We will be following the new OCR GCE A Level specification. There are four components to this course:
1 Unseen Translation – 33%
2 Comprehension or Prose Composition – 17%
In these components you will build on your knowledge and vocabulary and linguistic structures through a wide reading and study of prose and verse texts in Latin. You will study a wide range of prose authors as well as a verse unseen author in order to develop your linguistic ability to a high level.
3 Prose Literature – 2 set texts – 25%
You will study two Latin Prose Literature set texts in depth. You will also study additional literature in translation in order to understand the context in which the set texts were written.
4 Verse Literature – 2 set texts – 25%
You will study two Latin Prose Literature set texts in depth. You will also study additional literature in translation in order to understand the context in which the set texts were written. Assessment is by four written papers – one paper for each component, which will be taken at the end of the Upper Sixth year. The percentages of the total marks for each component are given above.
Each unit is formally examined and each is equally weighted in terms of the percentage of the final assessment.
Some of the greatest works of literature, history, philosophy and science were written in the Latin language. Indeed, Latin was once the universal language of academia, meaning that even great scientific works such as Newton’s Principia were also written entirely in Latin. The language, literature and culture of the Romans is all around us: from its survival in English, French, Spanish and Italian; its presence in our political and legal systems; its huge influence on Western Literature, from Shakespeare to JK Rowling , to the inscriptions and mottos on our buildings and school badges.
Students with an A Level in Latin will develop a great range of transferable skills, which are highly valued by universities admissions tutors. As well as going on to study Classics, Ancient History or Archaeology, students with an A Level in Latin will show that they have the linguistic skill to study
Modern Languages; the problem solving skills to study Mathematics and Sciences; the essay writing skills to study any of the Humanities, and the critical skills and breadth of knowledge to study English Literature. These skills are also highly valued by employers, who are always impressed by
the commitment and skill required to study Latin. Classics graduates typically go on to enter the professions of Law, Banking, Education, Administration, and the Media, as well as Academia.
It is advisable for students to have a good GCSE (grade B or above) in Latin to begin A Level study. Latin will combine well with any other subject from the Humanities or Sciences.