The students we take each year in English at Mansfield habitually excel in their performance in university assessments; they also contribute immeasurably to the creative life of the College. Mansfield English students have for many years been involved in student journalism and drama at the highest level and our graduates have progressed to successful careers in a variety of occupations: artistic, legal and administrative. At entrance we want people who are enthusiastic, who enjoy reading and thinking about what they read, and who are prepared to work hard. We pride ourselves on our teaching and our attention to the individual talents and interests of our students. The syllabus, designed to provide opportunities for the exploration of literary texts in English from every period, is both exciting and challenging; in our College teaching, we introduce students to a broad range of literary texts and their historical and cultural contexts as well as important issues in contemporary literary criticism and theory. Lectures and some classes are provided by the faculty. The College provides classes (with the whole year group) and tutorials (usually paired) in which students present and discuss their written work or study notes with each other and their subject tutor(s). Third year work on single authors and advanced topics are taught through single tutorials. You can expect to write between six and ten essays each term. We aim to secure the best teachers and leading scholars from within the faculty to cover areas of the syllabus which do not fall within the subject tutors’ expertise.
The College library is well-stocked with essential texts and important critical works. Mansfield is one of the closest to the English Faculty building where the majority of lectures are held, as well as the large Faculty library, which is essential for both borrowing and reference.
We welcome students who apply both pre- and post A level with any combination of subjects alongside English Literature or English Language and Literature. All candidates for English Language and Literature take the English Literature Aptitude Test (http://www.admissionstests.cambridgeassessment.org.uk/adt/elat). Candidates will also be asked to submit one example of written work. Candidates called for interview will be given two interviews, which will provide a supportive environment for you to show your true potential and ability.
Dr Ballaster’s research interests lie in eighteenth-century literature and women’s writing, Ms Rumsey’s in medieval literature.