Monday 10 May 2021

Code: 8401


This course is aimed at students who are aiming, to achieve grades 7-9 in the AQA English Literature GCSE course.

The session, led by Jo Fox, will focus on top tips, techniques and approaches, for producing sophisticated responses to Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’.

Advice will centre on effective analysis of the methods used by Shakespeare to communicate characters, themes and ideas effectively, time management and the overall structure of essays to ensure that all of the assessment objectives are met. It will particularly focus on ways to comment effectively on the historical and cultural context of the text.


  • Understanding what a high quality response looks like how to achieve it
  • Learning to structure effective 7 – 9 essays
  • Insight into what the examiner is ‘looking for’ in a top level response
  • Strategies for time management.


Introduction and Assessment Objectives

  • Introduction and re-cap of the Assessment Objectives for Shakespeare tasks (Romeo and Juliet) and Key Challenges of working with Macbeth.

Effective analysis to maximise your grades

  • How to approach the extract
  • Planning your writing
  • Writing an effective personal response that reaches the top grades
  • Answering the question that is actually being asked

Examiner examining examples and feeding back top tips

  • Looking at high quality examples, knowing what is needed to get the highest grades

Plenary and Questions



As a Team Leader for English Literature GCSE with a major examination board, Jo has 5 years’ experience leading a group of examiners through the marking process for papers focussing on Shakespeare and Poetry. She is an English Teacher with 20 years’ experience teaching GCSE English Language and Literature.  As a senior leader she has led on developing and improving the quality of teaching and learning in a range of schools, supporting staff to develop both subject knowledge and pedagogical approaches most likely to lead to improved outcomes.