English Literature has been added to My Courses


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This is a two year course in which allows you to enjoy reading and analysing prose, poetry and drama. 

There will be two exams which will constitute 80% of the total mark. The coursework element is worth 20%. The exam board is OCR and more information can be found on their website. It is a requirement of the course that three texts published before 1900 are studied, including at least one text by Shakespeare. One of the works studied will have been first published or performed after 2000.

Course content


The OCR A-level English Literature course is divided into three components. We will be studying a variety of poetry, drama and prose fiction. You will be examined at the end of your second year, and you will also complete a coursework file towards the beginning of the second year of study.

Component 1: Drama and Poetry pre-1900

Shakespeare (The Tempest by William Shakespeare)

Drama and Poetry pre-1900 (A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen and selected poems by Christina Rossetti)

Written paper 60 marks (Closed text 2 hours 30 minutes 40% of total A-Level)

Component 2: Comparative and Contextual study

This unit covers the amazing stories of love and disillusionment that can be so central to the immigrant experience. We study the narratives of Jamaican immigrants to Britain in Andrea Levy's novel Small Island as well as Pakistani identity in the USA in Mohsin Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist, as well as reading widely in the area of immigrant literature with extracts from novels like White Teeth and Brick Lane.

Written paper 60 marks (Closed text 2 hours 30 minutes 40% of total A-Level

Component 3: Literature post-1900

Close reading OR re-creative writing piece with commentary (Brand New Ancients by Kate Tempest)

Comparative essay: Literature post-1900 (Selected stories of Raymond Carver and Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller.

40 marks (Non-examined assessment 20% of total A-Level)  

Methods of Teaching and Learning

You will engage in a wide range of learning activities including seminar presentations, library-based research and dramatic performance. These and other strategies will help you to read texts closely and critically and to arrive at your own conclusions about their meaning. This is a course for students who love literature in all its forms.


We have a wide range of exciting enrichment in English Literature from theatre trips to competitions and guest speakers such as authors and academics. We also have a very dynamic student book discussion group where students meet to discuss books they have loved reading such as Frankenstein and The Bell Jar.


You will work from booklets, worksheets and textbooks. DVDs, computers and other interactive IT facilities support the teaching and learning, there are also many useful links to critical resources, study guides and much more on our bespoke Moodle learning page.


There are no course charges, but there is an expectation that students who are able to afford to buy their own text books should do so. If theatre trips and educational visits are arranged, these will also need to be paid for.


English Literature combines well with a wide range of other subjects. Through it you are offering evidence of high quality communication skills and an ability to be creative and analytical. You are also able to gain excellent academic writing skills through essay writing and drafting which will set you up well for both employment or further study.

24% of Literature students accepted places at Oxbridge/ Russell group universities in 2016 and many more gained excellent roles in employment or further study.

Where can this course lead?

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