Studying an A-level in English Literature offers an exciting and unique opportunity: the chance to explore the narratives, worlds and imaginations of others. Through studying some of the most celebrated works of the literary tradition, you will explore new and immersive worlds and vicariously live lives that you had never dreamed possible. You will develop a range of transferable skills: close analysis, interpretation, research skills, academic reading and writing, debate and evaluation skills – most of all, you will develop a love of language and the writer’s craft.
You will also have the opportunity to see extracts from a range of diverse texts and consider them using a range of critical theories, including Feminist, Marxist and Postcolonial literary theory. You will then be able to select a text of your choosing for one of the two coursework essays you complete.
Students will study the Tragedy genre, including Othello and Richard II by William Shakespeare, and The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald. Students will also study a range of crime fiction, including When Will There Be Good News by Kate Atkinson and Brighton Rock by Graham Greene. We also study The World’s Wife by Carol Anne Duffy for the poetry coursework component.
The skills gained through the study of English Literature are immeasurable. Students are able to broaden their knowledge, not only of a wide range of texts, but also of human relationships, history and different views of the world. Throughout the two year course, students are trained to become more independent and perceptive in their reading skills,
Assessment is conducted by 80% examination across two papers. There is also a Non-Examined Component, which consists of two 1500 word essays on a text of the student’s choice. These are conducted in non-exam conditions.
A good pass (Level 5) in English Language or Literature.
All universities see an A Level in English Literature as a major asset to any course, as it exhibits that students are academically able, well-read and capable writers. Specific careers which are benefitted by this subject are publishing, journalism, law, broadcasting, media, acting, teaching and advertising, among many others. An A Level in English Literature will open many doors to a successful future.