Understanding Literacy for GCSEs: Teaching disciplinary literacy - Merseyside

Secondary pupil taking exam

The reformed GCSEs include literacy requirements which can present a challenge to non-specialists. In line with recommendations from Improving Literacy in Secondary Schools (EEF, July 2019), this workshop supports teachers to prioritise and teach "disciplinary literacy" across all subjects, with a focus on extended writing and SPaG.

"There is no significant literacy development in the classroom without substantial professional development in the staffroom."

Stephen Tierney (2020), Read All About It: Why reading is key to GCSE success, GL Assessment


  • Understand how to analyse the literacy demands of your own subject
  • Examine mark schemes from a range of subjects and have a go at modelling extended writing
  • Transform informal, speech–like writing to a more formal written style
  • Learn to highlight specific language features and appropriate academic register that enable students to write like subject experts
  • Explore reciprocal reading and the Directed Activities Related to Texts (DARTS) approach


£175 for the first participant per school and £125 for every colleague you bring.

Attendance now includes one year's membership of the National Literacy Trust giving all teachers in the school access to a range of resources. Existing member schools receive a £25 discount per booking.

Disadvantaged students are often those most vulnerable to issues around literacy, meaning our courses are a great use of pupil premium funding, as recommended by the EEF.

Skills Academy

We offer schools who attend our training a £25 discount on purchases of Skills Academy, a 10-week intervention programme that teaches five core reading comprehension skills using engaging texts and online challenges. Skills Academy also includes a year's membership of the National Literacy Trust. If you would like to take up this offer please tick the box in the form below.

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