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GCSE/A Level English
GCSE/A Level Media Studies

Compulsory at Phase 1 and Phase 2, optional at Advanced Academy

English at Newquay Tretherras
English is vital for communicating with others in school and in the wider world, and is important to learning in all curriculum subjects. We encourage students to develop skills in speaking, listening, reading and writing. Students learn to express themselves creatively and imaginatively and to communicate with others confidently and effectively. Literature in English is rich and influential. It reflects the experiences of people from many countries and times, and contributes to our sense of identity. We encourage students to become enthusiastic and critical readers of prose, poetry and drama as well as non-fiction and media texts, gaining access to the pleasure and world of knowledge that reading offers. We are a committed, enthusiastic and successful team of 12 well-qualified English teachers. We have close links with the Learning Support and creative art departments, and English teachers are involved in a wide range of whole-school activities including school musicals and plays, Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expeditions, writing competitions and musical performances.

Phase 1 Curriculum
We deliver an exciting and enriching curriculum in Years 7 and 8 that supports students in their transition from primary to secondary school, and challenges them to develop their communicative and creative skills. Over the two years, students have three lessons of English every week and we study a range of texts. Students are set texts according to their ability in this subject.

In Year 7, students study a broad range of topics designed to support their learning and challenge them to achieve. Our curriculum covers a wide variety of areas, from reading literary heritage prose to creating modern media projects. Our study includes primary transition work, linked to the theme of Culture as well as study of World Literature, Contemporary Literature and Shakespeare.

Throughout the year, teaching will be focused upon the three key areas of reading, writing and speaking & listening. Media skills are also an integral part of our English curriculum.

In Year 8, students extend their skills further by studying 19th Century British Literature and Modern Drama. At the end of Year 8, students sit a formal written exam that helps prepare them for KS4 and GCSE work.

GCSE Curriculum – English
Students begin Phase 2 with the awareness that very important opportunities await them: Year 9 is a foundation year for GCSE where key skills will be developed. During the year, students will make choices about the GCSE subjects they will take on to Years 10 and 11.

The majority of students will study for two GCSEs in English Language and English Literature. This course is both challenging and exciting, allowing students to read a wide variety of literature including poetry, drama and prose, alongside the study of non-fiction texts.

In Years 10 and 11, English occupies increased hours on students’ timetables and they continue to be taught in ability groups.

GCSE Curriculum – Media Studies
Available as an option at GCSE, Media Studies offers pupils an opportunity to develop the analytical skills required to understand the influence of the media landscape in which we are all immersed. The pupils’ study of film, advertising, television, print media and web content help them to think critically about key issues, such as: the representation of gender in mass media and the role of narrative and stories in our understanding of the world.

The course is split between a coursework folder (60%), in which the pupils can opt to produce either a moving image or print production piece, and one exam (40%), the topic of which is set by the exam board each year.

Whilst the course is a good lead into A Level Media Studies, the field of study also touches on many of the other social sciences. Alongside this, pupils will receive training in a host of relevant computer programmes including Photoshop and iMovie, which are beneficial for A Level Photography and Art.

A Level Curriculum – English
The English Language and Literature A level is a demanding and exciting course which provides an excellent foundation for many degree subjects and also provides students with a range of transferable skills to take into employment. The course is designed to encourage students to use integrated linguistic and literary approaches in their reading and interpretation of texts whilst also developing their creativity and independence through a number of creative writing tasks. At A level, students take advantage of smaller class sizes and the expertise of at least two teachers as well as facilities for video editing, photography and desktop publishing.

For more information, go to http://tretherras.net/a-level-english-language-and-literature/

A Level Curriculum – Media Studies
The Media Studies A Level aims to develop students’ critical understanding of the media through engagement with media products and concepts and through the creative application of practical skills. The qualification is assessed through creative coursework as well as examinations, both worth an equal 50% of the final grade. The coursework section allows students to explore their creativity as they are given the freedom to choose the media form they produce whilst the examinations are based on texts that are studied in class time – in the past this has included films such as ‘Skyfall’ and TV programmes such as ‘Luther’.

For more information, go to http://tretherras.net/a-level-media-studies/

Links to exam board / specification