Are you captivated by the world of literature? Are you ready to embark on a thrilling journey of intellectual exploration, where creativity meets challenge in a vibrant learning environment? If the prospect of delving into novels, plays, and poetry beyond the typical English class curriculum excites you, then the AP English Literature & Composition course awaits your enrollment! 


This college-level, 12-credit program is not just an ordinary English class—it's an immersive experience crafted to mirror the intensity of an introductory-level university Literature course. Aligned with The College Board's rigorous standards, the course invites students to engage in the meticulous study and critical analysis of representative works spanning various genres and time periods. Successful completion of this program not only earns you credit for AP Literature & Composition but also for Literary Studies 12 and English Studies 12. In May, students have the option of taking the College Board AP Literature exam at the cost of approximately $130 CAD. If a student takes this exam and achieves a high enough score, they can earn three university credits.  


At the heart of AP Literature & Composition is the objective of fostering mature habits of critical thinking as independent readers and writers. Through intentional and thorough exploration of poetry, prose, and drama, students develop the skills to analyze literature with depth and nuance. Be prepared for a substantial amount of independent reading and study as this course thrives on active participation and lively classroom discussions, providing a platform for assessing and refining your ideas. 


While this course is a haven for literature enthusiasts, it requires a commitment to hard work and dedication. We recommend a background in Literary Studies 10/Composition 10 and/or English First Peoples Literary Studies with Elaborations 11. To ensure success in this challenging endeavor, we advise that students have achieved a score of Proficient (B/73%) or Extending (A/86%) in their previous English courses.  


Embark on this literary odyssey, where the joy of reading meets the thrill of intellectual challenge. AP English Literature & Composition awaits those ready to embrace the rewarding journey of literary exploration and critical analysis. See Ms. Shirlaw for more details!  


The following statements come from former AP Literature students: 

“[AP Lit] was the highlight of my grad year. Aside from the interesting and engaging material we read, we had SO much fun. Yes, this course is a lot of work, but the class really feels like a family by the end of the year. I recommend this to anyone that loves books, plays, poetry, and reading in general.” 

  • C, 4th year Bachelor of Arts student, UBC 


“AP Lit is challenging but manageable. We read so many cool novels and poems that I never would have read in a regular English class. I got to university and was already familiar with a lot of the material and concepts.” 

  • A, 2nd year Bachelor of Education, SFU 


“This course is largely discussion-based, which helped prepare me for lecture-style university courses. I loved being able to talk about the books we read with others who were as passionate about the content as I was. The agree/disagree discussions were so interesting and thought provoking.” 

  • L, 2nd year Bachelor of Arts student, UFV


“I walked into English 105 at UFV and felt like I already knew what I was doing. Ms. Shirlaw really stressed having a ‘line of reasoning’ in our essays and taught us to write quickly and succinctly. I am an infinitely better student for having taken AP Lit. This course definitely isn’t just for English majors.”  

  • S, 3rd year Bachelor of Science student, UFV 


“This course opened my eyes to the viewpoints and life experiences of others in a way that no other course has done since. Understanding literature helped me learn how to analyze and understand life.” 

  • L, 4th year Music student, Grant MacEwan University 


We usually read through five or six major works throughout the year. The following works have been studied in GW Graham’s AP Literature program over the last several years 


Atwood, Margaret- The Handmaid’s Tale 

Bronte, Charlotte- Jane Eyre 

Chaucer, Geoffrey- The Canterbury Tales 

Fitzgerald, F. Scott- The Great Gatsby 

Golding, William- Lord of the Flies 

Gyasi, Yaa- Homegoing 

Kafka, Franz- The Metamorphosis 

MacEwan, Ian- Atonement 

McCarthy, Cormac- The Road 

Orwell, George- 1984 

Owens, Delia- Where the Crawdads Sing 

Shakespeare, William- Hamlet 

Shakespeare, William- King Lear 

Shakespeare, William- Macbeth 

Shakespeare, William- Othello 

Shakespeare, William- Taming of the Shew 

Shelley, Mary- Frankenstein 

Ward, Jessmyn- Sing Unburied Sing 

Wilde, Oscar- The Picture of Dorian Gray