In English Literature, an enjoyment and interest in reading becomes a rewarding subject that will develop you as a person and provide you with indispensable skills. You will learn about society both of today and in the past, other cultures and political viewpoints. English Literature is an excellent choice for a surprisingly wide range of careers, and is highly regarded by employers and universities. This is not surprising when it develops skills of judgement, argument, analysis, selection and expression. Career pathways are numerous including the law, management, human resources, publishing, journalism and education.
Students study a number of texts, drama, prose and poetry, chosen for their range and socio-historic significance. We take every opportunity to view productions, both live and streamed, to enhance the experience of what we are studying. We follow the OCR specification.
In the Lower Sixth there are two AS Level components:
Component 1: Shakespeare’s (Measure for Measure) and Poetry pre-1900 (Christina Rossetti) (Exam: 50%);
Component 2: Drama post-1900 (Alan Bennett’s The History Boys) and Prose post-1900 (Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber) (Exam: 50%).
In the Upper Sixth there are three A Level components building on the skills and knowledge developed during the Lower Sixth course:
Component 1: Shakespeare’s (Measure for Measure) and Drama (Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband) and Poetry pre-1900 (Christina Rossetti) (Exam: 40%);
Component 2: Close Reading and Comparative and Contextual Study from chosen topic area – The Gothic (Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber and a further text to be selected according to the group) (Exam: 40%);
Component 3: Close reading OR re-creative writing piece with commentary, and comparative essay – The Contemporary World (Seamus Heaney’s District and Circle, Jez Butterworth’s Jerusalem and Ian McEwan’s Saturday) (Coursework: 20%).
Students are encouraged to enter a variety of non-fiction and creative writing competitions both internal and external. We have an extensive programme of writing workshops and visit all relevant theatre productions. We also offer opportunities for extra-curricular and additional support within English.
There are three dedicated classrooms and a smaller A Level teaching room, each featuring a data projector, interactive white board or Smart TV. The Department has a wide range of texts and visual resources for students to study which is updated annually.