Do men and women use language differently? Does the way we talk influence the way we think? Are some accents better than others? How is social media changing the way in which we communicate? How do children learn to speak, read and write? Is there such a thing as ‘correct’ English? Is our language changing for the better? Is political correctness a good thing? Is the English language sexist? And why does the word ‘literally’ not mean ‘literally’ anymore?
If these are the kinds of question you find interesting, A Level English is the course for you.
A Level English Language is a demanding course that builds on some of the skills developed during the GCSE years. You will be introduced to advanced language study, and will develop the ability to write for a variety of specific audiences and purposes. In the first year, you will learn how to use linguistic methods to analyse a variety of texts – from text messages to Facebook conversations to newspaper articles – enabling you to explore them on a much deeper level. You will also look at how children acquire language, and how language can produce and reflect social values.
In the second year, you will explore how language has changed over time, and how English usage varies around the world. You will also undertake an independent investigative language study that will allow you to focus on an area of your own interest. There will also be the opportunity to produce a piece of original writing than can be creative or functional.
A grade 5 in both English Language and English Literature GCSE. Successful students of English Language appreciate reading a variety of texts critically, and also enjoy creating their own texts.
Students need to be able to cope with a demanding workload, and be resilient in response to the challenges that the course provides.
A Level English Language develops many useful skills that employers and higher education establishments recognise and appreciate, and a qualification in the subject will be a key asset if you are interested in any career that involves written and spoken communication and a comprehensive grasp of the English Language.
English is the number one language in the world of business, and knowing how to convey your thoughts effectively, and having the skills to understand nuance and subtleties in English, can set you apart in the jobs market.
In terms of higher education, A Level English Language will facilitate entry on to university courses in a variety of subjects beyond English itself – particularly those that involve extended writing. Former English Language students at the college have gone on to study a diverse range of degrees, from Law to History, with the subject also serving as useful stepping stone for courses in the social sciences and the arts