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Reading Literature and Culture

Course Code: ENGL 1102
Faculty: Language, Literature & Performing Arts
Department: English
Credits: 3.0
Semester: 15 weeks
Learning Format: Lecture, Seminar
Typically Offered: Fall, Summer, Winter
course overview

In this course students will read, discuss and write about at least one major theme in literature and culture, such as crime and punishment, gender roles, immigrant experiences, or paradise lost. Works studied will include at least one of the major genres (fiction, non-fiction, poetry or drama), and at least one other type, drawn from another of the major genres or from less traditional sources, such as graphic novels, film or literary work in other media.

Course Content

All first-year English literature courses share the following features:  

  1. Students are instructed in the writing of critical essays on literary subjects.
  2. Students are taught to recognize and understand a variety of literary devices and textual elements, such as metaphor, symbolism, distinctions between author and narrator/narrating persona, and issues of language and of structure, as appropriate to the genres and texts studied.
  3. Readings and topics vary among sections of the same course, according to each instructor’s selection; however, all course materials are consistent with the objectives/outcomes for this course.

In English 1102, students will examine thematically-linkedworks in at least one of the following major genres:

  1. Fiction (novels, novellas and/or short stories)
  2. Poetry (dramatic, narrative or lyric, which may include song lyrics)
  3. Drama
  4. Non-fiction (personal essays, autobiography, memoir, journals/diaries, travel literature)

Additionally, students will examine works in one or more of the other major genres OR in one or more of the following:

  1. Graphic novel
  2. Film
  3. Literary work in other media (such as blogs, podcasts, zines, music videos)

Texts in any of the four major genres will account for at least 70% of course readings overall.

The majority of class-time will be spent in discussing and analyzing course materials.  Where film or works in other media are to be examined, students may be required to view some of these works outside of class time.

Methods of Instruction

Some or all of the following methods will be used:

  1. Lecture/discussion
  2. Group work
  3. Peer editing
  4. Instructor feedback on students’ work
  5. Individual consultation

Means of Assessment

  1. A minimum of two formal academic essays, with a combined value of at least 40% of the course grade.
  2. A minimum of 80% of the course grade will be based on writing assignments (essays, essay-based exams, journals, paragraphs).  A maximum of 20% of the course grade may be based on informal writing (quizzes, short answer tests); oral reports/presentations; participation/preparation grades; and/or other non writing-intensive assignments.
  3. A minimum of 15% of the course grade will be based on in-class writing (essay or exam).

Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of any first-year English literature course, the successful student should be able to 

  1. read receptively and reflectively, with sensitivity to the subtleties of language;
  2. recognize and understand literary devices;
  3. practice writing as a process involving pre-writing, drafting, revising and editing;
  4. write an essay of literary analysis that develops an interpretive thesis supported by appropriate and correctly cited evidence; and
  5. give and receive constructive criticism about written work.

Upon completion of English 1102, the successful student should also be able to

  1. recognize and understand the elements of theme in literature;
  2. understand and analyze the relationship of theme to other literary elements, such as plot, character, setting, figurative language and irony; and
  3. recognize and appreciate connections between the theme(s) studied in the course and social issues.

course prerequisites

Any College entrance Language Proficiency Requirement EXCEPT the Douglas College Course Options in ELLA or ENGU, OR

a minimum grade of C- in ELLA 0460, or a minimum grade of C- in both ELLA 0465 and 0475, OR

a minimum grade of C- in ENGU 0450, ENGU 0455 or ENGU 0490, OR

Mastery in ELLA 0330 and any two of ELLA 0310, 0320, or 0340.


Courses listed here must be completed either prior to or simultaneously with this course:

  • No corequisite courses


Courses listed here are equivalent to this course and cannot be taken for further credit:

  • No equivalency courses

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.

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