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A Program of the Virginia Department of Education

01004 English 12

Field of Study

English 12 is a yearlong course that will enable students to become skilled readers of a wide range of literature, including prose, poetry, and short stories.

Material Covered

The English 12 course prepares students for future academic and vocational success. Students write informative, expository, and persuasive/argumentative papers. Additionally, they produce a well-documented research paper. During the writing process, students demonstrate their understanding of grammatical conventions and practice techniques for improving their writing style and fluency. A survey of British literature helps the students relate to the political, social, and philosophical perspectives of each historical period. As students preview the social, historical, and literary elements of each time period, they begin to see how the British and their language have influenced the lives and literature of many people.

Student Expectations

Students will demonstrate the ability to respond to a text by employing personal experiences and critical analysis. They will compose in a variety of modes by developing content, employing specific forms, and selecting language appropriate for a particular audience and purpose. Students will comprehend language by applying the conventions of Standard English in writing and speaking. Student will evaluate the content, organization, and language use of texts.

Additional Information

In this course, students will compile a writing portfolio that will assist them with college applications and job searching, including a resume, college application essay, cover letter, etc.

Related Requirements

Students will complete the twelfth-grade Standards of Learning, wherein they will use organizational skills, audience awareness, appropriate vocabulary and grammar, and verbal and nonverbal presentation skills to plan and deliver an effective formal oral presentation. Students will use a variety of listening skills to evaluate oral presentations. In addition, students will examine media messages for their objectivity, subjectivity, and effects on the audience.


  • Completion of English 9, 10, and 11

Course Texts and Materials


  • Hamlet by William Shakespeare
  • Lord of the Flies by William Golding
  • One “personal choice” novel from the following list:
    • Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
    • Frankenstein – Mary Shelley
    • Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
    • Emma – Jane Austen
    • The Picture of Dorian Gray – Oscar Wilde
    • Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
    • Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
    • 1984 – George Orwell


  • Beowulf
  • The Canterbury Tales by William Chaucer
  • Film version of Hamlet (1996, Kenneth Branagh)

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