GCSE English Literature (2017)

Please note: a Specification Addendum is in place for the 2020/2021 academic year for those candidates completing their course in Summer 2021. View Specification Addendum.

The CCEA GCSE English Literature specification encourages students to be enthusiastic, independent, imaginative, critical and analytical readers. It aims to increase their enjoyment of reading, helping to nurture a lifelong love of literature.

The specification deepens students’ knowledge and understanding of a range of poetry, prose and drama, including texts by local and modern writers. Students explore the impact of language, structure and form in the texts. Connecting the texts’ ideas, themes and issues is another key focus.

Students also learn how to explain settings, characters and themes creatively through social, cultural and historical contexts. They develop their ability to research, plan and prepare their responses using their own ideas and interests, as well as critical reading.

This qualification builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills developed through the Language and Literacy Area of Learning.

This specification is unitised, so it’s possible to take part of the assessment before the end of the course.

The specification has three units:

  • Unit 1: The Study of Prose
  • Unit 2: The Study of Drama and Poetry
  • Unit 3: The Study of Shakespeare.

Skills developed through our GCSE English Literature

This specification supports the Northern Ireland Curriculum at Key Stage 4 and gives students further opportunities to achieve their potential and develop skills for life. These skills include reading and evaluating the written word across various genres, conveying personal interpretations through cogent organisation of ideas and well-constructed arguments. Students also develop skills that will help them to manage information effectively, work independently and work with others.

This qualification offers lots of opportunities to develop transferable skills, such as generating creative, individual responses to problems and writing accurately and clearly. It provides a sound basis for progression to further study, higher education or employment in a range of areas.

For more information on this specification contact:

Olivia McNeill
Subject Officer
(028) 9026 1200 ext. 2963
Joan Jennings
Specification Support Officer
(028) 9026 1439