New and incoming students
The following offers information for students who are joining the University to study English.
- Current module list - a list of the modules being taught can be found in the School of English. Please note that Honours module offerings may change from year to year.
- Orientation - events and activities to welcome you to St Andrews.
- Orientation events in English 2020-21 (PDF) - a list of the School of English events.
- Reading list - Culture and Conflict: An Introduction to Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Literature reading list 20-21.
- EN1003 Victorian poetry handout (PDF)
A welcome message from the Head of School, Professor Ian Johnson
We understand that the transition to university can feel a bit overwhelming. There will be lots of people to help you when you get here but you might already be wondering what university will be like and, as Head of School, I wanted to provide an advance outline of what learning experience to expect when you are studying English at St Andrews.
Studying English at university is (obviously and excitingly) not the same as studying English at school. University-level learning involves different teaching methods and the rate of reading through texts is much faster (at least one author per week rather than one author or text for a whole term). We take it for granted that, if you have come to St Andrews to study English, you already love reading and are prepared to read a lot. For students with registered special needs or disabilities, the University will offer specific support.
In your first year, the two main teaching methods you will experience are the lecture (the whole class of 200 plus people in a large lecture hall or online with one lecturer for 45 minutes) and the tutorial (you and about 6 or 7 other students with a tutor in a smaller room (or online if circumstances require) for 45 minutes). In lectures (which in the first semester will be online only) you will be encouraged to listen and interrogate (in your mind) received opinion and ask questions of yourself and others.
The tutorial is discussion-based. You are not being tested (tutorials are all about the chance to experiment with new ideas), but you will be invited to speak about each text on a week-by-week basis, to bring queries along and to ask questions. We understand that, especially at the start, students might feel shy about venturing opinions, asking questions or throwing out spontaneous thoughts in front of a small group, but this is why you are here. The first week can seem daunting, but (trust us!) discussion gets progressively easier after the first week. Your tutor's job is to ensure that everyone participates fully to the best of their ability and to encourage your development as an independent thinker through your study of English.We look forward very much to welcoming you in September. The course begins with a selection of Victorian poetry made available online. Reading any poetry from the Victorian period will help you prepare for this section of the course.
Professor Ian Johnson,
Head of School
A message for incoming students planning to take EN1003: Culture and Conflict
I'd like to extend a very warm welcome to all students planning to take module EN1003 – Culture and Conflict: An Introduction to Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Literature. My name is Dr Susan Manly, and I'm the co-ordinator of this module. I hope that you will enjoy reading the novels and poems that form the focus of your studies for EN1003 this coming autumn.
You may wish to do some reading ahead of the beginning of the autumn semester, and I would recommend that you begin to equip yourself with the set texts. These are listed below, together with one other title, by Andrew Bennett and Nicholas Royle, which will give you a stimulating and useful introduction to what is involved in university-level literary study and will introduce some of the critical and theoretical ideas that inform our approaches to literature. This would be a good text to dip into over the next month or two.
The Victorian poems can be found in the EN1003 Victorian poetry handout (PDF) Many of the set texts can be found in very inexpensive forms, for instance in secondhand copies, and I would advise you to prepare by gathering them together now. You may also wish to read one or two of the longer novels – Great Expectations or A Passage to India, for example – in advance, as well as revisiting them the week that you discuss them in tutorials.
The set texts for this autumn (2020) are as follows:
- Victorian dramatic monologues by Elizabeth Barrett Browning ("The Runaway Slave at Pilgrim’s Point"); Robert Browning ("Two in the Campagna"); Christina Rossetti ("Cousin Kate"); and Alfred, Lord Tennyson ("Ulysses")
- Emily Brontë, Wuthering Heights
- Charles Dickens, Great Expectations
- Robert Louis Stevenson, Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
- Virginia Woolf, Mrs Dalloway
- E. M. Forster, A Passage to India
- T. S. Eliot, The Waste Land
- Sam Selvon, The Lonely Londoners
- Jackie Kay, Trumpet
- Don Paterson, 40 Sonnets
- Andrew Bennett and Nicholas Royle, An Introduction to Literature, Criticism and Theory (5th edition)
Where available, you are strongly advised to acquire good scholarly editions of the Brontë, Dickens, Stevenson, Woolf, and Forster set texts. We recommend Penguin Classics, Oxford World's Classics and Norton editions, which will provide you with valuable introductions, notes and appendices, in preference to other editions that do not provide this helpful expert guidance.
I look forward to meeting you this autumn. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to contact me by email.
Dr Susan Manly,
A welcome message to all incoming students from the School President
Welcome to the School of English! My name is Callum Irvine, and I have the honour of serving as your School President for the next academic year. In my role I’ll be acting as the bridge that connects the students and the staff, working to answer questions, resolve concerns, and facilitate improvements for the School and University by sitting on a number of committees. I’ll also be leading a team of elected Class Representatives who will join me in working to improve your student experience.
The School of English offers world-leading academics alongside a warm and inviting community, and I’m excited to welcome the next cohort of students into the school.
If you have any questions, or just fancy a chat, please contact me at any time at email@example.com, and you can keep up to date with the happenings of the School of English on Twitter @staenglish and through my weekly email.
I look forward to seeing you soon.