Reading Literature is a compulsory core module for English students in their first year of study. I taught on this module as a seminar leader in the first semester of 2017–18 and 2019–20. I had two groups per semester, with approx. 20 students in each group.
WHAT ARE THE MODULE AIMS?
The module aimed to support students in developing the foundational academic reading skills for literary study at university, including close reading and literature searching.
INTENDED LEARNING OUTCOMES
Engage in close reading analysis of poetry, prose, and drama in light of their cultural and historical contexts
Articulate key concepts in a range of criticism and theory in relation to the texts studied
Devise, develop, construct, and sustain an argument in verbal and written formats
Collaborate with other students to produce oral responses to weekly discussion questions
The module also equipped students with skills that are transferable to other areas in their university curriculum and beyond into the workplace. These skills include:
Independent research, preparation, organisation, and time management skills
An ability to negotiate and present ideas and information when working in a team
Thinking creatively and approaching all information critically and analytically
Articulating knowledge and understanding of ideas in a range of formats, e.g. written and oral
MY ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
I designed and delivered teaching materials to help students achieve these Intended Learning Outcomes on a weekly basis during seminars and in formal assessments throughout the module. Each seminar focused on a new literary text and theory (including feminist, Marxist, queer, and critical race theory), before setting focused group work that allowed students to develop ideas in conversation with one another. The weekly activities were geared toward helping students learn to read for academic purpose, in the process enhancing their pleasure, knowledge, and confidence as readers of literature. I also provided one-to-one consultation and 'feed-forward' feedback on student work in order to aid students in their personal learning development.