Celtic & Scottish Studies

Undergraduate study | Celtic and Scottish Studies

Offering a wide range of degree combinations, we are the longest-established Celtic department in Scotland and the only institution in the world to offer an undergraduate degree in Scottish Ethnology, providing a fascinating insight into the traditional and popular culture of Scotland.

Celtic civilisations produced the earliest vernacular literature in Europe after Latin and Greek, and today Celtic languages and cultures continue to flourish in writing, song, theatre, the media and more, with a broad international reach and a steady stream of enthusiastic new speakers and audiences.

Based in a city with a long-established Gaelic community, we are at the heart of a lively contemporary cultural scene and lead the way for future language planning and maintenance, particularly for Scottish Gaelic. We work at the cutting edge of linguistic and sociolinguistic research in the Celtic languages.

Our award-winning department is small, friendly and innovative, with access to an unrivalled range of sound, video, film and photographic resources in the School of Scottish Studies Archives, strong links with Bòrd na Gàidhlig, the National Library of Scotland and National Museum of Scotland, and a great relationship with student societies, including An Comunn Ceilteach (The Highland Society), organisers of the city’s largest annual cèilidh.

Your learning at a glance

  • You can take Celtic, Scottish Ethnology, and Scottish Studies as single honours subjects, or - in the case of the first two - jointly with one of a range of other subjects. We also support Moray House School of Education in its delivery of two degree programmes in Primary Education with Gaelic: one for fluent speakers; and one for learners.
  • You’ll complete a four-year MA degree, with the opportunity to study abroad in your third year.
  • You’ll engage with a broad range of subjects in your first two years, and specialise thereafter. At all levels, we have an extensive range of courses to choose from.
  • If you’re studying Celtic, you’ll study Scottish Gaelic language, literature and culture. It doesn’t matter if you're a complete beginner; you’ll always be taught at a level that meets your needs. You’ll gain an interdisciplinary insight into Celtic’s wider historical and contemporary context and, at honours level, can opt to study Modern Irish and the Medieval Celtic languages and literatures.
  • If you’re studying Scottish Ethnology, which puts folklore and folklife in a Scottish and international context, you’ll develop practical and comparative skills applicable to the study of any culture, while Scottish Studies will give you a multidisciplinary perspective on the nation’s history, literature, society and culture, including its rich oral and visual traditions.

Undergraduate study | Celtic

Celtic knot
Uncover Celtic's rich languages, literatures, histories and cultures as part of a single or joint honours degree.

Undergraduate study | Scottish Ethnology

Scottish landscape
Develop practical and comparative skills at the only institution in the world to offer undergraduate degrees in Scottish Ethnology.

Undergraduate study | Scottish Studies

Edinburgh Castle seen from Princes Street gardens
Explore our modern European nation, with its rich and fascinating heritage, from a variety of perspectives in a highly flexible, interdisciplinary degree.

Undergraduate study | Gaelic & Primary Education

Choose between two innovative MA Hons degrees delivered by Moray House School of Education.

Visit us

Our undergraduate Open Days are a great chance to find out about student life in Edinburgh from the people who know it best: our students and staff. Our next Open Days will be for learners wishing to start their undergraduate degree in 2021. These events will be taking place later this year.

Keep up to date with Open Day information on the University of Edinburgh website