Coronavirus (Covid-19) Information

Module QXE-1013:
Reading, Thinking, Writing

Module Facts

Run by School of Languages, Literatures, Linguistics and Media

20 Credits or 10 ECTS Credits

Semester 1

Organiser: Dr Michael Durrant

Overall aims and purpose

  1. To introduce students to the skills in literary and critical interpretation that will be required for degree level study in the School of English Literature..

  2. To introduce or reinforce skills in prosody.

  3. To introduce students to a range of text and theory-based reading strategies (these may include, for example, New Criticism, post-structuralism, ideological criticism, psychoanalytical, postcolonial or feminist criticism, literary geography, material cultures, the ‘male gaze’ and queer theory) which challenge and broaden students’ approaches to texts.

  4. To sharpen and practise students’ skills in textual analysis, as well as learn to read in ways that uncover meanings they never knew were there.

5.To develop research, reading and writing skills

Course content

The course will be an introduction to critical and theoretical approaches to the reading of literature; the integration of close textual study and critical/theoretical approaches, as the foundation for all other modules in the School; practical development of skills of literary commentary, essay writing, and critical discussion.

Assessment Criteria


Typically, work graded B- to B+ (or 60 to 69) will show many of the following qualities: • Discusses ideas adeptly • Most of the arguments about a specific field are well-aired • Displays knowledge of the subject in question; the answer is relevant • Shows analytical and clear thought • Gives evidence of relevant reading • Shows accuracy in expression with mastery over language. • A few minor errors here and there. • Signs of creative thought deserve a higher position within the class • In creative work: shows signs of originality, having understood the requirements of the medium • Plans of well-balanced and full answers, despite some gaps


Typically, work graded A- to A** (or 70 to 100) will show many of the following qualities:

• Discusses ideas with confidence and precision • Demonstrates maturity and sophistication • Displays deep knowledge of the subject in question; the answer is totally relevant • Shows independent, analytical and clear thought • Gives evidence of substantial and relevant reading • Shows great accuracy in expression, displaying total mastery over all aspects of the language • Shows occasional signs of brilliance and originality of thought • In creative work: displays considerable originality • Command over medium; may have potential for publication/production


Typically, work graded D- to D+ (or 40 to 49) will show many of the following qualities: • Unsure and lacking in confidence when discussing ideas • Referring to the subject in question in a superficial manner • Making an effort to provide fairly balanced answers • Some points in the argument irrelevant to the topic • Little evidence of background reading • Some uncertainty over language and syntax • Strengths and weaknesses fairly balanced; occasionally clumsy and unimaginative • In creative work: superficial • Not succeeding in mastering the requirements of the medium

Learning outcomes

  1. identify in texts a range of linguistic and literary features

  2. relate the meaning of a text to its formal and rhetorical aspects

  3. understand some of the central ideas in contemporary critical theory

  4. apply these concepts, both analytically and imaginatively, to the reading of literary texts.

  5. demonstrate appropriate academic writing skills, including referencing and bibliography.

Assessment Methods

Type Name Description Weight
Closed Reading 20
Final Essay 50
Reflective Seminar Log Book 30

Teaching and Learning Strategy

Lecture 11
Private study 167
Seminar 22

Transferable skills

  • Literacy - Proficiency in reading and writing through a variety of media
  • Computer Literacy - Proficiency in using a varied range of computer software
  • Self-Management - Able to work unsupervised in an efficient, punctual and structured manner. To examine the outcomes of tasks and events, and judge levels of quality and importance
  • Exploring - Able to investigate, research and consider alternatives
  • Information retrieval - Able to access different and multiple sources of information
  • Inter-personal - Able to question, actively listen, examine given answers and interact sensitevely with others
  • Self-awareness & Reflectivity - Having an awareness of your own strengths, weaknesses, aims and objectives. Able to regularly review, evaluate and reflect upon the performance of yourself and others


Courses including this module

Compulsory in courses:

Optional in courses: