Qualifications to start the course

Students must have five GCSEs including English, Mathematics and Science graded A* – C. Additional requirements for this subject: Students must have GCSE English Language and Literature at grade B or above.

Description of the subject

English Literature builds on skills already developed at GCSE. Students cover a range of texts from across genres, drawing comparisons and analysing ideas and themes in depth. There is a lot of emphasis placed on reading, both for the course and for pleasure.

At AS, the focus is on comparing the ways in which stories are told and thereby constructing different realities. At A2 this foundation is extended in two main ways: by looking in more detail at the way texts are influenced by culture or genre; and by considering the ways in which texts can be subjected to different types of critical approach, yielding different and potentially challenging interpretations.

What you will do – at AS, students will:

  • Pay close attention to how narrative works in texts
  • Make connections across texts through exploring their narratives
  • Be introduced to notions of genre through the study of drama.

At A2 students will, as part of the potential for stretch and challenge:

  • Broaden their understanding of genre and categorisation
  • Extend their independent reading
  • Extend their awareness of critical methods and readings.

Future prospects

English Literature is a solid foundation for any art-based subject at university (including English, Media Studies, Law, Philosophy, Languages or Social Science) as on completion of their A Level students will be skilled writers and will have developed strong communication skills.

English Literature is a good course to link up with Art, 3D Design, Business Studies, Information Technology, Media Studies, IT Practitioners and General Studies.