We offer a highly supportive and well-resourced one year course which is suitable for those students who have previously gained a Grade 3 in GCSE English Language and who would like to achieve grade 4 or higher in this subject.
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Our one year course is an intensive programme designed to inspire and motivate all students, whilst providing appropriate stretch and challenge and career related skills and links. Importantly, the GCSE English Language is an essential qualification for progression onto A Level and many other Level 3 courses. It is also frequently required for university entry in the UK.
This is a linear 9-1 GCSE qualification. Students should be able to demonstrate that they have the commitment and motivation to complete the course and a grade D/3 in English GCSE or Functional Skills Level 2. A linear qualification means that students must sit all their exams at the end of the course in June. There are no tiers of entry for GCSE English; all students will sit the same exam papers.
Students must complete two examination papers for the AQA English Language GCSE. Each paper consists of two components, each worth 50% of the each paper: Section A (reading and analysing language) and Section B (an extended writing question) to be completed in 1 hour 45 minutes.
Paper 1: Explorations in Creative Reading and Writing.
The focus of Language Paper 1, is to engage you in a piece of fiction and invite you to write creatively yourself by:
- Reading a literature fiction text in Section A to explore how writers use narrative and descriptive techniques to engage readers
- Composing your own creative text in Section B, to demonstrate your narrative and descriptive skills in response to a written prompt, scenario or visual image.
Paper 2: Writers’ viewpoints and perspectives.
The focus of Language Paper 2, is to explore how writers show particular viewpoints and perspectives on issues or themes that link to the world around us. It will invite you to demonstrate your skills by:
- Reading two linked sources from different time from either 19th, 20th or 21st century non-fiction texts of varying genres, in order to consider how each presents a perspective or viewpoint to influence the reader
- Composing your own piece to engage a specified audience, purpose and form in which you give your own perspective on the theme that has been introduced to you earlier in the paper
- GCSE English courses include a Spoken Language assessment, which takes the form of a presentation in class and responding to questions and feedback. This compulsory component is not part of the final weighting of the GCSE grade, however.
Career opportunities and further study
Gaining a GCSE in English Language can lead to many progression opportunities. Whether you have decided your career path or are keeping your options open, achieving your GCSE English Language qualification will positively influence your further education and future career plans: for the majority of jobs, a minimum grade of 4 is essential to access those opportunities. Essentially, this qualification will enhance your CV and improve your employability prospects in a broad spectrum of areas.
Employers maintain that one of the most fundamental skills they look for in their employees, is good communication skills and this means confident writing and presentation as well as speaking. Developing practical skills such as being able to write a strong cover letter, discussing ideas in a group or delivering engaging presentations can be essential in preparing for your dream career. As such, students who study GCSE English Language will greatly benefit from the transferable skills that the course promotes. The core skills required to succeed in the subject, such as written and oral communication, writing for a range of audiences and purposes, prioritising information and analytical interpretation, are essential skills in most workplaces.
A high level of competence in understanding and producing written and spoken English is invaluable for the future no matter what career or further education qualification you aspire to. It will also benefit your progress in the other subjects that you are studying at college too.
Trips and Events
The English department run several trips throughout the year, including visits to the theatre and universities. For more information see the English department’s website www.aquinasenglish.com .
- Useful Links
Entry Requirements 2019
You can download provisional entry requirements for 2019 courses below. Please note that your enrolment on to a particular course must be approved by the Head of that department.