Latin A-Level | Surbiton High School
LATIN
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Latin A-Level

Examination Board: OCR

The authors studied in this subject have fascinated people and influenced thought and culture for many centuries. If you choose this subject, you will learn to solve linguistic and other problems logically and to interpret evidence, understand complex issues and argue coherently; both in written assignments and orally. You will show universities and employers that you are very capable academically and you will develop good communication skills.

You should be studying the subject for GCSE, enjoying the literature and Roman Life studies, and be coping well with the language.

A-level Latin involves the study of language and literature. The literature is no more difficult than what you are studying for GCSE, but there is more of it and more time to enjoy and explore it in greater depth. We read poetry, which may be ‘Love Poetry’ or part of a longer narrative (Virgil or Ovid).

Students study two units at A-level. As at GCSE, there is translation from, but not into, Latin, and we supplement a very manageable AS vocabulary list with thematic lists provided by the Department.

Latin has been combined with a range of subjects; frequently with English, History or Mathematics, but also with Religious Studies, Economics, Biology and Theatre Studies.

Our students have gone on to university courses in Classics, Archaeology, English, History, Law, Business Studies and Medicine. Employers are also pleased to note the breadth of interest shown by Classics students, as well as the intellectual discipline required of those subjects, so that a variety of top careers is open to Classics graduates after university. We have had many students go on to study at Oxbridge.

A-level

Unit 01 – Unseen Translation

Examination: 1 hour 45 minutes (33%)
This component is designed to enable learners to demonstrate their linguistic competence in Latin.
Learners will be required to:
■ Translate a passage of unseen narrative prose into English
■ Translate a passage of unseen verse into English
■ Scan two lines of verse

Unit 02 – Prose Comprehension

Examination: 1 hour 15 minutes (17%)
This is a further language unit to demonstrate your linguistic competence in Latin. You will be required to demonstrate your understanding of a passage of unseen prose text through comprehension, translation and questions on syntax and accidence.

Unit 03 – Prose Literature

Examination: 2 hours (25%)
Learners will study two prose set texts and will be required to:
■ Understand and respond to passage(s) from a set text
■ Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the wider context of a set text
■ Translate a passage of each set text into English
■ Critically analyse the literary style, characterisation, argument and literary meaning of a passage from a set text
■ Write at length, drawing upon a study of a set text as well as material studied in translation

Unit 04 – Verse Literature

Examination: 2 hours (25%)
Learners will study two verse set texts and will be required to:
■ Understand and respond to passage(s) from a set text
■ Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the wider context of a set text
■ Translate a passage of each set text into English
■ Critically analyse the literary style, characterisation, argument and literary meaning of a passage from a set text
■ Write at length, drawing upon a study of a set text as well as material studied in translation

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