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English Literature A Level at Caldew School

Course description

The approved specification for English Literature is new for first teaching in September 2015. The A course is comprised of a unit of ‘Love through the Ages’ (including responding to Shakespeare, unseen poetry and a comparison task), ‘Texts in Shared Contexts’ (with a choice of WW1 and its aftermath or modern literature from 1945 to the present day), referring to prose, poetry and drama. A third coursework component is entitled ‘Texts across time’.

Entry requirements

Candidates should enjoy independent reading and sharing and discussing their own ideas. Candidates should also have a strong interest in all genres of literature and take a keen interest in historical and cultural differences as these form a large part of the discussion in lessons.


The AS qualification will be assessed by two exam papers of 1 ½ hours. Paper 1 will focus on Shakespeare and poetry, with Paper 2 (1 ½ hours) focusing on unseen and seen prose, both on the theme of ‘Love through the Ages’.

At A Level, ‘Love through the Ages’ is assessed in Paper 1 - a three hour exam - covering poetry, prose and Shakespeare. Paper 2 explores ‘Texts in Shared Contexts’ with a 2 ½ hour exam in which students must respond to poetry, prose and drama. The coursework makes up 20% of the A Level, involving a comparative critical study (2500 words) of two texts, at least one of which must have been written pre -1900.

Future opportunities

Previous candidates have gone into degree courses in a wide range of subjects including Journalism, Teaching, Theatre and American Studies. The course complements other AS/A Level courses well, particularly English Language and History, where some of the topics on context overlap.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 09 September 2016
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 - 2 Years