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English at A level is a huge and exciting leap up from GCSE. Students become independent thinkers and learners who open their minds to other possibilities within texts and do not just accept a received view, thus preparing themselves thoroughly for what will be expected at university. 

Since there is no coursework to consider in the first year of study, students are able to look in greater depth at all aspects of Tragedy, at the context of the texts, at close analysis of the devices used to create effects and at the way the texts have been interpreted over time and by different readers.

In the second year, students explore the genre of Social and Political Protest Writing as well as producing a folder of non-examined essays, entitled Theory and Independence. Here, they carry out independent reading to produce two essays responding to aspects of critical theory.

Over recent years, our students have gone on to study English in various forms at University. As well as pure Literature courses, there are many excellent combinations available, such as English with American Studies; English with Philosophy; Literature and Language; English with Drama and English with Creative Writing.


Visitors to St Gabriel's quickly recognise that this is no ordinary school. Parents are always impressed by the sense of purpose and enthusiasm of the talented, committed staff and the confidence of the extremely happy pupils. We offer girls the opportunity for a seamless journey from Nursery through to Sixth Form, with our boys leaving us at the age of 11 for their senior schools.

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