English Language A2 Coursework Methodology Define

Scheme of assessment

Find past papers and mark schemes, and specimen papers for new courses, on our website at aqa.org.uk/pastpapers

These specifications are designed to be taken over one or two years with all assessments taken at the end of the course.

The AS specification is designed to be taken over one or two years with all assessments taken at the end of the course. The A-level specification is designed to be taken over two years with all assessments taken at the end of the course.

Assessments and certification for the AS specification are available for the first time in May/June 2016 and then every May/June for the life of the specification.

Assessments and certification for the A-level specification are available for the first time in May/June 2017 and then every May/June for the life of the specification.

Our AS and A-level exams in English include questions that allow students to demonstrate their ability to:

  • draw together their knowledge, skills and understanding from across the full course of study
  • provide extended responses.

All AS and A-level components offer only extended response questions.

All materials are available in English only.

Aims

Courses based on these specifications must encourage students to develop their interest in and enjoyment of English as they:

  • develop and apply their understanding of the concepts and methods appropriate for the analysis and study of language
  • explore data and examples of language in use
  • engage creatively and critically with a varied programme for the study of English
  • develop their skills as producers and interpreters of language.

In addition, A-level specifications must encourage students to develop their interest in and enjoyment of English as they independently investigate language in use.

Assessment objectives

Assessment objectives (AOs) are set by Ofqual and are the same across all AS and A-levelEnglish Language specifications and all exam boards.

The exams and non-exam assessment will measure to what extent students have achieved the following assessment objectives.

  • AO1: Apply appropriate methods of language analysis, using associated terminology and coherent written expression.
  • AO2: Demonstrate critical understanding of concepts and issues relevant to language use.
  • AO3: Analyse and evaluate how contextual factors and language features are associated with the construction of meaning.
  • AO4: Explore connections across texts, informed by linguistic concepts and methods.
  • AO5: Demonstrate expertise and creativity in the use of English to communicate in different ways.

Weighting of assessment objectives for AS English Language

Weighting of assessment objectives for A-level English Language

Assessment weightings

The marks awarded on the papers will be scaled to meet the weighting of the components. Students' final marks will be calculated by adding together the scaled marks for each component. Grade boundaries will be set using this total scaled mark. The scaling and total scaled marks are shown in the table below.

AS

ComponentMaximum raw markScaling factorMaximum scaled mark
Paper 1: Language and the Individual70x170
Paper 2: Language Varieties70x170
  Total scaled mark:140

A-level

ComponentMaximum raw markScaling factorMaximum scaled mark
Paper 1: Language, the Individual and Society100x2200
Paper 2: Language Diversity and Change100x2200
Non-exam assessment: Language in Action100x1100
  Total scaled mark:500

Non-exam assessment marking criteria

Language Investigation

LevelAO1: Apply appropriate methods of language analysis, using associated terminology and coherent written expressionAO2: Demonstrate critical understanding of concepts and issues relevant to language useAO3: Analyse and evaluate how contextual features are associated with the construction of meaning
MarksStudents are likely to:MarksStudents are likely to:MarksStudents are likely to:

5

13 - 15
  • apply linguistic methods and terminology identifying patterns and complexities
  • select and apply appropriate methods, allowing valid conclusions to be drawn
  • describe language features in depth, establishing patterns of use and engaing with complexity
  • guide the reader
  • guide the reader structurally and linguistically, using controlled, accurate expression
13 - 15
  • demonstrate a synthesised, conceptualised and individual overview of issues
  • show a conceptualised overview of theories which illuminate the discussion
  • use data and findings to challenge viewpoints making evaluative comment
  • evaluate methodology and explore alternative/additional approaches
  • provide detailed bibliography
17 - 20
  • evaluate use of language and representations according to context
  • explore analysis within wider social and cultural contexts
  • evaluate how language is influenced by different contexts
  • evaluate meanings and representations
  • explore data in light of relevant wider social and cultural contexts
  • present data and findings to support reflective and cautious conclusions

4

10 - 12
  • apply linguistic methods and terminology with precision and detail
  • select and apply appropriate methods, allowing well-focussed analysis
  • describe language features in depth with very few technical errors
  • develop a line of argument
  • organise and sequence topics, using controlled, accurate expression
10 - 12
  • identify and comment on different views, approaches and interpretations of linguistic issues
  • show knowledge and understanding of different theories and ideas
  • connect theories, ideas and research with data
  • formulate well-focussed linguistic aims
  • consider ethical issues and validity of methodology
13 - 16
  • analyse how language choices create meanings and representations
  • analyse how aspects of context work together to affect language use
  • analyse how language is influenced by context
  • explore how meanings are produced and negotiated
  • demonstrate an open-minded approach
  • present examples/evidence to support conclusions

3

7 - 9
  • apply linguistic methods and terminology consistently and appropriately
  • apply methods, allowing for conclusions to be drawn
  • describe language features with infrequent technical errors
  • communicate with clear topics and paragraphs
  • use clear sections, with clear introduction and conclusion, using appropriate expression
7 - 9
  • show detailed knowledge of linguistic ideas, concepts and research
  • show detailed knowledge and understanding of ideas and research related to the investigation
  • identify and outline language issues raised by the data
  • explain methodology applied
9 - 12
  • interpret significance of specific choices of language according to context
  • link specific language choices with an aspect of context
  • interpret how meaning is produced/received
  • link context and language features
  • identify patterns of language use
  • draw conclusions

2

4 - 6
  • use linguistic methods and terminology inappropriately and/or inconsistently
  • apply some linguistic methods appropriately
  • describe language features with occasional technical errors
  • express ideas with organisation emerging
  • organise using subheadings – not always appropriate for focus chosen
4 - 6
  • show familiarity with linguistic ideas, concepts and research
  • show knowledge of and familiarity with theories related to the investigation
  • identify key language issues connected to the data
  • use and describe appropriate methodology
5 - 8
  • identify distinctive features of language and significant aspects of context
  • identify audience/purposes/field/producer
  • identify distinctive uses of language at different levels
  • use examples/evidence

1

1 - 3
  • quote or identify features of language without linguistic description
  • engage minimally with the data
  • present material with limited organisation
  • convey undeveloped points with list-like structure
1 - 3
  • discuss issues anecdotally without specialist linguistic knowledge
  • use inappropriate methodology
  • collect data without discussion
1 - 4
  • paraphrase or describe content of texts
  • respond to the content or subject matter
  • misunderstand text’s content and meaning
  • misunderstand context

0

0
  • write nothing
  • show no language focus
0
  • write nothing about language concepts or issues
  • demonstrate no understanding of language theories or issues
0
  • write nothing about the text or topic
  • offer no examination of data, context or meaning

Original Writing

AO5: Demonstrate expertise and creativity in the use of English to communicate in different ways

Level

Mark

Students are likely to:

5

21 – 25

  • use form creatively and innovatively
  • use register creatively for context
  • write accurately
  • provide interesting and engaging content for challenging audiences
  • use form in original and innovative ways showing ambition
  • position audience skilfully
  • show skilful and detailed manipulation of register at all levels
  • guide reader through a very coherent and cohesive text

4

16 – 20

  • use form convincingly
  • show close attention to register, effective for context
  • show strong control of accuracy
  • provide interesting content that is effective for audience
  • make choices about form in convincing ways, paying close attention to genre
  • engage with possible audience views and attitudes
  • show some evidence of deliberate shaping of register
  • structure content to develop a line of thinking/argument

3

11 – 15

  • use form competently
  • use and sustain effective register for context
  • show firm control of accuracy
  • provide sustained appropriate content to engage an audience
  • handle form competently showing knowledge of genre requirements
  • address audience appropriately
  • use an appropriate register consistently
  • organise writing with effective openings and closing

2

6 – 10

  • use form appropriately
  • use appropriate language for context
  • make occasional errors
  • use appropriate content with some ability to engage an audience
  • use form showing some of the needs of the genre
  • demonstrate a clear sense of audience
  • use an appropriate register with occasional lapses in control
  • organise writing – eg topics, headings, relevant presentational devices

1

1 – 5

  • use form limited to simple elements
  • shape language broadly for context
  • make intrusive errors
  • select some relevant content – may not be sustained or developed
  • show awareness of form used in simple genres, less convincing in ambitious ones
  • have a broad or oversimplified sense of audience
  • attempt to use an appropriate register – lapses in control/ineffective at times
  • use basic devices to organise content, eg paragraphs, sequencing

0

0

Commentary

LevelMark AOs 1–5
Students are likely to:

5

21–25

  • evaluate the significance of connections found across texts, justifying writing choices by reference to style model and its impact on language choices AO4
  • evaluate use of language and representations according to the two contexts AO3
  • demonstrate understanding of genre as a dynamic process AO2
  • apply different levels of language analysis in an integrated way, recognising how they are connected across both texts AO1
  • write accurately and guide reader with a coherent structure AO5

4

16–20

  • explore connections between the two texts by linking the language and contexts AO4
  • analyse and explain language choices made for the different contexts AO3
  • explain similarities and differences in genre AO2
  • apply levels of language analysis in depth and detail across both texts with occasional errors AO1
  • show strong control of accuracy and control content - develop a line of thought AO5

3

11–15

  • make connections across texts by identifiying similar or different uses of language/content/context AO4
  • illustrate similarities/differences in choice of language and in audience/purpose AO3
  • illustrate similarities/differences in aspects of genre AO2
  • label relevant features of language in both texts with more accuracy than inaccuracy AO1
  • show firm control of accuracy and organise writing clearly AO5

2

6–10

  • make connections at a literal level AO4
  • identify similarities/differences in subject/content AO3
  • identify genre of each text AO2
  • use linguistic methods and terminology inappropriately/inconsistently/inaccurately AO1
  • make occasional errors and connect some points in paragraphs AO5

1

1–5

  • discuss relevant aspects of both texts without explicitly making connections (4 marks max) AO4
  • discuss relevant aspects of one text only (3 marks max) AO4
  • paraphrase/summarise content without reference to context AO3
  • show no awareness of genre AO2
  • quote of identify features of language without linguistic description AO1
  • make intrusive errors and use a list-like structure AO5
00
  • write nothing about the texts
Assessment objectives (AOs)Component weightings (approx %)Overall weighting (approx %)
Paper 1Paper 2
AO114721
AO2-2929
AO322-22
AO414-14
AO5-1414
Overall weighting of components5050100
Assessment objectives (AOs)Component weightings (approx %)Overall weighting (approx %)
Paper 1Paper 2Non-exam assessment
AO1148426
AO2616426
AO3126523
AO486115
AO5-4610
Overall weighting of components404020100
  • I am struggling with this SO much....

    I was wondering if I could ask someone a HUGE favour. If there are any people who have already done the coursework would they be able to tell me exactly what I need to write about, or even better send theirs to me so that I can see some examples?? It's just that I literally have no information as to what we have to include, not even what sections we need. The deadline is so soon... and I don't even know where to start.

    I'm looking at the speech and communication of two children. How am I supposed to analyse that? Am I literally supposed to write what they can say? And how they communicate what they want? Because that's simple... do I need to include any theory? Not that I have any idea what theory I would include....

    Even if anyone could point me in the direction of any websites that may help me, especially if there are websites with example courseworks. We haven't seen any examples at all, and seeing coursework that others have done always helps me.

    I know it may be a bit cheeky to ask this, but I'm getting desperate!

  • I would strongly suggest you speak to your tutor(s) if possible because there is no way you can guess at this coursework and if you can it will have to be a VERY good blag.

    Seeing other people's finished copies can often be very helpful but I have a feeling it won't really help in this case because the A2 English Language coursework really is an individual investigation so no two investigations will be consistent or relevant. Even looking at something like style of writing or layout on someone else's work won't help because it has to be in your style.

    You sound as though you have chosen a linguistic area to study (the language of two children) but you need to have detailed ideas of what you are going to study about the language of children: is it the way they interact with each other? Is it the fluidity of their speech? What is it exactly?

    You also need to include specific details of what you hope to achieve, what you expect to find and how you are going to study them/what methods you are going to use. So yes you do need to include your theory and primarily a hypothesis * and no, no one can tell you exactly what you need to write about because really you are the only person who will know. Only you can answer these questions and if you don't know the answers then looking at finished pieces still might not help. Again I would recommend talking to a teacher or a trusted tutor who might be able to help explain things better.

    * Your entire coursework revolves around your hypothesis

    I hope this has given you some idea of what the coursework might require. I know it is very difficult and stressful, especially if you don't know what to do so if you need more details please feel free to message me.

    Best of luck!

  • Hi,

    We were told that we had to include:

    - Introduction-
    -say why you were interested in this topic area
    - how you gathered your data
    - Any limitations of your study (e.g. only two children- not representative, transcripts not reliable, etc)
    - Any background research. Look at studies about children's speech. David Crystal's book may be useful, else you could google it and see what you come up with. Ideally make this specific to WHAT you are investigating. You should try to refer to these studies through your investigation as you analyse your data.
    - How do you intend you analyse your data? We split our work into four sub-questions. E.G. One on gramma, lexis, etc. An example may be: how does the lexis of these two children differ?-if you were looking into the differences? My study was on the gender differences in two children's language, which was very interesting. I really enjoyed it- I hope you can too. :-)

    -Do each sub question seperately. Analyse it how you like. Use graphs, tables, even mind maps. Try to answer the question really. Make comparisons, explore similarities... perhaps suggests reasons for these (using your research if you can). This is the main body of your study.

    - Conclusion.
    -What did you find out?
    -Were there any problems/ difficultues and how did you overcome these?

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