St. Olave’s Grammar School celebrates a stunning 96% A*/B grades at A-Level with a total of 75% of all grades at A*/A . Fantastic GCSE results too with 90% of grades at A*/A or the new levels 9/8/7 in Mathematics and English. 67% at A* level

GCSE English Literature

English Literature is taught as part of our single integrated course with English Language. Assessment will be through written examination.

Students will follow the Pearson Edexcel GCSE specification. They are taught in form groups.

Year 9 marks a transition to focus on the skills of literary analysis and formal essay writing necessary for Key Stage 4. Building on students’ enthusiasm and experience we extend the difficulty of the texts studied whilst maintaining creativity and intellectual stimulation. We are keen to extend the range and ambition of our students’ reading. The areas studied will include:

  • a 20th century novel – To A Kill a Mockingbird or Of Mice and Men
  • Media – the moving image – ‘Hotel Rwanda’
  • 20th century drama – A view from the Bridge or  Journey’s End
  • Pre 1914 Prose – The Time Traveller or Short Stories
  • a Shakespeare play – Romeo and Juliet or Much Ado
  • Poetry – both modern and traditional

Assessment will mirror the GCSE 100% Examination.

In Years 10 to 11

Examination 100%

Paper 1 Shakespeare Play and Post-1914 Literature 50%

I hour 45 mins Closed book

  • Section A – Shakespeare: a two-part question, with the first task focused on an extract of approximately 30 lines. The second task is focused on how a theme reflected in the extract is explored elsewhere in the play.
  • Section B – Post-1914 British play or novel: ONE essay question.

Paper 2 19th century novel and poetry collection from Pearson Anthology

2 hour Closed book

● Section A – 19th-century novel: a two part question, with the first part focussed on an extract of approximately 400 words. The second part is an essay question exploring the whole text.

● Section B – Part 1: ONE question comparing a named poem from the Pearson

Poetry Anthology collection to another poem from that collection. The named poem will be shown in the question paper. Part 2: ONE question comparing two unseen contemporary poems.

Full details of the GCSE English Literature course can be found at 

Miss A. Wilkie          (Head of English)