Welcome! These pages provide detailed readings of the poems selected by the WJEC for the GCSE in English Literature component on Welsh Writing in English (for the years 2020, 2021 and 2022). You will find detailed discussions of each of the set poems, along with some pictures and links.  Helpsheets can be downloaded as individual PDFs or all 15 helpsheets can be downloaded as a single PDF file. Click on the poem titles below or navigate via the left-hand menu.

These readings are aimed at teachers doing the background reading in preparation for teaching, but can be viewed and used by anyone. 

NB: These resources are not endorsed by the WJEC and are not intended to replace any of the teaching resources created by the WJEC. 

These pages were commissioned and edited by CREW, the Centre for Research into the English Literature and Language of Wales.


GCSE Set Poems

Information for Teachers

The fifteen helpsheets provide a broad introduction and literary analysis without specific reference to the theme selected by the WJEC for 2020.  The helpsheets are intended for teachers who wish for a speedy but in depth immersion in the poems before they turn to prepare their own teaching materials or to make use of the classroom resources on offer from the WJEC.

Information for Students

These helpsheets are in-depth but general critiques of the poems. They provide a general reading of the poem aimed at teachers.  Students may gain insights into how to compose critical prose and gain good understanding of the techniques, themes and imagery of the poem which could help you develop your own ideas.  Remember - your coursework needs to be your own, so by all means use these for inspiration, but following them too exactly will not help you in your assessment.  First, examiners will recognise over-reliance on existing sources and, second, they are not focussed on the chosen theme and contain additional material such as contexts which are not assessed.