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module specification

SJ4005 - Writer's World (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module title Writer's World
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Art, Architecture and Design
Total study hours 300
192 hours Guided independent study
108 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Seminar 20%   Seminar/workshop performance (attendance, punctuality, preparation and contribution)
Coursework 30%   2500 word portfolio of creative prose.
Coursework 50%   3000 word portfolio of creative prose and commentary
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Tuesday Afternoon

Module summary

This module provides an introduction to major forms of contemporary prose including fiction, memoir, and essay and will thus be essential preparatory learning for Creative Writing modules at higher levels. Students will consider the historical development of contemporary forms through reading the writings by a range of contemporary writers and practising their own craft in context of these works. The module develops understanding of texts in the context of literary history, critical theory and contemporary production as well as helping students situate their own creative practice in both historical and contemporary literary and critical contexts. The module is taught in three-hour weekly classes comprising of seminars and workshops. It is assessed through pieces of written coursework and in-class presentations that offer students the opportunity to develop skills required for a range of prose forms, as well as for a future in writing and publishing.

The module aims to equip students with a historical, critical and practical understanding of key forms of prose including the novel, memoir, essay, travel and nature writing. It will develop students’ skills in critically analysing the effects and techniques of literary prose, especially in context of their own creative practice. It will engage students in contemporary debates about the relationship between literature and the cultural context in which that literature is produced and consumed, and how this impacts their creative output. Students will be encouraged to explore their ability to write in a range of prose forms and enhance their ability to use secondary critical material effectively in their analysis of literary texts and incorporate the knowledge into their creative practice.

Prior learning requirements


Module aims




Students will be introduced to a range of contemporary prose in English by writers across the globe, including from Britain, USA, Africa and Asia. (LO1)

Students will learn techniques, terminology and theoretical approaches for analysing prose writing as well as ways of incorporating them in their own creative practice. (LO2)

The module will introduce students to ways which forms and texts are shaped by changing circumstances and cultural values, particularly in context of their own creative practice. (LO3)

Alongside engaging with a range of primary and secondary texts, the module will develop students’ appreciation and understanding of the structure, style and impact of literary prose through ongoing creative practice. (LO4)

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Scheduled teaching ensures that independent study is effective and addresses the learning outcomes and assessment tasks. Students are expected to, and have the opportunity to, continue with their studies outside of scheduled classes.

There will be a range of learning strategies deployed and individual learning styles will be accommodated. The module’s learning outcomes, its contents and delivery, have been scrutinised and will be regularly reviewed to ensure an
inclusive approach to pedagogic practice.

The module and course utilise the University’s blended learning platform to support and reinforce learning, to foster peer-to-peer communication and to facilitate tutorial support for students. Reflective learning is promoted through assessment items and interim formative feedback points that ask students to
reflect on their progress, seek help where they identify the opportunity for improvement in learning strategies and outcomes, and make recommendations to themselves for future development.

Throughout the module, students build a body of work, including reflections on progress and achievement.

The School’s programme of employability events and embedded work-related learning within the curriculum supports students’ personal development planning. Through these initiatives, students are increasingly able, as they progress from year to year, to understand the professional environment of their
disciplines, the various opportunities available to them, and how to shape their learning according to their ambitions.

Learning and teaching




Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the module students will be able to:

Knowledge and understanding
LO1 show an understanding of the key forms of contemporary prose literature and its production;

Subject-specific skills

LO2 incorporate key literary techniques in their own creative practice;

LO3 locate their creative output in appropriate critical and cultural contexts;

Transferable skills

LO4 express themselves within a range of prose forms.

Assessment strategy

Summative assessments will be spaced across the year and consist of written coursework and class presentations. Assignments will require students to address all three sections of the syllabus and to show skills of critical analysis in context of their own creative practice.

The final assignment will allow students to develop a more extensive work of creative prose.


Where possible, the most current version of reading materials is used during the delivery of this module.

Comprehensive reading lists are provided to students in their handbooks.  Reading Lists will be updated annually.

Core textbooks:
Atwood, M., (2003) Negotiating with the Dead: A Writer on Writing, Virago
Booker, C., (2005) The Seven Basic Plots: Why We Tell Stories, Continuum
Howe, E., (2010) Close Reading: An Introduction to Literature, Longman
King, S., (2001) On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft, Hodder

Other textbooks
Lodge, D., (2011) The Art of Fiction, Vintage
Strunk, W., (1999) The Elements of Style , Longman
Truss, L., (2009) Eats, Shoots and Leaves, Fourth Estate

Literature Online  
Project Gutenberg

Electronic Databases:
Academic Search Complete