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Course Description

A GCSE in English Language and English Literature enables students to draw upon a range of texts as reading stimulus and engage with creative as well as real life and relevant contexts. 

Students will have the opportunities to develop higher-order reading and critical thinking skills that encourage genuine enquiry into different topics and themes.

The specification will ensure that students can read fluently and write effectively.  Students will be able to demonstrate a confident control of Standard English and write grammatically correct sentences, deploying figurative language and analysing texts.  Students will read and be assessed on high quality, challenging texts from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries.  Texts will include a range of genres and types and will enable students to consider the writers’ viewpoints and perspectives as well as develop skills including; persuasion, analysis, summary and synthesis.  These essential skills will be further developed via the study of spoken language and how it is used in different contexts.  This forms part of the programme of study but it will not form part of the final grade. 

The new Literature syllabus continues to offer students the opportunity to explore a wide range of  the finest Literature including: William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, Mary Shelley, Jane Austen, Robert Louis Stevenson and Sir Aurthur Conan Doyle.  Students will also study more modern texts including post 1914 prose, fiction and drama.  The new syllabus is challenging and requires the reading of whole texts rather than extracts.

Assessment Structure

English Language Assessment:

Paper 1—Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing—50% of final GCSE grade.

Paper 2—Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives—50% of final GCSE grade.

Spoken Language—Teacher assessed throughout the course of study—0% of final GCSE grade. As required by AQA, this element of the course will be recorded (via Academy camera) for moderation purposes.

Literature Assessment:

Paper 1—Shakespeare and the 19th Century Novel—40% of final GCSE grade.

Paper 2—Modern Texts and Poetry—60% of final GCSE grade.

Special Features:

In recognition of the need for English to be relevant to the real, post-education world, there is now an increased focus on developing functional skills—i.e. those skills (such as persuasive writing, formal speech, etc) essential for success in real, post educational situations; particularly the world of employment.

The GCSE English course offers the ability to achieve two GCSE qualifications in a core subject.  All students will be guided through a GCSE in both GCSE English Language and Literature.