English Language

A Level

Exam Board: Edexcel

2 years


Course Content:

At Alton College on the English Language A-Level you will study:

  • Language & Individual Variation. Have you ever wondered why people use language so differently? Is it true that females “gossip”, males “swear” & all teenagers use “like”. This section is where you find out what’s really going on when we use language.
  • Language Variation over time. This section studies how and why language changes. Why do we no longer use “thee” & “thou”? Is English really getting worse? And what exactly is a “hopper arsed hoddy doddy”?
  • Child Language. This section covers how humans are able to acquire speech so quickly & to such a high level. It also covers how children are taught to read & write.
  • Language Investigation. You will investigate range of language issues around Language & Gender, and Language & Journalism. You will develop your own skills as a researcher & find data.
  • Coursework – this is where you get to choose. You will produce two pieces of original writing & a commentary. If you love creative writing or are interested in journalism – this is the course for you.


20% course work, 80% exams.
3 exam papers; Variation, Child Language and Investigating Language.

Studying at Alton College:

Lessons activities are wide ranging, from debates to data analysis, research to individual writing. We also organise a range of trips to help your learning & understanding of context.

Entry requirements:

Students should normally have achieved at least five GCSEs at grade 9-4. For GCSEs which remain with the old grading system, a Grade 4 is equivalent to a Grade C.

You must have achieved at least a grade 5 in GCSE English.

Course costs:

Printing costs £10 per year
Optional trips from £20 each

English Language works well with:

Modern Languages
English Literature