Deciding Between Two Courses

By Katie Kirkpatrick

Up until halfway through sixth form, I was completely sure that I wanted to do English Literature at university. However, when I thought about what I was really enjoying learning about, it was words, and literature in general, and so I was presented with a dilemma: English Literature or French? Or both?

After some research, I decided I was going to study either English & French joint honours, or French on its own. It was also a big relief to find out that you can apply to different courses at different universities: you can choose the specific courses you’re most interested in, and only make that final decision once you have your offers. What I loved most about French was the literature aspect, so I ended up applying to one very literature-heavy sole French course, three English & French courses, and a Liberal Arts course that would allow me to do French, English, ab initio Spanish, and Visual Arts. 

I’ve now firmed my offer for the sole French course, but I don’t feel like I’ll be missing out on English Literature. Ultimately, what drew me to both subjects was my love of words, so it doesn’t feel like a loss at all – instead I get to read more deeply in French and study other things like French literary theory, philosophy, and film, and I can’t wait.

My advice to others stuck between two degree courses would be, first, to ask yourself what it is you really like about each of the courses. I also found it incredibly useful to try writing a personal statement for both, and see which was easier to write about enthusiastically. Similarly, if your courses interview, think about how easy it would be to talk about your interest in each of them on the spot. Good luck!