National 5

Why take this course?

The Course also provides pupils with the opportunity to develop an understanding of how language works, and use language to communicate ideas and information in English, to use creative and critical thinking to synthesise ideas and arguments, and to develop critical literacy skills and personal, interpersonal and team-working skills.

It provides pupils with the opportunity to develop independent learning and to enhance their enjoyment and their understanding of their own and other cultures.

The National 5 English course also seeks to develop an appreciation of language use, and of a variety of literature and texts.

National 5 English offers pupils the opportunity to develop detailed language skills in the contexts of literature, language and media.

What will I learn?

The course is made up of two mandatory units:

English: Analysis and Evaluation (National 5)

The purpose of this Unit is to provide pupils with the opportunity to develop listening and reading skills in the contexts of literature, language and media. Learners develop the skills needed to understand, analyse and evaluate detailed texts. The texts studied must include Scottish texts.

English: Creation and Production (National 5)

The purpose of this Unit is to provide pupils with the opportunity to develop talking and writing skills in a range of contexts. Pupils develop the skills needed to create and produce detailed texts in both written and oral forms.

How will I be assessed?

Learners will provide evidence of their reading and writing skills and their ability to understand and use English Language.  The course assessment will take the form of a Writing Portfolio, compromising two pieces of learners’ best work from different genres, through the day which they will demonstrate their writing skills; a question paper through which learners will demonstrate their reading skills and a critical essay paper, in which learners will require to answer two questions, at least one of which must be on a Scottish text.

The award of Higher English will be based on completion of the internally-assessed Units, and the pupil’s performance in an external examination: Paper 1: Close Reading (1 hour 30 minutes) and Paper 2: Critical Reading (1 hour 30 minutes), comprising one Critical Essay and the analysis of a Scottish text from the SQA prescribed list. Pupils’ final attainment is completed with the addition of a Writing Portfolio, comprising two essays, one Creative and one Discursive.

What homework will I be expected to do?

Homework and independent study tasks with strict completion deadlines will be set throughout the course.  English courses at all levels make demands of each learner as an active reader.  In addition to prescribed homework, each learner should be reading quality newspapers, complex fiction and challenging non-fiction texts which will provide short-term and long-term benefits in terms of vocabulary acquisition, enhanced genre/stylistic awareness and a growing stock of models for writing in a variety of forms which will inform the learner’s own writing and reading.  The purchase and use of both a dictionary and thesaurus will prove of immediate and continuing benefit to the student of English.

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