English Literature (GCSE) -


Examination Board


Syllabus 8702

During Years 10 and 11 all students will follow courses leading to the GCSE qualification in English literature.

Overview of the course

This course will enable you to:

Develop your ability to read, understand, enjoy and respond to all types of literary texts.  You will also learn to recognise and appreciate themes, attitudes and the ways in which authors achieve their effects.  The study of literature will develop your awareness of personal, social and cultural significance through a variety of texts.

Course content

Paper 1 – Written paper: Shakespeare and the 19th century novel

·         Section A will be a question based on a Shakespeare play. You will be required to write about an extract from the play and then to write about the play as a whole.

·         Section B will be a question about a 19th century novel. You will be required to write in detail about an extract from the novel and then to write about the novel as a whole.

Paper 2 – Written paper: Modern texts and poetry

·         Section A: Modern texts. You will answer one question from a choice of two on your studied drama or modern prose text.

·         Section B: Poetry. You will answer a comparative question on one named poem printed on the paper and one other poem from your chosen cluster in the anthology.

·         Section C: Unseen poetry. You will answer one question on one unseen poem and one question comparing this poem with a second unseen poem.

How you will be assessed


Assessment and duration

Maximum Marks

Percentage of overall result

Paper 1  Written paper


Exam -  1 Hour 45 minutes



Paper 2 Written paper

Exam – 2 Hours 15 minutes



Students sit both the examinations in the summer of year 11. Results will be graded on a nine point scale: 1 to 9 – where 9 is the best grade.

Post-16 Courses available to you

You can go on to study English Literature or English Language and Literature at A Level, both currently available in The Sandon Sixth Form.