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A Modest Proposal AQA A GCSE Pre-1914 Prose Coursework

Steph Atkinson | Wednesday October 07, 2009

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This teaching guide for students of higher ability is designed as a self-contained unit which can be used to produce the AQA A GCSE Pre-1914 Prose coursework. It can also be used as a springboard for Original Writing.

A Modest Proposal is an excellent alternative for the more able students to the rather well-worn (though useful) Pre-1914 Prose path of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Great Expectations and Pride and Prejudice. Its blistering satire allows students to produce some quite subtle and impressive analyses.

  • The AQA A Pre-1914 coursework is what is termed as a ‘cross-over’ piece; therefore, if you are using it for assessment for both English and English Literature GCSEs (the most common approach), you need to be able to address the assessment objectives for both.

Let us remind ourselves of these:

English

Candidates are required to demonstrate their ability to:

(i) Read, with insight and engagement, making appropriate references to texts and developing and sustaining interpretations of them;

(iv) Select material appropriate to their purpose, collate material from different sources, and make cross references;

(v) Understand and evaluate how writers use linguistic, structural and presentational devices to achieve their effects, and comment on ways language varies and changes.

English Literature

Candidates are required to demonstrate their ability to:

AO1: Respond to texts critically, sensitively and in detail, selecting appropriate ways to convey their response, using textual evidence as appropriate;

AO2: Explore how language, structure and forms contribute to the meanings of texts, considering different approaches to texts and alternative interpretations;

AO4: Relate texts to their social, cultural and historical contexts and literary traditions.


As this unit is aimed at higher ability students, it will also be useful to consider the general and specific criteria for a typical A grade response for both specifications:...


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