Module Details

The information contained in this module specification was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change, either during the session because of unforeseen circumstances, or following review of the module at the end of the session. Queries about the module should be directed to the member of staff with responsibility for the module.
Title Close Reading
Code ENGL203
Coordinator Dr JR Bainbridge
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Year CATS Level Semester CATS Value
Session 2023-24 Level 4 FHEQ First Semester 15


To foster and enhance the skills of close reading by drawing attention to what is needed. To read texts attentively and to acquire appropriate vocabulary and techniques for successful close reading.  Consider the implications of these categories for both writing and reading literary texts. To enable students to criticise and write focused critical essays on the basis of their attentive reading, discuss matters such as form, structure, voice and genre with confidence and using appropriate vocabulary. To expand our understanding and appreciation of texts and to consider the implications of using categories such as genre, structure, voice and form when analysing and discussing text.

Learning Outcomes

(LO1) The ability to demonstrate an intermediate-level understanding of the principles and aims of literary criticism, including offering intelligent and informed responses to a range of literary texts from a variety of periods.

(LO2) The ability to deploy analytical and critical vocabulary for the discussion of English literature with some level of sophistication and to demonstrate the knowledge and skills of close reading in informed discussion, both orally and in the writing of structured, lucid and informed critical essays.

(LO3) To enhance the ability to listen attentively and garner relevant information, practice and knowledge from views presented by others.

(S1) Information skills - Critical reading.

(S2) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Presentation skills - written.

(S3) Improving own learning/performance - self-awareness/self-analysis.

(S4) Communication (oral, written and visual) - Listening skills.

(S5) Time and project management - Personal organisation.

(S6) Critical thinking and problem solving - Critical analysis.



This module covers poetry and prose written in English covering a wide period from the Middle Ages to the present day. Major genres and forms are always covered such as the sonnet, irony, realism. 

Teaching and Learning Strategies

1 x small-group session of 1 hour (synchronous). Small groups are normally of no more than 9 students. Face to face or online as circumstances allow.

1 x whole-cohort session of 1 hour (synchronous or asynchronous, as can be accommodated).

Tutors select their own texts to discuss in detail with students in the weekly small group sessions (tutorials). The whole cohort sessions provide wider information and demonstrations of close reading.

Teaching Schedule

  Lectures Seminars Tutorials Lab Practicals Fieldwork Placement Other TOTAL
Study Hours     12


Timetable (if known)              
Private Study 126


EXAM Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
In-person written exam of 2-hours' duration, made up of writing close reading commentaries on two (of four) previously unseen extracts. There is a resit opportunity. This is an anonymous assessme    50       
CONTINUOUS Duration Timing
% of
Penalty for late
Course essays. A minimum of two course essays (one on a prose extract, one on poetry) should be submitted. Students will receive feedback on these essays with the expectation that this feedback infor         
Coursework. There is a resit opportunity. Standard UoL penalty applies for late submission. This is not an anonymous assessment. The summative essay is likely to be a re-written version of one    50       

Recommended Texts

Reading lists are managed at Click here to access the reading lists for this module.