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A Level English Literature at St Thomas More High School for Boys

Course description

Subject to specification approval, this is a two year course incorporating study of poetry, prose, and Shakespeare, culminating in two examinations at the end of the course. There is also an independent critical study where students are expected to research, compile and submit a comparative body of work based on two pre-1900 texts plus completion of an extended essay- now called ‘non exam assessment’; formally known as coursework.

Entry requirements

B grade or above at GCSE English Literature


Paper 1: Love through the Ages

Study of three texts: one poetry and one prose text, of which one must be written pre-1900, and one Shakespeare play.

Section A – Shakespeare

  •  One passage-based question with linked essay (25 marks).

Section B – Unseen Poetry

  •  One compulsory essay question on two unseen poems (25 marks).

Section C – Comparing Texts

  •  One essay question linking two texts (25 marks).
  •  Open book.

Written exam

  •  3 hours.
  •  75 marks.
  •  40% of A-level.

Paper 2: Texts in Shared Contexts Choice of World War 1 and its aftermath or Modern Times: Literature from 1945 to the Present Day.

Study of three texts: one prose text, one poetry, and one drama of which one must be written post-2000.

Section A – Set Text

  •  One essay question on set text (25 marks).

Section B – Contextual Linking

  •  One compulsory question on an unseen extract (25 marks).
  •  One essay question linking two texts (25 marks)

Written exam

  •  2 hours 30 minutes.
  •  75 marks.
  •  40% of A-level.
  •  Open book

Independent Critical Study: Texts across Time

  •  Comparative critical study of two texts, at least one of which must have been written pre-1900.
  •  One extended essay (2,500 words) and a bibliography.

Non-exam assessment

  •  50 marks.
  •  20% of A-level.
  •  Assessed by teachers.

Future opportunities

Dependent on post 6th Form choices, English Literature can lead to a range of professions such as teaching and critical analysis of Literature. English Literature can also lead to professions or degrees with links to Journalism, Linguistic study or research, Philosophy and Science, Humanities and History.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Thomas More High School for Boys directly.

Last updated date: 03 June 2015

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