English Literature is a rigorous and stimulating course which provides students with the opportunity to explore literary texts and develop their analytical and written skills. This qualification is very highly rated by schools and universities and is recommended for students who would like to study any essay-based A-Level subject such as English literature, History, Politics or Religious Studies.
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English Literature GCSE introduces you to literary study. You will explore texts from a variety of places and times and be able to see how writers respond to and reflect the events and movements that were taking place at the time they were writing. You will study a nineteenth century novel, a play by Shakespeare in addition to a modern drama text and a poetry anthology.

You will also develop the skills to analyze literary texts that you have never seen before. The course will develop your ability to read critically as well as to appreciate the different components of literary texts and literary criticism. By the end of the course, you should have a detailed understanding of structure, genre, language and form.
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We will begin by studying the beginning of Victorian crime fiction by looking at Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Sign of Four. We will also look at the AQA Power and Conflict Poetry Anthology, exploring 15 poems from different historical periods and how they explore the ideas of power and conflict.
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English IGCSE will equip you to be able to engage with texts and language with confidence and insight. You will develop a sensitivity to language choices and language can be used to persuade, engage and direct a reader. You will also gain an understanding of how language works in the real world and be able to craft your own language to have maximum effect on the reader.


Paper 1: Non-Fiction Texts and Transactional Writing 60%

(Written Exam – 2 hours, 15 minutes)

The exam is structured in this way:

Section A: Reading (Non-Fiction) 30% (of whole award)

Section B: Writing (Non Fiction) 30%

Paper 2: Poetry and Prose Texts and Imaginative Writing 40%

Assessed through Coursework

Two essays:

Analytical essay on any two texts from the Pearson Edexcel IGCSE English Anthology and a commentary on why these two texts were selected.

A piece of imaginative writing

Exam Board: Edexcel IGCSE

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You need to have an interest in the written and the spoken word and a willingness to read new kinds of text. You also need to be prepared to look at your own work with a critical eye and experiment with new techniques and ideas.

All students studying the GCSE programme are required to have an English language level of IELTS 5.0 or equivalent.


  • Can I take a resit in this exam?
    This examination is available in June.