An A level in English Literature will encourage you to read widely as a critical and independent reader. You will immerse yourself in a wide range of literary texts that span centuries, gaining an understanding of how to read closely and analyse a range of critical views.
Would you prefer to pay for your course by instalments? Please see the ‘How to enrol’ section below for details of our low cost, interest free finance available.
Are you intending to take your exams next summer? Please refer to our information on fast tracking and studying your course within one year.
This course is one of our new Gold Star A levels. Find out more about them here.
A GCSE or equivalent qualification in English language or literature is strongly recommended for this course.
Hours of study
As a guideline, you should allow for between 300 and 350 hours' study time, plus additional time for completing assignments. You will have tutor support for a period of up to 24 months from the date of enrolment.
Exams and assessment
- 3 hours, 40% of marks
- 2 hours 30 minutes, 40% of marks
Non-exam assessment (NEA):
One coursework task, 20% of marks:
Part of the A level assessment for the new specification is a non-exam assessment (NEA). To facilitate this, NEC has agreed with the awarding body that our own tutors are able to mark your NEA work, and you can then sit your written exams at one of our partner exam centres. Please refer to this page for more detailed information about how your coursework is marked and entered.
NEC's tutor-marked assignments:
- 1 introductory assignment
- 10 assignments
The following text is included free with your course and will be sent to you through the post:
- AQA AS and A-Level English Literature (A) Anthology: love poetry through the ages, AQA and Cambridge University Press 2015
- Othello (Arden Shakespeare: Third Series), Bloomsbury Publishing
- The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Penguin Modern Classics 2000
- Skirrid Hill, Owen Sheers, Seren 2005
- All My Sons, Arthur Miller, Penguin Modern Classics 2009
- Spies, Michael Frayn, Faber and Faber 2011
- A View from the Bridge, Arthur Miller (introduction from the author and Philip Seymour Hoffman), Penguin Modern Classics 2010
The Yellow Wallpaper (and Selected Writings), Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Virago
Your course is delivered online through learn@nec, so it’s important that you have access to a computer and the internet. We recommend that your computer is using one of the following operating systems and browsers to improve your experience of using learn@nec:
- Windows 7 or later
- Mac OSX 10.7 or later
- Google Chrome OS
- Android 4.4 or later, using the Chrome browser
- iOS 6 or later, using the Safari browser
- Google Chrome (latest version)
- Mozilla Firefox (latest version)
- Safari 6 or later
- Internet Explorer 10 or later (excluding IE11)
learn@nec may work on other operating systems and browsers with some restrictions. You can see full details of the system requirements by clicking here.
How to enrol
How to enrol
There are several ways to enrol with NEC:
- Click the ‘Enrol now’ button above
- Telephone us on 0800 389 2839 or +44(0)1223 400200 and speak to our course advice team
- Ask us to send you an enrolment form which you can complete and return by post.
How can you pay?
It’s your choice: you can pay in full at the point of enrolment, or you can spread the cost over monthly instalments with our finance offer. To pay in instalments you will need to enrol by telephone.
Amount of credit:
Duration of agreement:
Rate of interest:
0% APR representative.
The National Extension College (NEC) is the trading name of the Open School Trust, which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (register number 676788). Finance is provided through the Deko platform by a number of lenders. You will be offered the best rate available based on your credit history and the lenders’ credit decision policies.
Deko is a trading name of Pay4Later Ltd who act as a credit intermediary. They are registered in England and Wales (company number 06447333) and authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (register number 728646). For more information please go to www.dekopay.com/faq or visit www.dekopay.com.
Section 1 - Love through the ages: Othello
- Introduction to Shakespeare studies
- Othello Act I
- Othello Act II
- Othello Act III Part 1
- Othello Act III Part 2
- Othello Act IV
- Othello Act V
Section 2 - Love through the ages: The Great Gatsby
- Chapter 1: Setting the scene
- Chapter 2: Tom and Myrtle
- Chapter 3: Gatsby's party
- Chapter 4: Back stories
- Chapter 5: The reunion
- Chapter 6: Another party
- Chapter 7: Turning point
Section 3 - Love through the ages: pre-1900 poetry
- Destructive love
- Idealised love
- Lost love 1
- Lost love 2
Section 4 - Love through the ages: unseen poetry
- Unrequited love
- Mothers and daughters
- To a husband
Section 5 - Preparing for the non-exam assessment (NEA)
- The Yellow Wallpaper
- A View from the Bridge Act I
- A View from the Bridge Act II
- Writing the NEA
Section 6 - Modern times: Spies
- Spies Chapter 1
- Spies Chapter 2
- Spies Chapters 3 and 4
- Spies Chapters 5 and 6
- Spies Chapters 7 and 8
- Spies Chapters 9 to 11
Section 7 - Modern times: All My Sons
- All My Sons Act I
- All My Sons Act II
- All My Sons Act III
Section 8 - Modern times: Skirrid Hill
- Variants of love
- Love and loss
- Growing up
- Love and the land
- Love, war and politics
- Crossing continents
Section 9 - Unseen prose
- The Amateur Marriage
- The Buddha of Suburbia
- Cloud Atlas
- Enduring Love
- Mr Phillips
- The Remains of the Day
- The Secret History
Thank you for your interest in this course.
Please fill out your details below, and you will receive an email containing a link to download the course sample.
What our students say...
"The flexibility of studying at home suits my family and work situation. I have studied with NEC before and I like the style of course materials. I like reading different texts that I would not normally read, expanding on my knowledge. I also liked learning new skills, studying descriptive, analytical and comparative writing."
— Louise Murrell