11th Overview

Aims & Objectives

Studies in Language and Literature Aims

The aims of all subjects in studies in language and literature are to enable students to:

1. engage with a range of texts, in a variety of media and forms, from different periods, styles, and cultures

2. develop skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing, viewing, presenting and performing

3. develop skills in interpretation, analysis, and evaluation

4. develop sensitivity to the formal and aesthetic qualities of texts and an appreciation of how they contribute to diverse responses and open up multiple meanings

5. develop an understanding of relationships between texts and a variety of perspectives, cultural contexts, and local and global issues and an appreciation of how they contribute to diverse responses and open up multiple meanings

6. develop an understanding of the relationships between studies in language and literature and other disciplines

7. communicate and collaborate in a confident and creative way

8. foster a lifelong interest in and enjoyment of language and literature.

Assessment Objectives

Know, understand, and interpret:

• a range of texts, works and/or performances, and their meanings and implications

• contexts in which texts are written and/or received

• elements of literary, stylistic, rhetorical, visual and/or performance craft

• features of particular text types and literary forms.

Analyse and evaluate:

• ways in which the use of language creates meaning

• uses and effects of literary, stylistic, rhetorical, visual or theatrical techniques

• relationships among different texts

• ways in which texts may offer perspectives on human concerns.


• ideas in clear, logical and persuasive ways

• in a range of styles, registers and for a variety of purposes and situations

• (for literature and performance only) ideas, emotion, character and atmosphere through performance.

Areas of Exploration

Over the course of the two year class, DP Language and Literature students will explore both non-literary and literary texts exploring these three areas and guiding questions:

Readers, Writers, & Texts

  1. Why and how do we study language and literature?
  2. How are we affected by texts in various ways?
  3. In what ways is meaning constructed, negotiated, expressed, and interpreted?
  4. How does language use vary amongst text types and amongst literary forms?
  5. How does structure or style of a text affect meaning?
  6. How do texts offer insights and challenges?

Time and Space

  1. How important is cultural or historical context to the production and reception of a text?
  2. How do we approach texts from different time periods and cultures to our own?
  3. To what extent do texts offer insights into another culture?
  4. How does the meaning and impact of a text change over time?
  5. How do texts reflect, represent, or form a part of cultural practices?
  6. How does language represent social distinctions and identities?


  1. How do texts adhere to & deviate from conventions associated with literary forms or text types?
  2. How do conventions and systems of reference evolve over time?
  3. In what ways can diverse texts share points of similarity?
  4. How valid is the notion of a classic text?
  5. How can texts offer multiple perspectives of a single issue, topic, or theme?
  6. In what ways can comparison and interpretation be transformative?

Excerpt from Language A: language and literature guide, first examinations 2021

Major Units

First Semester

  • Unit #1: Transformation (Intertextuality)
    • Poetry: Margaret Atwood’s "Sirens," "Helen of Troy," "Cyclops," "Orpheus"
    • Pop Culture: Music and TV; Simpsons, Family Guy
    • Music: Bob Dylan
    • Short stories: Stephen King and art by Edward Hopper
  • Unit #2: War and Context
    • Media literacy, articles, mediaLiterature selected by teacher and student, media, articles, advertising
    • Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien
    • Propaganda of war
    • Visual texts
    • Vietnam photographs
  • Unit #3: Perceptions of Beauty
    • Beauty
    • Killing Us Softly, fashion ads, online articles
  • Unit #4: Create a Visual Exhibit
    • Connect to Global Issue through photography and poetry

Second Semester

  • Unit #5 Conflicting Values & Beliefs: A Study of Gender
    • Pygmalion,
    • So Long a Letter
  • Unit #6: Defending and Challenging Arguments
    • Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
    • Articles , Advertising
    • Persuasive Writing
  • Unit #7: Conflicts & Identity
    • Literary Circles
    • Literature selected by teacher and student
  • Unit #8: Conflicts & Love
    • Neruda, Atwood, Shakespeare poetry
  • Finalize HL Essay