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Degree Programs

MA English Studies


The FAU Master of Arts (MA) Programme English Studies brings together the three fields of English linguistics, literary studies and cultural studies, and offers in-depth study of these fields with specific focus on the following areas:

  • Literary studies: relations between literature and other discourses, e.g. philosophy, politics, religion etc. (Chair Prof. Dr. Rudolf Freiburg),
  • Cultural Studies: cultural history, processes of cultural and medial translation (Chair Prof. Dr. Doris Feldmann),
  • Linguistics: theoretical linguistics and its application to the description of English, including the perspective of foreign language learning (Chair Prof. Dr. Thomas Herbst).

MA English Studies is a consecutive two-year full-time course (or four-year part-time course) with a total of 120 ECTS points (60 ECTS/30ECTS points per academic year). The course of study is modularised and encourages a specialisation in one of the two fields ‘Culture and Literature’ or ‘Linguistics and Applied Linguistics’. As the courses taught in these two fields comprise a large number, we recommend students to explore the general structure of the programme by having a look at the examination regulations (“FPO”, see below) which comprises model courses in the two fields.

The FAU Master of Arts English Studies is a taught course with a strong research orientation in the fields Culture and Literature or Linguistics and Applied Linguistics.

Culture and Literature: This field enables students to combine specially designed courses on literary and cultural history and theory with a broad range of interdisciplinary modules. Clearly situated in historical approaches, Culture and Literature rests on two central columns of the humanities: the history of ideas and discourse analysis. Areas of expertise include:

  • Cultural studies: offers a strong focus on cultural history and popular culture with a particular emphasis on the intersections of culture with economics and politics. Besides, this focus concentrates on cultural and medial translation.
  • Literary studies: examines relations between literature and other discourses such as philosophy, religion and politics.

Furthermore, students can adapt the course to their own personal career orientation. The module Wild Card allows students to either select an in-depth focus in their chosen field, to work in an interdisciplinary context or to have internships recognised as part of the course.

Linguistics and Applied Linguistics: This field focuses on the description and analysis of the English language in the light of current linguistic theories and teaching approaches. The following topics are covered in the course:

  • the idiomatic element of language: construction grammar, valency theory, research on collocation and idiomaticity
  • foreign language teaching: lexicography, grammar, contrastive linguistics, speech perception and production, literacy development, bilingualism and bilingual education
  • first and second language acquisition and research on learner language
  • corpus linguistics
  • the English language: history and variation
  • special advanced language classes

A number of places for studying at other European universities are available.

Students may study one of these fields exclusively, thus obtaining a degree in MA English Studies: Culture and Literature’ or in ‘MA English Studies: Linguistics and Applied Lingustics, or they may choose to study a combination of the two fields, thus obtaining a degree in MA English Studies.

Furthermore, students can choose

  • modules from other specified MA courses of the university
  • language classes: The research-based part of the programme is complemented by additional courses in language and academic skills.
  • courses in academic skills

These areas of research are embedded into a number of well-established research centres, e.g.:

  • Interdisciplinary Centre for Contemporary Literature and Culture (Schau ins Blau),
  • Interdisciplinary Centre for Research on Lexicography, Valency and Collocation (,
  • Postgraduate Programme Literature and Culture (PhD).

The language of instruction is predominantly English, so that the programme can be studied exclusively in English. Graduates will have a wide range of career options, e.g. in the following fields: journalism, public relations, cultural management, publishing, marketing, higher education, PhD programmes/academic career.

A more comprehensive description of this master course can be found under the following links:

Comprehensive Module Descriptions

Examination Regulations (FPO)


Practical Information

FAU Homepage Master

FAU – General Information

FAU – Information for International Students

FAU – Information Concerning Accommodation

MA English Studies is open for students of MA Linguistics (selected modules) and MA Literaturstudien – intermedial & interkulturell (all modules of literary and cultural studies).
Further information on MA Literaturstudien.

Courses and course registration

A listing of classes taught in the current semester can be found in UnivIs under Vorlesungsverzeichnis  >> Philosophische Fakultät und Fachbereich Theologie (Phil) >> Anglistik und Amerikanistik >> English Studies (Master Studiengang) >>

Course registration: CASSY
Exam registration: Mein Campus

Language requirements for Linguistics and Applied Linguistics:

Students from abroad are required to certify their language proficiency in English (C1). This can be done in a variety of ways. The test for English C1 can also be taken at our Language Centre. Please apply via OKTIS at

Language requirements for Culture and Literature or if you would like to study without specialization:

Students from abroad are required to certify their language proficiency in German (B2) and English (C1). Both for German and English, there are a number of tests we accept. Please see the respective links above (“Overview of Language Proficiency Tests in English/German”) for more details. The language tests can also be taken in Erlangen. To take the test for English C1 at our Language Centre please apply via OKTIS at To take the German language test in Erlangen: You will receive an invitation to the DSH examination at FAU together with your admissions letter; this examination will take place immediately before the start of the semester (late March/early April for the summer semester and late September/early October for the winter semester).

Overview of Language Proficiency Tests in English

Overview of Language Proficiency Tests in German

Application procedure

The MA English Studies is open to students who have a first degree (BA) in English and American Studies; graduates of other BA programmes with a focus on English philology (60 ECTS credits) are also invited to apply for places. The final grade in that subject needs to be 2,5 or better (exceptions may be made in well-substantiated cases and on the basis of a short letter of motivation and a 15 minute interview for those students who achieved a final grade ranging up to 3,5).

The programme begins each winter term.

Application deadline: August 15th

We recommend that international students from non-EU countries submit their applications by 31 July respectively, as Visa applications or, if necessary, language courses etc., require extra time.

Application and Enrolment – International Full Degree Students

Apply online at:

Postal address for applications:

Masterbüro (Referat L4)
Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
Schlossplatz 4
91054 Erlangen

General contact:

Supervisor for international students: Cornelia Zapf
Phone: +49 9131 85-24838

Supervisor for German students:
Anja Bohn
Phone: +49 9131 85-23270