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English Language AS/A-Level at The Appleton School

Course description

Are you interested in the way that our language system works? Do you ever wonder why people speak to each other the way they do? This course will develop your understanding of the English language. You will explore examples of real life language in use and apply concepts and methods appropriate for the analysis of language. You will develop your skills as producers and interpreters of language, and engage creatively with topical issues relevant to language.

Course content

AS unit – Exploring Language You will discover how language features are used in both written and spoken texts and explore how these features convey meaning. By comparing a range of transcripts you will develop your close reading and analytical skills, alongside your ability to apply language theories and concepts to unseen texts.

AS unit – Exploring Contexts You will explore topical language issues, for example the issues associated with language and gender and language and power, and apply theories regarding these issues to unseen texts in order to explore the attitudes of the speakers.

A2 unit – Exploring Language This unit focuses on the linguistic analysis of real life transcripts from different contexts. You will also explore more topical issues related to language and create an original piece of writing for a real-world purpose on a topical language issue

A2 unit – Dimensions of Linguistic Variation You will explore how children acquire language by engaging with samples of authentic children’s spoken text. You will also examine how the English language has changed over time, and how language is used today in the media.

A2 unit – Independent Language Research This is a piece of coursework which will allow you to explore an area of language that is of personal interest to you. You will complete an investigation into this aspect of language, collecting your own data for analysis, and then create an academic poster to present your findings.


You will be assessed both through coursework and examinations. In examinations you will be presented with unseen transcripts and short extracts and asked to write analytical essays in response to these. You will also be asked for original pieces of writing regarding language issues. You must apply your knowledge of linguistic theories and concepts in your answers.

Future opportunities

  •  Journalism
  •  Speech and Language Therapy
  •  Advertising
  •  Law
  •  Teaching

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact The Appleton School directly.

Last updated date: 21 September 2016

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 or 2 years