Introduction to the History of English

Programme Code: ENGL2112

Faculty of: Arts

Targeted Students: HKU Undergraduate, HKU Postgraduate, Non HKU Undergraduate, Non HKU Postgraduate

Area of Interest: Arts

Credits: 6

Programme Period: June 21, 2021 to July 9, 2021

Programme Fee: HKD 16,400

Early Bird Discount (Deadline : April 30, 2021)
– 5% discount on programme fee

Partnership Discount*:
– 10% discount on programme fee (HKU Exchange Partners’ students)
*This discount is not in conjunction with other discounts

Deadline for Application: May 31, 2021

Online Application: APPLY NOW


The application procedure of this programme is separated from HKUSI application system. You will be required to apply and pay all fees separately. For more information, please visit the programme link.

For HKU students, please visit here for the application procedures.

Course Description:

The English language began as a set of obscure dialects on a small island at the edge of the world. Today, it is spoken by almost two billion people, and functions as the lingua franca of a vast global network. This course offers students an introduction to the history of English, covering the development of its grammar and vocabulary, and also addressing the wide array of factors that have influenced the language across the centuries of its growth.

The story of the growth and spread of English is also the story of politics, power, religion, gender, technology, commerce, music and literature, the oppressor and the oppressed. This course examines the history of the Englishes that populate our globe, and the technologies that have shaped and facilitated them. The course begins at the end, with modern varieties of English, and traces the language back through the centuries. How has English changed? How can we recognize and interpret the English of a given place or time? And what do the words we use reveal about ourselves?

Pre-requisite requirements:

For HKU students:


  1. A minimum Level 5 in English Language HKDSE exam, or an equivalent score in another recognized English proficiency test.
  2. Passed 3 introductory courses (with at least one from both List A and List B).

For non-HKU students:

(a)   waiving the open test requirement if candidates are studying in a university where English is the medium of instruction; and/ or
(b)   following the requirements stipulated by HKU’s admissions office for UG admissions (see also

Course Outline:


Programme Schedule:

Monday – Friday 10:00 – 13:00

Programme Link:—humanities/undergraduate-level/undergraduate-programmes-session-a

For enquires, please contact Faculty of Arts General Office:
Phone:  +852 3917 8977


• You understand that you must be available for the entire duration of the programme, from the start to the end of the programme. 20% absence is allowed for emergencies or sick leave with legitimate reason and official letterhead proof for the absence. Students have the responsibility to contact the programme coordinator and/or teacher concerned about this ahead of time. No exceptions will be made, unless prior approval has been given. You are expected to be punctual for all classes and tutorials. Unexcused cases of lateness may count as absence. Students who fail to achieve an 80% of attendance or absence without legitimate reason and official letterhead proof for the absence will not be awarded the HKU Credits or the Certificate of Completion.