Key Stage 3

In English, pupils cover a 5 year GCSE, so skills are introduced in Year 7 that will be formally assessed at the end of year 11. We have a spiral curriculum. All work is tailored to the specific needs of each student, ensuring that students of all ability are challenged and are supported to make progress. The schemes prepare pupils for the skills and demands of GCSE studies in Language and Literature.

Pupils in all year groups cover the following assessment objectives:

A01 Reading
Identify and interpret explicit and implicit information and ideas. Select and synthesise evidence from different texts.

A02 Reading
Explain, comment on and analyse how writers use language and structure to achieve effects and influence readers, using relevant subject terminology to support their views.

A03 Reading
Compare writers’ ideas and perspectives, as well as how these are conveyed, across two or more texts.

A04 Reading
Evaluate texts critically and support this with appropriate textual references.

A05 Writing
Communicate clearly, effectively and imaginatively, selecting and adapting tone, style and register for different forms, purposes and audiences. Organise information and ideas using structural and grammatical features to support coherence and cohesion.

A06 Writing (and A04 Literature)
Candidates must use a range of vocabulary and sentence structures for clarity, purpose and effect, with accurate spelling and punctuation.

A01 Literature
Read, understand and respond to texts. Students should be able to:

  • Maintain a critical style and develop an informed personal response
  • Use textual references, including quotations, to support and illustrate interpretations

A02 Literature
Analyse the language, form and structure used by a writer to create meanings and effects, using relevant subject terminology where appropriate.

A03 Literature
Show understanding of the relationships between texts and the contexts in which they were written.

How is this done?

They are taught the key knowledge for each, then the teacher models how to apply these to an exam question. The pupils then try it, with support, before receiving personalised feedback and trying again, with support, if their understanding is not yet secure. Pupils are then assessed on their progress.

The Literature assessment objectives are taught through the use of a set text. At Key Stage 3, pupils are introduced to the texts that will be assessed in examinations at the end of year 11. In:

Year 7:

  • ‘Animal Farm’

Year 8:

  • ‘Romeo and Juliet’

Year 9:

  • ‘The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’

Key Stage 4

Students will sit two GCSEs (English Language and English Literature). The Language qualification is the AQA exam board and Literature is Edexcel. Students are awarded a grade between 1-9.


Two examinations and no coursework. Both papers are sat at the end of Year 11, with no re-sit. All students sit the same tier.

Paper 1: 1 hour 45 minutes - Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing – 50%

Paper 2: 1 hour 45 minutes – Writers’ Viewpoints and Perspectives- 50%


Two examinations and no coursework. Both papers are sat at the end of Year 11, with no re-sit. All students sit the same tier.

Component 1: 1 hour 45 minutes – Shakespeare and Post 1914 Literature – 50% - Closed Book

Set texts are ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘Animal Farm’.

Component 2: 2 hour 15 minutes – Nineteenth century novel and poetry since 1789 – 50%- Closed Book

Set texts are ‘The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde’, Unseen poetry and Conflict poetry (pre studied in an anthology).

Progression opportunities 16-19 links

Of course, GCSE English is a key qualification for all students regardless of which FE route they choose. Both Language and Literature continue to be viewed as excellent subjects to study at University as they provide the basis for a broad-based academic degree, which enables entry into a vast range of careers.

Careers, Higher Education and Lifelong Learning

A GCSE in English is vital for almost all jobs and vocational courses. English/English Literature at AS/A2 level are favourably viewed for entry to all institutions of Higher Education. The study of English can lead to many different areas of study within Higher Education: Psychology, Anthropology, Media Studies, Drama and the Performing Arts, Literary Criticism, Journalism and many others.

A broad choice of careers is open to people through the study of English/English Literature in:

  • Journalism
  • Media
  • Law
  • Higher clerical and administration
  • Publishing
  • Politics
  • Teaching

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