JAMB Syllabus for Literature in English & Textbooks 2024/2025

The JAMB Literature in English syllabus is the topic you must study for the UTME examination.

Using the JAMB syllabus to study for your examination is the open secret to getting a high score.

The JAMB Literature in English syllabus also contains objectives for each topic. These objectives are what you must know for every topic you study.

This post contains the complete list of topics in the JAMB Literature in English syllabus.

Let me know in the comment section if you have any questions.

JAMB Syllabus for Literature in English

Drama

Objectives

Candidates should be able to:

  1. Identify the various types of drama.
  2. Analyze the contents of the various types of drama.
  3. Compare and contrast the features of different dramatic types.
  4. Demonstrate adequate knowledge of dramatic techniques used in each prescribed text.
  5. Differentiate between styles of selected playwrights.
  6. Determine the theme of any prescribed text.
  7. Identify the plot of the play.
  8. Apply the lessons of the play to everyday living.
  9. Identify the spatial and temporal setting of the play.

Content

  1. Types:
    • Tragedy
    • Comedy
    • Tragicomedy
    • Melodrama
    • Farce
    • Opera etc.
  2. Dramatic Techniques
    • Characterization
    • Dialogue
    • Flashback
    • Mime
    • Costume
    • Music/Dance
    • Décor/scenery
    • Acts/Scenes
    • Soliloquy/aside
    • Lighting etc.
  3. Interpretation of the Prescribed Texts
    • Theme
    • Plot
    • Socio-political context
    • Setting.

General Literary Principles

Objectives

Candidates should be able to:

  1. Identify literary terms in drama, prose, and poetry.
  2. Identify the general principles of Literature.
  3. Differentiate between literary terms and principles.
  4. Use literary terms appropriately.

Content

  1. Literary terms: Foreshadowing, suspense, theatre, monologue, dialogue, soliloquy, symbolism, protagonist, antagonist, figures of speech, satire, stream of consciousness, synecdoche, metonymy, etc., in addition to those listed above under the different genres.
  2. Literary principles
    • Direct imitation in play.
    • Verification in drama and poetry.
    • Narration of people’s experiences.
    • Achievement of aesthetic value, etc.
  3. Relationship between literary terms and principles.

Literary Appreciation

Objectives

Candidates should be able to:

  1. Determine literary devices used in a given passage/extract.
  2. Provide a meaningful interpretation of the given passage/extract.
  3. Relate the extract to true life experiences.

Content

Unseen passages/extracts from Drama, Prose and Poetry.

Poetry

Objectives

Candidates should be able to:

  1. Identify different types of poetry.
  2. Compare and contrast the features of different poetic types.
  3. Determine the devices used by various poets.
  4. Show how poetic devices are used for aesthetic effect in each poem.
  5. Deduce the poet’s preoccupation from the poem.
  6. Appraise poetry as an art with moral values.
  7. Apply the lessons from the poem to real-life situations.

Content

  1. Types:
    • Sonnet
    • Ode
    • Lyrics
    • Elegy
    • Ballad
    • Panegyric
    • Epic
    • Blank Verse, etc.
  2. Poetic devices
    • Structure
    • Imagery
    • Sound(Rhyme/Rhythm, repetition, pun, onomatopoeia, etc.
    • Diction
    • Persona
  3. Appreciation
    • Thematic preoccupation
    • Socio-political relevance
    • Style.

Prose

Objectives

Candidates should be able to:

  1. Differentiate between types of prose.
  2. Identify the category to which each prescribed text belongs.
  3. Analyze the components of each type of prose.
  4. Identify the narrative techniques used in each of the prescribed texts.
  5. Determine an author’s narrative style.
  6. Distinguish between one type of character from another.
  7. Determine the thematic preoccupation of the author of the prescribed text.
  8. Indicate the plot of the novel; identify the temporal and spatial setting of the novel.
  9. identify the temporal and spatial setting of the novel.
  10. Relate the prescribed text to real-life situations.

Content

  • Types:
    • Fiction
      • Novel
      • Novella/Novelette
      • Short story
    • Non-fiction
      • Biography
      • Autobiography
      • Memoir
      • Faction: a combination of fact and fiction
    • Narrative Techniques/Devices:
      • Point of view
      • Omniscient/Third Person
      • First Person
      • Characterization
      • Round, flat, foil, hero, antihero, etc
      • Language
    • Textual Analysis
      • Theme
      • Plot
      • Setting (Temporal/Spatial)
      • Socio-political context

JAMB Literature in English Text

woman sitting beside table reading book

Here is the list of texts for the JAMB Literature in English;

Drama

  • African: The Lion and the Jewel by Wole Soyinka
  • Non-African: Look Back in Anger by John Osborne

Prose

  • African:
    • Unexpected Joy at Dawn by Alex Agyei-Agyir
    • Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta
  • Non-African;
    • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte

Drame

  • African:
    • Black Woman by Leopold Sedar Senghor
    • The Leader and the Led by Niyi Osundare
    • The Grieved Lands by Agostinbo Neto
    • The Song of the Woman of my Land by Oumar Farouk Sesay
    • Raider of the Treasure Trove by Lade Wosornu
    • A Government Driver on his Retirement by Onu Chibuike
  • Non-African
    • The Good Morrow by John Donne
    • Caged Bird by Maya Angelou
    • The Journey of the Magi by T.S. Elliot
    • Bats by D.H. Lawrence
a student studying with books on the table

The following is the list of recommended textbooks for JAMB Literature in English;

Anthologies

  • Obafemi. O. and Agoi (eds) Of Shadows and Rainbows – Musings in Times of Covid (An Anthology of Poems, Plays, and Short Stories) PEN Nigeria, Online
  • Hayward, J. (ed.) (1968) The Penguin Book of English Verse, London: Penguin
  • Johnson, R. et al. (eds.) (1996) New Poetry from Africa, Ibadan: UP Plc
  • Kermode, F. et al. (1964) Oxford Anthology of English Literature, Vol. II, London: OUP
  • Nduke Ofiono and Odoh Diego Okenyodo (eds) Camouflage: Best of Contemporary Writing from Nigeria, an Anthology of New Nigerian Writers, Mace Books Association, 2021, New edition.
  • Parker, E.W. (ed.) (1980) A Peagent of Longer Poems London: Longman
  • Senanu, K. E. and Vincent, T. (eds.) (1993) A Selection of African Poetry, Lagos: Longman
  • Soyinka, W. (ed.) (1987) Poems of Black Africa, Ibadan: Heinemann

Critical Text

  • Abrams, M. H. (1981) A Glossary of Literary Terms, (4th Edition) New York, Holt Rinehalt and Winston
  • Emeaba, O. E. (1982)A Dictionary of Literature, Aba: Inteks Press
  • Murphy, M. J. (1972) Understanding Unseen, An Introduction to English Poetry and English Novel for Overseas Students, George Allen and Unwin Ltd.

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112 thoughts on “JAMB Syllabus for Literature in English & Textbooks 2024/2025”

    • Hello Precious,

      UNILAG offers Music under Creative Arts.

      The subject combination is English Language, one Art subject and any two subjects.

      Reply
  1. Sir, please I do I wait till next year before I can get the syllabus,for 2024 because I will be writing next year but I want to prepare early sir.

    Reply
  2. excuse me sir, i noticed most of the things i read in my series do not correspond with things i study online. pls what do i do.

    Reply
    • No, you don’t need to go to any lesson before you can read. What you need to do is to get all your necessary textbooks and search online for any subject syllabus in order to know your reading points of any subject. Only if you’re not attempting mathematics because you can solve maths alone. You need a tutor to do so.

      Reply
  3. What is these anthologies and critical text under the jamb recommended literature text… Are they also for jamb exams?

    Reply
  4. Please sir, does JAMB change prescribed texts and poems annually because i checked their site for the syllabus and i am not sure if it has been updated or it’s the same one for last year. Are the recommended texts, poems and anthologies for last year the same as this year??

    Reply
  5. Please sir, does JAMB change prescribed texts and poems annually because i checked their site for the syllabus and i am not sure if it’s for last year or it has been updated. Are the recommended texts, poems and anthologies for this year the same as last year??

    Reply
  6. Please for literature, are we not making use of novels and drama books like “Faceless “, “Harvest of Corruption “and so on for our 2023 JAMB exam? Because am confused. Different websites are showing different books and topics

    Reply
  7. Pls sir the jamb recommended textbooks for both drama ,prose and poetry are all old ,both African and non African, we need the new ones pls.

    Reply
  8. Pls sir most of the poetry texts are
    Old ,I only know about the leader and the led and songs of the women of our lands ,I have not come across the rest

    Reply
  9. Please sir, there is a particular book that jamb gives to it’s candidate to buy every year, what is the one for 2022/2023

    Reply
    • Hello Joy,

      The textbooks listed here are for the 2022/2023 JAMB examination.

      The UTME board has not made any changes.

      Be rest assured that if any changes are made, they will reflect on this page.

      I hope your JAMB preparations are going well.

      Reply
    • Yes, Ottu

      You will see an update here if there are any changes from JAMB.

      It is a good thing you have started with your JAMB preparations.

      Let me know if you have further questions.

      Reply
  10. My problem is, after spending ur enough time over this a professor will ask you a question using some English words u never met 😭😭

    Reply
    • 1. Lion and the Jewel by Wole Soyinka

      2. Look Back in Anger by John Osborne.

      3. Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta.

      4. Unexpected Joy at Dawn by Alex Agyei Agyiri.

      5. Wuthering Heights by Emile Bronte.

      JAMB Literature Poetry Texts for 2022

      1. The Panic of Growing Older by Lenrie Peter.
      2. Vanity by Birago Diop.
      3. The Leader and the Led by Niyi Osundare.
      4. Ambush by Gbemisola Adeoti.
      5. The Song of the Woman of my Land by Oumar Farouk Sesay.
      6. Piano and Drums by Gabriel Okara.
      7. The Dining Table by Gbanabam Hallowell.

      Reply
    • 1. Lion and the Jewel by Wole Soyinka

      2. Look Back in Anger by John Osborne.

      3. Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta.

      4. Unexpected Joy at Dawn by Alex Agyei Agyiri.

      5. Wuthering Heights by Emile Bronte.

      Reply

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