A Level English Literature Watch

ElectricOceans
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#21
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#21
(Original post by Stace-is-Ace)
I don't think it's fair to make english people study Heaney too much...I think he's a good poet but so much of his work is driven by what happened here in NI so it's probably hard for English pupils to understand...I mean...I'm from here and I study History and I still don't really get it! Hehe!

Our exam board did give us Heaney for AS but that was the first time we'd had to study him for an exam...it was CCEA though.
I think his work is good I just didn’t take much interest in his work that’s why I’d rather have a bit of a change from the poets I did at GCSE. They had Carol Ann Duffy in the GCSE anthology but my English teacher decided to do Clarke and Heaney for the exam, I liked Clarke but I found Heaney’s work more challenging to interpret and analyse and I didn’t like some of his collection. I know some of Carol Ann Duffy’s poetry is meant to be strange but I think I’d like to explore her work a little more so I hope I get more of a variety of poets to study at AS. I noticed that in Heaney's work most of his poems are about Northern Ireland and there quite personal to him. I'll soon see if I get him at AS.
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Stace-is-Ace
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#22
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#22
Gosh...what age are you?
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ElectricOceans
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#23
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#23
I'm 16, why do you ask? :p:
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Stace-is-Ace
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#24
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#24
You sound much too clued up for 16 :P
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ElectricOceans
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#25
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#25
Really? Is that good? :p:
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rainbow drops
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#26
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#26
to answer your question in your original post about freedom to read, nope, you're stuck to the syllabus. us eager ones read around it though!

i'm with WJEC, they seem to be a very good board for english in terms of the marking. my tutors have told me that next year's new syllabus is horrific though. then again, she does love to over-exaggerate. i did study carol ann duffy this year but i had to do 40-odd poems, i really liked some of them but reading through ones like 'stafford afternoons' over and over again just sort of killed it for me, her pessimistic attitude in her poems often got to me in lesson.
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Laus
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#27
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#27
(Original post by ElectricOceans)
I just want to ask a few questions about A Level English Literature. In September I’m going to hopefully begin an AS Level in English Literature on AQA, not sure yet whether its specification A or B but I know that’s the exam board. I just wanted to know before I start the course what revision guides/textbooks are good to use for notes, reference and exam practice? What novels, plays and poets do you usually study on AQA? What’s the percentage for coursework and exam? Will I get more freedom to what I read or will everything stick to a syllabus?
You probably will not study the same as me but, just in case you do, I studied:

AS (worth 50%)

Spies - 20% (exam)
All My Sons (Arthur Miller) - 10% (exam).
The Miller's Prologue and Tale (Chaucer) - 10% (exam).

If I remember correctly, you do all three exams back-to-back.

The Taming of The Shrew (Shakespeare) - 10% (coursework).

A2 (worth 50%)

WW1 Synoptic paper - 20% (3-hour exam).
Blake's Songs of Innocence and Experience (William Blake) - 10% (exam).
Hamlet - 10% (Shakespeare) (exam).
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (Kesey) and The Bell Jar (Plath) - 10% (coursework).

The percentages are rough estimates. I think some might be worth 8%. It is worth checking with your teachers although I would not worry about it too much. Just do your best in each unit. I believe there is a list of all AQA texts that can be studied (your teachers usually select them) though the list is very extensive. You are better off waiting and/or getting in touch with someone who might know. I didn't read any of the texts before I started (not even for A2, as I did AS and A2 in one year and decided this after the summer holidays) so you should be ok. By all means, read as much as you can over the summer. Reading anything and everything will definitely help you. I would avoid revision guides as they can tell you what to think (something that (good) teachers hate). Some revision guides are OK, though. I'm sure google or the AQA website can provide more information. You will have to read what you're told to read although there is more freedom when it comes to coursework (you can choose your own title, for instance) and you might be able to choose your own books to write about for your year 13 coursework. If your synoptic (again, year 13) is anything like WW1, you will read a range of poetry/novels/biographies etcetera. I found reading the same text more than once really helped. Short chapter summaries/general thoughts can be quite helpful, too. Make sure you keep all of your notes organised.

Laus
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Laus
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#28
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#28
I do not even remember what authors/poets we studied at GCSE-level. I was that disinterested. I remember something to do with an inspector, Of Mice and Men, Half-caste and Mother Tongue... Oh and Romeo and Juliet. It's all coming back to me, now...
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inksplodge
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#29
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#29
(Original post by ElectricOceans)
I think she'd be a good poet to study, although I don't like all of her collection but I'd just like a change from Seamus Heaney.
Don't get me wrong; they're not difficult poems to study... But the themes etc are pretty same-y to me, and I really don't like many of the poems at all. I've never studied Seamus Heaney so I really couldn't compare the two :p:
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Greatleysteg
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#30
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#30
(Original post by ElectricOceans)
I think his work is good I just didn’t take much interest in his work that’s why I’d rather have a bit of a change from the poets I did at GCSE. They had Carol Ann Duffy in the GCSE anthology but my English teacher decided to do Clarke and Heaney for the exam, I liked Clarke but I found Heaney’s work more challenging to interpret and analyse and I didn’t like some of his collection. I know some of Carol Ann Duffy’s poetry is meant to be strange but I think I’d like to explore her work a little more so I hope I get more of a variety of poets to study at AS. I noticed that in Heaney's work most of his poems are about Northern Ireland and there quite personal to him. I'll soon see if I get him at AS.
I did Clarke and Heaney at GCSE, then Heaney poems at AS (along with an Oscar Wilde novel, "The Picture of Dorian Gray") - he was really interesting!

It gets much better, and you get less of a sense of his work being all about Northern Ireland. You'd enjoy "Limbo" and "Bye Child", I think. I used those two in the exam last year.

The only Duffy poem I ever liked was Miss Havisham.
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inksplodge
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#31
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#31
(Original post by Greatleysteg)
The only Duffy poem I ever liked was Miss Havisham.
Really? One of the only ones I liked was Eurydice - pure luck that it was on the exam paper in May
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username130457
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#32
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#32
(Original post by ElectricOceans)
I think his work is good I just didn’t take much interest in his work that’s why I’d rather have a bit of a change from the poets I did at GCSE. They had Carol Ann Duffy in the GCSE anthology but my English teacher decided to do Clarke and Heaney for the exam, I liked Clarke but I found Heaney’s work more challenging to interpret and analyse and I didn’t like some of his collection. I know some of Carol Ann Duffy’s poetry is meant to be strange but I think I’d like to explore her work a little more so I hope I get more of a variety of poets to study at AS. I noticed that in Heaney's work most of his poems are about Northern Ireland and there quite personal to him. I'll soon see if I get him at AS.
What are you predicted for Language and Lit? Just curious.
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Greatleysteg
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#33
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#33
(Original post by ElectricOceans)
I did AQA A for GCSE English Literature and I really enjoyed the course. Some of the anthology work was a little dull but it seemed like a good exam board to be on for English. I heard WJEC isn’t as structured or it may have been something else but I heard one of the exam boards is quite bad for English so hopefully AQA will be as good as it was for English at GCSE.

Nah, WJEC is the best for English Lit! That's why so many schools from outside Wales choose to enter their pupils for exams with them. And this is coming from someone who can compare, having done AQA English before.

I did AQA spec A for English Lit GCSE - it was fun, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was great that there was so much material - the clusters of poems from other cultures, the two poets, the anthology prose, outside novels, plays... :coma:
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highachiever
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#34
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#34
does anyone know any A2 level chemistry CD rom online to buy?

i will appreciate if anyone replies

thx...
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ElectricOceans
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#35
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#35
(Original post by Laus)
I do not even remember what authors/poets we studied at GCSE-level. I was that disinterested. I remember something to do with an inspector, Of Mice and Men, Half-caste and Mother Tongue... Oh and Romeo and Juliet. It's all coming back to me, now...
You were on AQA then and you did the poets from the anthology by the sounds of it. I wish I got to do Romeo and Juliet or Macabeth instead of A Midsummer Night's Dream, I found it confusing.
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Laus
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#36
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#36
We did A Midsummer Night's Dream in year 10, I believe. R&J was OK although I don't remember reading the book I think we just watched the film. lol.
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rainbow drops
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#37
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(Original post by Greatleysteg)
Nah, WJEC is the best for English Lit! That's why so many schools from outside Wales choose to enter their pupils for exams with them. And this is coming from someone who can compare, having done AQA English before.
just out of curiosity, did you find the WJEC english literature marking to be harsh or lenient for your AS level? i've just finished AS but i've only got my coursework mark back so far.

they do seem to be a very very good board though, i live nowhere near wales and my school has chosen to use them.
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ElectricOceans
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#38
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#38
(Original post by Ramadulla)
What are you predicted for Language and Lit? Just curious.
I was predicted B for both.
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Greatleysteg
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#39
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#39
(Original post by rainbow drops)
just out of curiosity, did you find the WJEC english literature marking to be harsh or lenient for your AS level? i've just finished AS but i've only got my coursework mark back so far.

they do seem to be a very very good board though, i live nowhere near wales and my school has chosen to use them.
Well, it's hard to say. I think they're the best in terms of the material you're tested on and the questions they set, but I think they marked rather harshly.

I mean, I'd have thought English was my best subject, but I only got 92% in it; it wasn't even my second best! (EDIT: That's not meant to sound quite so arrogant - what I mean is, I'd been expecting quite a bit higher.)

No complaints, though. No one's been seriously under- or overmarked, everyone's got the grade they were pretty much expecting. And they sent my school lovely notes telling us how interesting they thought our coursework was and how much they enjoyed marking it.
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rainbow drops
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#40
(Original post by Greatleysteg)
Well, it's hard to say. I think they're the best in terms of the material you're tested on and the questions they set, but I think they marked rather harshly.

I mean, I'd have thought English was my best subject, but I only got 92% in it; it wasn't even my second best! (EDIT: That's not meant to sound quite so arrogant - what I mean is, I'd been expecting quite a bit higher.)

No complaints, though. No one's been seriously under- or overmarked, everyone's got the grade they were pretty much expecting. And they sent my school lovely notes telling us how interesting they thought our coursework was and how much they enjoyed marking it.
ah okay. i was just wondering, my teacher marks WJEC papers and she's always telling us about all the 100% marks she's given out, hahaha. so i was wondering whether it's the same across all the examiners. then again, she does tend to over-exaggerate matters.

i do have 100% in my coursework already, providing the exam board don't mark it down, and i feel that i did well in my exams, so all should be well. it would be nice if i ended up getting over 95% overall, because i'm applying for english later this year and it could be put in my reference.

thanks for that!
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