English A Language and Literature (group 1)

In this course, students will study a wide range of literary and non-literary texts such as poetry, prose, drama, literary non-fiction, graphic novels, newspaper and magazine articles, art, photographs, interviews and advertisements in a variety of media. Students will investigate the nature of language itself and the ways in which it shapes and is  influenced by identity and culture. Approaches to study in the course are meant to be wide-ranging and  can include literary theory, sociolinguistics, media studies and critical discourse analysis among others.

At HL students will study 6 literary texts and 4 non-literary bodies of work. At SL, students study 4 literary texts and 2 non-literary bodies of work.

Texts studied: A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen, The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, a selection of poetry by Carol Ann Duffy, Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi, The Crucible by Arthur Miller, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, a body of work by Frida Kahlo, Benetton advertisements by Oliviero Toscani, Generation Wealth by Lauren Greenfield, ‘A Small Place’ by Jamaica Kincaid, ‘Behind the Beautiful Forevers’ by Katherine Boo, a body of work by Barbara Kruger, a body of work by Sara Rahbar.

  • To gain a wide range of knowledge about language and literature and the ways in which meaning is communicated by writers
  • To develop an understanding of how a range of texts can relate to a student’s personal circumstances 
  • To become more aware of the perspectives of others through their studies and to develop  a stronger sense of their own individual viewpoints, such as their position in time and place. 
  • To have the ability to analyse literary and non-literary texts in detail both orally and in writing
  • To reflect on their own responses to texts.
  • To foster a lifelong love of, and appreciation for, language and literature.


Syllabys and Assessment

Paper 1

SL – 75 minutes Guided Analysis (35%). Analysis of one unseen non-literary text from a choice of two. One guiding question.

HL – 135 minutes Guided Analysis (35%). Analysis of two unseen non-literary texts (two different text types). No choice. one Guiding question.


Paper 2

SL – 105 minutes Comparative Literary Essay (35%). Compare two texts from anywhere in the course. Choice of four generic questions.

HL – 105 minutes Comparative Literary Essay (25%). Compare two texts from anywhere in the course. Choice of four generic questions.


Individual Oral (SL 30% / HL 20%)

Presentation on any two texts. (one literary – one non-literary). This will focus on the ways in which texts present a global concern and will include detailed analysis of an extract from each work. 10 minutes to present with 5 minutes of teacher questions.


Higher Level Essay (HL 20%)

Literary essay. 1200 – 1500 words.


Learner Portfolio

Record of independent analytical and independent thinking,links with other subjects, evaluation of experiences outside of the classroom, creative writing, record of classroom activities / discussions, reflections on reading texts. NOT ASSESSED though may be requested.


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