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The syllabus enables learners to read, interpret and evaluate texts through the study of literature in English. Learners develop an understanding of literal meaning, relevant contexts and of the deeper themes or attitudes that may be expressed. Through their studies, they learn to recognise and appreciate the ways in which writers use English to achieve a range of effects, and will be able to present an informed, personal response to the material they have studied.
The syllabus also encourages the exploration of wider and universal issues, promoting learners' better understanding of themselves and of the world around them.
The syllabus year refers to the year in which the examination will be taken.
We revise our qualifications regularly to make sure they continue to meet the needs of learners, schools and higher education institutions around the world and reflect current thinking. Please see the 2023-2025 syllabus document for full details on the changes.
The updated syllabus is for examination from June 2023 onwards. Please see the 2023-2025 syllabus above for full details.
We are developing a comprehensive range of materials to help you teach the updated syllabus. These resources will be available from June 2021 onwards (before first teaching) through our School Support Hub and include:
Face-to-face and online training will be available. For up-to-date information, visit our Events and training calendar.
Cambridge IGCSE and O Level Literature in English (Hodder Education)
Provide students with a clear structured route through the syllabus, with opportunities to assess their own progress, as well as reflect on and discuss new ideas and concepts.
Read more on the Hodder Education website
Cambridge IGCSE and O Level Literature in English (Cambridge University Press)
Stimulating literary material from around the world encourages your students to enjoy studying and analysing literature. Develop your students’ informed personal responses through well-known texts such as 'Ozymandias', 'Blackberry-Picking' and 'Odour of Chrysanthemums'.
Read more on the Cambridge University Press website
Cambridge IGCSE Literature in English (Collins)
Introduce students to the fundamental skills and concepts of literary study and allow them to apply those skills to poetry, prose and drama. This resource also supports the Cambridge IGCSE World Literature syllabus.
Read more on the Collins website
Find out more about our range of English syllabuses to suit every level and ambition.
For some subjects, we publish grade descriptions to help understand the level of performance candidates’ grades represent.
We paused the publication of grade descriptions in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the temporary changes to the awarding standard in 2020, 2021 and 2022.
As the awarding standard has now returned to the pre-pandemic standard, we are working to produce up-to-date grade descriptions for most of our general qualifications. These will be based on the awarding standards in place from June 2023 onwards.
Teachers at registered Cambridge schools can unlock over 30 000 teaching and learning resources to help plan and deliver Cambridge programmes and qualifications, including Schemes of work, Example candidate responses, Past papers, Specimen paper answers and more.
Register your interest in becoming a Cambridge School
Sign up for updates about changes to the syllabuses you teach