DigitalHamim
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I'm a year eleven student.

I can pick three, or four, A-levels depending on what college I choose to enroll.

My strongest four subjects are (In chronological order):
Geography
English Literature
Business Studies
Biology

Some of the advice given to me was "Choose your strongest subjects". But I'm not relatively keen on Biology, and the fence with Business Studies

Some of the A levels I'm interested in taking are:
Economics.
Business Studies.
English Literature and/or Language.
Sociology.
Law.

I've gathered opinions from a careers adviser, subject teachers, and you rosey bunch. So far I've got this.

Economics & Business Studies
I'm mostly afraid of overlap if I do both. I've heard teachers who have done both who say nothing but for me, it's a big deal. I'm currently doing a level two BTEC qualification for Business. I'm interested in taking A-level business but I'm unsure of the BTEC option. I don't fancy re-learning stuff from secondary school.

Economics has always interested me. It's something that I find intriguing. But this is heavily math orientated. Math isn't one of my strongest subjects but my target is a 7, and I'm currently on a 6-. Is math a large part of the A-level? Does this A-level demand a lot out of students? It's an AQA exam board. Are they nice? etc.

English Literature & Language
For me, poetry is one of the main reasons why I love literature in the first place. It's something that I do enjoy. My English teacher advised me that A-level English Literature gives you a broader perspective on texts, it gives you the freedom to analyse your texts, etc.

English Language is where I'm stuck at really. I've heard that it's different, and it's not all boring 10 mark questions on writer's methods. For the people who have taken this A-level, what sort of qualities would you say are best suited to do well in this A-level? Is it demanding, how is the AQA exam board like?

Sociology & Law.
Sociology is also something that intrigues me. Social sciences are always interesting to study and I hope that it's no different when it comes to Sociology. However, from what forums I've read and people's opinions, Sociology is considered a "soft subject." Are there any benefits to sociology? What career path can it lead to? Would Sociology be something Universities want?

Law is a tricky one. I like aspects of law but what I've heard from teachers is that it's very formulaic, applying knowledge and learning facts. Moreover, A-level law is completely different from degree level law? What do unis say about law etc?

If you've read up to this point I'm very grateful you read me rambling on about what to choose. Any advice at this point would be greatly appreciated. I'll be replying to all the comments I can. c:
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ashestostardust
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I do both English Lit (OCR) and English Language (AQA). The only poetry work I've really done in Lit is for my coursework, but your school/exam board might be different. But the creative and analytical freedom is 100% there and it's really freeing. English Language's workload is NOTHING in comparison to literature's. You start by learning about key terms like types of verbs/adjectives/nouns, sound types etc in far greater detail which is super invaluable for analysis across the two subjects. You then go onto learning about the development of language, diversity (accents, gender, occupation etc), how children learn language etc. Coursework in Lang is far more free in my opinion. You can 100% incorporate poetry into both pieces if you want, analyse these texts, create them if you wanted, and in far deeper analytical detail than literature. However, it's completely up to your areas of interest. Literature is more contextual work whereas Language is more analytical work.
Last edited by ashestostardust; 1 year ago
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DigitalHamim
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(Original post by ashestostardust)
I do both English Lit (OCR) and English Language (AQA). The only poetry work I've really done in Lit is for my coursework, but your school/exam board might be different. But the creative and analytical freedom is 100% there and it's really freeing. English Language's workload is NOTHING in comparison to literature's. You start by learning about key terms like types of verbs/adjectives/nouns, sound types etc in far greater detail which is super invaluable for analysis across the two subjects. You then go onto learning about the development of language, diversity (accents, gender, occupation etc), how children learn language etc. Coursework in Lang is far more free in my opinion. You can 100% incorporate poetry into both pieces if you want, analyse these texts, create them if you wanted, and in far deeper analytical detail than literature. However, it's completely up to your areas of interest. Literature is more contextual work whereas Language is more analytical work.
Thank you! For me, both A-levels are with the AQA exam board. In terms of coursework, do you do any creative writing? (besides essay work). How do you feel about the courses, do you find the content easy to learn, have you done any mock exams, how were they like?
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Bea.McHealy
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Hey, hope I can offer some help, I’m doing both English’s at a level, unfortunately I’m doing ocr English language so can’t help much there but I can with English lit, before I go into it though, what spec is your english lit a level? I’m doing “B”, which is about aspects of tragedy, if your spec is same, I’d love to divulge further into some advice!
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DigitalHamim
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(Original post by Bea.McHealy)
Hey, hope I can offer some help, I’m doing both English’s at a level, unfortunately I’m doing ocr English language so can’t help much there but I can with English lit, before I go into it though, what spec is your english lit a level? I’m doing “B”, which is about aspects of tragedy, if your spec is same, I’d love to divulge further into some advice!
Exam board is AQA

Tragedy
Othello by Shakespeare
Death of a Salesmen by Arthur Miller
Followed by a collection of poems by John Keats
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Bea.McHealy
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(Original post by DigitalHamim)
Exam board is AQA

Tragedy
Othello by Shakespeare
Death of a Salesmen by Arthur Miller
Followed by a collection of poems by John Keats
Just so I cover everything, what things do you want to know about English literature a level?
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DigitalHamim
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(Original post by Bea.McHealy)
Just so I cover everything, what things do you want to know about English literature a level?
Your personal experience. Did you find the text fun to read, was the text difficult? In what way? Just give me a rundown of things I should consider! C:
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freddie.winters
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Try not to stress too much. You’ve still got a year to decide. Take subjects that you can see yourself doing a career in. I think that’s the main thing. If you do end up wanting to do law at uni, they don’t really care what a levels you have, they just care about the grades you get. So if I were you I’d do others that you know you’ll enjoy and do well in. Good luck!
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Bea.McHealy
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(Original post by DigitalHamim)
Your personal experience. Did you find the text fun to read, was the text difficult? In what way? Just give me a rundown of things I should consider! C:
Okay so to start I’m only in year 12, so hope someone whose in year 13 or out of a levels can help you with that side of it and exams, coursework etc. So far I’m finding it quite fun, I adore all my teachers and they make it really engaging, the content too I feel like is truly worth learning. We’ve learnt in depth the aspects of tragedy with terminology which is a whole AO at a level. The Keats section is really interesting, we study the idea of “Death of the Author” which is really interesting with him as a poet (being a woman hater and pretentious man) and the poetry is amazing for deeeeepp analysis of connotations and structure. Death of a salesman is honestly one of the best plays ever, if you do choose English Lit to do at a level this will definitely be the stand out one, I’m not sure if it’s the text or the my teacher as he’s a massive communist and reallllyy intelligent, his lessons are for sure the best. The subject of the death of the American dream and the mind being our ticking time bomb is really engaging and interesting. The great thing about English lit and DoAS at a level is that you aren’t just studying literature, your studying culture as well, e.g. Nihilism, Expressionism, Existentialism and all that philosophical goodness. Now, there are some negatives to it, for me Othello is for sure the worst, I think for most it’s hard to engage with Shakespeare plus the subjects of the play aren’t as relatable as the betrayal of Keats and the deconstruction of capitalism in Miller’s work.

So far we’ve done 2 essays so far and I’ve been getting full marks or a few off, so I think if you’re dedicated and love the subject it is amazing but also some of my friends in there aren’t really looking to go into English lit in the future but still enjoy it and find to get a lot out of it. You learn so many new ways of thinking in English lit it’s really worth it to expand your mind to different ideas.

Hopefully that’s it, I recommend reading the texts to see how you feel about them/engage with them and then go forward from there. Good luck!
Last edited by Bea.McHealy; 1 year ago
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ashestostardust
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I can do creative writing for both, but it has to be based upon the style of another text/analysed afterwards. Literature is so open that it's quite hard to learn in lessons, whereas Language is the complete opposite (terminology-based). I did my end of year 12 exams in June-ish. Literature has more general essay questions to answer 'Gothic writers use isolation as a means of inspiring terror. Discuss in relation to your chosen texts' whereas Language features shorter, more specific questions either based on provided texts or on areas of research/debate - 'The English language is undermined by lexical and semantic changes. Evaluate (30 marks)'. The latter is much easier because there aren't as many factors to consider (terms, argument, evaluation). In literature, you have to make sure you cram in context, terms, quotes, analysis, critics and comparison which can make revising it a pain in the ass. However, the ideas I've ended up coming with surrounding my chosen texts are really interesting and definitely worth the workload. Literature becomes far more personal at A-level, whereas Language becomes more technical.
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