Published: 01 April 2019

A week in the life of an English literature student

From literary theory lectures to creative writing, discover what a typical week looks like for first-year English literature students at Surrey.

Student reading by the lake with a duck nearby

A typical week


  • 9am to 10am – Shakespeare lecture
  • 12pm to 1pm – Literary theory lecture
  • 1pm to 2pm – Lunch 
  • 2pm to 5pm – Prepare for the week’s seminars 


  • 10am to 11am – Personal tutor meeting
  • 11am to 12pm – Theories of reading seminar, followed by coffee with course mates
  • 12pm to 1pm – Lunch
  • 1pm to 2pm – Walk over to the Library and Learning Centre to work on upcoming assignment
  • 2pm to 3pm – Understanding the novel lecture
  • 3pm to 5pm – Head back to library to continue working on assignment

"My confidence has improved in leaps and bounds, as I have grabbed opportunities and thrown myself into situations that I wouldn’t have even considered had I not gone to university. I have learnt that life begins at the end of your comfort zone, and so I have seized the chance to try something new on a daily basis."

Ellie Morley, BA (Hons) English Literature


  • 10am to 11am - Shakespeare seminar
  • 11am to 12pm – Introduction to creative writing lecture
  • 1pm – Home for lunch
  • 4pm to 6pm – Informal poetry workshop, convened by the Poet in Residence


  • 10am to 11am – Introduction to creative writing seminar
  • 11am - 12pm – Meet with module tutor to discuss plans for upcoming creative writing assignment and receive feedback on a short piece of informally submitted writing


  • 9am to 10am – Checking virtual learning environment for helpful links, additional reading, lecture notes and assignment information
  • 10am to 11am – Complete reading for next week’s lectures and seminars
  • 2pm to 4pm – Group work session in the library, followed by assignment work

"The University staff are inspirational because they encourage and motivate you to work hard, meet deadlines and be more creative and open in discussing your ideas – their enthusiasm for your work and the course is infectious."

Jack Probyn, BA (Hons) English Literature with Creative Writing

Choosing Surrey

Discover more about life at Surrey and our courses in English literature and creative writing.

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