English Language AS/A2 Level

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Course Specifics

Sixth Form
Level 3
16-18 School Leavers
1 year for AS Level 2 years for full A Level
Interview Required:
Age 16-18 Cost:
No cost
Age 19 or Over:
Funding Assisted:
Yes - If it's your first full Level 3 and you're aged 19-23 your course is funded otherwise Advanced learner loans are available

Course overview

A Level English will enable you to further develop English language skills you acquired at GCSE level. This course will help you understand and analyse the use of language in various types of texts, spoken and written, for particular contexts and audiences. So in Y12 we will study:

Language, the individual and society - Have you ever wondered how language in various texts differ or are similar? How do the writers use language in written texts like poetry, children’s stories or advertising? How does spoken language differ in various contexts? In categorising texts, you will be investigating various linguistic features and will categorise various texts accordingly. So you will explore different texts and analyse them using the language frameworks that you build upon throughout the course. This is the slightly scientific side of the course, because linguistics is more about the science of language.

Children’s Language Development - In this unit you will explore how children develop their spoken and written skills. You will consider different modes of communication such as spoken and written, while applying theories and research about language development.

Language diversity and change - The aim of this area of study is to allow you to explore language change over time or variation across regions. You will study a range of examples of language in use such as looking at different dialects (different regional, national and international varieties of English) and looking at language from different periods, from 1600 to the present day.

The content here is covered by the two years of study for the complete A level. The final year also includes completing Language in Action; a coursework folder that includes an investigation into a topic of your choice, a piece of original writing that is more creative and a commentary on your own writing.

Who is this course for?

You will also have an excellent work ethic as A Level work is not easy but opens up the door to many careers in the future. You also need to have an interest in English language and a strong commitment to study as you will be expected to do a lot of independent reading. The Language course fits in very well with A level English Literature but will also help in the studies in all A levels as the skills you develop in reading, analysing and writing are transferable.

Entry qualifications

Ideally you will be achieving at least 25 points/5 x 5 points or above/A*-C/9-4 grades at GCSE (or equivalent), including English and Maths.

What other experience will I gain?

Being part of Chesterfield College Sixth Form is about so much more than A Levels. We want you to leave us with boosted confidence and as many skills as possible to help you with your next step (as well as making your time here fun). That's why you'll also get the opportunity to take part in visits; The University of Sheffield School of journalism often has a master class that we attend. In addition, most language students are active student ambassadors and Peer mentors – Y13 students who pair up with Y12 students to offer help and support.

Where will this lead?

You will be able to progress to university level study or on to employment. Former English Language students are studying English at many prestigious universities; among these are Liverpool, Durham, and Manchester. In addition students who have studied English have places on Journalism courses at Derby, Sheffield Hallam and Nottingham Trent universities, and even on a Linguistics and Communications studies course at the University of Durham. It also provides a sound base for teaching degrees.

What are my career options?

What Ofsted say

"“A Level English is a step up from GCSE English and there is quite a gulf between the two levels. This course is about analysing language, so you need to practise analysing all the texts provided for homework and in class to develop these skills. You need to keep a well-organised folder with all the hand-outs provided because it's important to revise as you go along for tests and the end of year exams.”

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