How to pass GCSE English

by Anita Naik


GCSE English is a core subject that you need to pass, as it's a must-have for higher education qualifications, universities, apprenticeships and a wide range of careers.

By Year 10, you will already have covered a broad spectrum of grammar and vocabulary, and the GCSE English course will take this knowledge further. The idea is that you will build on your existing skills and use these to give insights into the texts and questions on the examination papers.

To do this, you need to familiarise yourself with what's required by your exam board, review various styles of written materials and have a good knowledge of grammar and vocabulary. It can, however, be tricky to revise English, which is why you need to make sure you practice as much as you can.

If you feel you are struggling in any of these areas or need more help one of our English Tutors can help.

To revise the English GCSE course firstly make sure you know what to expect. Most examining boards will examine fiction and non-fiction texts, poetry, spoken language, as well as spelling, punctuation and grammar. But check past papers and with your teacher or tutor so you are 100% clear.

Step one: Focus on grammar

The way to get to grips with the grammar is to practice daily and remind yourself of what key terms mean. An excellent way to do this is to write revision cards with definitions and examples and then pin them to your wall so you can view them every day.

Also, make sure you are familiar with language techniques such as similes, metaphors, hyperbole, and personification.

Step two: Read and analyse non-fiction and fiction texts

Practice your summarising and comprehension skills by taking a piece of text you like; it can be a newspaper report or a piece of non-fiction and write a summary. The aim here is to highlight the main facts and condense the key points so that someone reading the review will get a clear picture of what the report is about.

Step three: Revise language techniques

In the exam paper you will have an extract from a novel and have to answer four questions: comprehension; analysing the writer's choice of language; analysing the writer's choice of structure; presenting a personal response to the extract.

To do this you need to know various descriptive techniques and persuasive devices so you can answer clearly.

Step four: Look at past papers

Reading over past examination papers is vital for English GCSE as it will give you a good understanding of how questions will be asked, and what examiners are looking for you to do. Past papers also give you a good indication of question style and how you need to structure your time for the exam to ensure you maximise your marks.

Finally, if you feel unsure of any part of the English GCSE subject area and need extra help we can help English Tutors.

Tags: GCSEs English revision
Categories: GCSE English