IB Language and Literature SL is a yearlong course
offered to all juniors and seniors, including IB
diploma candidates, who would take this class as
an extra subject for their program. This course
represents a new way of looking at language in
action: key aims of the course are to encourage
students to question the meaning generated by
language and texts and to become aware of the role
of each text’s wider context in shaping its meaning.
The textual focus of the course is evenly split
between fiction and non-fiction, written and visual
texts. A wider aim of the course is the development
of an understanding of “critical literacy” in
students of the course. Students examine how
language develops in specific cultural contexts,
how it impacts the world, and how language shapes
identity. Students consider the way language is used
in the media, including newspapers, magazines,
the internet, social networking, mobile telephony,
radio, and film. Through the close reading of
literary texts, students are able to consider the
relationship between literature and issues at large,
such as power and identity. By looking closely
at the detail of literary texts, students develop
an awareness of their rich complexities and the
intricacies of their construction.
Instructional Methods / Assessments:
The course includes a significant composition
element in addition to literary analyses, including
contextual analyses, essays, formal papers and
comparative analyses. Other assessments include
classroom discussion and oral presentations.
Recommended Background for Success:
Students must be curious and motivated readers,
writers and thinkers. They must be interested in
looking closely at language in traditional and
nontraditional forms. Students must be willing
to work hard and participate fully in classroom
discussions.

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