A-level Spanish builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills gained at GCSE. It constitutes an integrated study with a focus on language, culture and society. It fosters a range of transferable skills including communication, critical thinking, research skills and creativity, which are valuable to the individual and society.
The content is suitable for students who wish to progress to employment or to further study, including a modern languages degree.
At Cecil Jones, we follow the AQA specification. Please click here to view the full specification.
Scheme of Assessment
Assessment is 100% examinations.
Paper 1: Listening, Reading and Writing
- Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes
- 100 marks
- 50% of A-level
- Listening (30 marks): All questions are in Spanish, to be answered with non-verbal responses or in Spanish.
- Reading (50 marks): All questions are in Spanish, to be answered with non-verbal responses or in Spanish.
- Translation into English (10 marks).
- Translation into Spanish (10 marks).
Paper 2: Writing
- Written exam: 2 hours
- 80 marks in total
- 20% of A-level
- One question in Spanish on a set text from a choice of two questions and one question in Spanish on a set film from a choice of two questions.
- Students are advised to write approximately 300 words per essay.
Paper 3: Speaking
- Oral exam: 21–23 minutes (including 5 minutes preparation time)
- 60 marks in total
- 30% of A-level
- Discussion of a sub-theme with the discussion based on a stimulus card (5–6 minutes). The student studies the card for 5 minutes at the start of the test (25 marks).
- Presentation (2 minutes) and discussion (9–10 minutes) of individual research project (35 marks).
Why should I choose A Level Spanish?
Being able to speak Spanish not only enables you to communicate with the 400 million other speakers worldwide, but it will bring other academic benefits as well. Moreover, Spanish is the third most commonly used language on the Internet.
As with learning any language, there are four key skills that you will gain with A-Level Spanish:
Speaking – The ability to speak Spanish will allow you to communicate with over 400 million people across the world, opening you to many different audiences.
Listening - Spanish listening skills will enable you to understand Spanish speakers as you’ll be able to pick up on the different subtleties of the language. You’ll also be able to watch Spanish films and TV shows, and listen to podcasts.
Reading – By learning Spanish at A-Level, you’ll be able to read Spanish books in their original format, as well as magazines, newspapers and online news sites. You’ll also be able to interpret road signs, alerts and notices.
Writing – With your A-Level knowledge, you’ll have the ability to write in many different styles, i.e. in emails, texts or essay format, and even write articles or blog posts.
Careers with Spanish
A Level Spanish Wider Reading List
Read any books about Spain that you can find, even if they are in English. Books like Dave Boling’s Guernica and Victoria Hislop’s The Return give you an insight into Spain at the time of the Civil War. Ian Gibson’s Fire in the Blood: The New Spain has an enormous amount of information on Spain over the last century up to modern times. The more you know, the easier it will be to come up with ideas in an oral, and understand reading and listening texts in an exam.
- Réquiem Por Un Campesino Español, Ramón J. Sender
- Las Bicicletas son Para el Verano, Fernando Fernán-Gomez
- Como Agua Para Chocolate, Laura Esquivel
- La Casa De Bernarda Alba, Federico García Lorca
- Crónica De Una Muerte Anunciada, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- El Coronel No Tiene Quien Le Escriba, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
- La Casa De Los Espiritus, Isabel Allende
- La Sombra Del Viento, Carlos Ruiz Zafón
- El Principe De La Niebla, Carlos Ruiz Zafón
- Las Rimas, Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer
- El Otro Arbol de Guernica, Luis de Castresana
- El Tiempo entre Costuras, María Dueñas
- La fiesta del chivo, Mario Vargas Llosa
Parallel & Bilingual novels
- Spanish Short Stories: Cuentos En Espanol (New Penguin Parallel Text Series):
- Spanish Short Stories: Cuentos Hispanicos: Volume 1 & 2 (Penguin Parallel Text Series)
- El Mundo http://www.elmundo.es/
- El Pais http://elpais.com/
- ABC https://www.abc.es
- La Vanguardia https://www.lavanguardia.com/
- BBC Mundo https://www.bbc.com/mundo
- 20 minutos
- hablacultura.com Other Sources of Information
- Cuentame (TVE)
- Amar en tiempos revueltos (TVE)
- Isabel (TVE) Films
- Maria, llena de sorpresas
- El Laberinto del Fauno
- Ocho Apellidos Catalanos
- Ocho Apellidos Vascos
- Las trece rosas
Radio and Podcasts
- Duolingo Podcast
- Ted en Español
- News in Slow Spanish
- Spanish Obsessed
- Radio Nacional de España