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English Literature A-level

Level 3 A-levels
Course Code:
North Devon Campus
Two years

If you're an avid reader, and a lover of literature, this highly-regarded study programme is a natural choice for you. You'll read and examine a real variety of writing from different periods and genres, building on the analytical skills you've acquired at GCSE.

English Literature is a ‘facilitating subject’ so is highly regarded by the leading universities.


The course texts can vary, but currently include such great titles as 'The Great Gatsby' by F. Scott Fitzgerald, 'Wuthering Heights' by Emily Brontë, Shakespeare's 'Othello' and a collection of poetry. At A-level you will also learn how to analyse unseen texts and how to apply your skills in comparison of a wide variety of texts.

In the second year, you will be encouraged to follow your own interests in coursework through the comparison of two texts. You will also go on to study a further range of texts such as 'The Handmaid’s Tale’ by Margaret Atwood, 'A Streetcar Named Desire' by Tennessee Williams and another collection of poetry.
Assessment will be through both exam and coursework. There is no coursework in year 1.

In the final year there are two exams and a coursework submission:
Paper 1: Love through the Ages (3hrs)
Paper 2: Modern Times: Literature from 1945 to the present day. Study of three texts
Non-exam assessment: an independent critical study of 2,500 words on two texts
To be accepted onto a two-year Level 3 programme, all entrants must hold at least a grade 4 in GCSE Maths and a grade 4 in GCSE English, as well as at least three other GCSEs at grade 4 (C) or above. Certain subjects require a minimum of GCSE grade 6.

You will be required to achieve grade 5 in English Literature as well as four other grade 4s including Maths.
This is a subject which is highly regarded everywhere.
If you want to study English Literature at university, you will have a great choice; you could also progress to Petroc's Foundation Degree in English with History.
A-level English Literature is also useful if you want to study other humanities subjects. Our students have gone on to follow careers in the media, publishing, marketing and teaching, as well as some pursuing academic careers.
The course is taught using books, booklets, critical material and some online resources. All A-level English lessons are taught in well-equipped classrooms that have interactive whiteboards and you will have access to computer rooms and laptops as required.

Learning Technologies and Library Services offer relaxed, quiet and comfortable places to study. You will find a variety of private and group study spaces on campus and multiple computers that can be pre-booked. The college WiFi also allows you to bring your own devices to use.

There are always friendly members of staff on hand to help you find information to assist your study, and you can borrow items including books, journals and media equipment in the Library.
On your first day of lessons, you will need to bring the texts that you will have been told to buy, as well as pens and A4 ruled paper with a margin.
You will be required to buy the texts you will be studying on the course which will cost approximately £35.
If you require any further information on this course, please email
Q: Which English subject should I choose - Literature or Language?
A: It depends on your interests. English Literature is best for those who enjoy reading and discussing poetry, prose and drama. English Language looks at how English works and why people use language in the way they do. If you have a keen interest in doing English at a higher level or simply enjoy both analysing literature and language in society, maybe you should consider doing both Language and Literature A-levels as two full subjects.

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