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ENL2003 The Art of Storytelling

Semester 2, 2012 On-campus Toowoomba
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Arts
School or Department : School of Humanities and Communication

Contents on this page


Examiner: Lawrence Johnson
Moderator: Brian Musgrove


Pre-requisite: ENL1000 or ENL1001

Other requisites

Students will require access to e-mail and have internet access to UConnect for this course.


Storytelling is considered to be a universal cultural practice. The study of narrative forms and structures thus contributes to a general understanding of how people make sense of themselves and their world. This course enables students to expand on concepts and skills from introductory English courses, providing more detailed strategies for analysing narratives in a variety of different textual forms, including novels, films and new media. Analyses of texts will be organised around key concepts of Narrative Time and Narrative Distance, enabling students to identify structural commonalities across the different types of narrative texts and to pinpoint specific characteristics of each form. Consideration will also be given in each case to historical and cultural contexts, to highlight the relationship between text and context, but also to demonstrate the more general validity of narrative analysis


On successful completion of this course students should be able to:

  1. Comprehend and apply an advanced vocabulary of critical narratology in identifying structural
    commonalities among narratives in novels, films and new media;
  2. Demonstrate further academic and professional literacy by critiquing a critical argument;
  3. Employ intermediate written communication skills in writing essays to different academic purposes;
  4. effectively use cultural literacy in examining the relationship between a narrative text and the cultural and historical contexts in which it is produced and received;
  5. exercise problem-solving skills in addressing both basic and complex issues related to adaptation of narratives between different media;
  6. successfully adapt the knowledge acquired from objectives 1 to 5 to a creative storytelling exercise.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Critical Approaches: Narrative Time and Distance 20.00
2. Narratology and the Novel 40.00
3. New Narrative Forms 40.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

  • Conrad, J 2005, Heart of darkness, 4th edn, Norton, New York.
    (Norton Critical Edition, edited by Armstrong, Paul B.)
  • Faulkner, W 2009, As I lay dying, Norton.
    (Norton Critical Edition, edited by Michael Gorra.)
  • James, H 1999, The turn of the screw, 2nd edn, Norton, New York.
    (Norton Critical Edition, edited By Esch, Deborah & Warren, Jonathan.)
  • Porter Abbott, H 2011, The Cambridge Introduction to Narrative, 2nd edn, Cambridge UP, Cambridge.
  • DVD, "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind", 2004, Michel Gondry (dir.), Roadshow Entertainment. Film, "Groundhog Day", 1993, Harold Ramis (dir.), Columbia Tristar. Film, "The Others", 2001, Alejandro Amenabar (dir.), Cruise/Wagner Productions. Film, "The Usual Suspects", 1995, Bryan Singer (dir.), PlyGram Filmed Entertainment. Multimedia, "Afternoon, A Story", Michael Joyce, Eastgate Systems Inc.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
  • Corrigan, T 1999, Film and literature: an introduction and reader, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.
  • Herman, D 1999, Narratologies: new perspectives on narrative analysis, Ohio State University Press, Columbus, OH.
  • Herman, D, Jahn, M & Ryan, M (eds.) 2005, Routledge encyclopedia of narrative theory, Routledge, New York.
  • Kindt, T & Muller, H-H 2003, What is narratology?: questions and answers regarding the status of a theory, Walter de Gruyter, New York.
  • Lothe, J 2000, Narrative in fiction and film, Oxford University Press, New York.

Student workload requirements

Activity Hours
Examinations 2.00
Lectures 13.00
Private Study 121.00
Tutorials 26.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
ESSAY 1 (1500 WORDS) 100 30 07 Sep 2012
ESSAY 2 (2000 WORDS) 100 30 26 Oct 2012
TUTORIAL PARTICIPATION 100 10 09 Nov 2012 (see note 1)
EXAMINATION (2 HOUR) 100 30 End S2 (see note 2)

  1. Tutorial participation is graded according to the quality and frequency of contribution to tutorial discussion and evidence of preparation throughout the semester.
  2. Students will be advised of the exam date when the timetable has been finalised.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students? responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as lectures, tutorials, laboratories and practical work) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration. Students must attend and complete the requirements of the Workplace Health and Safety training program for this course where required.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To satisfactorily complete an individual assessment item a student must achieve at least 50% of the marks.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    If students submit assignments after the due date without (prior) approval of the examiner then a penalty of 5% of the total marks gained by the student for the assignment may apply for each working day late up to ten working days at which time a mark of zero may be recorded.

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To be assured of receiving a passing grade a student must achieve at least 50% of the total weighted marks available for the course.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    The final grades for students will be assigned on the basis of the aggregate of the weighted marks obtained for each of the summative assessment items in the course.

  6. Examination information:
    Candidates are allowed to bring only writing and drawing instruments into the Closed examination.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    Any Deferred or Supplementary examinations for this course will be held during the next examination period.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the Examiner.

  2. Students must retain a copy of each item submitted for assessment. This must be despatched to USQ within 24 hours if required by the Examiner.

  3. In accordance with University Policy, the Examiner may grant an extension of the due date of an assignment in extenuating circumstances.

  4. If electronic submission of assessments is specified for the course, students will be notified of this in the course Introductory Book and on the USQ Study Desk. All required electronic submission must be made through the Assignment Drop Box located on the USQ Study Desk for the course, unless directed otherwise by the examiner of the course. The due date for an electronically submitted assessment is the date by which a student must electronically submit the assignment. The assignment files must be submitted by 11.55pm on the due date using USQ time (as displayed on the clock on the course home page; that is, Australian Eastern Standard Time).

  5. If the method of assessment submission is by written, typed or printed paper-based media students should (i) submit to the Faculty Office for students enrolled in the course in the on-campus mode, or (ii) mail to the USQ for students enrolled in the course in the external mode. The due date for the assessment is the date by which a student must (i) submit the assessment for students enrolled in the on-campus mode, or (ii) mail the assessment for students enrolled in the external mode.

  6. The Faculty will NOT normally accept submission of assessments by facsimile or email.

  7. Students who do not have regular access to postal services for the submission of paper-based assessments, or regular access to Internet services for electronic submission, or are otherwise disadvantaged by these regulations may be given special consideration. They should contact the examiner of the course to negotiate such special arrangements prior to the submission date.

  8. Students who have undertaken all of the required assessments in a course but who have failed to meet some of the specified objectives of a course within the normally prescribed time may be awarded one of the temporary grades: IM (Incomplete - Make up), IS (Incomplete - Supplementary Examination) or ISM (Incomplete -Supplementary Examination and Make up). A temporary grade will only be awarded when, in the opinion of the examiner, a student will be able to achieve the remaining objectives of the course after a period of non directed personal study.

  9. Students who, for medical, family/personal, or employment-related reasons, are unable to complete an assignment or to sit for an examination at the scheduled time may apply to defer an assessment in a course. Such a request must be accompanied by appropriate supporting documentation. One of the following temporary grades may be awarded IDS (Incomplete - Deferred Examination; IDM (Incomplete Deferred Make-up); IDB (Incomplete - Both Deferred Examination and Deferred Make-up).

  10. Students may be assigned an "Incomplete" grade to signify that all the requirements of the course have not yet been met. Students who are graded "I" can pass the course by successfully completing such additional work as prescribed by the examiner by a given date. Students who have been awarded an IM, ISM, IDM or IDB grade must access information regarding further work to be completed, in the Student Centre of U Connect. The Grades Page in the Student Centre contains information about further work to be completed. Students who have not completed the additional work to the satisfaction of the examiner by the given date will receive the appropriate Failing grade.

Other requirements

  1. Students can expect that questions in assessment items in this course may draw upon knowledge and skills that they can reasonably be expected to have acquired before enrolling in the course. This includes knowledge contained in pre-requisite courses and appropriate communication, information literacy, analytical, critical thinking, problem solving or numeracy skills. Students who do not possess such knowledge and skills should not expect to achieve the same grades as those students who do possess them.