Icelandic BA

London, Bloomsbury
Icelandic BA (2025)

UCL's four-year Icelandic BA is one of the only degree programmes of its kind outside Iceland. The programme aims to develop your interest in, and knowledge and understanding of, Iceland and the Nordic world in areas including other Scandinavian languages, literature, culture and history. Your third year is spent abroad at the University of Iceland.

UK students International students
Study mode
Full-time
Duration
4 academic years
UK tuition fees (2024/25)
£9,250
Overseas tuition fees (2024/25)
£28,100
Programme starts
September 2024
Application deadline
31 Jan 2024
UCAS course code
R690

Entry requirements

Grades
ABB
Subjects
Foreign language preferred.
GCSEs
English Language at grade B or 6 and Mathematics at grade C or 5.

Contextual offer information

Grades
BBC more about contextual offers
Subjects
Foreign language preferred.
GCSEs
English Language at grade B or 6 and Mathematics at grade C or 5.
Points
34
Subjects
A total of 16 points in three higher level subjects, preferably including a foreign language, with no higher level score below 5.

Contextual offer

Points
30 more about contextual offers
Subjects
A total of 15 points in three higher level subjects, preferably including a foreign language, with no higher level score below 5.

UK applicants qualifications

For entry requirements with other UK qualifications accepted by UCL, choose your qualification from the list below:

Equivalent qualification

Pass in Access to HE Diploma with a minimum of 30 credits at Distinction, 12 credits at Merit and 3 credits at Pass, all from Level 3 units. Foreign Language preferred.

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme.

D3,M1,M1 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects. Foreign Language preferred.

ABB at Advanced Highers (or AB at Advanced Higher and BBB at Higher). Foreign language preferred.

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme.

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme.

Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A levels at grades ABB. Foreign language preferred.

International applications

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

Access and widening participation

UCL is committed to widening access to higher education. If you are eligible for Access UCL you do not need to do anything in addition to the standard UCAS application. Your application will be automatically flagged when we receive it.

Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates

The Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPC) prepare international students for a UCL undergraduate degree who don’t have the qualifications to enter directly. These intensive one-year foundation courses are taught on our central London campus.

Typical UPC students will be high achievers in a 12-year school system which does not meet the standard required for direct entry to UCL.

For more information see: ucl.ac.uk/upc.

English language requirements

The English language level for this programme is: Level 4

Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.

A variety of English language programmes are offered at the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education.

Course overview

In your first year, you will embark on an intensive study of modern Icelandic at beginner's level, study a mainland Scandinavian language (Danish, Norwegian or Swedish) as well as Old Norse, and have the option of studying Scandinavian literary studies and linguistics. In your second year, you will continue with language studies and select from a range of optional modules, covering a range of topics that draw on literature, film, history, and linguistics, from an interdisciplinary perspective.

You will spend year three at the University of Iceland, taking a course in Icelandic for foreign students. If you have been given permission to transfer to Icelandic with Danish, Norwegian or Swedish at the end of year one, you will also take a course in your mainland Scandinavian language while at Reykjavik.

The final year is spent at UCL, where you will take advanced modules in modern Icelandic and Old Norse, study Icelandic literature, and take further optional modules. If you have transferred to Icelandic with Danish, Norwegian or Swedish, you will also take advanced modules in your mainland Scandinavian language.

The programme involves modules offered across the School, allowing students to study literature, film, art and culture from a wider and more interdisciplinary perspective. You will be exposed to broad cultural movements, issues and approaches and be able to draw on the full range of specialisms within the School.

What this course will give you

You will spend a year abroad at the University of Iceland in Reykjavik. During this time you will finesse your language skills and gain valuable experience which will enhance future learning as well as career prospects

A broad range of optional modules are available, including Viking Studies, Old Norse, modern Scandinavian languages, literary studies, film studies, history, and cultural studies, together with the opportunity to acquire proficiency in a second Scandinavian language.

UCL Scandinavian Studies has specialists across the areas of language, politics, history, medieval studies, literature and film.

You will have access to one of the largest and oldest Scandinavian libraries in the country, as well as state-of-the-art facilities within the UCL Language Space.

Teaching and learning

In each year of your degree you will take a number of individual modules, normally valued at 15 or 30 credits, adding up to a total of 120 credits for the year. Modules are assessed in the academic year in which they are taken. The balance of compulsory and optional modules varies from programme to programme and year to year. A 30-credit module is considered equivalent to 15 credits in the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS).

Upon successful completion of 360 credits, you will be awarded a BA (Hons) in Icelandic.

Modules

Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change. Modules that are in use for the current academic year are linked for further information. Where no link is present, further information is not yet available.

You will spend the first two years at UCL gaining expertise in the productive and receptive skills of Icelandic and your chosen Scandinavian languages, as well as gaining a more developed understanding of the literature, cinema, politics, linguistics, history, culture and society of the countries where Scandinavian languages are spoken.

The final year is based at UCL where you will continue to study a range of advanced level modules on language, applied language (such as translation), literature, history, film and linguistics. A final year dissertation module is available should you wish to undertake a self-initiated project which builds on the independent research skills developed over the course of your programme of study.

Over the four years, you will deepen your knowledge of the Icelandic language and Scandinavian culture, while also developing valuable skills in cultural literacy and critical thinking. You will achieve the same linguistic competence regardless of whether you start a language from beginner level or have previous knowledge of it.

Your learning

Teaching consists of a mixture of lectures, classes, seminars, group work and presentations. The language elements comprise four taught hours a week for basic language in year one, four hours a week for intermediate language in year two, and two hours a week for advanced language in the final year. A significant portion of your work will take place in guided independent study.

During terms one and two, approximately 35% of a student's time is spent in lectures, seminars or tutorials and the remainder in independent study. There is minimal teaching during term three, which focuses on examinations and assessment.

Assessment

Most modules are assessed by a mixture of coursework and written examination. Some are assessed by essays only. Language modules are assessed by coursework and written and oral examinations. During your year abroad, you will take modules at your host university.

Accessibility

Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support and Wellbeing team.

Online - Open day

Undergraduate Virtual Open Days

UCL is London's leading multidisciplinary university, voted University of the Year 2024 by the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide. With students from over 150 different countries, UCL is a diverse global community of world leading academics and students. Join us at our Virtual Open Days and discover why UCL might be the place for you! Check out our Open Days webpages where you can find out about the programmes on offer, student services and book live Q&A sessions to get your questions answered.

The foundation of your career

Many of our graduates find they are able to use their Nordic languages in a variety of contexts, such as working for Scandinavian companies. Recent graduates have also entered translating, publishing and teaching.

Employability

Upon graduation you will be fluent in Icelandic and also have knowledge of other medieval and modern Scandinavian languages. The historical and literary parts of the degree will develop your cultural awareness. You will be trained in the organisation, presentation and interpretation of complex information, written and oral communication, and independent and group work.

Fees and funding

Fees for this course

UK students International students
Fee description Full-time
Tuition fees (2024/25) £9,250
Tuition fees (2024/25) £28,100

The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2024/25 academic year. The UK fees shown are for the first year of the programme at UCL only. Fees for future years may be subject to an inflationary increase. The Overseas fees shown are the fees that will be charged to 2024/25 entrants for each year of study on the programme, unless otherwise indicated below.

Full details of UCL's tuition fees, tuition fee policy and potential increases to fees can be found on the UCL Students website.

Additional costs

The department strives to keep additional costs low. Books and journal articles are usually available via the UCL library (hard copies or via e-journal subscriptions).

In addition, please note that if you study abroad during your programme at UCL, this is likely to incur additional costs. Studying abroad may cost between £200–£1,000 per month depending on where you choose to study. The cost of studying abroad can be difficult to predict as it will depend on your priorities and choices. There is more information available on the UCL Study Abroad website.

A guide including rough estimates for these and other living expenses is included on the UCL Fees and funding pages. If you are concerned by potential additional costs for books, equipment, etc., please get in touch with the relevant departmental contact (details given on this page).

Funding your studies

Various funding options are available, including student loans, scholarships and bursaries. UK students whose household income falls below a certain level may also be eligible for a non-repayable bursary or for certain scholarships. Please see the Fees and funding pages for more details.

Scholarships

The Scholarships and Funding website lists scholarships and funding schemes available to UCL students. These may be open to all students, or restricted to specific nationalities, regions or academic department.

Next steps

Your application

We seek to select candidates who, in addition to academic achievement, have the motivation and passion for language learning, for inter-cultural inquiry, and who have a deep commitment to developing and finessing their language proficiency to an advanced level.

How to apply

Application for admission should be made through UCAS (the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service). Applicants currently at school or college will be provided with advice on the process; however, applicants who have left school or who are based outside the United Kingdom may obtain information directly from UCAS.

Selection

For further information on UCL's selection process see: How we assess your application.

Our admissions process aims to assess your linguistic abilities and attainments as well as your cultural awareness, motivation for study and intellectual potential. We may interview candidates by telephone in order to establish a level of language ability.

If your application demonstrates that your academic ability and motivation make you well suited to our degree and you receive an offer, we shall invite you to a Post Offer Open Day. There, you will be able to experience the sort of teaching we offer and life in the department.

UCL is regulated by the Office for Students.