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English Language and Literature A Level at Cirencester College

Course description

The two year linear A-level course in English Language & Literature offer students exciting opportunities to study a range of interesting literary and non-literary texts. There is a strong focus on linguistic analysis, looking at how language affects our response to novels, poetry and drama. Texts include: Shakespeare, a Pre-1914 Poetry Anthology, twentieth century American literature and a modern novel.

Through learning linguistic terminology, students will be able to articulate more precisely their perceptions about literary and non-literary texts. This will not only enhance their appreciation of other people’s writing but will also help them to write more effectively and accurately for a wide variety of purposes.” Exam Syllabus (Eduqas)

Course content

The course will involve reading literary and non-literary texts, both in and outside class, a range of group activities, lots of group discussions and writing essays – all designed to develop students’ critical responses, insights into texts and understanding of the contexts in which novels, plays, poetry and non-literary texts are produced and received. The coursework component will also provide the opportunity to produce two short pieces of creative writing. The course will equip students with the skills and knowledge to write about literature confidently, using literary and linguistic terminology to produce high quality work. Most of all, our current students say that they really enjoy the course and the texts they study.

Entry requirements

GCSE English Language at grade 5.


The course is 80% exam and 20% coursework. For the exams:
• Component 1 (the Poetry Anthology and Ian McEwan’s novel Atonement) is open text (you take the books into the exam)
• Component 2 (Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing and Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof) and Component 3 Section B (Capote’s In Cold Blood) are closed text (you don’t take the books into the exam)
The coursework involves an extended essay and two short creative pieces based on the theme of identity and being an outsider, linked to The Catcher in the Rye and other literature.

Future opportunities

Many of our students go on from this course to study English courses at University, these include combination courses of Language and Literature, English Language, and Linguistics. English is also a course that allows for a wide range of Joint Honour options at University, this is where English is combined with another subject to create a dual degree programme, for example:
• English and Drama
• English and History
• English and Philosophy
• English and Music
• English and Creative Writing
After University, the options available to English graduates are vast:
• Journalism
• Publishing
• Public Relations
• The Civil Service
• Teaching
are some of the more traditional routes linked to an English degree.
• Marketing
• Human Resources
• Teaching English as a Foreign Language
• Events Management
• Law Conversions
• Media Production
are other common destinations for those with English qualifications.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Cirencester College directly.

Last updated date: 27 January 2017
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