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Guide to studying Celtic Studies

If you want to learn about one of the formative cultures of Great Britain and Ireland, then Celtic Studies could be the perfect subject for you.

Viking wood carving depicting a wolf or a dragon, low depth of field


  1. What's Celtic Studies?

  2. Why study Celtic Studies?

  3. What jobs can you get as a Celtic Studies graduate?

  4. What do graduates do and earn?
  5. What qualifications do you need?

  6. What degrees can you study?
  7. How will you be assessed?

  8. What are the postgraduate opportunities?

What's Celtic Studies?

A degree in Celtic Studies can vary depending on the university, but there will be a focus on the historical culture that formed the foundations of the British Isles.

Perhaps the most significant area of Celtic Studies is Celtic languages. Although for many they aren’t a primary form of communication, languages such as Welsh, Irish and Scottish Gaelic have been the subject of revival efforts in recent years. 

Other areas of study can include Celtic literature, art and culture, including a focus on the religious and spiritual habits of Celtic people.

Why study Celtic Studies?

A Celtic Studies degree will give you an exclusive insight into the fascinating medieval and modern Celtic cultures of Great Britain and Ireland. 

The potential for research during a Celtic Studies course provides the opportunity to develop your skills in this area, as well as acquiring new skills for the analysis of data. Additionally, through your written work, you'll develop your ability to articulate information in a clear and concise manner.

Read our five reasons to study Celtic Studies for more information on why you might choose to study this subject area.

What jobs can you get as a Celtic Studies graduate?

Some of the professions that Celtic Studies graduates go into include teaching; work in museums and government heritage bodies; writing, editing and publishing; and research and academic work.

What do graduates do and earn?

In the infographic below, the first table shows what graduates of Celtic Studies have gone on to do in the months after their graduation.

The second table shows the average salaries of undergraduate Celtic Studies students entering employment. The three skill levels – high, medium and low – reflect the UK's Standard Occupational Classification's major groups 1–3, 4–6 and 7–9 respectively.

Source: HESA Graduate Outcomes Survey 2017/18

What qualifications do you need?

Entry requirements vary from institution to institution, but A Levels (or equivalent) in English, History or a modern language can be useful. Always check the specific requirements of the university/course you're interested in.

What degrees can you study?

  • BA Celtic Studies
  • MA Celtic Studies
  • BA/MA Celtic Studies as a joint honours

Joint honours options include combinations with subject areas such as Classics & Ancient History, English Literature, Linguistics, Geography and a foreign language.

How will you be assessed?

Assessments are usually in the form of written examinations at the end of modules or semesters. Usually, a dissertation project is undertaken during the final year of study.

What are the postgraduate opportunities?

Examples of taught MAs and research degrees at postgraduate level include in Celtic Studies, Welsh History, Celtic Archaeology, Gaelic, Irish and Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic.

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