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The Marlborough Science Academy

English - Key Stage 4

At Key Stage 4 students follow the AQA English Language and AQA English Literature English courses.

The areas covered in the courses include:

  • Reading: plays, novels, short stories, poetry and journalism
  • Writing: for a wide variety of different purposes and audiences
  • Spoken Language: giving a presentation and responding to questions

For English Language students will:

  • Read a wide range of texts from the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries, including literature and literary non-fiction as well as other writing such as reviews and journalism
  • Read and evaluate texts critically and make comparisons between texts
  • Summarise and synthesise information or ideas from texts
  • Use knowledge gained from wide reading to inform and improve their own writing
  • Write effectively and coherently using Standard English appropriately
  • Use grammar correctly and punctuate and spell accurately
  • Acquire and apply a wide vocabulary, alongside a knowledge and understanding of grammatical terminology, and linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
  • Listen to and understand spoken language and use spoken Standard English effectively

For English Literature students will study:

  • A play written by Shakespeare
  • A 19th – century novel
  • A modern (post 1914) modern prose or drama text
  • A cluster of poems taken from the AQA poetry anthology, Poems Past and Present
  • A wide range of poetry in order to develop their ability to closely analyse unseen poems in preparation for this section of the examination
  • Through studying the set texts students have the opportunity to develop the following skills:
    • Literal/inferential comprehension
    • Critical reading
    • Evaluation of a writer’s choice of vocabulary and the grammatical and structural features of the work
    • The comparing of texts with specific reference to themes, characterisation, context, style and literary quality
    • Production of clear and coherent writing in order to be able to describe, explain, summarise, argue, analyse and evaluate, discuss and maintain a point of view, along with the use of relevant quotations and references to emphasis key points
    • Accurate spelling, punctuation and grammar

Both GCSEs are 100% examination and assessed at the end of Year 11. There are two examinations for English Language and two for English Literature:

  • English Language - Paper 1 (Fiction, 50%) – 1 hour 45 minutes, Paper 2 (Non-Fiction, 50%) – 1 hour 45 minutes
  • English Literature - Paper 1 (Shakespeare and the Nineteenth Century Novel, 40%) – 1 hour 45 minutes, Paper 2 (Modern Texts and Poetry, 60%) – 2 hours 15 minutes.
  • Spoken Language is teacher assessed but does not contribute towards the final grade.

Confidence and sound qualifications in written and spoken English are the key that will help students to go on to Post 16 or college courses and open the door to a very wide range of careers.

Curriculum Implementation 

Click here to view the curriculum implementation overview for English at Key Stage 4.

Curriculum Timelines 

Click here to view the curriculum timeline for English at Key Stage 4. 

Click here to return to English page.