Department Leader: Stephanie Power

The examination board for this qualification is AQA.

Our A-level English Language and Literature specification draws on the academic field of Stylistics in order to create an integrated English Language and Literature course which brings together literary and non-literary discourses.

Students should be prepared to cover a whole range of concepts and ideas from the following topics:

In Year 12

Students will complete an introductory unit on stylistic analysis.  They will learn how to analyse texts using a series of language levels.

  • Students will study a collection of non-fiction texts and extracts based on the theme of Paris.  They will be expected to complete detailed stylistic analysis of these and apply their learning to the contexts of culture and society: people and places.
  • Using the same Anthology of texts students will select short extracts and re-cast the content into new text forms, writing for different audiences and purposes and with different genre conventions.  They will learn to write thorough analytical commentaries of their own writing.
  • Students will complete a study of two focus literature texts.  Currently they work on The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood and a collection of poetry by John Donne.  The theme connecting these texts is how writers construct imagined worlds through point of view, place and character.

All these literature texts are based around the theme of People and Places, and Views and Voices.
Students will complete a formal mock at the end of Year 12 based on this content.

In Year 13

The topics covered in Year 12 will be:

  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood and John Donne’s poetry
  • The collection of texts from the Paris Anthology


The topics covered in Year 13:

  • A study of a play text, The Herd by Rory Kinnear
  • Students will read and analyse a The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini and will apply their skills of textual recasting to work content into new forms and styles.  They will be required to write a formal commentary on the recasting.

Additionally, students will be asked to complete a language and literature independent investigation, where they select and collect their own texts and connect the literary and linguistic worlds in stylistic analysis.  This piece forms the non-examined unit for the course (coursework).

The AQA page for the English Language and Literature course is the best place to start. It has details of the course, mark schemes, past papers and examiner reports.

We provide all students with a login to the English and Media Centre, which publishes e-versions of all its magazines. They are a huge resource for students of Language and Literature

Students will develop understanding of different schools of literary and critical theory and Shmoop is a good starting point for this work.

To help with a more detailed working understanding of English Language, especially grammar, the British Council offer lots of helpful resources, games and apps.

And finally, the most useful resource is the library. Students who read extensively and beyond the prescribed texts are the most successful. Reading novels, poetry, plays and non-fiction texts at a level appropriate to A Level study is always time well spent. The KBA 100 Classics is a great place to start and we have all of the books on the list in our school library

Any queries about this course can be directed to Mrs Brown at

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