Celtic & Scottish Studies

Undergraduate study | Celtic

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

Why study Celtic in Edinburgh?

Available in multiple degree combinations, Celtic has been taught here since 1882, making us the longest-established Celtic department in 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, and with strong links to Bòrd na Gàidhlig, Celtic at Edinburgh is at the heart of this lively contemporary scene and leads 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 a fantastic range of sound, video, film and photographic resources, an annual prize-giving scheme, and a great relationship with An Comunn Ceilteach (The Highland Society), the University’s oldest Student Society and organisers of the city’s largest annual cèilidh.

Studying within a small department has been very rewarding because of the positive relationship with staff, and between students. I have found this particularly helpful.

Sarah ScottMA (Hons) Celtic & Archaeology student

Your learning at a glance

  • You can take Celtic as a single honours subject, or jointly with one of a wide range of other subjects. It doesn’t matter if you're a complete beginner or have studied Scottish Gaelic before; 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. Although Scottish Gaelic language, literature and culture are at the heart of our programmes, you can also study Modern Irish and the Medieval Celtic languages and literatures at honours level.

  • You’ll engage with a broad range of subjects in your first two years, and specialise thereafter, developing your expertise in the periods and disciplines that interest you most. At all levels, we have an extensive range of courses to choose from.
  • You’ll complete a four-year MA degree, with the opportunity to study abroad in your third year.
  • You’ll be based at the heart of the University of Edinburgh, in the city’s historic centre, close to the Main University Library, School of Scottish Studies Archives, the National Library of Scotland and National Museum of Scotland.

The staff are very approachable and willing to help out with any queries or problems. The teaching style is also quite interactive.

Catriona HeawoodMA (Hons) Celtic & English Literature student

What and how you'll study

Degree combinations, teaching methods, and a year-by-year guide to your learning.

Where might Celtic take you?

Career opportunities for Celtic graduates.

Find out more and apply

If you’d like to study on any of our undergraduate programmes, you must apply through UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. There’s lots of information about the application process on the University of Edinburgh website, including detailed entrance requirements and fees.

Go to the University of Edinburgh web page on how to apply for undergraduate study

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 students wishing to start their undergraduate degree in 2021. The Open Days scheduled for 26th September and 10th October 2020 are currently still planned to go ahead. The University is also working to develop an online alternative for prospective students thinking about starting university in 2021.

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

Student representation 

Find out more about class representatives and student representation in Celtic (secured)