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English Literature

Minimum Entry Criteria

Desired: 7 in English Literature and Language

Essential: 6 in English Literature and Language



Outline of the Course

The OCR A Level in English Literature allows learners to undertake independent and sustained studies to deepen their appreciation and understanding of literature, including its changing traditions. Students will explore a range of poetry, prose and drama, with a focused exploration of Gothic Literature.

Learners are encouraged to develop their interest in and enjoyment of literature and literary studies as they:

  • read widely and independently both set texts and others that they have selected for themselves
  • engage critically and 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 writing
  • explore the contexts of the texts they are reading and others’ interpretations of them


Type of Assessment
Drama and Poetry Pre 1900
Written Examination – closed text – 60 marks
Section A: Shakespeare (Hamlet) (2 extended questions)
Section B: Comparison of poetry (Milton’s Paradise Lost) and drama (Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi)
2 hours 30 minutes
Comparative and Contextual Study (The Gothic)
Written Examination – closed text – 60 marks
Section A:  Close analysis of unseen extract
Section B: Comparison of Angela Carter’s The Bloody Chamber and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
2 hours 30 minutes
Literature Post 1900
Non-exam assessment – 40 marks – two tasks
A close reading or re-creative task with commentary focused on Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire
A comparative essay on one prose and one drama text (student choice)
4 weeks

6 weeks