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English Language AS Level at William Howard School

Course description

What do I need to start the course?

An interest in language. You need to be the kind of person who is fascinated by how language affects the way we think, and how the way we think affects language. You need to be prepared to learn a wealth of new terminology, and become conversant enough with it to be able to use it to analyse texts.

This course will appeal to students who:

  • enjoy analysing, expressing their opinions and justifying their comments on texts.
  • enjoy studying a subject which is relevant to their own lives
  • want to keep their options open as it is a popular qualification for a wide variety of courses and future careers.

Course content

Learners will develop a broad knowledge and understanding of the language levels, including:

  • Phonetics, phonology and prosodics: how speech sounds and effects are articulated and analysed
  • Lexis and semantics: the vocabulary of English, including social and historical variation
  • Grammar including morphology: the structural patterns and shapes of English at sentence, clause, phrase and word level
  • Pragmatics: the contextual aspects of language use
  • Discourse: extended stretches of communication occurring in different genres, modes and contexts


Paper 1: Exploring Language

Written paper 60 marks - 50% of total AS level (1 hour 30 minutes)

Section A: Understanding language features in context

Analysing one written text. (24 marks)

Section B: Comparing and contrasting texts

Comparing written text to a spoken text. (36 marks)

Paper 2: Exploring Contexts

Written paper 60 marks - 50% of total AS level (1 hour 30 minutes)

Section A: Writing about a topical language issue

Written discussion on gender or power study to be created for a non-specialist audience. (24 marks)

Section B: Exploring language in context

Analysing a text using the theories of gender or power. (36 marks)

Future opportunities

You will learn a wide range of transferable skills: writing for different audiences and purposes; responding to spoken and written texts; expressing informed and independent opinions; identifying and developing the links between different parts of the subject.

These skills are in demand from employers, universities and colleges and are also valuable in their own right. English Language forms a good basis for study with any other subject. Journalism, the Media, Law, Teaching and Management are some of the areas former students have pursued.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact William Howard School directly.

Last updated date: 04 October 2016
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