English National Qualifications (S5/6)
Our subject is offered at three levels in S5: Intermediate I, Intermediate II and Higher. 
There is an Advanced Higher course offered to S6 pupils, but this is only for those who have succeeded at Higher level. 
The entry requirements are as follows: 
Intermediate 1  Pass at Standard Grade 4,5 or 6 
Intermediate 2 Pass at Standard Grade 3 A or B pass at Intermediate I level 
Higher Pass at Standard Grade 1 or 2 (with at least 2-2 in Reading andWriting) A or B pass at Intermediate II level 

Course Description

Unit Assessments 
To take English as a course, all of the component units of the course must be studied. At Intermediate I, Intermediate II and Higher, these component units are: 
1        Unit One: Language Study
2        Unit Two: Literary Study
3        Unit Three: Personal Study 
For Unit One there are two tasks: 
  • Pass at least one Close Reading NAB under exam conditions; and
  • Compose a piece of writing in a particular genre. There is a minimum word limit for each level.
 For Unit Two there is one task:  
  • Pass at least one Textual Analysis NAB under exam conditions. (Textual analysis is interpretation of an unseen text, whether prose, drama or poetry, which is similar to a close reading text, but with the emphasis on analysis.)
Unit Three is also known as the Personal Study Unit (or PSU). There is a choice of areas in this unit: Language or Literature or Oral Communication. Generally, however, the Literature option is taken and this consists of an extended written response to a text (or texts) under exam conditions. 
You must pass all the Unit Assessments to go forward to the final exam and to gain an overall NQ award. 
The Exam  In addition to the unit assessments there is also an external exam. This is in two parts:
Paper One 
Close Reading  50% weighting
Paper Two Critical Essay 50% weighting

At Higher level, the Close Reading paper will consist of two passages and will be out of fifty marks; at Intermediate II and Intermediate I level, it will consist of one passage out of thirty marks. 
At Higher and Intermediate II level, each pupil will do two critical essays in the exam; whereas, at Intermediate I level, each pupil will only have to do one critical essay.

Student Responsibilities
Students should note that with National Qualifications there is a much greater emphasis on personal responsibility for your own learning than there was in previous years. To this end it will be expected that students will: 
  • complete all homework by agreed dates;
  • undertake individual study;
  • attend Supported Study seminars; and
  • meet all the above deadlines.
 Course Progression 
  • A pass at A or B level in Intermediate I will lead to study of Intermediate II the following year.
  • A pass at A or B level in Intermediate II will lead to Higher the following year.
  • A pass at A or B (and in some cases C) may lead to Advanced Higher the following year.
The Prelim 
The prelim will take place in February and will act as an indicator of pupil progression. Any student gaining less than 40% in the Higher and Intermediate II prelim will have very little chance of success in the exam and will consequently be advised to move to a lower level. There will also be a Second Prelim later in the year which will take place under exam conditions. This will be for those students who have failed the prelim but still hope to be presented at their level of choice; additionally, it is also for all other students to gain some necessary exam practice. It would be expected that all pupils who gained less than 40% in the exam would manage to pass the second prelim.