Modern Languages study guide 2022/23

Modern Languages at Bristol

The School of Modern Languages demonstrates an overwhelming passion for foreign languages and cultures, offering undergraduate and postgraduate courses in French; German; Hispanic, Portuguese and Latin American Studies (including Catalan); Italian; Russian and Czech. Degrees are flexible and multidisciplinary, catering to the interests of the individual. This gives students the opportunity to deepen their existing linguistic knowledge, or to take on a new language while studying a wide range of topics on literature, society, civilisation and culture. In all cases, a language degree at Bristol involves much more than just learning a language.

The school is recognised for its friendly, close-knit community, with a long-established reputation for innovative teaching and excellent research, and attracts high calibre staff and students to each of its five departments. Learning extends well beyond the classroom, through cultural weeks, seminars and extra-curricular activities. Combined with access to cutting-edge facilities such as the new Multimedia Centre and the Graduate School of Arts and Humanities, this makes the School of Modern Languages one of the leading centres for language studies in the UK.

Unit structure

The school offers many classes that are based in a single semester, and can therefore accept unit requests from Study Abroad students who want to join Bristol for just the autumn or spring semester.

Unit levels

The school offers units across all undergraduate levels of study: year 1 (level C/4), year 2 (level I/5), and year 3 (level H/6) units. Selected postgraduate units (level M/7) are available. Level M/7 units are normally taken by students who have studied the subject for at least 3 years beforehand and are at an appropriate level of study to take postgraduate units.

Unit codes

Unit codes in the School of Modern Languages begin with 'MODL' or 'UWLP'. This is followed by a number indicating the year (1, 2, 3). For example:

  • MODL10000 = year 1 unit
  • MODL20000 = year 2 unit
  • MODL30000 = year 3 unit.

For more information about each unit, check the University's unit catalogue for 2022/23. Applicants on all study abroad programmes must review the unit details on the catalogue before listing unit choices on their application form. This includes checking the format of assessment for each unit. The unit catalogue for 2022/23 is updated by April.

Your unit choices cannot be guaranteed. Some units may not have capacity to accommodate all of the unit requests we receive. Registration on a unit also depends on whether you meet the pre-requisite conditions through prior study at your home university.

Study Abroad (Subject pathway)

If you have been nominated to Bristol on one of the School of Modern Languages subject pathways, you must take the majority of your credits from across the School and from the Centre for Academic Language and Development:

Units available on the study abroad programme in 2022/23

The following units from the School of Modern Languages are open to incoming Study Abroad students.

Year 1 (level C/4)

Language units:

  • Beginners Catalan (TB4) - UWLP10025
  • Beginners Czech (TB4) - UWLP10017
  • Beginners French (TB4) - UWLP10001
  • Beginners French for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10032
  • Beginners German (TB4) - UWLP10004
  • Beginners German for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10027
  • Beginners Italian (TB4) - UWLP10014
  • Beginners Japanese (TB4) - UWLP10012
  • Beginners Korean (TB4) - UWLP10018
  • Beginners Mandarin Chinese (TB4) - UWLP10013
  • Beginners Modern Standard Arabic (TB4) - UWLP10008
  • Beginners Portuguese (TB4) - UWLP10026
  • Beginners Portuguese for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10033
  • Beginners Russian (TB4) - UWLP10016
  • Beginners Russian for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10028
  • Beginners Spanish (TB4) - UWLP10009
  • Beginners Spanish for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10034
  • Intermediate French (TB4) - UWLP10003
  • Intermediate German (TB4) - UWLP10006
  • Intermediate Spanish (TB4) - UWLP10011
  • Post-Beginners French for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10030
  • Post-Beginners French/Follow-on French (TB4) - UWLP10002 / UWLP20001
  • Post-Beginners German for visiting students (TB1)  - UWLP10031
  • Post-Beginners German/Follow-on German (TB4) - UWLP10005 / UWLP20003
  • Post-Beginners Italian/Follow-on Italian (TB4) - UWLP10015 / UWLP20010
  • Post-Beginners Spanish for Visiting Students (TB1) - UWLP10029
  • Post-Beginners Spanish/Follow-on Spanish (TB4) - UWLP10010 / UWLP20005

Non-language units:

  • Classics of European Cinema (TB2) - MODL10010
  • Comparative Literature: What is it and how can we practise it? (TB1) - MODL10016
  • Contemporary European Cinema (TB1) - MODL10009
  • Introduction to Visual Cultures (TB2) - MODL10018

Year 2 (level I/5)

Language units:

  • Advanced French (TB4) - UWLP20002
  • Advanced German (TB4) - UWLP20004
  • Advanced Spanish (TB4) - UWLP20006
  • Catalan Language (Elementary) (TB4) - MODL23014
  • Czech Language (Elementary) (TB4) - MODL23015
  • Follow-on Portuguese (TB4) - UWLP20016
  • Intermediate French for second and final year (TB4) - UWLP20013
  • Intermediate German for second and final year (TB4) - UWLP20015
  • Intermediate Spanish for second and final year (TB4) - UWLP20014
  • Portuguese Language (TB4) - MODL20022
  • Post-Beginners Russian (TB4) - UWLP20011
  • Pre-intermediate Japanese (TB4) - UWLP20008
  • Pre-intermediate Mandarin Chinese (TB4) - UWLP20009

Non-language units:

  • General Linguistics (TB1) - MODL20016
  • Historical linguistics (TB2) - MODL20017
  • Introduction to teaching Modern Languages as Foreign Languages (TB1) - MODL20021
  • Migrations of culture (TB1) - MODL20024
  • Popular representation and its institutions (TB2) - MODL20026
  • Women and Nation (TB1) - MODL23017

Year 3 (level H/6)

Language units:

  • Catalan Language (follow-on) (TB4) - MODL30011
  • Czech Language (follow-on) (TB4) - MODL30012
  • Intermediate Japanese/Advanced Japanese (TB4) - UWLP30001 / UWLP30003
  • Intermediate Mandarin Chinese (TB4) - UWLP30002
  • Liaison Interpreting French (16) and Spanish (16) (TB2) - MODL30006
  • Liaison Interpreting German (8) Russian (8) Italian (8) (TB1) - MODL30006
  • Portuguese Language follow-on (TB4) - MODL30037

Non-language units:

  • Communism in Europe (TB1) - MODL30001
  • Pan-Africanism (TB2) - MODL30026
  • Sociolinguistic Anthropology: Language Culture and Society (TB2) - MODL30016
  • The Cultural heritage of Historic Towns and Cities in Europe and Beyond (TB2) - MODL30027
  • The Italian City: Medieval and Early Modern Cultures (TB1) - MODL30020
  • Theoretical Approaches to Language Teaching (TB2) - MODL30036
  • Translating in a Professional Context (TB1) - MODL30010

Year 4 (level M/7)

Incoming Study Abroad undergraduate students are permitted to take a maximum of one M-level unit from postgraduate programmes in the School of Modern Languages. This choice requires School-level approval through the School Education Director, in consultation with the relevant Study Abroad Coordinator (usually the Language Director):

  • Black Humanities 1 (TB1) - MODLM0043
  • Black Humanities 2 (TB2) - MODLM0044
  • Contemporary Global Chinese Literature and Visual Arts (TB2) - MODLM0050
  • Rise of the Novel in European Fiction (TB1) - MODLM2035
  • Space, Comparison and Empire (TB1) - MODLM0051
  • Theorising Violence: Colonial Encounters and Anti Colonial Reactions (TB1) - MODLM0025
  • Tradition and Experimentation in the Twentieth Century European Fiction (TB2) - MODLM2034

Units also available to Modern Languages subject pathway students

Alongside units from the School of Modern Languages, students taking a subject pathway in Modern Languages can take units from the Centre for Academic Language and Development. These units focus on the development of your academic English language skills, and are designed to complement and enhance your UK studies. You can read more about the Centre's units in their study guide.

There are also 2 units available from the Department of English (where space is available):

  • Approaches to Poetry (TB2) - ENGL10026
  • Critical Issues (TB1) - ENGL10017

(Please note that other English Literature units are not available on the Modern Languages subject pathway programme).

Application queries

Contact the Global Opportunities Team if you have any queries about the application process for the study abroad programmes:

Phone: +44 117 39 40207


Students cannot audit units. Study abroad students are fully registered on units for credit purposes and must attend teaching only for classes that they are registered on.

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