The Department is one of the smallest in Cambridge, and prides itself on its friendly and informal atmosphere among undergraduates, post-graduates and staff. Because there are usually only one or two ASNaCs (as undergraduate students in the Department are known) per year at any particular College, the Department itself has a strong sense of identity and intercollegiate cohesion.
How you learn
The course lasts for three years, and as it covers subjects not taught at all in most schools, all students start the undergraduate course at the same level and almost from scratch.
For the first two years (Part I) you will study six subjects from a range of ten taught within the department, including history and language-and-literature topics, with additional choices available from a selection of papers in related fields borrowed from other courses (archaeology, medieval literature, etc.). And for one of these subjects you may substitute a dissertation, if you wish.
In the third year (Part II), you consolidate your knowledge by developing some of those subjects in far greater depth, or you may extend it by adding wholly new ones. You take four papers out of a range of twelve and you write a dissertation.
|Typical Offer Conditions
||41-42 points, with 776 at Higher Level
||See the University’s Entrance Requirements page
||A language or humanities subject
Two school essays on any subject.
All applicants are required to take the pre-interview written assessment for ASNC at an authorised centre local to them (for a lot of applicants, this will be their school/college). Please see the Admissions Assessments page on the University website for further details.
The main aim of the interview for ASNC is to ascertain your aptitude for the subject, and the strength of your interest in it. Commitment and keenness are essential, as the course is intellectually strenuous and demanding. You may be asked to look at some specimen passages of English, and to comment on them or ask questions about them.
Applicants tend to have studied English, History, Classics or Modern Languages to A level or an equivalent qualification, although occasionally applications come from students who study other, less obviously related subjects (e.g. Mathematics). If you have not studied languages to A level standard, we would normally look for some other evidence that you have an aptitude for languages, although absence of such evidence need not be a bar to entry.