EAL: English as an Additional Language

EAL aims to meet the language needs of overseas students in preparation for the IGCSE exam English as a Second Language. In addition we aim to introduce students to English culture as well as embracing cultural and linguistic diversity to help students find their place in the world. Cross-curricular support for other subjects is included within our syllabus.

The course in Years 10 and 11 encourages the development of language skills in general and prepares students for the specific language tasks set in the examination which are useful skills for academic life both now and into the future. We emphasise the importance of reading the task, analysing what is required and providing the response as directed, together with high standards in presentation and grammar. A good grade in IGCSE is an indication that a student has reached an intermediate level of English and should be able to cope with the language aspect of most A levels.

Reading and Writing

Students read a variety of written material to look for specific information and to identify key points and arguments. It is essential that students respond as instructed in order to maximise their achievement. Some tasks require short answers, whilst others are limited by a word count. Students should be able to develop both a receptive and productive vocabulary appropriate to the demands of their GCSE courses. We also encourage reading for pleasure.

Students should be able to write long and short essays. Tasks typically require a response to a specific situation, or a more general piece of writing and may be either formal or informal. There may be errors but these will not obscure meaning. Good presentation and the correct use of grammar, spelling and punctuation as well as a wide vocabulary are all important.


Students should be able to listen and respond to material, with or without visual aids, and respond appropriately in both exams and class activities. Answers may be one word or a brief phrase.


Students should be able to sustain a basic conversation/argument in class on curriculum or general themes in Years 10 and 11 or amongst their peer group socially. They should be able to comfortably describe, compare and explain their ideas and opinions in response to a question or suggestion on any topic.


Students are usually entered for Cambridge IGCSE English as a Second Language in Year 11.

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