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GCSE English Language Course

IGCSE First Language English
Examination board: CIE
Subject code: 0500

This course is designed for students whose first language is English. Students taking this course develop the ability to communicate clearly, accurately and effectively in both reading comprehension and writing. They learn how to employ a wide-ranging vocabulary, use correct grammar, spelling and punctuation, and develop a personal style and an awareness of the audience being addressed.

Learners are also encouraged to read widely, both for their own enjoyment and to further their awareness of the ways in which English can be used. Cambridge IGCSE First Language English also develops more general analysis and communication skills such as synthesis, inference, and the ability to order facts and present opinions effectively.

What careers and further study can English Language lead to?

This qualification is a general one that enables students to progress directly to employment or to proceed to further qualifications. Candidates who are awarded grades A* to C in this course are well prepared to follow courses leading to AS and A Level English Language, or the equivalent.

Prior learning

We recommend that students who are beginning this course should have a level in English equivalent to First Language competence.

Candidates take:

Two exams to be awarded Cambridge IGCSE First Language English:

-Paper 1 Reading Passages (Core), with a duration of 1 hour 45 minutes and a total of 50 marks. Candidates answer three questions on two passages. Passage A will be 500–600 words long and Passage B will be 300–350 words long. This component is set and marked by Cambridge. This component is eligible for grades C–G and is worth 50% of the total marks.

or

-Paper 2 Reading Passages (Extended), with a duration of 2 hours and a total of 50 marks. Candidates answer three questions on two passages. Passage A will be 650–750 words long and Passage B will be 550–650 words long. This component is set and marked by Cambridge. This component is eligible for grades A*–E and is worth 50% of the total marks.

and

-Paper 3 Directed Writing and Composition (Core and Extended), with a duration of 2 hours and a total of 50 marks. Candidates answer one question on a passage or passages totalling 650–750 words, and complete a composition task from a choice of four titles. This component is set and marked by Cambridge. This component is eligible for grades A*–G and is worth 50% of the total marks.

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