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English Literature GCE A Level

Languages, Literature and Culture

Languages, Literature and Culture
Languages, Literature and Culture
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What will you be working towards?

Code ELI
Qualification Type GCE A/AS Level or Equivalent
Qualification Level Level 3
Course type Full Time


You'll already know, from your GCSE studies, some of the appeal of literature.  You'll know that it can move you and make you more aware of your own and others' experience, and that it leads you to face some of the big moral and philosophical issues.  Studying literature at A Level will take you further into the exploration of some of the most interesting fiction, poetry and drama of modern times as well as that of the past.  You will explore the ideas expressed in literature but also study the craft of writing and how writers use literary techniques to create meaning.


We currently offer OCR’s A Level Literature Specification.  This programme of study requires the students to complete the following three units.

Drama and poetry pre-1900 (H472/01) - EXAM

There are two sections to this component:

Section 1: Shakespeare. 
Students study Twelfth Night or The Tempest

Section 2: Drama and poetry pre-1900. 
Students study one pre-1900 drama text and one pre-1900 poetry text: A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen and Selected Poems by Christina Rossetti 

Comparative and contextual study (H472/02) - EXAM

Learners will prepare one topic and study two whole texts in that topic area.
This component is split into the following topic areas:    

  • The Gothic: The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories by Angela Carter and Dracula by Bram Stoker            
  • Dystopia: 1984 by George Orwell and The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

Both these units are assessed by closed text examination.

Literature post-1900  (H472/03) - COURSEWORK

Learners are required to study three literary texts. The three texts must include one prose text, one poetry text and one drama text:

  • The texts must have been first published or performed in 1900 or later
  • At least one of these texts must have been first published or performed in 2000 or later

This unit is assessed by a coursework folder comprising two essays which combined must be no longer than 3000 words.

How will it be delivered?

The course is linear.

This qualification is assessed by two written examinations at the end of the two year period of study; in addition, a coursework folder of two essays for formal assessment needs to be completed during the second year of study.

Entry requirements

The College gives priority to its 11 partner schools. Places are offered to other applicants on a competitive basis.

All prospective students will be required to achieve a minimum of grade 4 in GCSE English Language and GCSE Mathematics, and a minimum of grade 6 in three GCSE subjects.

To study English Literature, students must achieve a grade 5 in GCSE English Language.


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