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A Level English Literature at Lady Margaret School

Course description

The OCR Specification in English Literature offers a broad and challenging range of reading from a variety of periods and sources; it encourages students to read independently and to develop analytical skills, flair and accuracy in their writing and in spoken discussion. An A Level in English Literature shows that the student has been trained in critical thinking and in communication skills, and it is valued by a wide range of University courses and employers.

Entry requirements

B grades in GCSE English Language and in English Literature.


AS Level 

 There are two units in the Advanced Subsidiary (AS) 
Unit 1: Poetry and Prose 1800-1945 
Unit 2: Literature Post-1900 

Poetry and Prose 1800-1945: assessed by closed book examination. (60% of AS marks) 
Prose: Next year our set text is The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde 
Poetry: A selection of poems by WB Yeats

Literature Post-1900: (40% of AS marks) Assessed through a coursework folder (3000 words maximum) made up of a close study of a single poem from a collection that we have studied, and a longer essay comparing an aspect of two novels or works of prose. Currently the poetry is Look We Have Coming to Dover! By Daljit Nagra; the first of our two prose works will be Andrea Levy’s Small Island, which will be read over the summer holiday

A2 Level
There are two units in the A2:
Unit 3: Drama and Poetry pre-1800 (Closed text examination: (30% of A Level marks)
Unit 4: Texts in Time: Coursework on three texts. (20% of total A Level marks)

Drama and Poetry pre-1800 involves the study of three texts: close study of a play by Shakespeare for Section A, and in Section B a combination of drama and poetry texts. Currently the texts are Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra, and Sheridan’s The Rivals and Chaucer’s The Wife of Bath’s Prologue and Tale.

Texts in Time involves the study of three texts, one of which is a work of poetry, on a theme chosen within school. It is assessed through a coursework essay (maximum 3000 words) involving a comparative analysis of three texts. Currently all classes start the coursework with The Great Gatsby.

Future opportunities

English is not a narrowly vocational discipline and a degree in English will allow a graduate an extremely wide range of career opportunities ranging from the Civil Service to Advertising, and from Education to Publishing. The English Department prides itself in offering a range of extra-curricular activities – writing, theatre trips, debating – which enhance our students prospects

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Lady Margaret School directly.

Last updated date: 24 April 2015
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