Examination Board:  AQA|

‘If the eyes are the windows to the soul, then literature is the window to the mind.’

The A-Level English Literature course is a two year programme of study which encompasses a variety of texts studied both during lesson time and also as part of independent study. Students will attend five 60 minute lessons per week and will be expected to complete the wide reading requirements in their own time.

For this course students will study a variety of texts, from prose to drama and poetry, as well as extracts of non-fiction.

The topics that will be covered;

Love through the ages poetry (Love Anthology), pre-1900 prose (Charlotte Bronte, Jane Eyre) and a Shakespeare play (Othello).

Texts in shared contexts: drama (Tennessee Williams, A Streetcar Named Desire), prose (Margaret Atwood, The Handmaid’s Tale) and poetry (Carol Ann Duffy, The Feminine Gospels).

Students will also complete an independent critical study which is a comparative essay of two texts, one to be pre-1900.

Students will be encouraged to select wide reading from a variety of genres, time periods and writers in order to develop a deep appreciation of the craft of writing.

Specific requirements

Grade 6 in GCSE English Language and Literature


What will I study?

During Year 12 students will build a variety of skills including:

  • the ability to think critically
  • making informed judgements about the meaning and content of texts
  • a knowledge of literary devices used by writers
  • an ability to analyse the way a text is constructed (considering form, structure and language)
  • the development and exploration of creative interpretations/readings
  • an appreciation of the way historical, social and cultural events impact literature that is produced and read

In Year 13 students will obtain the ability to:

  • Develop and hone your reading skills
  • Increase your powers of imagination and comprehension
  • Understand the author’s intentions
  • Improve your skills of communication
  • Make an informed argument
  • Have an overview of English literature
  • Identify with new ideas
  • an ability to empathise and identify with writers from different cultures and times than your own
  • an understanding of how literature and the world has changed over the past 90 years

Please click here to view the full specification.

Where does it lead?

This could directly lead to a B.A in English, Journalism, Education or towards the study of another Arts degree.

In turn this could lead to Careers in Teaching, Journalism, The Arts and Broadcasting.