English Literature

Where might literature take you?

Career opportunities for English Literature and Scottish Literature graduates.

The skills you’ll develop on our degree programmes, including the ability to think critically and work independently and to deadline, are essential in many careers. We have great links with the Careers Service and, throughout your time with us, we’ll encourage you to identify and hone those skills, including through initiatives like ‘Life After Lit’ where you can draw inspiration from our graduates.

Many of our students have gone on to work in publishing, advertising, arts and events management, the creative industries, teaching, and the media. Some have used their transferable skills to pursue careers in finance and business, while others have moved into creative writing, which we teach as an option throughout the undergraduate years, supported by our Writer-in-Residence.

There are also opportunities to continue studying at postgraduate level, with the honours years in particular developing the research skills you’ll need if you choose this path.


Studying at Edinburgh gave me a strong grasp of language, which is the foundation of my career. It also gave me a historical overview of artistic and linguistic styles, many of which have influenced my work. I studied English Literature during its 250th anniversary year, and it’s a time I will always value and treasure. It’s a very warm place to study and spend time. It takes all sorts to make a world, and some of the best I studied with.

Mairi Wilson, copywriter for Cello SignalMairi graduated with an MA (Hons) in English Literature in 2015

Find out more and apply

There’s lots of information about our undergraduate English and Scottish Literature programmes on the University of Edinburgh website. For example, you can find out about entrance requirements, English language requirements, fees, and funding opportunities.

Take me to the University of Edinburgh web page on undergraduate programmes in English and Scottish Literature

If you’d like to study on any of our undergraduate programmes, you must apply through UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service.

Take me to the University of Edinburgh web page on making a UCAS application

Related links

Read our full interview with graduate Mairi Wilson

Read our graduate feature on ‘life after LLC’ 

Visit the University of Edinburgh's Careers Service online