English Language A Level

Course Content

Do you enjoy writing? Do you like annotating language and identifying techniques? Are you interested in the way that people speak and write in different contexts? 

A-level English Language is about the way that language works in the world to build and create meaning. The subject offers opportunities for you to engage creatively and critically with a wide range of texts.  

The key skills you will develop are: 

·         Linguistic analysis of a range of texts 

·         Study of socio-lingustic scholars and theorists 

·         Critical understanding of how language shapes meanings and discourses in our society. 

·         Writing academically and creatively 

Included are units on: Child Language Acquisition, Language and Gender, Social Class and Ethnicity, Attitudes to Language, Language and Technology, Accent and Dialect, Language Control and Creative Writing. You will develop your critical essay writing, evaluative skills and ability to construct a convincing written argument. 

English Language is a highly regarded academic subject that fits perfectly with and complements so many others. It is a recognised and relevant stepping stone to further study at University or to Apprenticeships. Past leavers have gone on to study: Linguistics, Law, English and History, Anthropology, as well as Media, Film, Sports Broadcasting, and Creative Writing. 


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.