You will take 120 credits of modules split as below:
- Compulsory core modules - 40 credits
- Optional modules - 80 credits
You must pass year two, which counts one third towards your final degree classification.
The course offers the flexibility to explore. Whether you've come to the subject through an interest in global relations, politics, or even a love for American television shows, our expert-led courses let you design your degree to suit your strengths and interests
You will study American and Canadian history, literature and culture, selecting optional modules on everything from North American politics, music, art, film and television.
The above is a sample of the typical modules we offer but is not intended to be construed and/or relied upon as a definitive list of the modules that will be available in any given year. Modules (including methods of assessment) may change or be updated, or modules may be cancelled, over the duration of the course due to a number of reasons such as curriculum developments or staffing changes. This content was last updated on Thursday 9 February 2023.
You will be taught via a mixture of large-group lectures and smaller, interactive seminars. You might also be taught through tutorials and supervisions. These are one-to-one meetings or discussions with an academic tutor.
This course includes a wide range of learning materials. This could include reading books, online journal articles, e-book chapters, shorter review essays, newspaper and magazine articles. It could also mean watching documentary films, and, on some modules, listening to music on YouTube or Spotify.
“I did a module called ‘The Pop Century’, which was on 20th century music, in second year. I loved that because you’d have a playlist every week and reading to go with it. We’d listen to songs and you’d choose your favourite one and link it to the historical context." – Liberty Jones, 2021 graduate
You will also have a personal tutor from the Department of American and Canadian Studies. This is someone who can:
First-year students can benefit from being paired with a 'peer mentor'. This is an existing student from your department who helps you settle in, get to know your peers and advise on student life.
Find out more about the support on offer.
Assessment is based on a combination of coursework, including essays and dissertation projects, seminar participation and oral presentations, and formal examinations. The precise assessments vary from one module to another and across the years of your degree.
The opportunity to discuss ideas and coursework with your tutor is an integral part of your studies at Nottingham. Whether by giving feedback on an essay plan, or discussing the results of an assessment, we help you work to the best of your ability. Each tutor offers weekly support and feedback hours, while feedback on coursework is also posted online via our tailored teaching and learning platform.
You’ll have at least the following hours of timetabled contact a week through lectures, seminars and workshops, tutorials and supervisions.
Your tutors will also be available outside these times to discuss issues and develop your understanding.
We reduce your contact hours as you work your way through the course. As you progress, we expect you to assume greater responsibility for your studies and work more independently.
Your lecturers will be qualified academic staff. Some of your classes may be run by temporary teaching staff who are also experts in their field.
Class sizes vary depending on topic and type. A weekly lecture on a core module may have 50-60 students attending, while a specialised seminar may only contain 10 students.
As well as scheduled teaching, you’ll carry out extensive self-study such as independent reading and research. As a guide, 20 credits (a typical module) is approximately 200 hours of work (combined teaching and self-study). Each 20-credit module typically involves between three and four hours of lectures and seminars per week. You would ideally spend 8-10 hours doing preparation work.
Evidence shows that students commencing their university study at foundation level achieve the same levels of undergraduate degree as their fellow direct-route students, which in turn leads to the same wide range of career options.
In addition to your study we recommend that you participate in at least some of our cv-enhancing programmes which include:
You will also be able to take advantage of the wide range of services offered by our dedicated Faculty of Arts careers team within the Careers and Employability Service.
More information about subject-related careers opportunities from our Careers and Employability Services.
78.9% of undergraduates from the Faculty of Arts secured graduate level employment or further study within 15 months of graduation. The average annual salary for these graduates was £24,169.*
*HESA Graduate Outcomes 2019/20 data published in 2022. The Graduate Outcomes % is derived using The Guardian University Guide methodology. The average annual salary is based on graduates working full-time within the UK.
Studying for a degree at the University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take.
Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.
Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.
The University of Nottingham is consistently named as one of the most targeted universities by Britain’s leading graduate employers (Ranked in the top ten in The Graduate Market in 2013-2020, High Fliers Research).
"In my A levels I was very interested in literature. As I started my degree, I became more interested in history and then realised that I was more interested in political history and politics. That ability to form your own path, so you don’t have to home in on your main interests too soon, was really important. "
University Park Campus, Nottingham, UK