Spanish A Level

Head of Department
Mrs K Waters

Why choose the subject?
Globalisation, the ease of international travel and technology are bringing more of the world within our reach and the ability to communicate as well as understand and appreciate different cultures is an invaluable skill which is highly valued by employers. The A level Spanish course allows you to develop an advanced level knowledge and understanding of the Spanish language, the culture of Spain and Latin American countries as well as many transferable study skills. Languages combine well with virtually any subject for further study. The range of combined degrees and further education courses involving a language is limitless – from Accountancy with Russian to Theatre Studies with Italian.

A level Spanish is a 2 Year course

Who is eligible?
GCSE grade 6 or above in Spanish is a minimum requirement.

Qualification Type: A Level only (2 year)

Specification: Year 2024/2026 Advanced Level Award Examination Board: Edexcel

Theme 1: La evolución de la sociedad española Theme 1 is set in the context of Spain only. • El cambio en la estructura familiar • El mundo laboral • El impacto turístico en España

Theme 2: La cultura política y artística en el mundo de habla española Theme 2 is set in the context of Spanish-speaking countries and communities. • La música • Los medios de comunicación • Los festivales y las tradiciones

Theme 3: La inmigración y la sociedad multicultural española Theme 3 is set in the context of Spain only. • La inmigración históricamente y contemporáneamente • La integración y el multiculturalismo

Theme 4: La dictadura franquista y la transición a la democracia Theme 4 is set in the context of Spain only. • La dictadura franquista • El paso de la dictadura a la democracia

Paper 1. Listening, reading and translation
Written examination: 2 hours 40% of qualification (80 marks)
Section A: Listening (30 marks)
This section will be made up of spoken passages covering different registers and types, including authentic communication involving one or male and female speakers. Sources will include material from online media.
Section B: Reading (30 marks)
The reading section will be made up of texts containing both factual and abstract content and will be authentic or adapted from authentic sources. The texts will include contemporary, historical, literary, fiction and non-fiction, written for different purposes and audiences.
Section C: translation into English (20 marks)
The content for the translation will be taken from one of the four themes.

Paper 2. Written response to works and translation
Written examination: 2 hours and 40 minutes 30% of qualification (120 marks)
Section A: Translation into Spanish (20 marks)
Students are given an unseen text in English to translate into Spanish
Section B: Written response to works (literary texts) (50 marks)
Section C: Written response to works (films) (50 marks)
Candidates must write an extended response in Spanish on either 1 literary text and a film or 2 literary texts from the prescribed literary texts and films.
There will be a choice of two questions for each literary text and film. Students will give a critical and analytical response by selecting relevant material from the works.
Candidates will be expected to present and justify points of view, develop arguments, draw conclusions based on understanding and evaluate issues, themes and cultural and social contexts related to the works studied. Candidates can write 300-350 words although all the essay will be marked regardless of length.

Paper 3: Speaking
Internally conducted and externally assessed, 30% of the qualification (72 marks)
Total assessment time: between 27 and 30 minutes, which includes 15 minutes of formal preparation time.
Task 1 – discussion on a theme based on a stimulus containing 2 different statements.
Task 2 part 1 – independent research presentation, a summary of at least 2 of the written sources they have used for their research.
Task 2 part 2 – students answer questions on their presentation and then have a wider discussion on their research.

Learning a language to a high standard is an enriching activity; developing academic rigour, attention to detail, sensitivity to nuance, developing thinking skills and improving communication skills.

British students who speak a foreign language to this standard are increasingly rare. An A-Level in a foreign language will often give you an advantage in the jobs market. Universities look upon a foreign language at a good grade as indicative of academic ambition and ability. Foreign languages complement many other subjects and a number of students have successfully combined them with the sciences recently. They are available at many universities as an accompaniment to other, unrelated, subjects.

They are important in their own right, giving you the ability to communicate with other people in Europe, to appreciate other cultures and to widen your horizons. They will accompany through your life and be your flexible friend, surprising you throughout life with their usefulness.

This course is commonly studied with:
As an A-Level subject, Spanish complements several other A-Level courses, including French, German, biology, English, computer science and design technology.

Future Careers:
Translation, business, writing, teaching, diplomatic service officer, international aid worker.