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Advice for Students

Top Tips For English Literature Students!

15 August 2022

As an English Literature student at both postgraduate and undergraduate level there has been plenty of advice that I wish I had been given throughout the last four years. Studying English Literature at Cardiff University has been one of the most rewarding things that I have done, however, there is certainly more to the course than it appears at first. In the following article I will be giving you some top tips that I have picked up as an English Literature student for the past four years.

Do Your Reading

While this may sound simple, you would be surprised with the sheer amount of people that underestimate the amount of reading involved within the degree. Modules usually consist of ten separate texts spread out over ten weeks with usually between three and five added articles for each text. The seminars that you will attend throughout the week rely entirely on the reading that you have been set by your lecturers. However, while this may sound like an intense workload, if managed efficiently, it is doable for all students of the course.

Show Up to Your Lectures

In my opinion English Literature is one of the courses where the lectures are the most integral to your core understanding of the course. This is because not only do you have lecturers that are at the top of their fields giving you insightful and extensive lectures, but they are largely teaching on texts that they are incredibly passionate about. Not only this but the lecturers largely focus the content of their lectures on the essay questions which are available to the students at the beginning of the semester. If you show up to the lectures and make notes on their content then you have a much higher chance of reaching those higher marks within the end of module assignments.

Do Your Reading and Research As You Go

As a student it always seems a lot easier for you to leave deadlines and research for you essays to the last minute. However, in order to get your essays up to the standard expected at university degree level it is essential to work as you go throughout the course of each module. Making copious notes during seminars and lectures and completing the extended and background reading for each week will put you in perfect stead to achieve the top marks within the modules.

Make Multiple Copies Of Your Notes

If like me you are a forgetful and disorganise person then the idea of making just one copy of your course notes can be, a quite frankly dangerous tactic. One of the best pieces of advice I was given throughout my studies was to make multiple copies of my notes across different mediums. In order to achieve this I started off by writing my notes during lectures and seminars on a pad of paper and then typing them up on my laptop when I got back home.