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English Literature A level at St Michael's Church of England High School

Course description

Indulge your creative side and take up the challenge of studying English Literature. If you enjoy reading and analysing novels, poetry and plays and want to broaden your horizons by sharing ideas with like-minded people, then this is the course for you. In the words of Albert Einstein, ‘Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.’

Course content

You will study eight texts from the genres of tragedy or comedy, including one play by Shakespeare, one other drama, a prose text and a selection of poetry. Some of the possible texts for study are Othello, King Lear, Death of a Salesman, The Great Gatsby, Tess of the D’Ubervilles, The Taming of the Shrew and Emma. You will also study a specific genre of either crime or political writing by reading one post-2000 prose text, one pre-1900 poetry text and one further text. Some of the possible texts for study are The Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Atonement, Hamlet, Brighton Rock, Songs of Innocence and Experience, The Kite Runner and The Handmaid’s Tale. You will also learn to analyse unseen texts in the exam and produce a coursework folder of two 1500-word essays linked to a critical anthology and one poetry and prose text of your choice.

Entry requirements

Grade C in English Language and English Literature


Examination – Paper 1 (Literary Genres: Drama) AS (50%) 1.5 hours

Examination – Paper 2 (Literary Genres: Prose and Poetry) AS (50%) 1.5 hours

All assessment is via external examination following the AQA specification.

A Level: 
Examination – Paper 1 (Tragedy or Comedy) A Level (40%) 2.5 hours

Examination – Paper 2 (Elements of Crime or Political Writing) A Level (40%) 3 hours

Non Exam Assessment – Paper 3 (Critical Approaches) A Level (20%)

Assessment is via non-exam assessment, which will be externally moderated, and external examination following the AQA specification.

Future opportunities

Degrees in English, Law, Journalism and Media and Cultural Studies and any career requiring high level communication skills, such as, publishing, public relations, marketing, journalism, media, management, the legal profession and teaching.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Michael's Church of England High School directly.

Last updated date: 30 September 2015

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