English Language & Literature AS & A Level
We follow the English Language and Literature specification from Eduqas (the English branch of WJEC – the Welsh board) which encourages interest in and enjoyment of a range of literary and non-literary English texts. Students on the course are able to develop skills of literary analysis and evaluation, learn to consider a variety of viewpoints, consider texts from a literary and linguistic point of view and develop their own skills as producers of written language.
We study methods of language analysis including how language sounds, grammatical structures, the choice of words and the assumptions speakers, writers, listeners and readers make. Students also develop their own academic and analytical writing skills and complete a portfolio of writing, examining a genre of their own choice and producing related pieces of creative writing.
A minimum of 4 subjects at grade 5 or above at GCSE plus English Language at grade 5 or above.
What will I study?
Paper One: Comparative Analysis and Creative Writing
Based on the WJEC (Welsh board) English Language and Literature pre-1914 Poetry Anthology and creative writing, including spoken language, with a commentary.
Paper Two: Drama and Non-literary Texts
Based on Cat on a Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams as an example of Post 1900 Drama and Homage to Catalonia by George Orwell as an example of a non-literary text.
Paper One: Poetry and Prose
Based on the WJEC (Welsh board) English Language and Literature pre-1914 Poetry Anthology, along with an unseen text and on Great Expectations by Charles Dickens.
Paper Two: Drama
Based on Shakespeare’s King Lear and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.
Paper Three: Non-literary Texts
Based on a comparative analysis of three unseen spoken texts and the study of Homage to Catalonia.
Non-Examined Assessment: Critical and Creative Genre Study
Based on a critical study of a prose genre of your choice, plus two pieces of creative writing, one literary and one non-literary.
Method of delivery
Students will follow the standard A Level model of delivery with three 90-minute lessons a week. Lessons will include activities such as taking notes, class and group discussion, reading and research, essay practice and a chance to improve their own personal writing style.
How will I be assessed?
All assessment at the end of the first year is examination based.
The final examinations are worth 80% of the final grade.
The Non-Examined Assessment is worth 20% of the final A Level mark.
Good course combinations
This course combines well with most A Levels, particularly Modern Languages, History, Politics, Sociology, Music and Art.
Your next steps
Degree level study in areas such as English, journalism, creative and media industries, public relations, museum work, civil service, law etc. The course leads into literature and linguistics degrees and is popular among students who are planning to take their creative writing further. Past students have gone on to study at Cambridge, London, UEA, Huddersfield and other universities offering creative writing.
“I chose to study English Language and Literature because I wanted a mix of the creative side of Language and the analytical side of Literature. This way, I have enjoyed studying classics such as Frankenstein and A Streetcar Named Desire but also writing creative pieces from the perspective of various characters in The Great Gatsby.”