Skip to content ↓

English Literature

A Level |AQA

Why study English Literature?                                                                                                       

English Literature is all about stories: the way we tell them, the way we interpret them and the way they reflect and shape us as a society On this course we will explore a wide range of these ‘stories’, developing our critical thinking and analytical skills along the way as we explore them at a much more academic depth than GCSE. If you love reading, exploring interpretations and discussing ideas about society and humanity, then this course has a lot to offer.
Extra-curricular aspect of the course
There are many opportunities to experience Literature beyond the classroom, including National Theatre Live screenings both on and off site. We also offer theatre visits and lectures throughout the academic year, where possible. 

Entry Requirements
Students considering studying A Level English Literature are expected to achieve GCSE Grade 6 or above in GCSE English Literature. Students should also be enthusiastic about reading and be committed to studying independently.
Higher Education and Careers
The academic nature of this highly respected course is recognised by universities. The transferable skills you will develop, such as the ability to write coherently and critically, and to use reason and logic, will be valued by employers and would complement the following courses well: Philosophy and Ethics, Classical Civilisation, History, Government and Politics, and Sociology. This course will challenge you to push the boundaries of your critical and analytical thought, therefore a background in English Literature is useful in many high profile career areas such as Law, Journalism, Politics, Teaching, Academia, Business, Performing Arts, Broadcasting, and Psychological Sciences.
Equipment required for the course
Folders for storing notes, highlighters, post-its and a quality academic dictionary.                         
At A Level, students complete two externally examined units: Aspects of Tragedy and Elements of Crime Writing. For each unit the students will sit one examination at the end of Year 13. Students also complete a Non-Examination Assessment which is worth 20% of the overall A Level.

A-Level English Literature 

Paper 1: Literary Genres

Paper 2: Texts and Genres

Aspects of Tragedy

Elements of Crime Writing

Study of three texts: one Shakespeare text; a second drama text and one further text, of which one must be written pre-1900.

Study three texts: one post-2000 prose text; one poetry and one further text, one of which must be written pre-1900.    Examination will include an unseen passage

Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes

Written exam: 3 hours

Closed book

Open Book

75 Marks 

75 Marks

40% of A-Level 

40% of A-Level 

Non-exam assessment: Theory and Independence
Study of two texts: one poetry and one prose text, informed by study of the Critical Anthology
One essay can be re-creative. The re-creative piece will be accompanied by a commentary
50% of marks
20% of A Level
Assessed by teachers, marked by AQA


For more information on this course please email 

Miss C Lennon