Undergraduate prospectus 2020


Language and Culture BA

This distinctive and highly flexible programme provides great scope for you to customise your degree according to your interests. With a broad focus on cultural studies and sociolinguistics, the programme allows you to explore topics ranging from film to history, from gender to translation studies. Central to the degree is the study of two languages, with the possibility of changing language after the first year.

Key Information

Programme starts

September 2019
UCAS code
Full-time: 4 years
Application deadline
15 January 2019
London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements

A Levels

Foreign language required to include the following if studied as the main language: French or Spanish grade A.
English Language at grade B or 6, plus Mathematics at grade C or 5. For UK-based students, a grade C or 5 or equivalent in a foreign language (other than Ancient Greek, Biblical Hebrew or Latin) is required. UCL provides opportunities to meet the foreign language requirement following enrolment, further details at: www.ucl.ac.uk/ug-requirements

Contextual offer

ABB (more about contextual offers)
Foreign language required to include the following if studied as the main language: French or Spanish grade A.

IB Diploma

A score of 17 points in three higher level subjects, with no score lower than 5. Higher level subjects to include the following if studied as main languages: French or Spanish at grade 6.

Contextual offer

34 (more about contextual offers)
A score of 16 points in three higher level subjects, with no score lower than 5. Higher level subjects to include the following if studied as main languages: French or Spanish at grade 6.

UK applicants qualifications

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

Equivalent qualification

Not acceptable for entrance to this programme

Pass in Access to HE Diploma, with a minimum of 18 credits awarded with Distinction in the Level 3 units, the remainder of the Level 3 units awarded with Merit.

D3,D3,M1 in three Cambridge Pre-U Principal Subjects. Foreign Language required, to include the following if studied as the main language: French or Spanish grade D3.

Advanced Highers at grades A,A,B or Advanced Highers grades A,A plus Highers at grades B,B,B. Foreign language required to include the following if studied as the main language: French or Spanish grade A at Advanced Higher.

Successful completion of the WBQ Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate plus 2 GCE A-Levels at grades AAB. Foreign language required to include the following if studied as the main language: French or Spanish grade A.

International applications

In addition to A level and International Baccalaureate, UCL considers a wide range of international qualifications for entry to its undergraduate degree programmes.

Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates

UCL Undergraduate Preparatory Certificates (UPCs) are intensive one-year foundation courses for international students of high academic potential who are aiming to gain access to undergraduate degree programmes at UCL and other top UK universities.

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: www.ucl.ac.uk/upc.

English language requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency. Information about the evidence required, acceptable qualifications and test providers can be found on our English language requirements page.

The English language level for this programme is: Advanced

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

Degree benefits

  • You will be able to choose from the exceptional range of languages taught at UCL, including many of the less frequently spoken languages of Europe and beyond. 

  • You will spend a year abroad in a country where your main language is spoken.

  • Language learning takes place in small groups with research-active teachers, many of whom are native speakers. Your learning will be well supported by the excellent facilities of the UCL Centre for Languages & International Education (CLIE).

  • You will benefit from the outstanding specialist library resources and the enormous range of cultural experiences — such as exhibitions, film festivals, and concerts — that London has to offer.

Degree structure

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).

Year one mainly comprises core language and culture modules, providing a foundation for further study. You will also choose a main and a second language. In years one and two and in your final year you also choose optional modules from a wide range offered by both your chosen language departments and the School of European Languages, Culture & Society focusing on film, history, literature and linguistics.

You will spend your third year abroad on an academic placement in a country where your main language is spoken.

In your final year at UCL you will continue with your language studies either in both your languages, or concentrate on your main language only. You will select cultural modules in fields of your choice.

You will initially choose two languages (one as a 'major' language, the other as a 'minor' language) from the following wide range of languages taught at UCL:

Ancient Greek (may only be studied as a minor language); Arabic (may only be studied as a minor language); Bulgarian; Croatian; Czech; Danish; Dutch; Finnish; French (beginner's French may only be studied as a minor language); German; Hebrew; Hungarian; Icelandic; Italian; Japanese (may only be studied as a minor language); Latin (may only be studied as a minor language); Mandarin (may only be studied as a minor language); Norwegian; Polish; Portuguese; Romanian; Russian; Serbian; Spanish (beginner's Spanish may only be studied as a minor language); Slovak; Swedish; Ukrainian.

Some language courses including Arabic, Mandarin, Japanese and beginner's French and Spanish are taught in the Centre for Langagues and International Education (CLIE) and may be subject to availability.

Areas of cultural study offered include: history; film studies; linguistics; literary studies; translation.

This degree allows great flexibility especially in your final year. You can continue studying your languages and follow language-specific content modules; take content modules  within one of your departments or SELCS; drop your second language in your final year to pursue a greater number of content modules; or apply to outside options.

In the past students have been allowed to take modules in anthropology, history of art, history and journalism in other departments and London institutions. Approval for outside options is granted on a case-by-case basis and with permission by the relevant provider. Securing a place on an outside course is the responsibility of the student.


An indicative guide to the structure of this programme, year by year.

Core or compulsory module(s)

You will study modules in both your main language and a second language. 
You will also study the Language, Culture and Representation core module.

Optional modules

You will select a cultural or linguistic module from your relevant main language department. 

You will also choose from a range of Interdepartmental First Level modules offered by SELCS. Options may include the study of literature, linguistics, film or history.

Core or compulsory module(s)

You will study modules in both your main language and a second language (with the possibility of changing your main and second language, subject to approval).

Optional modules

You will select a cultural or linguistic module in your relevant main language department, and either: 

Three SELCS Interdepartmental Intermedate modules
European Cultures and
Two SELCS Interdepartmental Intermediate modules
Two SELCS Interdepartmental Intermediate modules and
An outside option or cultural or linguistic module in your relevant minor language department
European Cultures
One SELCS Interdepartmental Intermediate module and
One outside option or cultural or linguistic module in your minor language department.

Year abroad

You will spend your Year Abroad at a university in the country where your main target language is spoken, studying alongside native speakers, to make the most of your cultural and linguistic immersion. British Council language assistantships are available subject to approval.

The experiences and skills developed while abroad further academic and personal development, cultural and social awareness, provide a foundation for further study and enhance career prospects.

For further information please visit the SELCS Year Abroad website.

Year abroad: further details

Students taking Ancient Greek or Latin as a major language normally spend their year abroad in the country of their minor languages but while overseas must study Ancient Greek or Latin.

Core or compulsory module(s)

You will study modules in your main language (and second language, where possible).

Optional modules

Modules from a selection of cultural/linguistic options from your second language or options outside of SELCS (subject to approval)
Dissertation in Language and Culture
SELCS Interdepartmental Advanced modules

Your learning

This programme and the first-year core module are run by the Language and Culture BA Programme Tutor. Languages are taught intensively, and you will be trained in speaking, reading, writing and translating in your target languages. Students on this programme develop their skills in both languages and interdisciplinary and cultural studies. 


Language modules are normally assessed by coursework and written and oral examinations. Other modules are normally assessed through a combination of written coursework and examinations.

Detailed course descriptions are available on the department website: Language and Culture BA.


On graduation from this programme you can expect to have excellent oral and written language skills and breadth and depth of cultural knowledge. This degree cultivates numerous transferable skills, including the ability to organise your time and work independently, think critically, and analyse and present information.

Graduates from the Language and Culture BA and related programmes have entered a wide range of professions including: journalism, the civil service, interpreting and translating, publishing, advertising, teaching, the media and the arts. A demand exists for graduates proficient in several languages, especially in the less commonly taught European languages.

UCL is commited to helping you get the best start after graduation. Read more about how UCL Careers and UCL Innovation and Enterprise can help you find employment or learn about entrepreneurship.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

The fees indicated are for undergraduate entry in the 2019/20 academic year. The UK/EU 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 2019/20 entrants for each year of study on the programme, unless otherwise indicated below.

UK/EU students
£9,250 (2019/20)
Overseas students
£19,970 (2019/20)

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

If you are concerned by potential additional costs for books, equipment, etc. on this programme, please get in touch with the relevant departmental contact (details given on this page).


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.

Departmental scholarships

Funding opportunities relevant to the department may appear in this section when they are available. Please check carefully or confirm with the programme contact to ensure they apply to this degree programme.

Modern European Languages Scholarship

£2,500 per year
Based on academic merit

Virtus UG Bursary

The successful candidates have been notified
£5,781.25 per year
Based on financial need

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.

Application and next steps

Your application

In assessing your application we are looking for evidence of your interest in and aptitude for language learning, as well as your interest in literature, film, art and other cultural subjects. If you know your language choices, please enter this in the relevant boxes on your UCAS Form.

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.

Application deadline: 15 January 2019


If your application demonstrates that your academic ability and motivation make you well-suited to our degree and you receive an offer, then we shall invite you to a Post Offer Open Day where you can experience the sort of teaching we offer and life in SELCS.

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

For further information on UCL's selection process see: Selection of students.