ELEMENTS OF NARRATIVE - 2020/1
Module code: ELI2035
In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, and in a departure from previous academic years and previously published information, the University has had to change the delivery (and in some cases the content) of its programmes, together with certain University services and facilities for the academic year 2020/21.
These changes include the implementation of a hybrid teaching approach during 2020/21. Detailed information on all changes is available at: https://www.surrey.ac.uk/coronavirus/course-changes. This webpage sets out information relating to general University changes, and will also direct you to consider additional specific information relating to your chosen programme.
Prior to registering online, you must read this general information and all relevant additional programme specific information. By completing online registration, you acknowledge that you have read such content, and accept all such changes.
This module explores the varied formal and technical challenges facing creative writers, examining the affordances and constraints of different modes of writing and the cultural, historical and theoretical contexts which impact upon text production and reception. It seeks to promote fuller critical awareness of the cultures and contexts of text design, and translate this awareness into more effective creative practice.
School of Literature and Languages
VLITOS Paul (Lit & Langs)
Number of Credits: 15
ECTS Credits: 7.5
Framework: FHEQ Level 5
JACs code: W800
Module cap (Maximum number of students): 45
Prerequisites / Co-requisites
Students must be enrolled in the English and Creative Writing programme, or be taking Creative Writing as their minor pathway or have completed at least one previous Creative Writing module at the University of Surrey. At the discretion of the module co-ordinator students who have not previously completed a Creative Writing module at the University of Surrey but who submit to the module co-ordinator a portfolio of 1000-1500 words of creative writing (poetry, prose, screenplay or dramatic script) may also be admitted to this module.
Indicative content includes:
This lecture gives an overview of the module, its rationale and the themes and aspects to be covered in the course of the semester.
Verbal and Visual Narratives I: Setting the Scene
In this lecture we discuss the consequences for storytelling of some of the differences between the visual and the verbal, with particular emphasis on how different modes of narrative establish mood, setting and narrative expectations.
Verbal and Visual Narratives II: Establishing Character
This lecture examines the different ways in which verbal and visual narratives are able to establish and convey aspects of fictional character.
Verbal and Visual Narratives III: Focalization
This lecture will discuss the different means by which a ‘point of view’ can be established in verbal and visual narratives. From whose perspective is this story being told, and what creative and interpretative implications does this have?
Verbal and Visual Narratives IV: Telling Time
In what ways do verbal and visual narratives differ when it comes to the handling of issues of temporality? How can different modes of storytelling convey the passing of time, for example? This lecture will examine different critical attempts to describe and analyze the relationship between time and fictional narration – and to explore the implications of this relationship for creative writers.
Drafting, Redrafting, Editing and Revising
This lecture will examine the most effective ways of redrafting, editing and revising creative work, with reference to the techniques employed by a range of contemporary writers.
Rhetorical Devices I: Prose
This lecture will explore a variety of common rhetorical techniques and their use in crafting a memorable, persuasive piece of creative prose.
Rhetorical Devices II: Poetry
This lecture will explore a range of common rhetorical techniques and how they have been used in crafting a memorable, persuasive piece of poetry. It will also examine the specificities of poetic syntax.
This lecture will explore the challenges of structuring dramatic writing, and will explore the differences and similarities in the technical demands of writing for the page and writing for stage, screen or radio.
This lecture concludes our examination of the possibilities and limitations of different narrative modes by examining a range of adaptations from page to screen, and reflecting upon the theoretical and practical issues raised when a written text is adapted into a film – or vice versa.
Reading week preparing materials for semester 2 modules
|Assessment type||Unit of assessment||Weighting|
|Coursework||CREATIVE WRITING SUBMISSION (2000 WORDS) AND REFLEXIVE CRITICAL COMMENTARY (500 WORDS)||100|
The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate
Their technical accomplishment in their chosen branch(es) of creative practice
Their ability to reflect critically upon their own work, and locate it productively in relation to the themes of the module and it literary, critical and theoeretical context more generally
Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of a portfolio composed of:
Creative Writing submission (2000 words)
Reflexive Critical Commentary (500 words)
To be submitted at a date near the end of the semester.
Formative assessment and feedback
Students receive formative feedback in the form of:
Peer and tutor verbal feedback in class on work produced during writing exercises, which may be developed for inclusion in the Creative Writing portfolio.
Peer and tutor feedback during two workshop sessions in the middle and near the end of the semester, in which they have a chance to read and discuss their work (verbal and/or written)
- Further develop their confidence and experience in producing effective creative writing
- Heighten their awareness of the stylistic and technical considerations involved in text production
- Enhance their ability to examine their own work critically and have a better understanding of the processes of editing and revision
- Develop the ability to formulate their creative aims more clearly and effectively
- Locate their own creative practice more fully in relation to literary, historical, theoretical and cultural contexts
|1||Show evidence of increased confidence and familiarity with the techniques of creative writing||KPT|
|2||Demonstrate an enhanced ability to produce lucid and critically-informed commentary on their own creative writing||KCPT|
|3||Demonstrate fuller understanding of the contextual forces shaping text production and of the creative affordances and constraints of different media||KCPT|
C - Cognitive/analytical
K - Subject knowledge
T - Transferable skills
P - Professional/Practical skills
Overall student workload
Workshop Hours: 22
Independent Study Hours: 117
Lecture Hours: 11
Methods of Teaching / Learning
The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:
Introduce students to a range of technical considerations in the composition of creative prose, poetry dramatic script and screenplay. It is also designed to encourage and enable them to reflect in a historically, theoretically and critically informed manner upon their own work and on the writing of others. It is designed to encourage them to discuss and evaluate different technical decisions made during the creative process and to reflect upon the implications and effects of these decisions.
The learning and teaching methods include:
- Lectures (11 hours)
- Workshops (22 hours) – These involve both disucssion and parctical exercises and the presentation of creative work to the group.
Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: ELI2035
This module has a capped number and may not be available to ERASMUS and other international exchange students. Please check with the departmental exchange coordinator.
Programmes this module appears in
|English Literature with Creative Writing BA (Hons)||1||Compulsory||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature with Politics BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature with Sociology BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature and French BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature and Spanish BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature with German BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
|English Literature with Film Studies BA (Hons)||1||Optional||A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module|
Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2020/1 academic year.