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English Language and Literature A level at Westcliff High School for Boys

Course description

The Course offers students the opportunity to study Language and Literature as interconnected subjects, extending from their experience at GCSE. Literary and non-literary texts will be studied from different periods, including the modern age. Students will be actively involved in class discussion, to which they should contribute responses based upon their independent reading as well as on the texts set for study. Each year’s programme of study includes a coursework unit, giving the opportunity for personal writing aimed at different audiences.

Course content

The Advanced Subsidiary Curriculum: Unit 1: Exploring Voices in Speech and Writing (135 minute examination). 60%

In Section A in the Language and Literature Course in Year 12, we study spontaneous conversation and the various codifications used to transcribe conversation on the page in Unit 1, Exploring Voices in Speech and Writing. We analyse extracts from plays, dialogues and commentaries and the way ‘voice’ is explored through various paralinguistic features, gestures and utterances. In Section B, we also study, for the remaining 50% of the course, The Color Purple by Alice Walker, paying particular attention to African American vernacular English and the way the voice is employed to create character across a developing narrative. 

Unit 2: Creating Texts (internal assessment). 40%

Unit 2 offers students a chance to explore the Gothic genre. This includes a 1750 word coursework folder written for a reading audience and another 750 word piece for a listening audience, in addition to a commentary on the processes involved in the writing of each. This unit will involve the reading of one main prose text and a further poetry or drama text.

The A2 Curriculum: Unit 3: Varieties in Language and Literature (165 minute examination). 60%

In Section A, candidates will write a critical analysis of the unseen prose non-fiction spoken or written extract linked to the chosen topic studied throughout the year. They will apply their knowledge and understanding of literary and linguistic concepts. These extracts will be drawn from the eighteenth century to present day.

In section B, students examine two plays, Translations by Brian Friel and Stuff Happens by David Hare, in a Unit called A Sense of Place. The plays both examine conflict as a major human issue, the first looking at Britain’s colonial project in Ireland in the early nineteenth century, the second exploring Hare’s take on the Iraq War in 2003.

Unit 4: Presenting the World (internal assessment). 40% 

Unit 4 looks at the impact of war on the individual and involves Journalism over time, letters, editorials , witness testimony, documentaries, historical references. Folders should be made up of a single extended essay of no more than 2500-3000 words supported by a single analytical evaluative commentary of no more than 1000 words.

Entry requirements

Students will be expected to have gained two A grades, or better, in English Language and English Literature at GCSE. An interest in the structure and variety of spoken and written language in literary and non-literary contexts is essential; the ability to express oneself in writing both analytically and imaginatively, with suitable vocabulary, is necessary for success in this course.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 09 June 2015

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