Introduction

Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies at Aberdeen is an exciting new programme, building on a strong track record of Celtic teaching to offer a fascinating, flexible and interdisciplinary study of the Celtic, Anglo-Saxon, and Scandinavian peoples. You will cross traditional boundaries of literature, history and culture, and develop skills which open wide career options across the arts, media and more.

This programme is studied on campus.

Aberdeen is one of very few universities in Europe where you can study the Celts, Anglo-Saxons and Vikings in comparison – and of course it’s an ideal location.

Our modules cover literature, culture, history and languages – with an emphasis on the Dark Ages and Middle Ages – but you can add ancient and modern periods as well, with the flexibility to choose your own pathway according to your interests and inspired by world-leading experts in the Celtic and Anglo-Saxon fields. You can also study this subject with various language options and courses which include Celtic literature in the modern age.

Aberdeen has been a centre for Celtic studies for more than a century, and the quality of our teaching and our library resources are outstanding.

You will be taught by specialists in the history and literature of Britain, Ireland and Scandinavia in the Middle Ages, in medieval Celtic and Scandinavian literature and the cultural history of Ireland and Anglo-Saxon England.

You will gain essential skills in critical thinking, communication, and other attributes which will make you attractive to employers whatever your career choice. Our graduates work in a wide variety of areas in the arts and elsewhere, including heritage management, teaching, research, librarianship, enterprise and broadcasting.

You will enjoy our warm Aberdeen welcome and friendly, vibrant international community, beautiful campus with great facilities for learning, sports and leisure, many opportunities for personal as well as professional development, and to broaden your horizons through study abroad.

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Key Programme Information

At a Glance

Learning Mode
On Campus Learning
Degree Qualification
MA
Duration
48 months
Study Mode
Full Time
Start Month
September
UCAS Code
5Q28

What You'll Study

Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies is a diverse programme and you will benefit from the University's wide-ranging approach to the subject. You will study a range of topics, including the barbarians, gods and warriors, the Vikings, saga literature and the old English language. The MA degree programme is available either as a single or joint honours option.

Year 1

Year 1

Compulsory Courses

Academic Writing for Language & Literature (AW1008)

This compulsory evaluation is designed to find out if your academic writing is of a sufficient standard to enable you to succeed at university and, if you need it, to provide support to improve. It is completed on-line via MyAberdeen with clear instructions to guide you through it. If you pass the evaluation at the first assessment it will not take much of your time. If you do not, you will be provided with resources to help you improve. This evaluation does not carry credits but if you do not complete it this will be recorded on your degree transcript.

View detailed information about this course

Professional Skills Part 1 (PD1001)

This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year.This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students and above, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

Candidates must select courses worth at least 30 credits from the list of Level 1 options in the Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies table of courses, including at least one of the following:

  • Songs, Myths and Hero-Tales of the Old North (CE1037)
  • Arthur and Finn, Beowulf and Alfred the Great: History, Law and Literature in the Early Medieval North (CE1534)

Plus further courses of choice to make up 120 credit points.

Arthur and Finn, Beowulf and Alfred the Great: History, Law and Literature in the Early Medieval North (CE1534) - 15 Credit Points

This course explores the changing cultures of the early mediaeval North, especially the cultural history and literatures of Britain and Ireland between the Anglo-Saxon settlement of south Britain and the Norman invasions half a millennium later. These islands were a cultural and ethnic melting-pot between Celtic and Germanic peoples, as seen through a rich body of texts: heroic poems, historical narratives, law-texts, family trees, letters and outlaw-legends. In lectures and small-group tutorials, we explore the diverse forms of social organisation which emerged, and we examine how these peoples interacted with each other: from sex to violence and everything in between.

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Songs, Myths and Hero - Tales of the Old North: an Introduction to Early Celtic and Anglo - Saxon Literature (CE1037) - 15 Credit Points

This course introduces the oldest vernacular literature of Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England, beginning in the sixth century AD. We explore heroic narratives featuring, for example, the Scandinavian monster-fighter Beowulf (immortalized in England’s first epic poem), the Irish warrior Cú Chulainn (hero of the Táin) and the tragic Welsh princess Branwen, caught up in a fatal power-struggle between Wales and Ireland. We examine praise-poetry, meditative poetry, and look at mythological tales about the old gods and voyages to Otherworld isles in the western ocean.

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Year 2

Year 2

Optional Courses

Candidates must select courses worth at least 30 credits from the list of Level 2 options in the Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies table of courses, including at least one of the following:

  • Vikings in Celtic and Germanic Scotland (CE2035)
  • The Celts, Their Neighbours, and the Classical World (CE2536)

Plus further courses of choice to make up 120 credit points.

Vikings in Celtic and Germanic Scotland (CE2035) - 15 Credit Points

In this course you will be introduced to the Viking Age (A.D. 800-1100), an era of vast economic and political change in western Europe. Scandinavian assaults and conquests changed many social norms, as did the development of urban culture and international trade associated with vikings' activities. In these islands, outstanding vernacular literatures developed: for instance, we have fascinating texts in Gaelic, English, Scandinavian, and Welsh. Scotland provides an intense realisation of all these trends; this course is, therefore, particularly exciting for students who wish to explore Scottish history and culture, and Scotland's relationship with the rest of mediaeval Europe.

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The Celts, Their Neighbours, and The Classical World (CE2536) - 15 Credit Points

Greek and Roman interactions with, and perceptions of, Celtic and Germanic peoples will form the central theme of this course. We will analyse individual Classical authors' motives and judgments in relation to Celts and Germani, and how these perceptions evolved against the background of the emerging Roman Empire. The course also involves discussion of broader themes and questions posed by the sources, e.g. the portrayals of Celtic and Germanic peoples in Greek and Roman art, and the possible uses by Celtic and Anglo-Saxon literatures of Classical texts.

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Year 3

Year 3

Optional Courses

  • Select 90 credit points of level 3 Celtic & Anglo-Saxon courses.
  • Select further courses of choice to make up 120 credit points.
Year 4

Year 4

Compulsory Courses

Dissertation in Celtic & Anglo - Saxon Studies (CE4598) - 30 Credit Points

The Dissertation in Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies is for Senior Honours students registered in the Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies degree programme. It will consist of approximately 3 one-hour tutorials, to provide students with guidance on selecting a suitable academic topic and developing a methodology for tackling this topic.

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

  • Select 90 credit points of level 4 Celtic & Anglo-Saxon courses.

Course Availability

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

Our staff have a wealth of teaching experience gained from universities across the world. We use a range of teaching styles, including introductory lectures, small-group tutorial discussion, student seminar presentations, and intensive language classes.

Learning Methods

  • Individual Projects
  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials

Assessment Methods

Students are assessed by any combination of three assessment methods:

  • Coursework such as essays and reports completed throughout the course.
  • Practical assessments of the skills and competencies they learn on the course.
  • Written examinations at the end of each course.

The exact mix of these methods differs between subject areas, years of study and individual courses.

Honours projects are typically assessed on the basis of a written dissertation.

Further Information

View detailed learning and assessment information for this programme

How the programme is taught

The typical time spent in scheduled learning activities (lectures, tutorials, seminars, practicals), independent self-study or placement is shown for each year of the programme based on the most popular course choices selected by students.

How the programme is assessed

The typical percentage of assessment methods broken down by written examination, coursework or practical exams is shown for each year of the programme based on the most popular course choices selected by students.

Year 1

Learning Method
scheduled: 22%
independent: 78%
placement: 0%
Assessment
written: 57%
coursework: 39%
practical: 4%

Year 2

Learning Method
scheduled: 11%
independent: 89%
placement: 0%
Assessment
written: 45%
coursework: 47%
practical: 8%

Year 3

Learning Method
scheduled: 11%
independent: 89%
placement: 0%
Assessment
written: 57%
coursework: 43%
practical: 0%

Year 4

Learning Method
scheduled: 6%
independent: 94%
placement: 0%
Assessment
written: 45%
coursework: 53%
practical: 2%

Why Study Celtic & Anglo-Saxon Studies?

  • A unique programme in Scotland, emphasising critical thinking and small-group discussion, to gain in-depth knowledge of history, literature and languages, plus transferable skills to enhance your employability.
  • All teaching is on the beautiful, late-mediaeval King’s College campus, and the surrounding countryside is rich in archaeological and historic remains of Scotland’s Celtic and Nordic past.
  • Academic staff are leading international researchers who have published widely on Celtic, Anglo-Saxon, and Scandinavian literature and history.
  • The spectacular, award-winning Sir Duncan Rice Library with great study facilities, state-of-the-art technology, and extensive collections and resources for this programme.
  • A vibrant Celtic Society, one of the oldest, most famous and liveliest student societies in the University, organising social and cultural events, including Welsh and Irish themed evenings and traditional music sessions.
  • A packed campus programme of lectures, café events, exhibitions, and the annual May Festival attracting internationally acclaimed public figures, historians, authors and broadcasters to debate hot topics, and hosting a popular Viking tea-party!

Entry Requirements

Qualifications

The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.


General Entry Requirements

2018 Entry
2019 Entry

SQA Highers - AABB

A Levels - BBB

IB - 32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL

ILC - 5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3 OR AAABB, obtained in a single sitting. (B must be at B2 or above)

SQA Highers

Standard Offer: AABB - BBB
Applicants who have achieved between AABB - BBB are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers / Advanced Highers may be required in order to receive an offer of admission.

Adjusted / Access Threshold: BB (or below)
Applicants who have achieved BB, and who meet one or more Widening Participation criteria, are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers / Advanced Highers will be required in order to receive an offer of admission.

More information on our definition of Standard, Adjusted and Access Threshold entry qualifications.

A LEVELS

Standard offer: BBB

Adjusted / Access Threshold: BB (or below)

More information on our definition of Standard, Adjusted and Access Threshold entry qualifications.

International Baccalaureate

32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL.

Irish Leaving Certificate

5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3 OR AAABB, obtained in a single sitting. (B must be at B2 or above)


Further detailed entry requirements for Arts and Social Sciences degrees.

English Language Requirements

To study for an Undergraduate degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:

IELTS Academic:

OVERALL - 6.0 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0

TOEFL iBT:

OVERALL - 78 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL - 54 with: Listening - 51; Reading - 51; Speaking - 51; Writing - 54

Cambridge English Advanced & Proficiency:

OVERALL - 169 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169

Read more about specific English Language requirements here.

Fees and Funding

You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.

Fee Waiver

For international students (all non-EU students) the tuition fee charged upon entry will apply to all years of study; however, most international students will be eligible for a fee waiver in their final year via the International Undergraduate Scholarship.

Most RUK students (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) on a four year honours degree will be eligible for a full-fees waiver in their final year. Scholarships and other sources of funding are also available.

Fee information
Fee category Cost
Home / EU £1,820
All Students
RUK £9,250
Students Admitted in 2019/20
International Students £15,300
Students Admitted in 2019/20

Additional Fees

  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Our Funding Database

View all funding options in our Funding Database.

Careers

Studying Celtic and Anglo-Saxon Studies at Aberdeen will provide you with unrivalled knowledge of the languages, literature and cultures of the Celtic, Anglo-Saxon and Scandinavian people. Previous graduates of our programme have gone on to work in a wide variety of areas in the arts and elsewhere, including heritage management, teaching, research, librarianship, enterprise and broadcasting.

Study a Unique Celtic Programme in Scotland

Celtic and Anglo Saxon Studies is an interdisciplinary programme, unique in Scotland to study the culture and people of the past

Our Experts

Our courses in Celtic & Anglo-Saxon studies are taught by experts in their field. Your teachers will include, among others:

Other Experts
Professor Ralph O'Connor
Professor David N. Dumville
Dr Aideen O'Leary
Dr Susan Marshall

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Facilities

Centre for Scandinavian Studies

Aberdeen has the largest concentration of experts on early Scandinavia in the British Isles.

Celtic Society

One of the oldest, most famous and liveliest student societies in the University. The Society organises social and cultural events, including Welsh and Irish themed evenings and traditional music sessions.

Image for Sir Duncan Rice Library
Sir Duncan Rice Library

Sir Duncan Rice Library

The University’s award winning Sir Duncan Rice Library is listed in the “Top 20 spellbinding University libraries in the World”. It contains over a million volumes, more than 300,000 e-books and 21,000 journals.

Find out more

Unistats

Unistats draws together comparable information in areas students have identified as important in making decisions about what and where to study. You can compare these and other data for different degree programmes in which you are interested.

Get in Touch

Contact Details

Address
Student Recruitment & Admissions Service
University of Aberdeen
University Office
Regent Walk
Aberdeen
AB24 3FX