English Language and Literature

Why should I study this subject?

This course allows you to develop your interest and enjoyment in English Language and Literature as you will use both linguistic and literary approaches when reading and analysing a wide variety of written, spoken and multimodal texts.

What will I study ?

You will develop and apply your knowledge of literary analysis and evaluation; develop and apply your understanding of the concepts and methods appropriate for the analysis and study of language and use linguistic and literary approaches in your reading and interpretation of texts, showing how the two disciplines can link.

Component 1: Examination – (40%) (open text)

Section A: Voices in 20th and 21st Century texts – one comparative essay based on one text from the anthology and an unseen 20th or 21st century text.

Section B: Drama text: A Streetcar Named Desire 

Component 2: Examination—(40%) (Open text)

Section A: Unseen non-fiction

Section B: Wuthering Heights and Romantic Poetry

Component 3: Coursework-(20%)


Students study:

  • a chosen topic
  • two texts relating to chosen topic; one fiction and one non-fiction.

Students will produce two assignments:

  • one piece of fiction writing and one piece of creative non-fiction writing
  • one commentary


What are the entry requirements?

Please check this subject table for full details of our A Level entry requirements.

What skills do I need?

An interest in learning how to analyse language across a wide variety of literary and non-literary texts; enthusiasm for creating and evaluating original coursework which has been inspired by what you have read; an ability to write fluently, accurately and coherently.

How will I be taught?

The subject is usually taught by one teacher, using a wide variety of methods. These include small group work, whole class discussion, independent study and supportive one-to-one feedback from your teacher. Resources for the subject will be available via the College’s virtual learning environment, Moodle.

How will I be assessed?

A level involves 80% exam with Coursework (20%)

Two pieces of creative writing: one fiction and one creative non-fiction, with a commentary.

What will the course prepare me for?

A-Level English Language and Literature gives you the analytical and critical skills which are valued by many universities and many employers. Students who follow this course are often interested in the following careers: journalism, literary publishing and editing, business, law, media, advertising and PR.

How much private study should I expect to do?

As an approximate guideline, you should be prepared to spend four to five hours a week on this subject outside of lessons.

What materials will I need to purchase?

Your own pens, paper and folders. You will also need to purchase your own copies of the set texts.

What is the exam board?


This subject is for you if

you enjoy reading, coursework and grammar and analysing the way language is used to achieve particular effects in literary and non-literary texts.

This subject is not for you if

you do not like analysing lengthy texts, discussion, grammar and analysing the language of a range of literary and non-literary texts.

“English at New College is really interesting – you get to explore new and challenging texts that are personally enriching.”

Imogen Owens, Freeston Academy

“Though challenging, English develops great transferable skills that help with my other subjects at college.”

Leonie Hudson, Shafton ALC