My HONEST AS Level Experience: English Literature



hello everybody and welcome back to my revision channel so today's video is going to be on a level English and my experience of a level English this year and what I think about it and my advice and everything like that so I took a level English as my fourth option honestly because I love my teacher and she told me that she thought I'd be really good at a level English and I had come on such a journey with GCSE English that when I opened my results on results day and it was one of my best juices I was honestly shook and I was like right okay I think I'm going to take English because honestly it was either chemistry or English I do not regret taking English compared to chemistry I'm so glad I took it but that was not the case that I've stopped though I do see our English which don't know is just ten times harder native English I'm sorry eighty ways but is I literally spoke to someone the other day he was like oh I do like four five texts we do eight texts but this year he did fall thankfully and the a s exam did not count it was not relevant and the essays were all the same you had four thirty mark essays and two of which have extracts and two of which did not so we did streetcar named desire and the tempest which did not have extracts this year and we also did Gatsby which has an extract from another piece of American literature and we also did Chaucer which had an extract from Tulsa so if I'm honest with you I loved a level English up until my mocs essentially I could not cope with the fact that in all my other subjects I was getting high A's and in English I was not my brain was like either of failure little did I know that English is just honestly like somebody told me at the start of the year English is like this with it's gross whereas all over subjects are like that and I did not believe them oh how true that is English is the biggest jump from GCSE of all of my subjects purely because the level of writing and the level of perception and the writing style is just so different GCSE the text is so much more complicated and they have so many more layers so I started with Gatsby and Chaucer I hated Gatsby I loved the book and I hated learning about it because I felt like I was getting nowhere with my essays and people in the other class which is doing so much better I felt like I just hated it I thought I'm going to drop it I just hate the subject and I just really was struggling with it I don't know why now like looking back but I just kept at it I had a massive breakdown in December with English I like the biggest breakdown I've ever had where I go an essay back I'm like I literally just for that I can't do this anymore I'm not getting anywhere there and Chaucer I was doing okay ways but still like I wasn't getting what I wanted and one thing I would say with English is stick asset because at the start of the year you're grading will drop like it will but it will combat if you stick at it with the work so at the start of the year I don't think I was doing it like properly whereas as I went along I started reading like critical articles reading other books and just kept working at my essays and some reason I went into my English mop still with this negative attitude and I still could figure out how to revise for it and I came out way English mock and I end up getting 56 out of 60 which is a joke what 28 and both essays are 30 and at that point that wasn't my relationship thing was changed because I realized that I could do it that was the highest I've got in my Chaucer essays ever like and that was one mark lower than the highest that ever got any gaps PSA like by that point I've got one good gap PSA about just for Christmas and I'm language teachers like look you can do it you need to get yourself out of this nursing mindset so like way English teacher at GCC kind of just let me stay in that negative mindset which is fine like it's not her fault it's my fault but one of my teachers at a-level she was that look easily to like to get out of this mindset that you can't do English because you can and I'm not going to tolerate you moping about when you're doing like well and after my mocks I was like I can do this like I am going to English clearly and so yeah I think it's really a mindset thing with English if you feel like you can't do it you're not going to do well if you feel like you can do it oh the difference after my mark I did not get lower than 28 on an essay for the whole of the rest of the year genuinely like that is I went from like 21 at the start of the year to 28 and I stayed there I worked my ass off English literature I would say actually that is part of the exam that most of my time and energy went into purely because I felt like I had something to prove to my teachers and I loved The Tempest and I loved the streetcar which were the ones that we did after marks I actually much preferred them okay that's a lie I love Chaucer but I genuinely like preferred into like the first like term I got really into the stride of it and as I went along we did a scene for tempest as go home I'd use my revision device to annotate that scene I'd really rather see like I would keep up to date I would do quote flashcards everything like that and as I went along rather than leaving it all to like just before marks like I did forget the inch or so and then the streetcar and I loved the teaching style that my English teacher does she just goes through the text in depth and then wraps it all up at the end and I just kept adding to my notes making quote flashcards everything like that and and I was still absolutely breaking it for the exam because English is just one of those exams that you can go either way and one of the exams which I've learned that I just I cannot judge how it goes like I just can't I'm incapable of doing it so I need to stop doing it so exam season rolled around and I was back in my english product and so I went into a path paper melaka to the GCSE I cannot recommend path papers and ask to revise English for someone like me that need to like have concrete revision in reading the book just doesn't quite do it for me so ideas free path papers for streetcar one for The Tempest to pick up speed three in for Gatsby because I found out through the hardest because you have to compare it with unseal it and two for Chaucer I did the first ones without like timing but without looking at my book and then I did the second one with time we've done what a book and was I've gotten to that mindset of how to write a timed essay because all the way through the year we haven't been doing time they says we've just been doing and like typed essays which is really great enhance your understanding but like I could spent hours on those words you only have 45 minutes an exam you don't have the time to do that so I've built up my confidence with past papers and by the time I've gone six armed and my English teachers like look I've got nothing else to say to you like I've got no feedback let's just go and do this in the exam so it was a good place to be which I think I've got to because they're swimming past papers and and the other thing that I do before an exam is reread the text but is that for every single one of my texts and you did not know his text properly until you've read it four times so I had read that for you at least four times Chaucer I've read three times tempest of read read twice watch three times and what says launch streetcar I'd read like a few times and watched a few times I would really recommend watching the plays like if you do then that's find a production line and just watch it over and over again so to revise the English I did quote flashcards my map and planned out a lot path paved questions and memorize the examiner's report looked at past papers for and like marked by the exam board that was how a revised English exactly same as this do to see only more stress and then you can rot around and honestly I went into the first English exam right back where I started I got myself in such a state when I went in fact arm I was in the exact same mindset that my teacher told me not to be in I have never in my life come out of an exam feeling as bad as I did after I came out of that exam I was so upset like I mean my friend came out we just looked at each other and just cried and the Chaucer extract was about the garden which I thought yay what a great extract I had not left myself enough time to write a decent FL nut i bombed it I thought I bombed it I read about the wrong person accidentally there was no coherence to my argument and Chaucer and tempest are my better texts I would say in general so to come out of that exam not being half of my template essay which I'm spent too much time on anyway and also feeling slowed down that I did not do any work for like two days after that exam I was so upset like I just came home about wallows in my own self-pity until someone was like you've got your other English exam next week you need like step it up and you need to revise those now so after a day or so of wallowing in my own self-pity I was like right I'm going to revise really hard I'm going to go into my next exam with a much better mindset I did so and I loved the questions apartment Street car which I don't think I did particularly well on just because there were two really good questions and I picked the ones that are a great picking like 10 minutes after start it Gatsby was a beautiful question it was actually on what high I had literally just revised before I went into the exam so I was actually blessed and I was really proud of my guts BSA actually and the street car of all the proud of my essay the one that I'd written just before we examine think was a lot better but I was like yeah that exam went okay and I'm not going to over critique myself and I came out of that one with a much more I didn't come out happy with it but I didn't come out like Gossage but again goes to show that you can't judge your exams because I go up to my English teachers on results day so you have got my results because they just happen to be doing a today which is my surname is Bennett and they're like well done and what off thank god I've got a oh I got cognitive body and and you have to go up to them and ask them what you've got in your individual papers because you don't have UMS for the new exams and they were like and well on your Chaucer and tennis paper but you have like 10 right now you're 59 our 60 hours like you actually having a laugh that paper what I don't know whether they got the marks the wrong way around like I genuinely have but I was like how can I've dropped a mark on a paper that I felt so awfully about just goes to show don't judge your own English essays because you you always will get it wrong I'm sure I'm so happy with that um and yeah goes to show that you can't choose your own exams and my main advice English to fill up with B stick at it because I have never come on such a personal journey in my life than I have with English English has been like my personal like the one that I've just grown as a person from and the one that I think has been the most rewarding for me this year it's not the most challenging but the most rewarding second would be read read books around to author reach critical articles watch videos don't just do the class works ain't going to get you anywhere third path papers new best friend and we didn't have any questions so I got my teachers to make up questions for me and planning past papers is your best friend even if you don't want to write them just make sure you can plan them really quickly fourth don't try to achieve dozen eggs are because you'll get it wrong as I clearly did and don't panic because the exam border off there's a lot more lenient than your teachers are add finally read the text know your texts I mean I don't know them now because I haven't touched them since like May okay I have touched the book not properly but I like by the time I went into my exam I could probably recite to you Gatsby and Tempest and I'm neutrals are a street color really well know your text and the only way you can denies by reading them reading articles on them making quote cards flashcards all those sorts of things and make sure when you go to exam you can just pick and choose the bits of the text that you want you know it so that extent that you can do that so that is everything I have to say for English literature yes I'm now going once doing research to a to which honestly I feel like I'm going to go through the same process again I just feel like it's going to happen I hope y'all come up the other end with a good grater and but yeah that is my AF experience of English it's been my most traumatic a level but the one that I've actually come to love the most in a way and I think that just because the teachers because I'm so blessed to have amazing teachers my school if I don't have them next year I'm going to cry because that's what happened to make you see but as phone and but just stick a sit with English and don't come out the exam and compare your answers with other people because it will make you some rubbish I hope you enjoyed this video if you have any questions about English literature put them in the comments and I will reply to you and I will see you very soon with a video on either German or Spanish bye

47 thoughts on “My HONEST AS Level Experience: English Literature

  1. In my opinion, lit is just a waste of time. I mean like all you do is just read books and analyse them and there is no purpose for it. Learning maths and sciences on the other hand you are learning the language of the universe and reading the mind of God(if there is one). Please, someone enlighten me on the benefits and uses of literature.

  2. i did english lit in yr 10 and came home crying because i thought i did so bad!!!
    But i got a grade 8!!!

  3. I’ve taken A level English Lit and I’m currently in year 12! I haven’t noticed a significant jump from GCSE, so is it different for exam boards?? (I’m with AQA)I’ve come back to this video because I seem to be doing ok… 💓

  4. Do you have any recommendations for good textbooks and websites for studying English Lit?? Its always been my favourite and best subject, however my teachers are not amazing and are teaching the texts to a GCSE level. Any tips would be helpful!!

  5. I’ve done both OCR (year 1) and AQA (year 2 because I changed colleges) and for AQA we had 5 books and 15 poems and two courseworks. In terms of difficulty I’d actually say they’re the same, but I do think that with AQA there’s just more freedom of choice with texts and it’s more flexible – which, tbf, is how an English course should be, (although in the end the boards test the same thing)

  6. I’m currently doing Gatsby and Streetcar so I was wondering if you had any recommendations as to where to look for, any extra reading you found useful, because my AS year flopped and not going to lie I’m scared of the A2 exam 👀

  7. Would you recommend taking E Lit in alevels if I didn't take it in olevels?

  8. Is it me or is eve trying to hide her accent here? 😂

  9. Unplanned I’ve taken English lit I got A and B in English at GCSE and I’m bricking A level I’ve never had confidence in English and did not expect the results at GCSE, I’m just worried that I will continue to not have the confidence and absolutely flop at English, any tips🤷🏻‍♀️x

  10. Help I just realised i might have to choose English for a level , I didn’t prepare anything I am so scared !!

  11. I literally hated English Lit until 1 year into the course and then fell in love with it

  12. i'm currently doing my GCSES rn and have chosen English Lit for one of my A levels, thank you for this vid, it made me really excited haha!

  13. I had the exact same experience last year with lit! (lol what is ocr please) This year has been the same- it's a funny ol' relationship

  14. When you want to do language but it's mostly likely not going to be available… 😢

  15. Thanks, i enjoyed your take on the experience but I really struggled to get over how many times you like, said like throughout your presentation. I nearly quit halfway through as it was like, getting overpowering. That said, it was like interesting and helpful. I liked it.

  16. It's so true what you said about a positive mindset! I walked into my gcse English mock with a positive mindset and went from a 7 to a 9!

  17. Could you make a top 10 revision tips or advice for English lit video

  18. Heyy I know this is about language but for persuasive writing, I find it really difficult to write more than one side of a4 and I even do a plan, I recently got a 3 in my persuasive writing and should be getting a 7. Do you have any tips on writing at least 2 sides??? Mocks next week :(( THANKS EVE x x x

  19. Omg I did the exact same course as you but Paradise Lost instead of Chaucer! So surprised that I managed to get an A and 30 in the tempest 😮

  20. I do English Literature and Language, I’m on AQA for both and currently, and in Literature I love doing “Death of a Salesman” by Arthur Miller but HATE “Othello” by Shakespeare

  21. i completely agree!! at the beginning of year 12 i was getting D's and in december i just sobbed because i couldn't see myself getting a B let alone an A. in around february, around mocks, it just clicked in my brain that i needed to focus on the AOs, like i got away with not knowing them at GCSE but for a-level it is so important!! i cant stress that enough. from february i was getting 20-23/25 on my streetcar essays and 30-33/40 on my frankenstein/the handmaid's tail essays! if anyone is worried i have some tips☺️
    – know what AOs you need for each exam
    – litcharts will help you with your analysis
    – learn your context (!!! i cant stress this enough)
    – get the revision guides for your texts but do extra research, don't just rely on them but they're handy as they have a lot of information on critics☺️☺️

    applying for an english literature degree at the moment, so please don't feel disheartened, year 12s, if you're struggling. you're being assessed on a two year specification, so you'll naturally pick it up as you go along☺️

    good luck for 2017/18 guys!! 💛💛💛

  22. Eve, did you use any English revision apps or and good websites? If so please could you recommend any?

  23. I really don't know If I should do Alevel English.. I was kinda good at it in GCSE and really enjoyed it but everyone is saying alevel english is sooo hard and long.. Help!

  24. I really don't know what course I can enter with such diverse a levels subjects with English Literature, Biology and Art

  25. I'm thinking of swapping classics with English literature because i feel like ill enjoy it but people are telling me not to change it, and that they do not make a difference, could u help me decide fue to your experiance?

  26. I can believe you're moaning about getting 21/30 on an essay! Omg

  27. This has nothing to do with the vid but if anyone has any tips on how I can revise poetry for the new gcse. I'm not really sure how to go about revising it to be honest xx

  28. Thank you Eve I managed to get an A* in English Literature

  29. I did AQA English and got to say it definitely wasn't easy! Yes we only did 6 texts but we also had an unseen text and had to study 2 more for coursework. Definitely agree about how big the gap is though, I was working at a B/C until about a month before the exams where I managed to get an A! Love your videos x

  30. we legit have had the same experience with lit omg- no jokes a level lit is hard on all exam boards but in aqa we actually did 8 texts not including unseen analysis (on paper 1: love through the ages we did "Othello" which was extract based, unseen poetry comparison, and "the great gatsby" compared with pre-1900 anthology love poems, on paper 2: modern times we did "a streetcar named desire," analysis of an extract of unseen prose. and a comparison between the novel "the god of small things" and the poetry collection "skirrid hill," and for coursework we had to choose two texts to compare so i chose "to the lighthouse" and "villette.") Also, the sophistication aqa examiners want from you is bloody ridiculous (luckily it was how i write.) The thing about progression is so true- i was getting b's essentially right up until after my mocks in the february of year 13 where after i legit had a massive breakdown like u did- after that (like ur teacher- aren't they fab i genuinely dunno where i'd be without mine what a babe- she also told me like u to stop writing practice essays cause she had nothing else to say bantaa) my teacher sat me down n gave me this whole chat on how i need to STOP THINKING I CAN'T because i obviously can n a whole lot of other top notch advice. Afterwards i just was suddenly getting a*'s, and then full marks consistently all because my mindset had suddenly switched. Obvs it wasn't all plain sailing n i still cried regularly about it n worked myself up into such a state before my first exam that my teacher legit pulled me to one side right before i was going in to give me a metaphorical slap in the face as it were that i wasn't going to fail lol. Still came out of that exam crying as i thought i'd bombed it (didn't do as bad as i thought- [email protected] JUDGE UR OWN WORK IT IS FUTILE) n just tried to channel all my energy into nailing the second paper (which thank god i did i am actually still so proud of my 24/25 streetcar essay ngl i wanna frame it) But I got my a* in my lit a level n am now about to start my degree in it- genuinely am so grateful i didn't give my passion up because i was an impatient sod n continued to wallow in my self-pity. U can do it- lit is hard but if u keep up the critical and wider reading like i did, and constantly review ur essays to see how u got the mark u did u will ace it! I believe in u bby stick at it like i did n u will be fandabbydozy xxx

  31. Would a grade 6 (b) at English lit gcse be enough to do English a level?

  32. Theres no public speaking presentations in a level english lit is there? (Like gcse speaking and listening sort of thing)

  33. I will be taking this subject in Sixth Form and mentioning the whole mindset thing is going to be so useful to me because I get into a state too, this is so useful!

  34. Well done ma lovely, another great video – I had a very similar experience to you with History A Level, so I completely understand – also very glad that I do AQA English – OCR sounds so much more difficult.

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