The Spanish A level course focuses on learning the language through the understanding of aspects of society, culture and history in Spanish speaking countries.
In the first year, aspects of the social context are studied, together with the artistic life of Spanish-speaking countries, over six units. In the second year, another six units cover multiculturalism and aspects of the political landscape including the future of political life in the Hispanic world by focusing on young people and their political engagement.
Apart from the cultural topics, there is a film, ‘Volver’, and a play, ‘La casa de Bernarda Alba’ to study. You will learn to write essays on each.
We also encourage you to visit Spain during the course so that you might improve your fluency as well as gain first-hand experience of a different culture. You can participate in a week of work experience at the end of the first year, or organise a few days on a course in Spain at a time when it suits you best.
A minimum of 5 GCSEs at grade 4 or above including a grade 6 or above in Spanish GCSE.
In line with College procedure, you will be given a grade for your effort and attainment at fixed intervals throughout the year. At the end of the two year course, there will be three formal external examinations.
|Paper 1||Listening, Reading and Translation||2hr 30 min||50%|
|Paper 3||Speaking||5 min prep/21-23 min exam||30%|
Modern foreign languages are skill-based subjects and in order to improve your skills, you should ensure that you get as much extra practice as possible beyond what is covered in class. There are many ways in which you can do this. For example, if you wish to research a topic or do some follow-up work on an interesting article, you can refer to the many different internet sites available as well as search Spanish newspaper archives.
For extra listening or reading practice, more grammar work or to practise past examination papers, you can log onto our Kerboodle website facility which will give you access to a whole host of materials.
The real key to success is to ensure that you involve yourself right from the start. If you do, you will be amazed at your progress. The more you practise, the better your fluency and understanding.
The course fosters a range of transferable skills including communication, critical thinking, research skills and creativity.
We are housed in the new, custom-built 400s block with specialist classrooms equipped with a data projector which is connected to the College network. Students can access resources on the internet on their own devices as there is reliable College Wi-Fi in the room. There are also small rooms for the conversation classes, where you go once a week in groups of 2 to 4 to practise your speaking skills for 45 minutes. Such resources not only allow for improved teaching & learning during timetabled lessons but also allow each individual student to develop their skills at their own pace & in their own time.
There are three of us in the Spanish department. All are native speakers from different countries in South America, which is extremely advantageous from a linguistic as well as a cultural perspective.
Knowing a language puts you in a strong position in the job market. Language study contributes to a broad general education and gives you invaluable practical and transferable skills for the future. You may choose to specialise in Spanish at university or combine your language with other subjects such as Engineering, History, Media and Journalism, Management and Business Studies, Teaching, Fashion Design, Travel and Hospitality Management, Accountancy, European Studies, or International or European Law or even Medicine.
A qualification in A Level Spanish is very highly regarded by universities due to the huge range of study skills that students acquire during their course; for example, it develops critical and analytical thinking, good communication skills and improves grammatical awareness. Such meticulousness strongly enhances students’ future work be it at University or in a professional capacity. Studying a language also adds to your skills base for employment with international companies or UK companies operating overseas.
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“Languages are invaluable for a generation growing up in an increasingly connected world. If the UK is to be truly global post-Brexit, languages must become a national priority… At a time when global connections matter more than ever, it is worrying that the UK is facing a languages deficit... If we don’t act to tackle this shortfall, we’re set to lose out both economically and culturally.” ~ Vicky Gough, Schools Adviser at the British Council
According to a British Council report in 2017, Spanish is the most important language that the British need to learn after Brexit.