Home > EOH > e-Open House > Academic Highlights  > Subjects > English Language and Linguistics

English Language and Linguistics



English Language and Linguistics (ELL) is offered as an H2 humanities subject. In the course of the two years, students are brought through a journey of exploration of the nature of the English language and how language varies according to user and use. Through application of linguistic tools of analysis, they will examine the English language in its contexts of audience, purpose, subject matter, genre and modes of communication. They will understand how through discourse, meaning is constructed, manipulated and challenged, and develop a critical awareness of how language is used to encode identity, relationships and ideology.

Among the knowledge and skills to be developed are the following where students will be able to:
  • Analyse and evaluate how writers and speakers use language in context
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the features of different genres
  • Explain how meaning is constructed
  • Adapt texts for a variety of audiences and purposes and comment on their linguistic choices
  • Discuss variation and change in the English language including the role of Singlish, English as a world language and language in the digital age
  • Evaluate how texts produce representations of identity such as gender, age, ethnicity, nationality and how these representations reflect dynamics of power, dominance and subordination
  • Comment on how language shapes our perspectives in various discourses including the media, politics, institutions, business, and advertising


ACJC is one of three junior colleges in Singapore accorded the status of an English Language Elective Programme (ELEP) centre. Students admitted to the programme may apply for the MOE English Language Elective Scholarship offered to outstanding students at ELEP centres to pursue their passion for the English language.

At ACJC, the ELL programme emphasises learner-centredness where students are encouraged to participate actively in task-based activities in engaged learning alongside their peers. To promote active learning, opportunities for reflection, research, enquiry, and questioning of assumptions, ideas and norms about language issues are built into lessons.

The academic rigour of the subject in ACJC is matched by an equally vibrant range of English language-related programmes and CCA activities which students can participate in. Among these are ELL work attachments in the media industry, legal firms, established commercial organisations, statutory boards and tertiary institutions where students can put the linguistic skills they have learnt into practice. Students may also develop their oratorical and writing skills in a diverse range of activities in the college from debates and rhetoric, writing of student blogs and college newsletters, to radio and film productions.

Pre-requisites to offer ELL at ACJC:
  • Good English Language Grades (A1 or A2)
  • Passing of the ELL selection test


Learning is situated in the exploration of authentic contexts of use where students learn how purpose, audience, social context and culture can determine appropriateness of language use. Lessons are built on a spiral progression where knowledge and skills are developed at increasing levels of difficulty. This allows students to revisit their learning while they hone their skills to attain yet higher levels of sophistication and mastery. To truly appreciate the dynamic nature of language, students are encouraged to make connections between linguistic tools, concepts and issues in the study of the English language.

Students are tested on two papers which are taken on two different sittings on different days.
  • Paper 1 ( 3 hour) comprises two sections. The task in Section A (Analysis) requires systematic analysis of the various linguistic constituents of a set of written, spoken and multi-modal material and their relevant contextual factors. Section B (Adaptive writing and commentary) is an adaptive writing task requiring students to adapt the given material to another genre with specification for a particular audience and purpose. Accompanying the adaptation is an evaluation where students discuss and justify the linguistic choices of their adaptation.
  • Paper 2 ( 3 hour) comprises two sections, Section A (Language Variation and Change) and Section B (Language, Culture and Identity) where students answer three essay questions, with at least one question from each section. Each task is linked to source material accompanying each question.

The syllabus may be accessed at the following link