BA (Hons) English Language with Mandarin

Key information

Why choose this course?

  • Engage in the scientific study of everything to do with language
  • Conduct psycholinguistic experiments in our eye tracking suite
  • Improve your employability with a language

We give you:

  • an understanding of applied language, to underpin a career in teaching a language to non-native speakers
  • a supportive, research-active academic team
  • a flexible programme of study, allowing you to concentrate on areas you find especially interesting
  • access to huge online databases to underpin your original research projects
  • CV-building potential through work placements and extra-curricular activities
  • a guaranteed post-graduation interview with the School of Education. 

What's the course about?

How do humans learn language? We’re all experts in our native tongue, so why can it be so hard to become fluent in a language we learn later in life?

Through this BA English Language with Mandarin you’ll learn about the English Language but you’ll also have the opportunity to learn Mandarin. This is for beginners or GCSE level only. 

This combined programme of English Language and a Language will give you an excellent grounding if you plan to teach children in primary or secondary schools following postgraduate teacher training.

In your first year, alongside core English Language modules, you’ll study language and mind, where you’ll analyse child speech transcripts and consider language acquisition. You’ll also explore the diversity of use of the English language including regional variants, pidgin and creole English, language and ethnicity, and slang and street English. In addition, you’ll take two modules in your chosen language each year.

Core modules in your second year focus on English grammar and the sounds of English. You can explore theories of how and why language developed and also have the option to take a language competencies module leading to a work placement. This could involve field work or observing teaching and learning methods in a college setting.

In your final year you can follow modules in different topics, including child language and communication, clinical linguistics, gender and language, and formulaic language, informed by our academics’ own research specialisms. In addition, you’ll study Global Englishes and take a compulsory project looking at a particular aspect of English Language teaching.

What will I study?

Degree programmes are structured into levels, 4, 5 and 6.  These correspond to your first, second and third/final year of study.  Below you can see what modules you’ll be studying in each.  

Alumni headshot

Alumni Stories

Alex Olney

Meet Alex Olney who has applied his skills in communication to the gaming industry. He is currently a Senior Video Producer at Nintendo Life.

Read more stories Find out more about this course
Current job roleSenior Video Producer
Year of graduation2015
Course of studyBA(Hons) English Language and Communication
Alex Olney

University experience

While not his first choice of university, Alex is grateful that he applied to the University of Hertfordshire through Clearing as whilst at the University he discovered and explored his passion for everything linguistic. This passion has had a profound impact on his life since graduating.

He says, ‘Studying a language gave me confidence and a deeper understanding of human and non-human communication and has allowed me to create a distinct idiolect that identifies me as a creator and, more importantly, entertains tens of thousands of people every day.’

He credits his success to the support he received from his lecturers who encouraged him throughout his studies: ‘The lecturers were not only well informed about the subject matter but had a genuine passion for language.’ He states that they pushed him to explore languages so much so that ‘it became a driving force in my everyday life.’

Alex also believes that the transferable skills he learnt while at the University have helped him throughout his professional life including time management. He states that he learnt effective time management skills to ensure that he never leaves projects and deadlines to the last minute and plans out in advance what is required.

The future

Alex really enjoys his current role at Nintendo Life as he likes the hands on nature of producing content but would eventually like to manage and become a head of the video editing department.

‘Studying a language gave me confidence and a deeper understanding of human and non-human communication and has allowed me to create a distinct idiolect that identifies me as a creator and, more importantly, entertains tens of thousands of people every day.’