Group 1 – Language (English Literature)

IB English Literature involves the study of literary texts – looking at characters, themes, writer’s language and structure, and the context of the times the texts were produced. You will have the opportunity to study plays, novels, poetry, non-fiction and a graphic novel.

What texts will I read?

  • ‘Hamlet’ by William Shakespeare
  • ‘The Great Gatsby’ by F.Scott Fitzgerald
  • ‘Persepolis’ by Marjane Satrapi
  • The poetry of Grace Nichols
  • The speeches of Martin Luther King Jr.
  • And many more!

Is there a mix of coursework and exams?

Coursework is done in Year 12 and is worth 55% of the IB. You will write a 1200-1500 word essay, deliver a 15 minute oral presentation to the class and also sit an oral exam (10 mins for Standard Level students and 20 mins for Higher Level). Year 13 prepares you for your two exams at the end of Year 13 – Paper 1 is a written analysis of a poem or prose passage, Paper 2 is an essay analysing an aspect of two plays that you would have studied in class.

What’s the difference between Standard and Higher Level?

SL students study 10 texts, and HL 13 texts; the expectations of the quality of writing and analysis are higher for HL students, so the marks schemes are more challenging; the exams are 1hr 20m for SL, 2 hrs for HL students; the oral exam is 10 mins for SL, and 20 mins for HL.

In order to be successful at this subject, you must:

  • Be prepared to do wider reading
  • Enjoy discussing plot, characters and themes of texts and be able to analyse language, structure and form
  • Provide alternative readings and make perceptive comments
  • Be prepared to write extended essays and deliver oral presentations