English Literature


Type of Qualification: A Level  

Exam BoardOCR 

Additional Entry RequirementsGrade 6 at GCSE in English Literature. A love of reading is essential. 

Why study English Literature? 

Anyone who is interested in reading for English, Law or a Humanities based degree should consider this course. 

English Literature can be studied with Language as separate, complementary subjects, whilst Literature can be a useful opinion based and discursive subject to act as a foil to scientific subjects. 

Additionally, the analytical skills required are testing and therefore recognised as being valuable for any given degree course. 

Course Content 

Candidates explore and analyse the written word and are encouraged to:  

  • read widely and independently both set texts and personal choices 
  • engage creatively with a substantial body of texts and ways of responding to them 
  • develop and effectively apply their knowledge of literary analysis and evaluation in speech and writing 
  • explore the contexts of texts and others’ interpretations of them 
  • deepen their understanding of the changing traditions of literature in English  
  • develop creative and informed responses to literary texts, using appropriate terminology and concepts, and coherent, accurate written expression 



Component 1: Drama and poetry pre-1900 exam (2½ hrs); 40% of A Level 

Component 2: Comparative and contextual study exam (2½ hrs); 40% of A Level 

Component 3: Literature post-1900 coursework comprising two tasks totalling 3000 words; 20% of A Level   


Careers in English Literature 

Any career which involves analysis, high levels of clear communication or simply a love of literature.