Literature in English

Access the current Literature in English WAEC Syllabus.
Below is this year’s Waec Syllabus for Literature in English. Note that this syllabus is for both internal and external candidates.
View the Literature in English Waec Syllabus as text below Or download the syllabus as a PDF below;
WAEC Syllabus Literature in English

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Category Textbooks
African Prose Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta
Unexpected Joy by Alex Agyei-Agyiri (2018 Edition)
Non-African Prose Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Shakespearean Text A Midsummer Night’s Dream
African Drama Let me Die ALone by John K. Kargo
The Lion and the Jewel by Wole Soyinka
Non-African Drama Fences by August Wilson
Look Back in Anger by John Osborne
African Poetry “Raider of the Treasure Trove” by Lade Qosrnu
“Black Woman” by Leopold Sedar Senghor
“The Grieved Lands” by Agostinho Neto
“The Song of the Women of my Land” by Oumar Farouk Sesay
“A Government Driver on his Retirement” by Onu Chibuike
Non-African Poetry “The Good Morrow” by John Donne
“Caged Bird” by Maya Angelou
“The Journey of the Magi” by T.S. Eliot
“Do not Go Gentle into the Good Night” by Dylan Thomas
“Binsey Poplars (Felled 1879)” by G.M. Hopkins
“Bat” by David H. Lawrence


(i)  The Unseen Prose passage for Paper 1 shall be about 120 – 150 words long.

(ii) Only context questions shall be set on the Shakespearean text. The context questions will test such items as theme, characterization, style and setting in the Shakespearean text.

(iii) No essay question shall be set on the Shakespearean text.

Scheme of Examination

There will be three papers – Papers 1, 2 and 3. Papers 1 and 2 will be a composite paper and taken at one sitting.

Paper 1 will be a multiple-choice objective test. It will contain fifty questions distributed as follows:

  • Twenty questions on General Knowledge of Literature;
  • Five questions on an unseen prose passage;
  • Five questions on an unseen poem;
  • Twenty context questions on the prescribed Shakespearean text.

Candidates will be required to answer all the questions within 1 hour for 50 marks.

Paper 2 will be an essay test with two sections, Sections A and B. Section A will be on African Prose and Section B on Non-African Prose.

Two essay questions will be set on each of the novels prescribed for study. Candidates shall be required to answer one question only from each section within 1 hour 15 minutes for 50 marks.

Paper 3 will be on the Drama and Poetry components of the syllabus. It will be put into  four sections, Sections A, B., C and D, as follows:

  • Section A:  African Drama
  • Section B:  Non-African Drama
  • Section C:  African Poetry
  • Section D:  Non-African Poetry

There shall be two questions on each of the prescribed drama texts for Sections A and B. There shall also be two questions for each of the poetry sections, i.e., Sections C and D.

Candidates shall be required to answer one question from each of the sections, making a total of four questions. The paper will take 2 hours and 30 minutes to complete and will carry 100 marks.

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