English Literature GCSE Course

£ 306.33

The English Literature GCSE Course covers the AQA 8702 specification and has been designed to inspire and challenge students using classic literature.

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Course Description

This English Literature GCSE Course gives students the opportunity to explore their literary interests through reading a wide range of classic literature and is designed to show the depth and power of the English literary heritage. Students will read extensively and critically so that they are able to discuss and explain their understanding and ideas fluently, and make connections across their reading.

This specification is designed to show the depth and power of the English literary heritage and students will need to write accurately, effectively and analytically about their reading, using Standard English and will acquire and use a wide vocabulary, including the grammatical terminology and other literary and linguistic terms they need to criticise and analyse what they read.

Each lesson begins with a set of clearly stated objectives and an explanation of its place in the overall programme of study. Effective learning is encouraged through frequent activities and self-assessment questions. There are eleven tutor-marked assignments.

Specification and Exams

The English Literature GCSE course prepares students for the AQA 8702 GCSE English Literature specification for exams in May/June 2021 or later years. This syllabus has been chosen as it is the most suited to distance learning. Assessment is by two examination papers.

  • Paper 1: Shakespeare & the 19th Century Novel is 40% of the total marks. The exam is 1 Hour and 45 Minutes and is 64 Marks.
  • Paper 2: Modern Texts and Poetry is 60% of the total marks. The exam is 2 Hours and 15 Minutes and is 96 Marks and the course materials cover the Power and Conflict cluster of poems.

There is no coursework with this specification.

English Literature GCSE Course Syllabus

The English Literature GCSE Home Study Course is Divided into Six Modules Containing 23 Lessons:

The Module Includes the Following Lessons:

  • Writing about Yourself
  • Comparing Different Versions of an Event
  • Imagery and Setting
  • Character
  • Point of View

The Module Includes the Following Lessons:

  • Persuasion
  • Paragraphing
  • Planning Essays
  • Argument

The Module Includes the Following Lessons:

  • Studying Shakespeare
  • The First Two Acts
  • Acts III, IV and V
  • Characters and Themes

The Module Includes the Following Lessons:

  • An Inspector Calls: the Curtain rises
  • Act Two
  • Act Three and a Twist in the Tale
  • Review and Revision

The Module Includes the Following Lessons:

  • Analysing Poems

The Module Includes the Following Lessons:

  • The Plot of Frankenstein
  • Mary Shelley and the Gothic Novel
  • Characters and Themes
  • Frankenstein and Science Fiction

Additional Reading

Additional Reading:

You are required to study a Poetry Anthology and three further texts in detail. The following three texts match the AQA criteria to study on this course.

Students will also require the following books:

  • William Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet (Cambridge School Shakespeare; ISBN-13: 978-0521618700)
  • Mary Shelley: Frankenstein: The Modern Prometheus (Wisehouse Classics; ISBN: 978-9176370698). This is the original 1818 edition of the novel.
  • J.B. Priestley: An Inspector Calls (Penguin Classics; ISBN: 978-0-14-118535-4)

AQA do not nominate specific editions, but we recommend the above versions. In each case it is acceptable to use a different edition.

We recommend purchasing any books after receiving your course materials to make sure there have been no revisions.


There are no prerequisites for starting this course. We don’t recommend that you should study more than 5 GCSE or IGCSE courses at any one time.

Please Note: We cannot accept students who are under 16 years old on this course. All applications are subject to acceptance from our course advisory team.

Duration & Support

Students will be supported until their chosen examination window. Every student receives a personal tutor with whom they should keep in regular contact. All tutors are fully qualified experienced teachers holding either a Postgraduate Certificate in Education or a degree in education. Most work from home and are able to offer flexible contact times. The tutor will contact students with an introductory letter and a telephone call to help decide on a study plan. They will also let the student know the best ways and times for contact.

There is no limit on how often you can contact your tutor. The advice and encouragement our tutors provide are an important part of your learning experience. You can contact your tutor by Phone, Post or Email. There are tutor-marked assignments (TMA’s) in every course. These help the student to consolidate their learning and prepare for examinations.

All tutors have a Freephone 0800 telephone number and most will have Skype capabilities. Whilst you are still actively submitting assignments, you should expect to be in contact with your tutor regularly. Remember, to get the most out of your tutor, you will need to tell them when you need assistance.

AQA GCSE Examination Centres and Exam Dates

All AQA specification GCSE Exams must be taken at a registered examination centre as a private candidate. We offer course materials and tutor support although we don’t offer the examinations. An Examinations Officer can assist any registered student with finding centres and dealing with coursework forms, but we do not book exams on behalf of students and it is the students responsibility to book their own exams. 

Students are contacted in December/January and advised to start arranging their examinations. AQA have over 300 examination centres in the UK. If you would like to research exam centres prior to enrolment then you can visit the AQA page for private candidates which shows a small selection of centres set out geographically.

Private Candidates cannot complete AQA Specification Exams outside of the UK. Students wanting to sit exams outside of the UK should consider IGCSE Specifications. 

Examination Dates and Exam fees:

GCSE exams are available in the Summer examination window and examination fees need to be paid direct to your chosen exam centre. Prices for exams will vary depending on the exam centre’s administration costs.

Please Note: The nearest examination window we can accept students aiming towards is now Summer 2022.

Any student aiming for the Summer 2022 examination window will need to be enrolled on the course by 14 November 2021. Students can aim towards Summer 2023 exams if that is their preference, providing the specification is still available.

Predicted Grades & References

Predicted grades without a reference are available free of charge on request. If applying to a college or other further education establishment and you require a refernce with predicted grades then this is available at an additional cost of £45.00. A course advisor will discuss your predicted grades and progress with each individual tutor and put together a comprehensive reference that can be sent on your behalf. 

Please Note: Students need to have completed a minimum of four assignments per subject in order for us to have something to base our reference/prediction on. 

Additional information

Course Format

Paper Based Materials

Self-Study Time

Approximately 200 Hours (Self-Study)

Delivery Time

7 Working Days (Courier Service)