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A Student Guide to A Level English Language ‘Text Analysis’

Steve Campsall | Monday November 11, 2019

Categories: Archived Resources, KS5 Archive, AQA A Level, AQA A Level Pre-2015 Resources, AQA A Level English Language A, AQA A Level English Language B, ENGB1, AQA A Level English Language & Literature A, AQA A Level English Language & Literature B, EDEXCEL A Level, Edexcel A Level Pre-2015 Resources, EDEXCEL A Level English Language & Literature, 6EL01, EDEXCEL A Level English Language, 6EN01, 6EN03, OCR A Level, OCR A Level Pre-2015 Resources, OCR A Level English Language & Literature, F672, F674, OCR A Level English Language, F652, WJEC A Level, WJEC A Level Pre-2015 Resources, WJEC A Level English Language & Literature, LL4, WJEC A Level English Language, LG1, LG4, Hot Entries, Writing, Lexical Analysis, Linguistic Analysis, Textual Analysis

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This guide is intended to help you learn or revise for your English Language A level course. In writing it, I’ve tried to tackle the analysis of language and texts in a particularly straightforward way in the hope that it will appeal especially to you if you are feeling a bit ‘lost’ by this often complex subject, one that can so very easily, for many students, seem more different from English at GCSE than they ever imagined, and, well, none-too-easy.

  • The guide can be used at any time during your course – as an introduction, as a refresher or for exam revision.

On the next page are two texts, typical of the kind you will analyse during your course. Have a look at them now. They have two uses. The most important by far is for you to refer to them as you read through each section of the guide. By analysing actual texts as you read about new concepts and terminology, you’ll be putting what you are learning or revising into action. You’ll be ‘making it your own’. This will surely help cement the concepts more effectively into your memory banks ready for future use. The two texts have also been occasionally referred to in the guide to help show how certain language features work, that is, the effects they create, the methods used and the purposes intended. These are both “media texts? and written / printed. To keep the guide shorter, conversation analysis has not been included here.

  • The triplet of ‘EFFECTS > METHOD > PURPOSES’ is, you’ll discover, a truly useful mantra for you during the whole of this A level course. In fact, it is as important to your analysis of texts as ‘P>E>E’ is to the writing up of your analysis into an argumentative essay and exam answer.
  • Whenever we use language it has a purpose, the primary one being that we wish to communicate some of our ideas, thoughts and feelings to someone else – our ‘audience’. Communication occurs as a response to two aspects of context: a remembered...

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