International Education homepage

FAQs for IGCSE Literature in English (0475 & 0992)

These syllabuses replace Cambridge IGCSE Literature (English) (0486) from 2020 onward. Past papers and other resources for Cambridge IGCSE Literature (English) (0486) are still largely applicable for teaching Cambridge IGCSE Literature in English (0475) and Cambridge IGCSE Literature in English (0992).


Can a candidate do ALL passage based questions or ALL essay based questions in Component 1 and Component 2?

Candidates taking Component 1 must answer one question from Section A (Poetry) and one question from Section B (Prose). There is no requirement to answer both a passage-based and an essay question.

Candidates sitting Component 2 must answer one passage-based question and one essay question.

Why don't the Specimen Papers contain questions on the Set Texts?

As set texts on Cambridge IGCSE Literature syllabuses are updated regularly, we do not issue new specimen materials for each examination series or set text. New materials will only be published if there is a change to the assessment or syllabus structure. The specimen papers available on the relevant subject pages of the public website and School Support Hub are intended for use for all examination series’ and may not reflect current text lists.

These specimen papers are for illustrative purposes to give a sense of the types of questions that will appear in live material. From these, teachers and candidates are able to identify the typical structure and formulation of examination questions in IGCSE Literature.

In addition to Specimen papers, past examination papers are available on the School Support Hub to give a wider sense of the style of questions that may be asked in an IGCSE Literature examination. Teachers can also discuss and share their own mock examination questions on specific Set Texts on the IGCSE Literature forum on the School Support Hub.

Can dictionaries be used in the examination?

Simple translation dictionaries are allowed unless specifically prohibited in the syllabus. 

What are the Set Texts for 2020-2021?

Set texts may change from one year of examination to the next. Where a syllabus is published covering a number of examination years within a single document, set texts may still change from the first year to the second. It is essential that teachers read the whole syllabus before they begin teaching, and that they check the set text list for the year in which their candidates will take their examinations. Please refer to the relevant section of the syllabus document that covers your year/s of examination for set text lists for individual components.

Can any editions of set texts be taken into the open-book examination for Component 3?

The syllabus provides the following advice in Sections 3 and 4:

Requirements: set texts in open-book examinations
Candidates may take their clean copy set texts into the exam room, but these texts must not contain personal annotations, highlighting or underlining. They are not permitted to use editions that include extensive study notes or face-paging translations or explanations. Editions with brief introductions, conclusions and foot/end notes are permitted, though candidates must not make use of these additional notes during the examination.

Resources: set text editions for classroom use
There are many editions of set texts available, with newer editions sometimes including notes (often displayed on facing pages), illustrations, activities and further resources which make these texts particularly useful and user friendly for classroom use.
If you are purchasing texts that are intended for both classroom and examination use, we would advise that you avoid editions that include extensive study notes and page-facing translations.”

Do candidates have to study all set texts listed in the syllabus?

Candidates are not expected to study all set texts listed in the syllabus. Though there is no limit to how many texts can be studied, a typical candidate will study between three and five texts in total depending on the combination of components taken.

  • Component 1 – Poetry and Prose

Candidates answer questions on two set texts, one from section A (Poetry) and one from section B (Prose). In section A, a set text constitutes 15 poems from a collection and there are three collections to choose from. Candidates should be prepared to answer on the 15 poems listed in one of the three collections. In Section B, a set text constitutes EITHER one novel OR a collection of 10 short stories.

  • Component 2 – Drama

Candidates answer questions on two set texts. A set text constitutes one of the plays listed in the syllabus.

  • Component 3 - Drama (Open-Text)

Candidates answer a question on one set text. A set text constitutes one of the plays listed in the syllabus.

  • Component 4 - Unseen

There are no set texts for Component 4.

Where can we find more resources responses for this syllabus?

Resources such as specimen papers, schemes of work, Example Candidate Responses and Learner guides are available on our School Support Hub. Teachers can also access and share teaching resources, ideas and questions on our subject forum, found under the ‘Community’ tab on the School Support Hub.

Additional resources can be purchased via the 'Published Resources' section of the public website or via our Resource Plus package for 0475/0992. The content in this package is relevant to all Level 2 Literature syllabuses, though teachers using it should also ensure that they read closely the syllabus document relating to their specific course. This package includes a range of useful and interactive resources for teachers and candidates of IGCSE and O level Literature.

For more information and materials on this syllabus, please visit our School Support Hub here.

Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request