Liberal Arts

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Key Facts

Code W4A2
  • Typical A-level offer


  • Course Length

    4 Years

Further details on entry requirements

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Aberystwyth University has a lively community, rich history, a passion for culture and a thriving arts scene. Here you can take your learning beyond traditional degree programmes and focus on one of six ‘major’ areas that are all taught by experts in their field of Arts and Humanities. Students will also have the opportunity to study any of the four modern languages taught in the department of Modern Languages from beginners or advanced level. If you have broad interests and curiosities in Literary Cultures, Media Cultures, Theatre & Performance, Visual Cultures, and you enjoy finding connections and contrasts between different traditions, this is the ideal degree for you. 

UK students are able to access the usual undergraduate-level financial support for the full four years.

[NSS/DLHE Awards]

Department of Modern Languages: 93% student satisfaction (NSS 2017)

85% of our graduates entered work at professional level, 38% more than Language graduates nationally (HESA 2017)


Why study Liberal Arts at Aberystwyth University?

  • The University is home to one of the largest Arts Centre in Wales.
  • Take advantage of the National Library of Wales (one of the UK’s five copyright libraries) which is a five-minute walk away from campus.
  • Opportunity to develop your abilities as a writer, thinker and presenter.
  • You can investigate the way digital, verbal, performance-based and filmic media help us to construct and interpret our contemporary world and our own roles and opportunities within it.
  • Study French, German, Italian or Spanish from beginners or advanced level. 
  • Understand how the cultural and historical foundations of our contemporary world influence its potential presents and futures.
Our Staff

All of the lecturers in the Dept of Modern Languages are qualified to PhD level and are research active. We also employ language tutors, some of whom have a PhD, and all of whom are experienced teachers. We occasionally employ native-speakers from our partner universities abroad (lectors) who come to us highly recommended on the basis of their academic achievement at the home university, and many of whom have trained as teachers. The fourth group is part-time staff who are employed on the basis of their expertise in a particular specialist area.  


Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

  • You must take:
  • You must choose 80 credits from the list of modules offered by Departments within the Institute of Arts and Humanities and the Department of History and Welsh History. In each semester, one module must be chosen from within your 'Major Area' and one module must be chosen from outside your 'Major Area'
  • You must take:
  • You must choose 80 credits from the list of modules offered by Departments within the Institute of Arts and Humanities and the Department of History and Welsh History. Three modules must be chosen from within your 'Major Area' and one module must be chosen from outside your 'Major Area
  • You must take:
  • You must choose 60 credits from the list of modules offered by Departments within the Institute of Literature, Languages and Creative Arts and the Department of History and Welsh History. One module must be chosen from within your 'Major Area' and two modules must be chosen from outside your 'Major Area

Course Details

The Liberal Arts programme at Aberystwyth offers students an opportunity to develop their own interests in the Arts and Humanities, to combine areas of study that are not available to students on traditional single-honours courses, while developing in depth understanding of their major. Students elect a major from a broad choice of themes (exploring the past, literary cultures, visual cultures, theatre and performance, languages, or media cultures), and to be taught by staff from a number of departments, including English, History, Modern Languages, Welsh, Art, Theatre, Film & Television Studies.


As Liberal Arts graduate, you could pursue careers in many different areas including including business and commerce, law, teaching and academia, journalism and the media, culture and heritage, the civil and uniformed services. This course also provides an excellent foundation for postgraduate study.

What skills do acquire from studying this course? 

By studying Liberal Arts at Aberystwyth University, you will be gaining sought after transferable skills by employers. Our programme fosters your analytical, evaluative, critical and creative thinking, together with your ability to learn and synthesise new skills and ideas. You will also demonstrate your organisation skills and capacity to work to deadlines, communicate effectively and carry out independent research. 

At a time when the business world is becoming increasingly global, your experience studying abroad will impress a potential employer. You will learn to view the world from fresh perspectives, becoming more independent, mature, versatile and confident in the process.

What work experience opportunities exist whilst studying? 

Click here to find out about the various opportunities that our Aberystwyth University Careers team offer. 

Enhance your employability prospects with GO Wales and YES (Year in Employment Scheme) managed by our Careers department. 

Teaching & Learning

What will I learn?

  • Year 1 – as well as choosing modules from a range of different disciplines, you will take two specially-designed core modules. These will help you develop your critical thinking across traditional subject boundaries and explore broad questions from a number of perspectives. 
  • Year 2 – at this stage in your studies you will elect a ‘major’ from a choice of six thematic areas and also take modules from a broad range of disciplines to supplement your learning. The thematic areas are: ‘Exploring the Past’, ‘Languages’, ‘Literary Cultures’, ‘Media Cultures’, ‘Theatre & Performance’ and ‘Visual Cultures’.
  • Year 3 – at this stage you will receive research training (in the first semester) and write a dissertation (with regular sessions of individual tutorial guidance) during the second semester on a topic covering a chosen aspect of your ‘major’ area.
  • Year 4, the core element is the ‘PRO’, the Presented Reflective Overview, which is an individual account of the student’s personal Liberal-Arts ‘journey’ over the four years of the degree. Training for the PRO is given in the linked ‘PRO-PREP’ component in Semester 1. As a focal point for their lecture-style presentation to tutors and peers, students will be advised to make some use of an illustrative ‘case study’ related to an aspect of their work earlier in the course. The presentation is followed by an interactive questions-and-responses session. An augmented and annotated written follow-up is submitted one month after the presentations. In this final year students also take 2 modules from their major area and 2 from elsewhere.

How will I be taught?

The course will be delivered through a balanced programme of lectures, workshops, tutorials, and seminars. Students have access to a range of online resources including e-books and journals, and other learning support through Blackboard, our online learning portal.

You will be assessed through numerous methods including essays, oral presentations, portfolios, reflective journals, literature reviews, and exams.

Students will be strongly encouraged to undertake original archival research during their degree, and at Aberystwyth we are fortunate to have the National Library of Wales, and National Screen and Sound Archive just next to the main campus, both of which house a huge array of archival material.

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Typical Entry Requirements

A Levels BBB-AAB

GCSE requirements (grade C min):
English or Welsh

BTEC National Diploma:

International Students

International Baccalaureate:
30-34 points overall

European Baccalaureate:
70-80% overall

Applicants are considered on their individual merits and offers can vary. For further information, please contact

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