A-Level English Language and Literature

A-Level English Language and Literature

By choosing to study A-Level Language and Literature, you will learn about the development of language as well as understanding prose and poetry. Not only is this a popular A-Level for those who wish to study English at university, it offers knowledge and skills that will always be of benefit, whatever career you choose.

A-Level English Language and Literature

A specific arrangement of units is required for certification, made up of AS-Level units and A2 level units. You will study four units and the assessment for A-Level English Language and Literature is by coursework and exam.

Over the course, you will undergo at least 360 guided learning hours over a two-year period. These guided learning hours are levels set by the government on how much time the tutor at your sixth form or college has to be present to give guidance (such as lectures, tutorials etc.) towards your award.

AS-Level English Language and Literature

AQA offer two AS awards for English Language and Literature – AS-Level English Language and Literature A and AS-Level English Language and Literature B.

  • AQA AS-Level English Language and Literature A

The unit Integrated Analysis and Text Production will allow you to develop your skills of using linguistic terminology to analyse text and to write both fluently and coherently. Analysing Speech and Its Representation will introduce you to the principles of speech analysis by allowing you to compare and analyse spoken texts.

  • AQA AS-Level English Language and Literature B

Introduction to Language and Literature Study allows you to study an Anthology of selected texts to consider genres and the development of language and style. The unit Themes in Language and Literature will focus your study on major prose genres, including fiction and non-fiction.

  • Edexcel AS-Level English Language and Literature

The Edexcel AS-Level English Language and Literature contains two units, Exploring Voices in Speech and Writing and Creating Texts. These units will allow you to study both written and spoken language and develop your reading and analysis of both a prescribed text and wider texts. The second unit allows you to write for a variety of purposes and audiences.

  • OCR AS-Level English Language and Literature

The first AS unit is Speaking and Voices and this will develop your analytical skills around the representation of voice. You will also study two prescribed prose texts. The Changing Texts unit will allow you to study one text from any genre and explore the text and possibilities for multimodal transformation. You will then produce your own multimodal version of your chosen text with a commentary.

A2-Level English Language and Literature

The A2 English Language and Literature is the equivalent of the second year of study of A-Level English Language and Literature. This is not a separate award. The A2 –Level English Language and Literature with the AS-Level English Language and Literature makes up the A-Level English Language and Literature.  The A2-Level English Language and Literature will further develop your knowledge from AS-Level English Language and Literature.

AQA offer two A2 units for either English Language or Literature A or English Language and Literature B.

  • AQA A2 English Language and Literature A

Comparative Analysis and Text Adaptation focuses on integration of linguistic and literary study. You will also produce a piece of work based around non-fiction writing. The fourth unit, Comparative Analysis through Independent Study will further develop your knowledge of terminology and allow you to evaluate and compare chosen texts.

  • AQA A2 English Language and Literature B

The unit Talk in Life and Literature emphasises spoken language and you will study a play. This will allow you to identify how meanings are constructed, conveyed and interpreted. Text Transformation allows you to select two selected texts and transform them into a different genre.

  • Edexcel A2 English Language and Literature

Varieties in Language and Literature will build on your skills developed in your AS-level and allow you to study written and spoken language drama or poetry. The Presenting the World Unit allows you to carry out independent research and produce your own writing.

  • OCR A2 English Language and Literature

The unit Dramatic Voices will allow you to study two drama texts and compare power relationships across the texts. The second unit, Connections across texts allows you to further study relationships between texts.

A-Level English Language and Literature Exam Board Information

  • The specification for the OCR AS and A-Level English Language and Literature is available here.
  • The Edexcel AS and A-Level English Language and Literature specification is available from their website.

Career Opportunities

Most people study A-Level English Language and Literature so that they can study English Language and Literature at University. Career options can include teaching and working in the media and some students may wish to be professional writers, editors or work in publishing.

The knowledge and skills that you will gain from studying A-Level English Language and Literature will be beneficial, whatever occupation you choose as this award not only demonstrates your written English skills, but also your spoken English and communication skills.

Other Useful Information

  • There are a number of podcasts for English Language and Literature topics available here.
  • Edexcel past papers and exemplar materials are available on their website.
  • Further links to English Language and Literature revision resources are available through the Times Educational Supplement.
  • Lancaster University offer a page of links to A-Level English Language and literature resources.