GCSE English

Our guide to GCSE English.

What is GCSE English?

GCSE English is a qualification that is usually sat during school at ages 14-16. Adults do have the option to sit their exams later in life if they did not pass at school.

GCSE English is graded 9 to 4 (or A* to U on the old grading system)).

GCSE English is usually assessed over 4 exams. Two for GCSE English Language and two for GCSE English Literature.

Find out more about GCSE English by using the links below:


Why are GCSEs important?

GCSE English and maths are important as thy provide employers, further education providers and universities with proof that you have a certain level of ability.

A pass grade in English and maths is essential if you want to progress in your education and career. You may need GCSEs to:

  • Apply for a job that requires GCSE grade 9 to 4 (A* to C)
  • Access further education
  • Enrol on an access course
  • Enrol on an apprenticeship
  • Go to university

GCSE can be more difficult to study if you have already existing work commitments or a busy personal life. If you can’t commit to full-time study, Functional Skills might be a better option for you.

Find out more about Functional Skills using the link below.