This qualification is made up of two parts: AS and A2. However, to gain the full GCE (A Level), students must complete the AS and the A2 units. The AS units make up 40% of the full A level qualification, and the A2 units make up 60%. The AS and A2 units are as follows:

Year 13

Unit AS 1: The Study of Poetry 1900–Present. Pupils will study an anthology of 24 poems by the poets Robert Frost and Seamus Heaney;

AND Drama 1900–Present. Pupils will study Brian Friel’s play Translations.

Unit AS 2: The Study of Prose Pre 1900. Pupils will study one of the following novels:

  • The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • Silas Marner by George Eliot
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
  • Emma by Jane Austen
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker

Year 14

Unit A2 1: Shakespearean Genres. Pupils will study William Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale.

Unit A2 2: The Study of Poetry Pre 1900. Pupils will study an anthology of 15 poems by the poet William Blake.

AND Unseen Poetry. Pupils will demonstrate critical skill and personal engagement in

response to an unseen poem, analysing poetic methods to determine how poets shape meaning. In this section, pupils experience poems from different time periods and poems with various themes, forms and poetic styles.

Unit A2 3: Internal Assessment. Pupils engage in a detailed study of two novels, one of which must be a twenty-first-century novel. We encourage pupils to select their own novels, with teacher guidance and support. They explore a theme and analyse how authors shape meaning. They also explore the contexts in which each novel was written and analyse connections across the texts. In writing the internally assessed essay, pupils develop their research abilities and writing skills. Below is an outline of some of the texts pupils may engage with on the theme of ‘Outsiders’.


Core Novel – C21st

Companion Novels


The Shock of the Fall by   Nathan Filer


  • The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
  • The Butcher Boy by Patrick McCabe
  • Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
  • The Outsider by Albert Camus
  • Or   any other appropriate novel