Leeds East Academy


Year 9 Options Process - English





English is a core subject and is therefore compulsory. At the end of Year 11, you will be awarded two GCSEs – one in English Language and one in English Literature. English is a hugely important subject as most colleagues and employers will expect you to have a pass in English in order to progress further.

Course Details

  • English Language

The course consists of 2 components: Component 1 - 20th Century Literature Reading and Creative Prose writing and Component 2 – 19th and 21st Century Non-Fiction reading and Transactional/persuasive writing.

At GCSE, students will learn how to analyse extracts of both prose and non-fiction writing from a variety of time periods, developing analytical skills which will be assessed through a range of structured questions. They will also learn how to write creatively, as well learning how to write transactional and persuasive pieces. There it’s also a Spoken Language component which sees students giving a presentation or speech, which includes responses to questions and feedback.

  • English Literature

The course consist of two papers – Component 1 in which the students study a Shakespeare play and a poetry anthology and Component 2 in which the students Post 1914 Prose/Drama, 19th Century Prose and Unseen Poetry.

At GCSE, learners will study a wide range of texts which enables them to read a wide range of classic literature critically and evaluatively, so that they are able to appreciate the depth and power of the English literary heritage and develop the habit of reading widely and often. The texts that they will study are: Romeo and Juliet by Shakespeare, a wide range of poetry, An Inspector Calls by JB Priestley and A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

Progression beyond GCSE

Once you have completed your GCSEs in English and English Literature and have gained a pass, this will ensure that you will be able to follow the path you wish to take at college and beyond. If you wish to continue with your studies relating to English, at college you be able to study A Levels in English Language, English Literature, Combined A Level Literature and Language or even Media Studies A level which is closely linked with English.

Where will the course take you? 

If you do well in English at GCSE, you may wish to continue your studies at A Level. English Literature and English Language A levels are highly prized by Russell Group universities, should you wish to go on to study at university. Even if you don’t which to specialise in English at University, you can go on to study Media, Drama, Law, History, Sociology, Archaeology and many more subjects that require the ability to write analytically about a topic.

Possible careers that can use an English qualification include: journalism, writing, teaching, advertising, public relations, intelligence (secret service), marketing and many more.

Some famous people who studied English at University are: Emma Watson, Stephen Fry, Hugh Grant, Stephen King, Steven Spielberg, Christopher Nolan, Stephen Fry, Philip Pullman and Martin Scorsese.

Course structure and assessment

  • English Language
    • Component 1: 20th Century Literature Reading and Creative Prose Writing
      • Written Examination: 1 hour 45 Minutes
      • 40% of qualification
    • Component 2: 19th and 21st Century Non-Fiction Reading and Transactional/Persuasive Writing
      • Written Examination: 2 hours
      • 60% of qualification
  • English Literature
    • Component 1: Shakespeare and Poetry
      • Closed book written examination: 2 hours
      • 40% of qualification
    • Component 2: Post 1914 Prose/Drama, 19th century Prose and Unseen Poetry
      • Closed book written examination: 2 hours and 30 minutes
      • 60% of qualification

Further information