St. Mary's

English Language

Is this course for me?

English Language A level enables students to become linguistically fluent in analysing how language is used and to explain, in significant depth, how writers exploit and manipulate language for purpose and effect. Following the reformed GCSE English Language, it is the next step in language analysis, building upon critical skills acquired at GCSE.

Areas of Study

A wide range of topics are studied throughout the course including an Original Writing unit which allows students to flex their creative muscles! English Language A Level study units enable opportunities for independent research on a sociolinguistic topic. Such a variety within the syllabus provides range and dynamism for the English Language students, keeping it fresh, interesting and relevant. We look at language in a wider context and study the social, historical and cultural impact of the written and spoken word. One key area of study is exploring how the English language developed and continues to adapt, change and evolve over time.

A level English Language Modules:

  • Language Concepts and Issues – Analysis of spoken language transcripts and key issues (ranging from language acquisition to language and power).
  • Language Change over Time – Wide range of language change studied ranging from Early Modern English to how English is used in the C21st.
  • Creative and Critical Use of Language— Two original writing tasks and one commentary.
  • Coursework: Language and Identity — Independent Extended Essay ( 20% of overall A-Level) Exam Units: 3 exams plus 1 piece of coursework

Future Opportunities

The ability to communicate effectively is paramount: a desirable addition to any A level combination. English Language is extremely complementary to many subjects and can lead to a variety of degrees and careers. Of course there are more specialised English Language and Linguistic courses, which can lead to a career in speech therapy, publishing and specialist roles like a lexicographer or a forensic linguist. Many students who study English Language go on to do journalism, marketing, PR, human resources, management, advertising, law, publishing, media, librarian, writer and, of course, teaching.

Exam board: Eduqas