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English Language A Level at Bennett Memorial Diocesan School

Course description

The English Language A Level course aims to encourage students to pursue linguistic and sociological lines of enquiry, debate different viewpoints about language and develop independent research skills. This course offers opportunities for students to engage in a wide range of written and spoken texts in a creative and critical way. We explore and identify how and why different types of genres are constructed and what influences the process of production and reception. The specification explores the study of English Language both as a medium of communication and as a topic in its own right: it is a creative and expressive tool; a medium we use for making social connections; and it is innately individual. In English Language, we aim to explore the wide range of language as a symbolic system to assert power too. Language and social functions are a key factor in the course.

Course content

Language, the Individual & Society

This area of study introduces students to methods of language analysis to explore concepts of audience, purpose, genre, mode and representation. It introduces students to the study of children’s language development, exploring how children learn language and how they are able to understand and express themselves through language. We analyse spoken and written language from different eras, global language, community language and regional styles. This is underpinned with the study of phonetics, graphology, lexis, semantics and grammar.

Language Diversity & Change

Students will study the key concepts of audience, purpose, genre and mode and will explore language in its wider social, geographical and temporal contexts. They will explore processes of language change. This part of the subject content also requires students to study social attitudes to, and debates about, language diversity and change. We examine a range of data to explore how historical influences have impacted upon linguistic change and the inherent debates and issues that affect language.

Coursework: Language in Action

The aim of this area of study is to allow students to explore and analyse language data independently and develop and reflect upon their own writing expertise. Students carry out two different kinds of individual research:

  • A languge investigation (2,000 words excluding data)
  • A piece of original writing and commentary (750 words each).

Entry requirements

- Students who enjoy analysing the way in which people speak and write.
- Students who are enthusiastic and relish the opportunity to debate ideas.
- Students who are organised and independent in their approach to research.
- Students who enjoy examining their own communicative skills from a new perspective.

- APS 4+

- Grade 5+ in GCSE English Language


TWO  exams at the end of the course = 80% 
- Paper 1: Language, the Individual and Society ( 2 hours 30 mins)
- Paper 2: Language Diversity & Change (2 hours 30 mins)

Coursework = 20%
- Language investigation: original writing, investigation and tion and commentary

Future opportunities

Almost any career would embrace English qualifications but the analytical, observant skills required would benefit journalism, media, teaching, management or any career that demands effective communicative skills.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Bennett Memorial Diocesan School directly.

Last updated date: 09 November 2017
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