• Faculty of Arts And Social Sciences
  • sastera@um.edu.my
  • +603-79675500

The programme is comparable to those offered in universities in the United Kingdom and the United States of America. Canonical literatures in English that cover the whole period of development of English Literature, from the Medieval to the Modern, form the foundation for the Bachelor of Arts (English) programme. Due emphasis is also given to literature in English from other parts of the world such as Africa, India, Australia and the USA. The department also offers courses reflective of current interdisciplinary developments in English Literature, such as ‘Popular Culture and Literature’, ‘Literature through Language’, and ‘Global Shakespeares’.

Teaching is conducted mainly in the form of lectures and tutorials, with an emphasis on interactive learning to encourage students to stretch their abilities. Most courses adopt a 60:40 ratio in assessment, with 60% based on continuous coursework assessment and 40% from final examinations. Some courses are assessed entirely from coursework. 

All teaching is supported by our e-learning system, SPeCTRUM, which every registered student has access to. Further, each student is assigned an Academic Advisor who can provide guidance on queries and problems of an academic or even personal nature. There are also opportunities to participate in Exchange programmes with overseas universities, giving students valuable and stimulating exposure to different learning environments and experiences. Credits earned from an Exchange programme may be transferred as part of the degree programme of the Department of English, subject to terms and conditions. Students will also carry out an internship with a company, institution or organisation to gain practical experience that will equip them with useful skills when they apply for jobs after graduation. Here is a selection of our courses:


Why Study English Literature at the University of Malaya?

The Department of English at the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences has a distinguished history. It is the oldest Department of English in the country, and can trace its beginnings to the establishment of the Faculty of Arts at the University of Malaya in Singapore in 1949.  The Department of English subsequently became one of the first departments of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences set up on the present campus in Lembah Pantai, Kuala Lumpur in 1959. 

The department’s identity, which proudly sets it apart from every other Department of English in Malaysia, lies in its continued commitment to coverage of traditional British literature, from Chaucer and Middle English, through Shakespeare and the 16th, 17th, and 18th centuries, to the Victorians and the Modernists.

Through its academic staff’s specialization and research interests, the Department offers expertise in a wide variety of literary fields, including Medieval literature, Renaissance literature, 19th century literature, Modernist and Postmodernist literature, Postcolonial literatures (with a strong interest in Malaysian literature), travel literature, ecocriticism, African literature, feminist literature, modern drama, literary theory and more.

Notable alumni include Shirley Geok-lin Lim, Razali Ismail, K.S. Maniam, Chin San Sooi, Rebecca Santa Maria and Leow Puay Tin.

We warmly welcome prospective students, both from Malaysia and from abroad, who wish to pursue their undergraduate studies in literature in English.

Interested to join us? Please click here.

  • Author
  • Editor
  • Journalist
  • Lecturer
  • Media Writer
  • Playwright
  • Screenwriter
  • Diplomat
  • Consultant
  • Public Relations
  • Advertising
  • Copywriter

 Important: Students should follow the selection of courses based on their intake’s SPI.

 Year One (Semesters 1 & 2)

 • Reading & Writing about Literature 1

 • Introduction to Fiction

 • Aspects of Poetry

 • Drama: An Introduction

 Year Two (Semesters 3 & 4)

 • Reading & Writing about Literature 2

 • Theories of Literature

 • Shakespeare & His Contemporaries

 • Postcolonial Literature

 • Topics in the 19th Century

 • The 20th Century

 • World Literature

 Year Three (Semesters 5 & 6)

 •Topics in Malaysian & Singaporean Literature

 • Research Project 1

 • Women and Literature

 • Research Project 2

 Year Four (Semester 7)

 • Practicum

 You may start to choose your electives from Semester 2 onwards.

 All electives are worth 3 credits each.

 Important: Electives offered for the semester may be subject to change.

 Important: Students should also follow the selection of courses based on their intake’s SPI.

 Semester 2

 • Effective Writing Skills

 Semester 3

 • Advertising Discourse

 • Theatre Performance in English

 • Exploring Travel Literature

 Semester 4

 • Journalistic Writing

 • The Restoration and the 18th Century

 • Literature and the Environment

 • Global Shakespeares

 Semester 5

 • Creative Writing

 • African Literature and Culture

 • Literature through Language

 • Texts and Contexts in the Middle Ages

 Semester 6

 • Popular Culture and Literature

 • Investigating Crime Fiction

 • Studies in American Literature

Semester I : September

Semester II : February

Deadline for Malaysian applicants : April for Semester I intake

Deadline for International applicants : June for Semester I intake and November for Semester II intake.

Remember to check UM’s admissions portal at https://myum-id.um.edu.my/ for the latest information on application dates and deadlines.

Last Update: 13/07/2022