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English Literature A Level - Level 3


Studying A Level English Literature will encourage you to develop your interest and enjoyment of the written word. You will gain an understanding of the traditions of literature, make informed opinions and judgements on literary texts and develop your knowledge of cultural and historical influences on text. By reading widely, and critically, across centuries, gender and genre, you will develop as an independent reader and critic.

You will be taught to critically analyse a text according to its historical and cultural period and, as well as enjoying great works, you’ll develop keen powers of analysis and an understanding of literature in all its forms.

Key objectives

  • Build on the skills and knowledge you have already gained at GCSE.
  • Critically read, analyse and enjoy a wide variety of different texts.
  • Develop your written communication skills to a high level.

Based at the new Mansfield and Ashfield Sixth Form College, Chesterfield Road from September 2021.

Recommended courses to study alongside this A Level are:

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Entry requirements

Five GCSEs with at least grade 4/C including English language, English literature and maths.

You will need to supply a written reference from your school/college teacher and/or a current school or college report with an indication of your attendance pattern and achievements. This will need to be uploaded to your myVISION account by the end of May.

Following your application you will normally be offered a place to study A Levels subject to achieving the entry requirements and attending a welcome taster.

Start dates and fees

Start DateCodeActions
September 20214443Apply online

How long is the course?

A Level qualifications last two years.

How will I be assessed?

This course is assessed primarily by two examinations scheduled for May/June at the end of the second year with some additional coursework assessment.

The variety of assessment styles used such as passage-based questions, unseen material, single text questions and open book approaches, allow students to develop a wide range of skills These skills incluse the ability to read critically, analyse, evaluate and undertake independent research which are valuable for both further study and future employment.

The majority of questions are open book, which means you can have a copy of the texts in the exam!

There are only 2 exams and a coursework element worth 20%. This coursework provides opportunities for students to pursue their own areas of interest and develop personal and independent learning skills.

Success rates

A Level pass rate 2020- 100%

Our tutors have a vast amount of experience in their field with a passion for a wide range of literature, both old and modern. Year after year the pass rate for this course is continuously high. Planned trips include a Shakespearian visit to Stratford-upon-Avon along with educational days out to the cinema and theatre.

What does the course lead to?

A Levels are a good qualification to attain for progression onto university or an academic career. These qualifications are also recognised and highly regarded by prospective employers.

The skills taught on this course will equip you with the knowledge required for working in: teaching, publishing, the media, social work, law and the public sector (defence, education or social security).

What will I study?

The texts covered include:

  • ‘A Streetcar Named Desire’ by Tennessee Williams
  • ‘The Help’ by Kathryn Stockett
  • ‘New Selected Poems’ by Seamus Heaney
  • ‘Othello’ by William Shakespeare
  • ‘The Great Gatsby' by F Scott Fitzgerald 
  • A pre-1900 poetry collection will also be studied 

You will also analyse unseen texts of different genres. In the coursework option you will be able to study a choice of texts.

Study programmes

It is an entry requirement for some courses to have gained GCSEs A*-C in English and maths (see entry requirements). If the entry requirements to a course do not require A*-C in these subjects, and you haven’t already gained GCSEs A*-C in English and maths before joining us, you will continue to study English and maths as part of your programme and take appropriate qualifications in these subjects with the aim of achieving A* to C grade. In addition, to help you gain essential skills for employment, every student aged under 19 and studying a full-time course at college will take part in our study programmes alongside their main subject qualification. Find out more.

What can I go on to study?

This A Level can be used to progress to a degree in English literature, creative writing, history, politics, media and communication.

How do I apply?

You don’t need to apply for each subject area you are interested in. Once we have received your application form we will invite you into college for an interview or audition where we will be able to discuss every aspect of the course you have chosen, as well as any alternatives you may be considering. You will also have the opportunity to visit the areas of the college used for your programme choice.

Apply online


Next steps

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Why choose West Notts?

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100% A Level pass rate in 2020.

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One of the top colleges in the UK for student satisfaction.**Learner Exit Survey 2019/20

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An extensive bus service across Mansfield and the surrounding area.

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We have four campuses each boasting a number of state-of-the-art facilities.

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