- Combine a solid foundation in Communications with the study of a language and its culture.
- You will hone practical and professional skills, equipping you to work across the creative industries or anywhere requiring people who understand how communications work.
- Opportunity to experience different ways of learning, with specialist modules that cover everything from the history of communications and professional writing, to language and social interaction and global communications.
- Excellent facilities on campus include our Special Collections relating to world-renowned writers, The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum which is a unique film and popular culture resource and our Digital Humanities Lab. Exeter has also recently been awarded UNESCO City of Literature status.
- Spend your third year studying abroad in a country where you can develop your chosen language.
- You can choose to study any of our languages from beginners: Chinese (Mandarin); French; German; Italian; Portuguese; Russian; or Spanish
Top 10 for Communications
10th for Communications in the Guardian University Guide 2023
Top 150 in world subject rankings for Modern Languages and Cultures
QS World University Subject Rankings 2023
Year abroad spent studying at a partner university or in employment
Unique on-site resources: Exeter’s Special Collections archive and the Bill Douglas Cinema Museum
This exciting new programme of study combines the highest standards of academic rigour with innovative, practice-based learning in the broad area of global communications.
Our course is wide ranging, flexible and gives students the chance to develop their own specialist areas of interest.
Professor Jo Gill
College of Humanities
Entry requirements (typical offer)
|Qualification||Typical offer||Required subjects|
|A-Level||ABB||Dependent on subjects chosen|
|IB||32/655||Dependent on subjects chosen|
|BTEC||DDM||Dependent on subjects chosen|
|GCSE||C or 4||English Language|
|Access to HE||24 L3 Credits at Distinction Grade and 21 L3 credits at Merit Grade.||Dependent on level chosen the required L3 credits in Modern Foreign Language subject area|
|T-Level||Distinction||Dependent on subjects chosen, GCE AL in a Modern Foreign Language will also be required.|
Specific subject requirements must still be achieved where stated above. Find out more about contextual offers.
|Other accepted qualifications|
|English language requirements||
International students need to show they have the required level of English language to study this course. The required test scores for this course fall under Profile B. Please visit our English language requirements page to view the required test scores and equivalencies from your country.
NB General Studies is not included in any offer.
Grades advertised on each programme webpage are the typical level at which our offers are made and provide information on any specific subjects an applicant will need to have studied in order to be considered for a place on the programme. However, if we receive a large number of applications for the programme we may not be able to make an offer to all those who are predicted to achieve/have achieved grades which are in line with our typical offer. For more information on how applications are assessed and when decisions are released, please see: After you apply
- No previous language qualifications are required.
- You may only choose one language.
- French, German, Italian, Russian, and Spanish can be studied either from A level or beginner’s level, with both cohorts reaching degree level in the final year. Portuguese and Chinese can normally only be studied from beginner’s level, not from A Level; students of these two languages reach degree level in final year.
Languages and levels available for Combined Honours courses
I want to study a new language at beginner level alongside my other subject (excluding programmes with Arabic)
|Modern Languages requirements||No previous language qualifications required. We strongly recommend that students who want to start a languages degree with no previous linguistic experience should contact us.|
|Advanced level languages available||n/a|
|Beginners level languages available||Chinese (Mandarin); French; German; Italian; Portuguese; Russian; Spanish|
I want to study my A level (or equivalent) language at advanced level alongside my other subject (including programmes with Arabic)
|Modern Languages requirements||A level grade B or IB HL 5 (or equivalent) in the language chosen at advanced level|
|Advanced level languages available||French; German; Italian; Russian; Spanish|
|Beginners level languages available||n/a
Completing your UCAS form
In the section named ‘further details’ on your UCAS application form please indicate in the ‘choices’ field the language and route you wish to study using the abbreviations below, separated by a space:
At each level, students will be able to choose from a portfolio of optional modules, meaning that they will not be restricted to one concept or experience of “Communications” and will, from early on, be able to plot their own route through a wide-ranging and flexible programme.
Communications: Year 1 of the programme offers a combination of compulsory modules (covering conceptual and applied approaches to Communications and enabling students to develop their critical and analytical skills) and options. Here, as throughout, students will have opportunity to learn or improve a second or further language via modularity.
In year 2, students will take a “Professional Writing” module, and they will undertake a guided work placement (“Communications in the Workplace” – 15 or 30 credit version).
Your International Placement (work or study) will take place in Year 3.
In the final year, students may take a specialist Communications option or other options relating to Communications but drawn from a range of fields; they will also take either a Communications Dissertation or a Communications Practical Project.
International Placement (work or study)
Study/Work Abroad in Year 3
A pivotal part of all Modern Language programmes is the International Placement, either studying at one of our prestigious partner universities, teaching on a British Council placement, or working in other employment. By immersing yourself in the culture you study, you will not only enhance your language skills, but cultivate:
- strong intercultural understanding
- improved communication skills
- the ability to think and study in different ways
- resilience and confidence
- analytical skills and the ability to make cross-cultural comparisons
- adaptability, independence and valuable life experience
During your International Placement you will still be registered as an Exeter student and therefore supported in several ways. You will retain your personal tutor and be expected to keep in contact with them. You will also have the support of the Exeter Global Opportunities team for advice on any matter.
You will need to decide how to spend your International Placement during the first half of the second year. We will help you in the process. During your first year you will be invited to an introductory presentation about your Year Abroad options. In your second year, there is an extensive orientation programme to help you prepare for your Year Abroad.
Ways to spend the International Placement (work or study)
- You must spend 7-15 months abroad, maximising the opportunities available to you
- You can work, study, or split the year on two or more placements
- Students going to China or Russia can currently only study (work abroad is not available)
- If you study Portuguese, the only options available are study or work abroad (not a British Council assistantship)
Studying abroad offers a range of possibilities, with over 40 different partner universities worldwide available to Modern Languages students. This can provide you with the opportunity to experience a different academic environment with local and other international students broadening your knowledge of the language and culture you study.
Internships are very rewarding in that they can offer you valuable workplace experience. Placements can be sourced via our Global Opportunities webpages, but you can also source your own internship externally, though it must be approved by the Global Opportunities team. Some of our students have spent their Year Abroad working in translation, tourism, marketing, fashion, commerce, journalism, heritage and many other sectors.
British Council English Language Assistantship
Becoming an English Language Assistant with the British Council is a brilliant opportunity to explore both the world of working and, more specifically, the idea of working as a teacher. An academic year is spent supporting teachers in a primary or secondary school in the country of the language you are studying.
Does it count towards my degree?
The International Placement is an assessed year and the marks obtained count towards your final degree classification. If you begin a language in your first year at Exeter and intend to take that language in your final year, we strongly recommend you spend the majority of your Year Abroad in a country where that language is spoken. If you would like to arrange the year differently, you should first speak with the Programme Director for your language and/or the Study Abroad Officer.
How does it affect my tuition fee and funding?
For your International Placement you will pay a significantly reduced tuition fee to Exeter – for more information visit our fees pages. You will also continue to receive any Student Finance support for which you are eligible. Other financial support may also be available for certain students.
Tuition fees for 2024 entry
UK students: £9,250 per year
International students: £23,700 per year
The University of Exeter has many different scholarships available to support your education, including £5 million in scholarships for international students, such as our Global Excellence Scholarships*. Financial support is also available for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, lower income households and other under-represented groups to help them access, succeed and progress through higher education.
* Terms and conditions apply. See online for details.
Learning and teaching
How will I learn?
The nature of learning at university involves considerable self-guided study and research. You will be taught through a combination of lectures and discussion-based seminars. We also support the development of team-based learning by organising students into study groups, and we make full use of both traditional learning resources and our virtual learning environment. Lecturers and tutors are all available to provide further support in one-to-one consultations.
Most of your work will be done in group and self-directed study: reading or viewing module material, writing essays or preparing for your seminars. Active participation in seminars develops important transferable skills such as good verbal and visual communication and effective interaction with other people. You will also develop a range of professional abilities, such as time management and team working, plus valuable critical, analytical and communication skills.
We are actively engaged in introducing new methods of learning and teaching, including the increasing use of interactive computer-based approaches to learning. Through our virtual learning environment, you can access detailed information about modules, and interact through activities such as discussion forums. You will also have access to online subscription databases and websites, such as Early English Books Online (EEBO), Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO), MLA FirstSearch and JSTOR.
How will I be assessed?
You will be assessed in a variety of ways but primarily through exams and coursework. Coursework includes essays, a dissertation and presentation work. The ratio of formal exam to coursework is on average 40:60. Your first year doesn’t count towards your final degree classification, but you do have to pass it in order to progress.
We provide an exciting range of special lectures and seminars by visiting academics and renowned writers, actors and film directors. In addition to your academic work, the student-run English Society organises book and poetry readings, film screenings and social events, providing an opportunity to meet students who share a love of literature, culture and the arts. Students from the English department are always active on the University student newspapers, radio and TV station and in the University’s drama groups.
Optional modules outside of this course
Each year, if you have optional modules available, you can take up to 30 credits in a subject outside of your course. This can increase your employability and widen your intellectual horizons.
Proficiency in a second subject
If you complete 60 credits of modules in one of the subjects below, you may have the words 'with proficiency in [e.g. Social Data Science]' added to your degree title when you graduate.
- A Foreign Language
- Social Data Science
We are exceptionally lucky to have some fantastic facilities and resources on the Streatham Campus.
We have Special Collections relating to writers such as Agatha Christie, Daphne du Maurier, and William Golding, and we integrate these into our teaching so students can share the excitement we have when discovering new insights from manuscripts, letters, and business papers.
The Bill Douglas Cinema Museum
Our unique film and popular culture resource, contains items going back hundreds of years. We regularly take students into its archives and think about the study of literature in relation to visual texts.
Digital Humanities Lab
Digital Humanities is increasingly important in all areas of humanities research, including history, archaeology, literatures and languages. This research space enables the examination, preservation and analysis of historical, literary and visual material. Facilities in the lab include:
- a flagship seminar room equipped with a 4.2-metre video wall, encouraging interactive engagement in a shared display space
- two state-of-the-art photography labs, including provision for the 2D digitisation of heritage material and primary sources
- an audio-visual lab with a recording studio and sound editing suite
- a MakerSpace equipped with 3D scanning and printing equipment
With practical modules on offer and opportunity to undertake professional placements, a degree in Communications and Modern Languages will give you plenty of opportunity to develop your professional portfolio which will give you the skills and experience needed to be successful in your chosen career.
Employer-valued skills this course develops
A Communications degree puts you in a great position to succeed in a range of careers. Oral and written communication is at the heart of our programme and you will learn to present your ideas in a variety of formats. You will also develop strong research and analytical skills and the ability to problem solve and make informed decisions. Through a balance of independent study and teamwork you will learn to manage your time and workload effectively.
The programme will include module ‘Communications in the Workplace’, within which students will be encouraged to find work placements with providers in the communications and media sector, or projects which will enable them to carry out communication-related projects. In this module, students will undertake one or two work placements. The module will enable students to develop an understanding of how the skills and knowledge acquired as part of the degree apply to the workplace. Through reflexive practice, they will extend relevant work-based skills and knowledge. Students will have the opportunity to develop an understanding of a business or work environment through practical work and to gain experience in the use of technologies and applications commonly used in organisations.
Graduates can expect to go on into roles in the following sectors:
- Digital Media
- Events Organisation
- International Relations
- Public Relations
- TV Production