English Language A Level

Course Content

Do you enjoy studying non – literary texts, picking apart language in detail and producing your own creative writing?

A-level English Language offers opportunities for you to develop your subject expertise by engaging creatively and critically with a wide range of texts and discourses. You will create your own texts and reflect critically on how you produced them, while analysing the texts produced by others. You will explore the study of English language both as a way of communicating and as an entity that develops and changes across contexts. Language is seen as a creative tool for expression and social connection, as well as for individual processing. You will draw on the academic field of linguistics to study language as a symbolic system used to assert power in society. You will develop the skills needed to pursue lines of enquiry, debate different views, and work independently to research aspects of language in use, all of which are required for both progression to university and enhanced employability.


Paper 1 : Language, the individual and society (40% of A Level)

Written exam: 2hours 30minutes

Explore a range of texts and look at how language varies and how different contexts are represented.
Compare and analyse two texts in the exam using linguistic theory and terminology.
Complete a discursive essay on children’s language development, based on theories of this field of linguistics.

Paper 2: Language, Diversity and Change (40% of A Level)

Written Exam: 2 hours 30 minutes

Explore how and why language diversifies and changes across different sections of society through an evaluative essay.
Analysis of how texts about the same topic show these changes. You will analyse how language is used to present ideas, attitudes and opinions.
The exam includes a directed writing task linked to the topic of the exam paper.(Creative writing).
Non – Exam Assessment: Language in Action (20% of A Level)

Coursework: 3,500 words

A language investigation based on data that you have collected
A piece of original writing and commentary


To be accepted onto the course students need at least a Grade 6 at both English Language and English Literature GCSE. The course demands good essay writing skills and a willingness to contribute to discussion. You will be expected to prepare aspects of texts for presentation in class. You need to enjoy reading and creative writing, and be willing to read independently beyond the texts we look at together in class.