What does Advanced Higher English involve? In many respects, Advanced Higher English more closely resembles a university course than its preceding Higher. Candidates at Advanced Higher will be expected to show independence of thought, create writing of complexity, and analyse literature to a great degree of depth.
How is Advanced Higher English assessed? 60% of a candidate's Advanced Higher score is assessed through coursework; 40% is assessed through a final exam. I. Coursework Candidates at Advanced Higher must submit a portfolio of writing (30%) and a critical dissertation (30%) to the SQA.
Portfolio Candidates must submit two pieces of writing. Unlike National 5 and Higher, there is no maximum word count for Advanced Higher folio pieces. Pupils' pieces must represent two of the following genres: persuasive, informative, argumentative, poetry, prose fiction, drama, or personal/reflective.
Dissertation The Advanced Higher dissertation requires pupils to independently select pieces of literature - two novels, six short stories, or five to six poems - and write an extended essay of 2500-3000 words critically analysing them. The Advanced Higher dissertation stresses independence: with guidance, pupils will choose the texts and the topic of their dissertation, and research it.
II. Exam The final exam consists of two papers, each worth 20% of a candidate's grade. Paper 1: Literary Study (90 minutes) In this paper, pupils will write a critical essay which asks them to compare and contrast two texts studied in class. Paper 2: Textual Analysis (90 minutes) In this paper pupils will be presented with a piece of literature, or an extract from a longer piece of literature, which they have not seen before. They will be asked a mini-essay question requiring them to analyse and critically evaluate it.
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