English Language and Linguistics BA (Hons)

Full-time undergraduate (3 years)


January 2017, September 2016

code: Q310

Available in Clearing call now 01245 686868


Do you want a deeper understanding of language as an important bridge for many cultures across the globe? This course will develop your knowledge of English, its nature, mechanics, and evolution. You’ll also have the chance to explore specialist skills like creative writing and Teaching English as a Foreign Language, opening up many new career options.

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Full description


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If you’re aiming for a career that needs good linguistic and analytic skills, then this is the course for you. Many of our recent graduates have found employment in communications, public relations and marketing, while others have gone on to take qualifications in speech therapy or teaching, and now work in primary or secondary schools.

Or you might enjoy your course so much you’ll choose to continue your education on a Masters course, like our MA Applied Linguistics and TESOL or MA TESOL and Materials Development.

Modules & assessment

Year one, core modules

  • Intercultural Awareness
    This module will give you insight into interpersonal communication in a culturally diverse world. You'll build on your own knowledge, your sense of identity, and your cognitive and communication skills, by examining your own culture and forming insights into the way cultural assumptions affect the behavioural judgements and communication codes of other cultures. You'll learn about the powerful effects group loyalties have on perception and understanding, explore the interplay of language, behaviour and cultural values, and examine some theories of cultural comparison. You'll also learn to recognise the signs of intercultural misunderstanding and culture shock, and the need to build common ground, communicating mindfully when necessary.
  • Introduction to the Sounds of English
    This module will introduce you to the system of sounds used in the English language, focussing on standard southern British English. Firstly, you'll learn how the various speech organs, such as the tongue and lips, are used to produce the range of sounds found in the language, how computer software can be used to visualise these sounds, and the terminology used to describe and classify them. Secondly, you'll learn to represent the sounds of English using the special symbols of the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). You'll be assessed by an in-class practical test, consisting of short answer questions about the nature and production of English sounds, as well as simple calculations and a transcription exercise in which you'll convert words from IPA to alphabetic spelling and vice versa.
  • Introduction to Vocabulary and Semantics
    You’ll be introduced to the concepts and terminology of semantics (the study of meaning in language) and pragmatics (the study of meaning in context), and gain the analytical tools to begin exploring the various sources of meaning. These sources include the inherent meaning of words and other linguistic expressions, their relatedness to other lexical items, the textual environment in which they occur, and the wider context and world knowledge of speaker and listener (or writer and reader).
  • Language and Society
    This module will introduce you to practical and theoretical aspects of the study of language and society, including forms of address; sex and age differentiation in language; accent and dialect; education and employment; language disadvantage; language choice according to function in multi-lingual communities. In weekly lectures you'll discover the key theoretical, analytical and descriptive terms, then explore these issues through a mixture of practical and discussion tasks in workshops. You'll analyse data closely and consider the reasons for collecting, analysing and interpreting it, as well as the practicalities involved. You will then design your own original, hypothetical sociolinguistic project. You'll also write a discussion-based essay, giving you an opportunity to identify, reflect on and synthesise some of the key concepts involved in one or two of the topics covered.
  • Revealing English Structure 1 & 2
    This module will introduce you to the structure of English grammar, the construction of phrases, clauses and sentences, and how you can analyse these. Starting with an introduction to the nature of English grammar and grammar description, you'll progress from word class to an analysis of the form and function of noun and verb phrases and to the components and structure of a simple sentence. You'll then analyse complex and compound sentences and how meaning and focus can be changed through the manipulation of clause structure. You'll also be introduced to the way in which the grammar of speech can vary from the traditional descriptions, and the way in which grammar is used to convey much more precise meaning than can be achieved by vocabulary alone.

Year one, optional modules

  • A History of English Literature from Blake to the Present
    Following on from A History of English Literature from Chaucer to Equiano, this module will give you an outline of the history of English literature from the Romantic period to the present. You will be reading authors like Blake, Tennyson and Wolf as well as less familiar texts, while also acquiring the basic terminology used for English literary history since 1789. There will be two assessments for this course, an essay and an examination, for which you will need to demonstrate your ability to read a literary text within a historical and social context.
  • Language and Criticism for Writers
    You'll learn the essential skills for working with language, for participating in workshops and for undertaking critical evaluation of creative work. The main areas you'll cover are: grammar and style; producing critical commentaries for creative and professional writing assignments; giving and receiving constructive criticism; making language choices in relation to audience expectations and working with drafts. You'll be introduced to key critical and analytical terms and taught how to use these to develop your own writing practice.
  • Media and Technology
    On this module you'll address the issues of technology and communication, exploring how the introduction of new communication technologies transforms notions of space, place and time. You'll discuss critically a variety of theoretical positions concerned with how we evaluate the role of technology within communication practices. Technologies and associated practices will be situated within their specific historical periods (for example, the role of printing in Reformation Europe and the role of the internet in contemporary culture). You'll also consider the manner in which communication technology affects cognitive processes such as memory, together with how technologies (for example, mobile phones) affect assumptions about the meaning and nature of communicative practices in general.

Year two, core modules

  • Written Text 1 and 2: From Principles and Patterns to Genre
    This module will show you a range of ways in which the workings of written texts can be described and analysed, as well as situational and contextual factors that determine genre. You'll discover what written texts have in common, and what criteria is met in successful texts, as well as how to distinguish between different types of text in terms of the considerations that influence a writer's choices. You'll learn to describe in detail the structural and organisational differences between a variety of text types, and become familiar with the organisation of a selection of different text types, ranging from literary narratives to reports and recipes; from advertising to shopping lists and invoices; from the stories found in women's magazines to those that make the daily headlines; and from academic essays to text messages and web pages.
  • English Phonetics and Phonology
    In this module, you'll build on your understanding of the sound system of the English language by exploring how sounds are combined to form words and longer utterances in standard southern British English. You'll learn about the structure of the English syllable and the relative prominence of different syllables, the differences between the pronunciation of words in isolation and in natural speech, and the form and functions of intonation. You'll also investigate some of the difficulties involved in representing speech as a series of phonemes.
  • Language, Power and Identity
    On this module, you'll explore the role of language in manifestations and perceptions of power and identity, whether at the individual, social, national or international level. You'll cover topics such as language and human rights, language and social status or equality, and language and globalisation. This subject is increasingly relevant in today's world, where ethical issues relating to language are frequently debated in the national arena.
  • History of English Language
    On this module, you'll explore the cultural history of English to extend your analytical understanding of the way the language has developed historically and the implications this has for the characteristics of spoken and written English today. You will study a selection of extracts from key works to trace the development of, and changes in, the language from Old English to the 18th Century.
  • Language, Mind and Brain
    This module introduces you to psycholinguistics: the study of the mental processes involved in acquiring and using language. You'll consider the kinds of evidence that can be used to gain insights into these processes, as well as the different ways this evidence has been interpreted. You'll consider many areas of linguistics, including the nature of language and languages; animal communication and child language acquisition; the relationship between thought, language and meaning; and language disorders. Overall, you'll focus on the development of transferable intellectual skills, including the recognition of what constitutes evidence, the analysis of data to provide it, the critical evaluation of arguments and the identification of underlying assumptions.

Year two, optional modules

  • Teaching English as a Foreign Language 1 and 2
    These modules will increase your language awareness, and give you ideas and techniques for teaching language items, such as grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. You'll examine skills such as reading, writing, listening and speaking to identify sub-skill and potential problems, and to assess methods and materials to develop these skills. You’ll look at elements of lesson planning and terminology related to language teaching, and explore ways of analysing and presenting language for teaching at different ability levels. You’ll become familiar with error analysis and discuss different correction techniques. You will also deal with a variety of ELT published material and authentic material and focus on learner training, learning strategies and teaching English for specific purposes.
  • Intercultural Encounters in Global Cinema
    On this module, you'll examine how the effects of increasing globalisation and the expansion of the European Union have been closely monitored and discussed not only in political discourse but in media as well. Cinema and TV are no exceptions, and such media portrayals are of key importance, be it as potential reflections of popular attitudes, ideas and preoccupations towards migration, or their likely impact on popular views and opinions on the topic. You'll investigate how the global perspective goes beyond the exploration of individual films in their national frameworks, and is therefore better equipped to address questions linked to the legacy of globalisation and international migration.
  • Language and Image
    This module will introduce you to semiotics and structuralism through the work of canonical theorists. You will apply theories of structuralism to a variety of forms of communication, including visual and other media, in order to explore the ways in which structures of language and image inform, develop and control society. You will study the work of Saussure, Barthes, Foucault, Derrida, Irigaray and others, firstly to discover the history connecting structuralism to post-structuralism, and then to apply the ideas of these theorists to various kinds of visual communication to investigate how written, spoken and visual language informs identity, difference, social inclusion and exclusion. By applying structuralism and post-structuralism to fine art, television, film, advertising and other representations of rhetoric and communication, you will advance your understanding of how all modes of communication linguistically structure the world. You will go on to develop tools for navigating and challenging structures of language within a contemporary context, so as to open spaces for new world views, for a general acceptance of difference and for an ‘ecology of meaning’ that can contribute toward sustainable ethical futures. You will work in groups throughout the course discussing interpretations and examples of the reading and giving short group presentations based on the reading. Feedback and reflection on these presentations will help you prepare for the module assessment - an individual 10 minute oral presentation in which you will synthesise ideas discussed in the module, and a written reflection on presentations given by other students and feedback on your own work.
  • News and Feature Writing
    This intensive reading and writing module will introduce you to the techniques of print journalism, focusing on news reports and feature articles. The skills required for effective news and feature writing are a key component of writing craft in any genre of fiction or non-fiction. It's a discipline that improves the imaginative work and communicative power of those who practice it. You'll explore the significance of journalistic writing in contemporary life using examples from a range of British tabloid, broadsheet and local publications. You'll practise sourcing news reports, developing feature articles and sub-editing for style and content. In seminar workshops, you'll combine analysis of journalistic techniques with practical writing exercises, covering topics that include: researching and pitching a story; interviewing; puns and rhythm; and economical use of language. Early on, you'll produce a set of briefs that must be approved by the seminar leader, then produce copy for these briefs and, in editorial teams, giving and receiving constructive criticism.
  • Language and Gender
    In this module you will explore the question of gender, one of the major concerns of contemporary scholarly fields including discourse analysis, media studies, philosophy, cultural theory and feminist criticism. You will investigate the ways in which different modes of expression, through language and the body, create and challenge gender and identity. Your exploration will highlight the importance of gender as an analytical category for comprehending issues such as language acquisition and expression, language and gender as performance, the body in society, power, desire, agency (a capacity to act), and understandings of the human and posthuman. You will consider gender from various perspectives, such as with reference to systems of knowledge and power, the organisation of social relations, lived experience, representations and readings of the body, and challenging gender norms. You will explore these different perspectives through the theories of key scholars, cutting-edge linguistic debates and critical theory, as well as the ways these theoretical perspectives are seen in everyday life and the media. Your developing awareness of gender will also shed light on a series of further questions and approaches, which include sexuality, feminism, trans/intersex modes of being, queer studies, and critical masculinity studies. Overall, you will approach gender as a multi-faceted problem, a highly useful, even experimental concept, and a set of linguistically learned and expressed practices - expressions, experiences and experiments - that are central to our existence and to identity. You will be expected to give short presentations in class, based on your preparatory reading, and your assessment will consist of a 2500 word essay and a supporting task.

Year three, core modules

  • Major Project
    The individual Major Project will allow you to undertake a substantial piece of individual research, focused on a topic relevant to your specific course. Your topic will be assessed for suitability to ensure sufficient academic challenge and satisfactory supervision by an academic member of staff. The project will require you to identify/formulate problems and issues, conduct research, evaluate information, process data, and critically appraise and present your findings/creative work. You should arrange and attend regular meetings with your project supervisor, to ensure that your project is closely monitored and steered in the right direction.
  • Spoken Discourse
    This module will equip you with the linguistic tools to describe and analyse spoken interactions of varying types in a range of social contexts. The topics you'll cover include: ethnographic influences on types and styles of interaction, institutional talk and classroom discourse. The ground covered will familiarise you with the characteristics of a variety of different types of interaction, ranging from a chat with friends to a job interview, and from tutorial discussions to wedding ceremonies.
  • Languages in Contrast
    This module gives you the opportunity to explore the relationship between English and other languages. You will discover how human languages differ, and which properties they share, across the full range of linguistic systems: lexis, syntax, morphology and phonology. You will also learn about the number and distribution of the world’s languages and how they are thought to be related to one another. The course will be delivered through a weekly lecture and one-hour seminar, the lecture introducing you to the main concepts involved in linguistic typology and historical linguistics, using examples from a range of human languages. To prepare for the seminar you will use these concepts to analyse linguistic data, with a focus on inductive reasoning. This means using information about a sample of language to draw conclusions about a language or languages in general, taking into account the frequency and distribution of different features, and the correlations between them. You will receive formative feedback on your work through the subsequent discussion of these exercises in class. Your learning will be assessed on the basis of a piece of coursework in which you compare and contrast English with another language, with reference to the concepts discussed in the module.

Year three, optional modules

  • Writing Poetry
    Through critical examination of modern and contemporary poems, you'll learn to explore important developments in technique and appreciate the benefits of close reading to open up possibilities for language use. You’ll develop sophisticated approaches to the relationship between form and content. You'll engage in advanced workshop treatment of your poems, moving beyond explanation of sources and meanings to explore process, form and audience. The seminar topics may include modelling, seeds and sources, working with journals, presentation of poetry on and off the page, working with sound and visual material, and redrafting. Your assessment will be a selection of poems accompanied by reflective writing that explores key issues of process.
  • Methods and Developments in TEFL
    This module will build upon and develop your practical classroom methodology, as covered on the TEFL 1 & 2 modules. You'll analyse and evaluate the nature of syllabus design and language teaching methodology, explore theories of both language and learning, and analyse and evaluate teaching methods of the past and present, along with their practical applications for the learner, teacher and language classroom. The methods you'll examine include those such as Communicative Language Teaching, task-based Language Teaching, and the Lexical Approach. You'll also consider the influence of theory and methodology on such areas as teaching grammar and language skills, and the approach to learner and teacher roles and learner errors. You'll be encouraged to discuss and evaluate a range of approaches and methods in order to inform your own teaching techniques, broaden your awareness of a wide range of methodologies, and develop the ability to approach past, current or future methodology in an informed and critical manner.
  • Language Acquisition: Topics and Issues
    On this module, you'll explore how we acquire a first language as children and the processes involved in learning a second. With more people needing to learn languages, or live a bilingual experience, it's essential to understand the mechanisms that operate in language-learning. You'll examine some of the raw data of learner language, and discover various explanatory theories of language acquisition (native and second language), assessing their relative merits. You'll also look at bilingualism and what can be learnt from the experience of bilinguals. You'll be taught through lectures and seminars. In weekly lectures, you'll learn about the topics that you'll explore in the subsequent seminar. This will involve group analysis of data, presentation of material that you've researched, and group discussion. Your assessment will take the form of a written assignment (3,000 words) with sub-components involving analysis as well as exposition.
  • Philosophies of Language and the Body
    In this module you will focus on language as a symbolic system and practice where meaning is produced and reproduced under specific cultural conditions and is characterised by fragmentation and conflict as much as by cohesion and consensus. You will relate the study of language to issues concerning, for example, identity, cultural power and domination, representation, and real life. You will explore post-structuralist critiques of linguistics, which may include theories of language as a means by which identity is produced through the interconnectedness of language and ideology. In addition, you will encounter the physical body not as ‘natural’ but as a linguistic phenomenon: where the body is a text to be read. Challenging binaries such as mind/body and biological/textual, you will query the role of language in creating bodies and the ways in which the flesh has been historically created through discourse. You will also look at the ways the body has transgressed these discourses. In examining the relationships between language, power and bodies, you will explore the links between language, power, knowledge, ‘truth’ and identity, and extend these links to ecological concerns and the connectedness of the human to the nonhuman and nature. You will learn to question how truth and knowledge are challenged in post-structuralist/ deconstructionist projects, and how this challenge can lead to what is known as posthuman ethics and the ecological revolution: currently known in linguistic philosophy as ‘ecosophy’. You will be expected to give short presentations in class, based on your preparatory reading. Your assessment will consist of a 2500 word essay, requiring you to make connections between different ideas explored in the module, and a supporting task.
  • Contemporary Fiction
    On this module, you'll study a range of fiction from 1990 onwards, examining formal and thematic issues and the relationships between them. You'll consider narrative experimentation (the recycling of old stories and forms, the representation of history) and the interrelated topics of voice, place and community. As there is inevitably an absence of established critical texts on the contemporary works studied, you'll also consider alternative methods of reading, alternative sources of critical opinion (academic journals, the internet, broadsheet and broadcast journalism), and the ways in which new novels demand and shape new criticism. You'll be assessed through a 3,000 word essay at the end of the semester.
  • Modern Science Fiction
    In this module, you'll study the development of modern science fiction, concentrating on major texts from the postwar period. You'll acquire a detailed knowledge of the history of science fiction and a critical understanding of the problems of defining it in relation to other forms of literature, as well as gaining an understanding of the distinctive pleasures that science fiction offers its readers. The emphasis will be on science fiction as a distinctive literature of ideas. You'll primarily consider science fiction as a literary form rather than with its manifestations in other media, but the demands of adapting science fiction to other media will also be considered. You'll read an anthology of short stories, a history and a collection of critical essays supplemented by recommended novels (used to exemplify different phases of science fiction from the 1930s to the present day, including 'The Golden Age', the British 'New Wave', cyberpunk and World SF). You'll be assessed through one essay of 3,000 words, showing your good knowledge and understanding of at least three texts.
  • Intercultural Competence and Graduate Mobility
    This module will help you to understand the importance of intercultural competence, global citizenship and the human dynamics of international mobility after you've graduated. It'll give you an understanding of working in different arenas, the effect of culture shock, and the skills and knowledge needed to take up employment successfully in a different culture. You'll also consider the social and psychological factors influencing international organisations and analyse varying patterns of intercultural communication, helping you look confidently beyond national boundaries in the search for rewarding employment. You'll also gain some insight into graduate careers that involve professional mobility and intercultural competence. Your assessment is made up of a presentation and an essay.
  • Business English 6: Writing for the Workplace
    This is a core PDP module for third year students on the BA International Business degree. It's also a specialist ESP English Language support module for undergraduate students studying in the Ashcroft International Business School and for others seeking a career in the business world in English Language Teaching or any other field where strategies for speaking and communicating are of particular relevance. You'll take advanced study and practice of written communication in business, preparing you for your future working life, increasing your awareness of your own strengths and skills, and developing your confidence in using written language in the business environment. You'll learn how to produce correspondence and reports used in business, including many aspects of recruitment and selection and data collection and analysis. You'll particularly focus on the use of functional phrases, register, tone, format and peer identification/correction of errors. Developing these skills will improve your self-confidence in dealing effectively with most situations requiring written responses in the workplace. In addition, you'll be asked to compare a variety of writing styles used in different cultures. You'll be assessed by a Portfolio of Coursework.
  • Global English
    More than a billion people world-wide speak English. However, only a fraction are native speakers. This raises the question of whether there is only one English or several 'Englishes'. In this module, you'll analyse the numerous varieties of English spoken around the world, and explore the linguistic properties, as well as the socio-cultural, political and educational variables influencing the shape, form and use of English. Starting with an overview of English in the British Isles, your focus will move across the Atlantic to look at variation within American English, before shifting to the varieties of English in the Commonwealth and former colonies. In the final part of the module, you'll explore the language of diasporas in English speaking countries and emerging hybrid languages. Throughout, you'll learn to analyse linguistic variation from a typological point of view by looking at real speech data from a variety of sources. For the assessment, you'll carry out a typological analysis, either of the varieties discussed in the seminar or of your own choice.

Optional modules available all years

  • Anglia Language Programme
    The Anglia Language Programme allows you to study a foreign language as part of your course. You'll take one language module in the second semester of your first year in order to experience the learning of a new language. You must select a language you've never learnt before from the following: Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Spanish.


You’ll demonstrate your progress through a combination of traditional assessment, such as essays, exams or oral presentations, and portfolios, which involve both theoretical and practical work. Most of our modules also include a practical element, such as a data analysis exercise, allowing you to apply your theoretical knowledge to ‘real’ situations.

Where you'll study

Your department and faculty

The Department of English and Media is a community of more than 800 students, exploring subjects that further their understanding of culture and communication in the global age, from film studies to applied linguistics. We focus on skills and knowledge valued by employers, and provide our students with valuable industry insight through our links with creative partners.

Our students take part in many activities to help prepare them for the future, like work placements, study abroad opportunities, talks by internationally acclaimed guest speakers, and research conferences. They even have the chance to get writing advice from our Royal Literary Fund Fellow.

We’re part of the Faculty of Arts, Law and Social Sciences, a hub of creative and cultural innovation whose groundbreaking research has real social impact.

Where can I study?

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Study abroad options

You’ll be able to study abroad for a semester or two as part of our Erasmus exchange (supported by the European Union). This will let you experience English as a truly global phenomenon, and you’ll also get to practice your intercultural skills.

Our partner universities are located across Europe (in Spain, Italy, France and Turkey), and all of their English linguistics courses are taught in English. You can even choose to study the relevant language as one of your optional modules, helping you to better communicate with the locals.

Additional experiences like studying abroad increasingly help job applicants stand out from the crowd, and we encourage you to make use of these opportunities.

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students, 2016/17 (per year)


International students, 2016/17 (per year)


How do I pay my fees?

Tuition fee loan

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Most English undergraduates take out a tuition fee loan with Student Finance England. The fees are then paid directly to us. The amount you repay each month is linked to your salary and repayments start in April after you graduate.

How to apply for a tuition fee loan

Paying upfront

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If you choose not to take out a loan you can pay your fees directly to us. There are two ways to do this: either pay in full, or through a three- or six-month instalment plan starting at registration.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You must pay your fees up-front, in full or in instalments. You will also be asked for a deposit or sponsorship letter for undergraduate courses. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees
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Funding for UK & EU students

We offer most new undergraduate students funding to support their studies and university life. There’s also finance available for specific groups of students.

Grants and scholarships are available for:

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Funding for international students

We've a number of scholarships, as well as some fee discounts for early payment.

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email answers@anglia.ac.uk for further information.

We don't accept AS level qualifications on their own for entry to our undergraduate degree courses. However for some degree courses a small number of tariff points from AS levels are accepted as long as they're combined with tariff points from A levels or other equivalent level 3 qualifications in other subjects.

Entry requirements are for September 2016 entry. Entry requirements for other intakes may differ.

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International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

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English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for undergraduate courses.

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Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry onto a degree course.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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Get more information

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01245 68 68 68

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International applicants

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