English - Higher Level

  Equivalency Testing for Career Development is the examination board and awarding body.

Higher Level English correspondence course
This Higher Level course is designed for students who need an equivalent qualification at GCSE level. It is designed to be completed over a duration of up to 12 weeks and comprises 12 assignments. Approximate self-study time of about 4 hours per week is required.

Students should revise the Equivalency Testing syllabus prior to booking an examination. An outline of topics covered is provided below.

Course materials
An assignment booklet and revision guide is provided to any student who chooses to complete the course.

Course tutor
All coursework is marked by a specialist tutor who will give constructive feedback where necessary. Contact with tutors is by email only.


Higher Level English Examination
The examination is 2 hours in duration. Students should spend no more than 40 minutes on each of the three sections listed here:

Section A: Reading (to show comprehension and understanding)
Section B: Writing (appropriate use of language,  grammar, spelling and punctuation)
Section C: Poetry (analysis and comparison of two unseen poems)

Examination materials or equipment
Pencils, pens, a pencil sharpener and an eraser.  Online examinations require a PC or laptop with working camera.

Examination grading
Students need to achieve a Grade 4 level to pass the examination (however your chosen university may require you to achieve a Grade 5 pass).

Grade 1 (25% to 34%)
Grade 2 (35% to 44%)
Grade 3 (45% to 54%)
Grade 4 pass   (55% to 64%)
Grade 5 pass   (65% to 74%) 
Grade 6 pass   (75% to 84%)  
Grade 7 pass   (85% to 100%)


Topics covered in the syllabus:

  1. Technical writing skills: good sentence and paragraph construction to aid clarity, purpose and effect. Appropriate use of grammar, punctuation,  spelling and vocabulary.
  2. Creative writing skills: Produce a written text for a specific audience and purpose. Effective and coherent use of standard English. Communicate clearly, effectively and imaginatively, selecting and adapting tone and style.
  3. Comprehension:
  4. Read texts in order to consider how established writers use narrative and descriptive techniques.
  5. Explain, comment and analyse how writers use language and structure to achieve effects and influence readers.
  6. Compare of how different writers convey ideas and perspectives.
  7. Compare and contrast two texts in order to consider how each represents a perspective or viewpoint to influence the reader.
  8. Understand the meaning of the selected poems, demonstrating knowledge of most common poetic techniques.
  9. Identify and interpret explicit and implicit information and ideas.
  10. Evaluate texts critically, supporting with appropriate references.


There are no prerequisites for starting this course, however a reasonable level of proficiency in literacy skills is assumed.


When can I take the exam?

New dates and times for all exams are updated regularly, check back to see new dates, times and venues.

Coursework and Examination

Students can choose our combined ‘home study and exam’ option in the core subjects of Maths, English, Biology and Combined Science. This flexible approach means home study coursework can be completed any time, and examinations are scheduled on a weekly basis.

Email info@equivalencytesting.com to request full details on the subject you would like to study.

Examination only

If you have completed the course, or you want to choose an ‘exam only’ apply here to sit an examination.



Yes! You will need to provied a passport or driving licence prior to the examination, otherwise you may not be able to sit the exam.

There are no age restrictions.

You can sit the examination more than once.  However, every time you sit an examination you have to pay the full price.

You can sit an examination at one of our designated places or an examination paper could be sent to the school you are currently working in. This is only with the agreement of the Head or Deputy Head Teacher or equivalent.

Contact us to arrange this

An exam only has a £30 deposit, and the rest is payable on the day. The deposit is non-refundable.

All courses must be paid in full. No monthly terms or part payments.