English Literature

Year 12 students – A level English Literature Course Outline

Students will study the new Edexcel specification.

Course Video

Qualification requirements for A level

The qualification requires students to study eight literary texts. Three of these have to be pre-1900 texts (including one Shakespeare play), plus one text first published or performed post-2000.

The requirement to study eight texts is met in the following way:
Component 1: Drama 1 Shakespeare and one other play
Component 2: Prose 3 Pre-1900 prose fiction 4 Prose fiction
Component 3: Poetry 5 Post-2000 specified poetry 6 Specified poetry (pre- or post-1900)
Coursework : Chosen text 8 Chosen text.

The pre-1900 requirement

In addition to their Shakespeare play and one pre-1900 prose text, students must study one further pre-1900 text from the available options in any one of the examined components.

Year 1

Component 1: Poetry and Drama

60% total AS qualification
2 hour written examination (Open Book)
Total of 72 marks available – 24 from Section A and 48 marks for Section B

Unit content


Students will study a selection of poems from a published poetry text – ‘Poems of the Decade: An Anthology of the Forward Books of Poetry 2002-2011. They will develop their understanding of poetic form, content and meaning and their ability to make links and connections within their studied collection.


‘A Streetcar named Desire’ Tennessee Williams

Component 2: Prose

Overview of assessment

  • Written examination 1 hour.
  • Open book – clean copies of the prose texts can be taken into the
  • Total of 40 marks available.
  • Students answer one comparative essay question from a choice of two on

Students will study aspects of prose via two thematically linked texts, at least one of which must be pre -1900

Year 2

Component 3: Poetry

Students study pre and post 1900 poetry and focus on a named poet (Keats)

Students also prepare for unseen poetry.

Students answer 1 of a choice of 2 questions in Section A and Section B

This is an open book exam.

Section A: Post 1900 comparison with unseen poem

Section B: Pre/Post 1900 Poetry

Component 4: Coursework

Students produce a 2500-3000 word essay response to two literary texts which are not covered elsewhere on the course.

Students are guided to Pride and Prejudice or The Kite Runner as starting points.

Course Specific Requirements:

Minimum level 5/6 in GCSE English Literature

Examination Board Link:


Last updated: 04-05-18

Key Staff

Mr A Hudson :
Assistant Subject Leader

Name: Mr A Hudson

Role: Assistant Subject Leader

Email: Dhudson@hartonacademy.co.uk

Mr A Richardson :

Name: Mr A Richardson

Role: Teacher

Email: ARichardson@hartonacademy.co.uk

Mr P Stebbing :

Name: Mr P Stebbing

Role: Teacher

Email: PStebbing@hartonacademy.co.uk

Mrs H Astrop :
Teacher / Head of Year 7

Name: Mrs H Astrop

Role: Teacher / Head of Year 7

Email: HBarclay@hartonacademy.co.uk