English Literature


The AS in English Literature is the first half of an Advanced GCE course and consists of two units. It contributes 50% of the total Advanced GCE marks. The course involves preparation for one examination based on set texts which embrace drama (post-1990) and poetry (post-1990).

It also involves preparation for an internal assessment which consists of a prose study and creative writing based on literature which embraces prose, drama and poetry – several texts studied will be twentieth century works. Students will be prepared for:


Students will be prepared for:


LT1 – a 2½ hour open text (clean copy) examination based on the study of poetry post-1900 and one post-1990 drama text.

LT2 – an internal assessment based on a prose study and creative writing. The prose study requires students to write about two prose texts, one chosen for detailed study, and one for wider reading. The creative writing includes (a) a personal creative writing response, written in a specific literary genre, in response to the wider reading of prose – the creative response may take the form of one of the following genres: short story; essay; life writing (biography/autobiography/journals); drama script; travel writing; a collection of poems – and (b) a commentary on their creative response.

The A2 units will contribute 50% of the total Advanced GCE marks. Students will be prepared for:

 LT3 – an internal assessment based on a period and genre study. Students will be required to produce a folder of approximately 3000 words. The folder will consist of an exploration of three texts, two of which must be of different periods and genres. The focus of the study may be thematic but students are free to select another literary focus. One of the texts must be prose, and one of the other two must be poetry. The third text may be drama, another poetry or prose. The emphasis in this coursework unit is placed on independent reading and research.

 LT4 – a 2½ hour closed text examination based on the study of one pre-1800 poetry text and one text from a list of ‘core’ Shakespeare texts and a designated ‘partner’ drama text.


Who is the course for?

If you enjoy reading widely and expressing your opinions then this is the course for you. The course encourages students to develop their interest in and enjoyment of literature and literary studies through reading widely and independently as well as writing creatively in response to a range of texts. The course focuses on developing and applying their knowledge of literary analysis and evaluation in class discussion and writing as well as developing an awareness of the contexts of the texts they are reading and the changing traditions of literature in English.

Entry requirements

Students should have studied GCSE English Literature. They must also achieve at least a C grade and preferably A/A* or B grades in both English and English Literature at GCSE Level. Evidence has shown that A or B grades are a better indication of likely success at AS/A2 Level, though, of course, not a guarantee.