Research course

Comparative Literature

Institution
Birkbeck, University of London · Cultures and Languages
Qualifications
MPhil/PhD

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Entry requirements

Usually a good first degree in an arts or humanities subject.

Specific indication of research interests or outline of proposed research prior to interview.

Months of entry

January, April, October

Course content

This research degree is ideal if you wish to engage critically with the study of comparative literature - or other cultural forms, especially in the area of visual studies - across two or more linguistic, regional or national contexts. The focus of research in the Department of Cultures and Languages is on French, German, Japanese, Portuguese and Spanish-speaking cultures in a transnational context, and we welcome research proposals that focus comparatively on or across these areas. The Department has great expertise in a wide variety of themes both historically and geographically (in Europe, Japan and the Americas).

An MPhil/PhD is an advanced postgraduate research degree that requires original research and the submission of a substantial dissertation of 60,000 to 100,000 words. At Birkbeck, you are initially registered on an MPhil and you upgrade to a PhD after satisfactory progress in the first year or two. You need to find a suitable academic supervisor at Birkbeck, who can offer the requisite expertise to guide and support you through your research. Find out more about undertaking a research degree at Birkbeck.

In the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF), Modern Languages and Linguistics at Birkbeck achieved 100% for a research environment conducive to research of the highest quality, while 73% of our research was recognised as world-leading or internationally excellent. Our indicative areas of research are:

  • Canon formation
  • French language literature and culture
  • German language literature and culture
  • Japanese language literature and culture
  • Literary and film history
  • Intermediality, intertextuality and translation across genres and media
  • Portuguese language literature and culture
  • Spanish language literature and culture
  • Transnational cultural theory and criticism in all the above languages
  • Visual culture.

Highlights

Information for international students

If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, the requirement for this programme is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 7.0, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

Fees and funding

PhD students resident in England can apply for government loans of over £26,000 to cover the cost of tuition fees, maintenance and other study-related costs.

Outstanding MPhil/PhD researchers are encouraged to apply for our competitive scholarships and studentships, which cover fees and maintenance. Read more and apply now.

Find out more about other research funding opportunities at Birkbeck.

Flexible finance: pay your fees in monthly instalments at no extra cost. Enrol early to spread your costs and reduce your monthly payments.

Fees discounts: If you are a member of a union that is recognised by the Trades Union Congress (TUC), you may apply for a 10% discount off your tuition fees.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MPhil/PhD
    part time
    84 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    24-48 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Name
Student Advice Service
Email
studentadvice@bbk.ac.uk
Phone
+44 (0)20 3907 0700