The study of English contributes to the development of literate individuals capable of critical and creative thinking, aesthetic appreciation and creativity. This study also develops students’ ability to create and analyse texts, moving from interpretation to reflection and critical analysis.

Through engagement with texts from the contemporary world and from the past, and using texts from Australia and from other cultures, students studying English become confident, articulate and critically aware communicators and further develop a sense of themselves, their world and their place within it. English helps equip students for participation in a democratic society and the global community.

This study will build on the learning established through AusVELS English in the key discipline concepts of language, literature and literacy, and the language modes of listening, speaking, reading, viewing and writing.

Units of Study

Unit 1: Reading and Creating Texts / Analysing and Presenting Argument

Students explore how meaning is created in a text. Students identify, discuss and analyse decisions authors have made. They explore how authors use structures, conventions and language to represent characters, settings, events, explore themes, and build the world of the text for the reader. Students investigate how the meaning of a text is affected by the contexts in which it is created and read.

Students focus on the analysis and construction of texts that attempt to influence an audience.

Students read a range of texts that attempt to position audiences in a variety of ways. They explore the use of language for persuasive effect and the structure and presentation of argument. They consider different types of persuasive language, including written, spoken, and visual, and combinations of these, and how language is used to position the reader.

Unit 2: Reading and Comparing Texts / Analysing and Presenting Argument

Students explore how comparing texts can provide a deeper understanding of ideas, issues and themes. They investigate how the reader’s understanding of one text is broadened and deepened when considered in relation to another text. Students explore how features of texts, including structures, conventions and language convey ideas, issues and themes that reflect and explore the world and human experiences, including historical and social contexts. Students practise their listening and speaking skills through discussion, developing their ideas and thinking in relation to the texts studied. enous languages. Students consider the cultural repercussions of the spread of English.

Students build on their understanding of argument and the use of persuasive language in texts that attempt to influence an audience. Students consider a range of texts where the primary purpose is to convince an audience to share a point of view. They develop an understanding of how texts are constructed for specific persuasive effects by identifying and discussing the impact of argument and persuasive language used to influence an audience.

Unit 3: Reading and Creating Texts / Analysing Argument

In this area of study students identify, discuss and analyse how the features of selected texts create meaning and how they influence interpretation. In identifying and analysing explicit and implied ideas and values in texts, students examine the ways in which readers are invited to respond to texts. They develop and justify their own detailed interpretations of texts.

Students prepare sustained analytical interpretations of selected texts, discussing how features of the texts create meaning and using textual evidence to support their responses. They use planning and drafting to test and clarify their ideas, and editing to produce clear and coherent expression. They craft their writing for convincing and effective presentation.

Students present sustained creative responses to selected texts, demonstrating their understanding of the world of the texts and how texts construct meaning. In developing a creative response they explore issues of purpose and audience and make key choices about structure, conventions and language. They develop a credible and effective voice and style and use the chosen features of the selected text, for example characters, narrative or dialogue, to offer an interpretation of the selected text. They produce and share drafts, practising the skills of revision, editing and refining for stylistic and imaginative effect.

Unit 4: Reading and Comparing Texts / Presenting Argument

In this area of study students explore the meaningful connections between two texts. They analyse texts, including the interplay between character and setting, voice and structure, and how ideas, issues and themes are conveyed. By comparing the texts, they gain a deeper understanding of the ideas, issues and themes that reflect the world and human experiences.

Students produce a written analysis comparing selected texts, discussing important similarities and differences and exploring how the texts deal with similar or related ideas, issues or themes from different perspectives to reflect particular values. Through discussion and preparatory drafting they compare in detail the ideas encountered in the texts and the features of the texts on which the comparison is based. They use planning and drafting to test and clarify their ideas, and edit for clear and coherent expression of them. They apply the conventions of written analysis and textual evidence. They draft, revise and edit for clarity, coherence and technical accuracy, and refine for effective presentation of the insights gained through comparison.

In this area of study students build their understanding of both the analysis and construction of texts that attempt to influence audiences. They use their knowledge of argument and persuasive language as a basis for the development of their own persuasive texts in relation to a topical issue that has appeared in the media since 1 September of the previous year.

This area of study focuses on the construction of persuasive texts. Students use their understanding of argument and language as the basis for the development of an oral presentation of their points of view. Students draw on their knowledge to express their viewpoints through arguments and persuasive language selected specifically to position an audience.

Example pathways
  • Journalism
  • Writing
  • Education
  • Arts
  • Media
  • Communications
  • Law
  • Politics

This is a guide only, please see the careers team for pathway planning advice.


There are no prerequisites for entry to Units 1, 2 and 3. Students must undertake Unit 3 prior to undertaking Unit 4.

Unit 3 and 4 Assessment

Percentage contributions to the study score in VCE English are as follows:

  • Unit 3 School-assessed Coursework: 25 per cent.
  • Unit 4 School-assessed Coursework: 25 per cent.
  • End-of-year examination: 50 per cent.