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English Language A Level at Aylesbury High School

Course description

Why study English Language?

This A Level is for individuals who wish to explore and understand how language is the prism through which we see the world.

Students will study the conventions of written, spoken and multimodal language in order to understand how the building blocks of human communication shape the way that we think. You will learn about the development of the English language, how it has evolved over time and how children learn to speak. You will also explore the central role language plays in the construction of identity. Using the texts that are studied in class as a basis, you will be expected to devise your own written pieces. The course offers a logical framework methodology for analysing language in the world around you.

English Language students often go on to deepen their love of language by studying Linguistics and also Creative Writing at university, but it also complements those who are interested in Law, History, Psychology and Classics. If you are considering a degree or joint honours degree in English, you will need to study A Level English Literature.

Course content

Component 1: Language Variation

Students study how language varies depending on different factors, how language choices can create personal identities and the variation in English from c1550 to the present day.

Component 2: Child Language

In this component of the course, students explore how spoken language is acquired and how children learn to write between the ages of 0 and 8.

Component 3: Language and Gender

Developing their research and investigation skills, students will explore social attitudes and how the forms and conventions of written, spoken and multimodal language can construct or reflect gender and sexual identities.

Coursework: Crafting Language

Students are able to pursue their own interests to produce two pieces of original writing from the same genre. This is followed by a commentary reflecting on the two pieces of original writing.

Entry requirements

You will need an average grade 6 or higher in GCSE English Language and English Literature to take this course.


Paper 1 2¼ hours 35%

Paper 2 1 hour 20%

Paper 3 1¾ hours 25%

Coursework 20%

Financial information

Trip to a university linguistics workshop approx. £20

Further information

Opportunity for creative writing (as part of the coursework)

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 22 November 2018

Key information

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