills developed through English, will give you a wider range of transferable, employment-related skills.

Study options

You can choose from a full BA (12 courses), Diploma of Higher Education (8 courses) or a Certificate of Higher Education (4 courses). The Certificate is an ideal option if you don't feel ready to commit to a full Diploma or degree programme or don't have the qualifications to meet our entrance requirements. Once you pass the Certificate, you can transfer your registration to the Diploma or BA. You can also transfer to the BA on completion of the Diploma.

A prestigious qualification

These combined degrees draw on the academic expertise of the University of London and two of it's Member Institutions:

  • Goldsmiths, University of London, one of the UK’s leading creative universities, is responsible for the English and Computing courses.
  • The Theology programme is directed the University of London.
  • Birkbeck, University of London, develops the philosophy component.

Transferable skills and career progression

Studying a combined degree with an English major will equip you with transferable skills that can be used in a wide range of contexts.

This includes being able to understand and analyse complex ideas, communicate effectively in writing, think both laterally and systematically, produce persuasive arguments, discern and create meaningful patterns and (for Computing courses) interpret data.

This will give you a sound basis for careers in areas such as the civil service, teaching and research, advertising and marketing, journalism, radio and television, arts administration, charity work and fundraising, museums, libraries, and some careers in the IT industry such as website management.


Structure and Syllabus

These qualifications combine academic disciplines. English is the major subject and is taken with either Computing, Philosophy or Theology as the minor subject.

BA in English with Computing
BA in English with Philosophy
BA in English with Theology

The Bachelor of Arts degrees comprise twelve courses. Each degree is made up of nine English courses and three courses from either Computing, Philosophy or Theology.

DipHE in English with Computing
DipHE in English with Philosophy
DipHE in English with Theology

The Diplomas in Higher Education comprise eight courses. Each diploma is made up of six English courses and two courses from either Computing, Philosophy or Theology.

CertHE in English with Computing
CertHE in English with Philosophy
CertHE in English with Theology

The Certificates in Higher Education comprise four courses. Each certificate is made up of three English courses and one course from either Computing, Philosophy or Theology.

To see the choice of courses please refer to the English Major [pdf, 4pgs 92KB] combined award structure.

To see the syllabus for each course please refer to the English, Computing, Philosophy and Theology programme structures.

Study materials

How you study

The combined degree is offered through distance and flexible learning which allows you to study at a time and place to suit yourself. When you first register we will provide you with:

  • Subject guides for each course studied
  • Access to the University of London Online Library with a selection of links to relevant materials
  • Past examination papers and examiners' reports
  • Student handbook
  • Past examination papers and examiners' reports
  • Regulations

Each year you continue to register, you will receive updated materials. In addition to the materials we provide, you will need to buy some books, and others you will need to refer to in a library. As far as possible, you should consider the facilities available locally to you, and how accessible books are likely to be before registering.

We also provide all students with a student registration card.

Online support

You will have access to the programme’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) where you can:

  • preview and download subject guides, supplementary materials, past examination papers, reading lists, and additional audio-visual material
  • interact with tutors and other students in discussion groups (both open and course-specific)
  • confidentially submit formative assessments.

Tutor groups, e-seminars and written feedback

When you begin your studies, you will be assigned a tutor and a tutor group for each Level 4 English course you do. The tutor provides monthly online discussion forums, which run over the course of five months. With the exception of ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’, all Level 4 English courses require you to submit a piece of formative assessment. This will help you prepare for examinations and final assessment.

When you reach Level 5/6 you will have developed the study skills to self-manage your studies, so you then swap the assigned tutor group for a more flexible pattern of support to suit your needs and interests. This includes the option to participate in e-seminars, focussed around a text and/or literary topic, and the opportunity to submit up to two practice essays per year for feedback by academic staff.

Computing minors:
If you choose a Computing minor, you will have the opportunity to take part in online workshops for these courses and receive personalised feedback on coursework.

Theology minors:
For Theology courses, you will receive online/printed resources and have access to a comprehensive virtual learning environment, but will not receive any tutor support.

Philosophy minors:
The Philosophy courses are designed for entirely independent learners so you will need to be able to direct your own learning without a tutor and with a limited virtual learning environment.

Programme reading lists

Download the following reading lists for:

Sample study materials

You can get a taste of what it would be like to study English courses by looking at the taster materials below. The exercises are aimed at those studying at Level 4 (stage 1) of the programme.

Introduction to English Language

Using English: causes and effects.
Download: Introduction to English Language [pdf: 2 pgs, 26KB]

Explorations in Literature

Practice close reading with a poem studied on the Explorations in Literature course, T.S. Eliot’s ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’.
Download: Practice close reading [pdf: 2 pgs, 32KB]

Approaches to Text

A quiz to find out what kind of critic you are.
Download: Approaches to Text [pdf: 3 pgs, 70KB]

A window on the world

A practical exercise to creative writing.
Download: Introduction to Creative Writing [pdf: 1 pg, 24KB]

Renaissance Comedy

An exercise to determine the characters in Ben Jonson’s Volpone.
Download: Renaissance Comedy [pdf: 3 pgs, 37KB]



Academic year 2017-2018
Annual registration fee£ 883
Fee per Computing full course / half course£ 318 / £159
Fee per English full course£ 318
Fee per Philosophy full course£ 224
Fee per Theology full course£ 252
Examination resit fees
Computing (per full course / half course)£ 219 / £110
English (per full course)£ 219
Philosophy (per full course)£ 170
Theology (per full course)£ 170
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Disclaimer: the currency conversion tool is provided to you for convenience only and does not constitute an endorsement or approval by the University of London; the exchange rates are provided dynamically via a third-party source, consequently, the University of London International Programmes is not responsible for their accuracy.

The fee per course depends on the level of support provided. Courses with high levels of online support, such as English courses, are more expensive than those with limited support, such as Philosophy courses.

When to pay

Fees are payable between 1st March 2017 and the registration closing date is 30th November 2017. The annual registration fee is payable each year to maintain your registration. The course fee includes one attempt at the examination. Examinations take place in May or June each year and examination entries are accepted from mid-December to the closing date of 1 February.

Please note that students registering for English Level 4 courses should ensure they complete their registration by 9 October in the time for the commencement of VLE Tutor Groups on 15 October.

How to pay

All University fees must be paid in pounds sterling (GBP). The University accepts:

  • Western Union - Quick Pay
  • Credit/debit card (Visa, MasterCard, Maestro, Electron, JCB)
  • Sterling banker's draft/cheque
  • International money/postal order

Further details are given in payment methods.

Other costs

In addition to the fees payable to the University, you should also budget for:

  1. textbooks (this may well be in the region of £300 per year if you are taking four courses in one year)
  2. tuition costs if studying at a teaching institution
  3. the fee charged to your local examination centre to cover its costs; this fee will vary.


Fees are subject to annual revision and typically may be increased by up to 5% per annum. For a full list fees that may be applicable, please see the fee schedule.


Each course of the BA and Diploma and Certificate of Higher Education is assessed by one unseen examination, with the exception of ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’ (Level 4), which will be assessed in May by a creative piece of coursework (fiction, poetry or stage writing).

Examinations are held once a year, usually in May or June. You do not have to come to London to take your examinations as we have exam centres around the world as well as in London. Examinations overseas are arranged mainly through Ministries of Education or the British Council. You will be charged a fee by your local examination centre (this fee will vary).

All Level 4 English courses require you to submit a piece of formative assessment in the form of an essay (for all courses except ‘Introduction to Creative Writing’). This is to help you prepare for examinations and final assessment. The piece of formative assessment is compulsory but does not contribute to your final assessment.

For further information please see the Assessment and examinations section of our website.

Computing minors

Those taking a course in any of the three Computing minor pathways will have to submit coursework for assessment for most of their courses.


Academic Requirements

Bachelor of Arts degree in English with Computing, Philosophy or Theology
Diploma of Higher Education in English with Computing, Philosophy or Theology

To be eligible for the BA or DipHE you must:

  • normally* be aged 17 or above by the 30 November in the year of registration and satisfy the University’s General Entrance Requirements and
  • demonstrate competence in English at least equivalent to UK GCE A Level at grade E or above and
  • satisfy the University’s general English language proficiency requirements as outlined below.

If you choose the Computing Information Systems minor pathway you also need to:

  • demonstrate competence at least equivalent to UK GCSE/GCE O Level grade C in an acceptable mathematical related subject.

If you choose the Computer Science or Computing and Cognition minor pathways you also need to:

  • demonstrate competence at least equivalent to UK GCSE/GCE O Level grade B in an acceptable mathematical related subject.

Certificate of Higher Education in English with Computing, Philosophy or Theology

To be eligible for the CertHE with English as the major you must:

  • normally* be aged 18 or above by the 1 September at the time of registration
  • have passed the equivalent of at least three separate subjects at UK GCSE/GCE O Level (at not less than grade C).
  • satisfy the University’s general English language proficiency requirements as outlined below.

If you choose the Computing Information Systems minor pathway you also need to:

  • demonstrate a competence at least equivalent to UK GCSE/GCE O Level grade C in an acceptable mathematical related subject.

If you choose the Computer Science or Computing and Cognition minor pathways you also need to:

  • demonstrate a competence at least equivalent to UK GCSE/GCE O Level grade B in an acceptable mathematical related subject.

UK GCSE equivalents, including grade requirements can be found at Entrance Qualifications.

* Applications will be considered from applicants who do not meet the normal minimum age requirement for admission. Each application will be considered on an individual basis, and the decision taken at the discretion of the University of London.

If you are not automatically eligible then you will be individually considered by the Admissions Panel. The Admissions Panel will consider qualifications which are not published under the Qualifications for Entrance Schedule, incomplete qualifications (e.g. diplomas / degrees) and substantial relevant work experience. If we cannot accept you with your current qualifications and experience, we will advise you what qualifications you could take in order to become eligible in the future.

English language requirement

The language of instruction, reading and assessment is English. To succeed on our programmes you need a good level of competence in English. If you doubt your ability in written or spoken English we advise you take a course and test in English language before enrolling on the programme.

Required standard of English

You will usually meet the English language requirement for undergraduate programmes if you:

  • hold a UK GCSE / GCE O Level in English at grade C or above
  • have five years secondary schooling taught solely in English or have passed GCE A Levels or IB in essay-based subjects
  • have passed an International Foundation programme that permits entry onto a recognised UK bachelor degree
  • hold a full Postgraduate award, or a full first degree or Associate degree taught and examined in English from an institute that is acceptable to the University
  • have passed, within the past three years, an Associate degree, Diploma or Higher Diploma awarded by an acceptable institute / polytechnic / university in Hong Kong, Malaysia or Singapore, or
  • have passed, within the past three years, a test of proficiency in English language from an organisation acceptable to the University.

Where an applicant does not meet the required English language level but believes they can demonstrate the required level for admission the University may, at its discretion, consider the application.

Please note if an applicant satisfies one of the above conditions yet provides evidence of a test of proficiency in English language, awarded within the past three years, which is below the University’s minimum requirements then they will be required to retake such a test before being offered admission.

Accreditation of prior learning

If you have studied a syllabus as part of a previous qualification which is comparable in level, content and standard, you might not have to take a particular course as part of your University of London International Programmes degree if we believe that the subject has been covered to the same breadth and depth. This is called Accreditation of prior learning or APL. It is also sometimes known as Credit Transfer or Exemption. We will give credit for a maximum of four courses on the degree and two courses on the DipHE.

We can award APL towards the BA degree and DipHE only. The rules that apply are given in the Credit transfer and accreditation of prior learning section of the Programme Specification and Regulations [pdf, 85pgs, 419KB]. More information about APL can also be found on the APL section of the website.

Computer Requirements

You must have regular access to a computer (or mobile device*) with an internet connection to use the University of London International Programmes website and the Student Portal. These are where your programme’s study resources are located. Through the Student Portal you can register as a student, enter exams and use your programme’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). The VLE provides you with electronic learning materials, access to the University of London Online Library, networking opportunities, and other resources.

To get the most from your studies, your computer should have at least the following minimum specification: 

  • a web browser (the latest version of Firefox, Chrome or Internet Explorer). This must accept cookies and have JavaScript enabled
  • screen resolution of 1024 x 768 or greater
  • sufficient bandwidth to download documents of at least 2 MB

and the following applications installed:

  • a word processor that reads Microsoft Word format (.doc)
  • Adobe, or other pdf reader.

Certain courses may have addtional requirements, such as:

  • Microphone and speakers
  • software to manage spreadsheets and run macros
  • software for playing mp3 and mp4 files.

* Full mobile access is not available for all programmes.

Academic leaders

Combined degrees - Academic leadership

These combined degrees draw on the academic expertise of three University of London Colleges. The Philosophy programme has been developed by Birkbeck, University of London, which has one of the highest ranking Philosophy departments in the UK. Goldsmiths, University of London, is responsible for the English and Computing courses. From 1 August 2017 the Theology courses are directed by the University of London. Theology academic direction was previously provided by Heythrop College, University of London.

Apply online

Read our blog posts from our English students.

Download BA English taster podcasts from iTunesU

Combined Degree Scheme: An Overview

The new Combined Degree Scheme is for those who want the flexibility to study two subjects in a major/minor combination. Watch this video to hear more about the combined degrees from Programme Director, Dr Sarah Rauchas.

Alumni Inspiration: BA English - Malta

Tatjana Chircop speaks about why she decided to study BA English with University of London International Programmes and shares her thoughts on why she loved the course, what makes people succeed and what her favourite book was from the course.