How to write a creative writing piece

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Published Date:04-07-2017
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BA (Hons) English with Creative Writing Course Handbook 2016/17 Undergraduate Students Programme Code(s) BAECW Faculty Faculty of Arts, Environment & Technology School School of Cultural Studies & Humanities Contents 1 Welcome to the Course ...................................................................................................... 3 2 Studying on this Course .................................................................................................... 11 3 Assessment and Feedback ................................................................................................ 14 4 Where to Get Help ............................................................................................................ 19 5 What to do if you… ........................................................................................................... 23 6 Relevant Policies ............................................................................................................... 25 7 Appendix A: Course Specification………………………………………………………………………………… 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 2 1.3 Academic Calendar and Timetable Our standard student academic calendar is summarised below: Week Commencing Monday Student Calendar 22.08.16 29.08.16 Bank Holiday 29.08.16 05.09.16 12.09.16 19.09.16 Student Welcome and Induction Week 26.09.16 Semester 1 Teaching Starts 03.10.16 10.10.16 17.10.16 24.10.16 31.10.16 07.11.16 14.11.16 21.11.16 28.11.16 05.12.16 12.12.16 19.12.16 – 06.01.17 Christmas Break 09.01.17 – 20.01.17 Formal Examinations Period 23.01.17 Student Welcome and Induction Week 30.01.17 Semester 2 Teaching Starts 06.02.17 13.02.17 20.02.17 27.02.17 06.03.17 13.03.17 20.03.17 27.03.17 03.04.17 10.04.17 Easter Break 17.04.17 Bank Holiday 24.04.17 01.05.17 Bank Holiday 01.05.17 08.05.17 – 19.05.17 Formal Examinations Period 22.05.17 29.05.17 Spring Bank Holiday 29.05.17 05.06.17 12.06.17 19.06.17 26.06.17 03.07.17 10.07.17 17.07.17 24.07.17 31.07.17 07.08.17 14.08.17 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 5 Full details of this and future standard student academic calendars are available at: Once you have enrolled, you will have a student login. You can then find confirmation of your personal timetable by selecting the appropriate link after logging on the Student Hub from 1.4 Key Contacts Course Leader The Course Leader is the lead academic responsible for managing, overseeing and reviewing the course. Their duties include the induction of students at each level, preparation of the Course Handbook, acting as a source of information and assistance to students throughout the teaching semester, and reviewing and developing the course in consultation with students and other academic staff. The Course Leader chairs a number of progress and review meetings over the course of the year, including following Semester 1 when students’ marks are recorded and their progress discussed. Students with failing marks likely to affect their progression are contacted by their personal tutors, and referred to module tutors for detailed advice on reassessment. The Course Leader for English with Creative Writing is: Dr Lucy Burnett Tel: 0113 812 5793 Office Hours: Wednesdays 10am - midday Personal Tutor All students are allocated personal tutors and have their initial meeting with them as part of the induction process. Subsequently, formal meetings occur at least once each semester at each level. The function of these meetings is to review students’ academic progress and to offer appropriate pastoral support. In addition students can meet informally with their personal tutors for advice and guidance by arranging a meeting at any point in their 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 6 programme of study. Particular attention is given to the academic support and guidance of Level 4 students. All BAECW students are supervised by one of the L4 creative writing teaching team in order that there is a direct link between the academic and pastoral elements of support. At Level 6 students’ dissertation supervisors are their personal tutors, during which time students are given advice and support to enable them to prepare for life beyond university. Student Liaison Officer Module and personal tutors are supported by the Faculty’s two Student Liaison Officers, who are available to give students practical advice and refer them to the University’s student support services. A student counselling service, a Chaplaincy, a Health Centre and Disability Support are provided by Student Services. There is also a student drop-in centre, the HelpZone, which provides information about services available to students. The Student Liaison Officers (SLOs) for this course are: BEN WILLIS Reception, Caedmon, Headingley Campus/ Reception, Broadcasting Place, City Campus Email: Telephone: 0113 812 4754 (Headingley) 0113 812 1861 (City) LUCY HOPKINS Reception, Caedmon, Headingley Campus/ Reception, Broadcasting Place, City Campus Email: Telephone: 0113 812 474 (Headingley) 0113 812 1861 (City) 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 7 Course Representative Course Representatives are student volunteers who represent your views at course-level, in course forums and in meetings with academic and support staff. Details about being a Course Representative are available at representatives.htm and on the Students’ Union website Further information and the opportunity to consider standing for the role will be provided during student induction. Student Administrator The Student Administrator, who provides the first point of contact for any administrative queries about this course, is Chris Calvert: Telephone: 0113 8124923 The course administration team is led by Gemma Stronach: Telephone: 0113 8123339 The administrative team are based in Broadcasting Place in Room 111 where there is an enquiry desk during office hours. Academic Librarian Our subject librarians, who are based in the Sheila Silver Library, are Alison Park and Karen Fisher. They share the following contact details: (0113) 812 1106 / (0113) 812 3382 1.5 Keeping in Touch Academic and administrative staff at our University use your student email address to contact you. It is important that you check this account regularly. You can forward emails from your student email address to a preferred personal email address, however, 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 8 quarantine and spam filters needed by our University mean that emails sent from external email addresses may be delayed, blocked or deleted. It is therefore important that your student email address is the only email address that you use to contact University staff. We will inform you of class activities and course notifications, including any cancellations, as soon as possible. Depending on the preferences of module tutors, this might include a text to the mobile number on our student records, emails to student email addresses or through MyBeckett announcements. In order to keep up to date with course and module developments we recommend the download of the MyBeckett app onto your smart phone. For each module, the Module Handbook will include the preferred method of communicating general information about that module to you. Please make sure that you inform your Student Administration team whenever you change your address and contact details. It is important that you also update your records yourself. You can do this via the My Account/Update my Data tab on MyBeckett. This will ensure we can always contact you in an emergency, and that you receive any important University communications that we may need to send you. 1.6 Working in Partnership We are committed to working in partnership with you and the Students’ Union to provide you with an inclusive, safe and engaging learning environment which is conducive to study for all our students and our staff. An important element of your time studying with us is your engagement in developing your learning. Your engagement and attendance on your course enables you to further your learning and supports your achievement, course completion and aspirations for the future. There is an expectation that students will attend, engage in their learning and submit for assessment. We provide support for you to maximise your time studying with us and to develop your learning, skills and abilities to support you in your chosen career path. We seek active participation by all our students in the continuous enhancement of our courses and through our annual course monitoring and review processes. These are formal processes used by our University for assuring the academic standards and quality of your course and its continuous improvement. These processes utilise your feedback, External 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 9 Examiners’ reports, feedback from staff and others, data relating to student outcomes on the course and student surveys to reflect on areas of good practice and areas for further enhancement. We invite all students to participate in a range of opportunities to provide us with feedback on your course and modules. This may include discussions with staff, focus groups, and meetings (e.g. with Course Representatives or with staff) and formalised student surveys e.g. mid module reviews, end of module evaluations and specific course or other surveys such as the Student Barometer, National Study Survey (undergraduate students)/Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey and Destination of Leavers in Higher Education Survey. We utilise the outcomes of this survey to benchmark our courses nationally and to inform annual course enhancements. Informal feedback is also welcome at any time either via your personal or module tutor or via your Course Representative. Our partnership with you enables us together to make the most of your learning experience with us and to enhance the quality and reputation of your course. You can find out what actions have been taken in response to your feedback through your Course Representative, the Students’ Union, your tutors or through the Library. 1.7 Course Representatives You have the opportunity of becoming an elected Course Representative working in a voluntary capacity with students, the Students’ Union, the Course Leader and members of the course team and our university. The Students’ Union, working in partnership with our University, jointly enables the process for election and appointment of Course Representatives, their training, development and engagement in enhancement activities. Being a Course Representative provides an opportunity for you to enhance your own learning and the development of relevant professional and employability skills in parallel with your studies. As a Course Representative you would play an important role in:  acting as a point of contact and advocate for students on your course and in supporting their active engagement; 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 10  gathering feedback from students on your course to inform further enhancements to the quality of your course and the student experience;  enabling dialogue and good communication between students and staff on the course;  working with the Course Leader, members of the course team and the Students’ Union to enhance your course;  facilitating and engaging in meetings about your course; and  being an ambassador for your course. Further details about Course Representatives are available on the Students’ Union web site, on the Student Hub web site and in our University’s Academic Regulations (section 3.3). 2 Studying on this Course Gaining a greater understanding of what writers have done by having a go at it yourself is at the heart of our course. Great readers make great writers, and vice versa, while the course will encourage you to not only study cultural change, but to make your own creative cultural interventions The literature component of the course reflects the range and diversity of English as a global literature, and reinterprets the literature of the past, making it relevant to the present day. The creative writing component will introduce you to a range of skills and techniques in different forms such as poetry, fiction and life-writing. In the first two years the critical and creative parts of the course will be run in parallel – while you are studying reading poetry you will simultaneously be studying poetry as a creative practice. Thus, during the first two years you will develop the skills and knowledge required for literary and creative study, and be encouraged to identify your own interests and style ready for the dissertation and final creative portfolio which represents the culmination of the course. Professional skills are embedded into the course at all levels, preparing you for the world of work upon graduation. 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 11 2.1 Course Specification The Course Specification is a concise description of your course's aims and objectives and how you will be taught and assessed. The Course Specification is accessed via our online prospectus. Just search for your course title here: then click the ‘Modules and Learning’ tab on your course page to access the Course Specification. Course Structure The course structure outlines the modules that will be delivered on this course. Full details of the structure for this course can be found in the Course Specification. Course Learning Outcomes All courses are benchmarked against the Frameworks for Higher Education Qualifications of UK Degree-Awarding Bodies (FHEQ-DAB). The FHEQ-DAB can be viewed on the Quality Assurance Agency website: For more details on the Course Learning Outcomes specific to this course please view the Course Specification. Module Information For detailed information about the modules on this course please refer to the Module Handbooks. 2.2 Course Resources The Course specification specifies the physical and online resources available to students on this course. 2.3 Skills you will Gain during the Course Skills Developed We aim to give our students a solid grounding in the subject of English Literature and the skills and techniques of a wide range of creative practices, deepening your knowledge and understanding, expanding your intellectual and personal horizons, and providing you with the knowledge and confidence to write in a wide variety of forms and genres. The course also allows students to identify and develop the skills of independent and critical thought, 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 12 research, self-reflection, evaluation, presentation collaborative working and effective communication that will make them employable. A distinctive element of the creative writing component of the course is developing the ability to provide constructive feedback to peers – a skill particularly transferable to professional development. Additional Activities/Recognition You will have opportunities to gain recognition during your time at Leeds Beckett University for the extra activities you do in addition to your studies, including volunteering, student societies, playing in our University sports teams and being a Course Representative. 2.4 Graduate Attributes There are three Graduate Attributes for Leeds Beckett University and these are tailored to suit your course. They will provide you with capabilities which are essential for your employability and wider life as you move on from your studies here. You will be formally assessed on them in some of your modules at each academic level in each year of your course. The tasks and assessments you do for the modules at each level increase in complexity. Our University has a Taxonomy which is used to design your course: This shows the different levels of knowledge you are expected to demonstrate at each level. A summary of how graduate attributes are developed and assessed on this course is provided in the Course specification. 2.5 Work-Related Activities and Employability Employability is an integral part of the course and an arc of development related to enterprise, global outlook and digital literacy are built into every level of the course structure. These three graduate attributes are developed with specific, appropriate emphasis in each course and you will be assessed on each of them at every academic level. 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 13 2.6 Opportunities for Graduates The Course Specification includes details of any accreditations, career paths, further study options and other opportunities for graduates. 2.7 External Examiner The External Examiner assures that you are assessed fairly in relation to other students on the same course and also that the standard of your own award is comparable to similar courses taken by students in other higher education institutions within the United Kingdom. The details of the External Examiner for this course are as follows: • Dr Julian Stannard • Reader in English and Creative Writing • University of Winchester The External Examiner(s) provide an annual report for your course and your Student Administrator can provide details of the External Examiner’s report on request. Further details on all External Examiners’ reports can be located here: 3 Assessment and Feedback 3.1 Assessment Assessment Strategy Information on the various methods of assessment can be found in the Course Specification. University Assessment Regulations Our University’s assessment regulations are contained within the University Regulations (section 2.2). Regulations on progression, award eligibility and honours degree classifications can be found in section 2.3. The Regulations are available at: 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 14 Assessment Schedule Please note the exam/assessment periods in the academic calendar (see section 1) and make sure that you are available during those periods. Examination The examination schedule is made available to you once exam times and locations are confirmed. Coursework Coursework assessment schedules are found in module handbooks and on the relevant sections of MyBeckett. Assessment Support Students with a disability who require additional support with assessment and examinations should contact Disability Advice who will assess your suitability for an adjustment plan. New applications should be made to Disability Advice as soon as possible. Where adjustments relate to examinations Disability Services should be contacted no later than Friday 11 November 2016 in advance of the semester one exam period, and by Friday 10 March 2017 in advance of the semester two exam period. This will provide the best chance of putting the recommendations, from the adjustment plan, in place for that semester’s main exam period. Where applications are made after these dates, we will try to put recommendations in place, but this may not always be possible. Please see for further information. Submitting Assignments Written assignments will be submitted via electronic submission on the student portal MyBeckett. Each module has its own site and submission box which is specific to each assignment (and linked late submissions box). If you are unclear where you are to submit assignments for any module, ask the module leader. The assignment submission process is linked to the software Turnitin which will ‘match’ your work with a massive global database of books, e-books, journals, websites and other students' work to help you to avoid 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 15 plagiarism. You can see if parts of your work 'match' work in the database and you can see if you have attributed this to the source. Turnitin can only help you if you submit drafts of your work a reasonable length of time before the submission deadline. Turnitin cannot detect plagiarism, it can only 'match' text. If you are not sure how to interpret the 'originality report' which Turnitin makes available to you please ask your module tutor. It is important for your achievement that you submit all work for all assignments in a timely manner. It is also important that you keep copies of all work submitted until after you have graduated. You should also keep any receipts confirming the submission of assignments. In the event of your submitted work being lost you may be required to produce a copy of the work and submission receipt. If you are unable to do so, your work will not be marked. It is important to note that submitting all assignments is a requirement of your course. Should you experience extenuating circumstances which prevent you from submitting on time please make yourself aware of section 3.4 of this handbook. Without any form of extenuating circumstances, standard penalties apply for late submission of assessed work. These range from 5% to 100% of the possible total mark, depending on the number of days late. Full details of the penalties for late submission of course work are available at (see section 2.2). 3.2 Getting Feedback on your Assessed Work Our University has committed to a four week turnaround for feedback. Each Module Handbook will provide you with specific guidelines on how and when you will receive this. The Course Specification explains how feedback will be provided on both formative and summative assessments. The four week period between assessment and feedback enables tutors to dedicate sufficient time for marking, to provide a window of time for second marking and input by external examiners plus the necessary administrative tasks surrounding assessment. 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 16 3.3 How do I Get my Results? Results from module assessments and decisions on progression to the next level of study (e.g. from level 4 to level 5 of an undergraduate degree) or awards (if you are in the final level) are available on the Results Online system from: Results will only appear within Results Online five working days after the date of the Board of Examiners meeting (the meeting where your end of level outcome will be decided) or the Examination Committee meeting (the meeting where modular outcomes are decided). If you are unsure about when you might receive your results or have queries relating to your results, you should contact your Student Administrator. 3.4 Extenuating Circumstances and Mitigation If you are experiencing problems which are adversely affecting your ability to study (called 'extenuating circumstances'), then you can apply for mitigation. The University operates a fit to sit/fit to submit approach to extenuating circumstances which means students who take their assessment are declaring themselves fit to do so. Examples of extenuating circumstances include personal or family illness, bereavement, family problems or being a victim of crime. You will need to provide evidence to prove your situation; the Students’ Union Advice Service can offer guidance on what evidence you will need to present. Further information can be found at Forms on which to claim extensions and mitigation are available from the School Office in BPA111 or online. There are a number of deadlines throughout the academic year after which mitigation panels meet to assess claims. This panel informs students of the outcome of their claims. Students may well seek the advice of personal tutors, the course leader, or Student Liaison Officers, in deciding on whether and how to claim. 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 17 3.5 Re-assessment If you have not passed a module at the first attempt you will be eligible for re-assessment. See your Module Handbook for details of the relevant re-assessment process (e.g. whether it is coursework, an examination, a presentation or other form of assessment/when it will take place/what the deadline is). You will be advised via Results Online of your options for re-assessment. You are advised to contact your Course Leader, Module tutor, Student Administrator or personal tutor for any necessary clarification. 3.6 Student Appeals If you feel that you have in some way been disadvantaged during your studies and this is reflected in your results, then you may have grounds for an academic appeal. After your results are available on Results Online you have 15 working days to submit a request for an appeal hearing. You will find the information you need, including grounds for appeal, when and how to appeal and frequently asked questions at: You are strongly advised to seek guidance from the Students’ Union Advice Service on whether you have grounds for an appeal and the completion of the paperwork – see section 4 for Students’ Union Advice Service contact details. 3.7 Academic Integrity Our University wants to give you credit for your learning and for work which you have done yourself. Unfair practice occurs when you have not done the work yourself. Any attempt to gain an unfair advantage, whether intentional or unintentional, is a matter of academic judgement and may be considered to be unfair practice. Examples of unfair practice include, but are not limited to cheating, plagiarism, self-plagiarism, collusion, ghostwriting and falsification of data. Definitions of these offences and the serious consequences of unfair practice can be found in our Regulations, section 2.9: Academic Integrity: 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 18 There are a range of resources available to help you understand what is and what is not permitted and how to use other people’s ideas in your assessed work. These include the Skills for Learning website which can be found at If you are unsure on how to reference your work correctly please seek advice from your tutors or access the Skills for Learning resources online. 4 Where to Get Help 4.1 Personal Tutors Your personal tutor (see Key Contacts in section 1) will usually be an academic member of staff who teaches you on your course. Your Course Leader will make sure that you are given the name and contact details of your personal tutor at the beginning of each year, usually in your course induction. Normally, your tutor will aim to follow you right through the duration of your course. Your personal tutor has an important role to play in supporting you in academic and personal matters while you are studying on this course. The meetings will include discussion about career aspirations, your course, your progress, and your academic results. You may want to set objectives for academic and life goals which you can store on your e- portfolio. Personal tutors are not trained counsellors and will signpost you to other University services if they can’t help you. These services may, for example, be the Students’ Union, the counselling service or the Student Hub. In the first year your tutor will probably initiate communication to request a meeting at a mutually convenient time, but later in your course it should be your responsibility to set up the meeting. If you ask information to be kept confidential it will be and a note will be kept securely in your University notes with an indication of who can access the information. You are entitled to have one meeting per semester with your personal tutor in each year of your course. But your personal tutor may ask you to come to see them more frequently and you should feel free to contact them if you need to see them urgently. 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 19 4.2 Student Hub If you have any questions about or problems with life at our University, the first place to call, email or pop into is the Student Hub. The team can help with a broad range of enquiries including: funding and money advice, being an international student, disability, counselling and wellbeing support, student cards, accommodation, fee payments, support from the Students’ Union, how to access on-line services, getting help with your CV, preparing for an interview, careers guidance and getting a part-time job. Details of these and other services are available at There is a Student Hub on the ground floor of the Rose Bowl at City Campus and one also in Campus Central at Headingley. Their telephone number is 0113 812 3000 and their e-mail address is They work closely with the course team, the Students’ Union, all University Services and external organisations to make sure that if they don’t have the answer to your question they will know who will. You can also use 'my Hub' which is an online resource available 24/7 where you can access information and guidance about a range of services, register and make appointments with Services, register for workshops and employability tutorials, search for job vacancies and use a range of careers resources. 4.3 Disability Support Disability Support is available from our Disability Advice Team. The Disability Advisers will work with students to ensure support is provided to meet their individual needs: Disabled students can also access the Disability Resource Areas in each library and the support provided by the Library Learning Support Officer, more information is available at 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 20 4.4 Library Help The Library There are two Libraries at Leeds Beckett, Sheila Silver at City Campus and Headingley Library, both open 24/7, 365 days a year. You can use either Library, although the book stock reflects the courses taught at each campus. The website ( also provides access to thousands of resources and information about Library services. Academic Librarian Your academic librarian (see Key Contacts in section 1) liaises with your lecturers to ensure physical and electronic information resources for your subject are available in the Library and they work with you throughout your time here to help you develop information and digital literacy skills. Help and Information Points If you have any questions about using the library or need IT support you can get help: • from the Help and Information Point on the ground floor of each library • online: • by phone - 0113 812 1000 (including 24/7 IT support). Skills for Learning Skills for Learning provides a wide range of web resources and publications on topics including plagiarism, group skills, research, maths, Harvard referencing, essay writing and time management. Information about workshops and one-to-one tutorials can be found at The School of Cultural Studies also has a dedicated Academic Writing tutor who runs weekly sessions aimed at improving your writing skills, and also 1-1 slots. For further information about these or to book a session contact Lisa Samson on: 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 21 MyBeckett It is important that you also update your personal data yourself. You can do this via the Update my Data channel in the My Account tab in MyBeckett. Opportunities for you to feedback to us formally include: course meetings, end of module evaluation, mid module review, student barometer surveys, Course Rep forums, the National Student Survey and other student surveys. MyBeckett, the portal and virtual learning environment, is the gateway to all the information you will need to support your studies during your time at University. It provides access to your modules and timetable, your email account: your personal storage area on our University IT servers and a wide range of other information. 4.5 Students’ Union Advice Service The Students’ Union advice service offers free, independent and confidential advice and representation to students. Professional advisers are employed directly by the Students’ Union to represent your interests – even if you are in dispute with our University. Advice is available on a large number of issues, for example:  Academic Problems including: mitigation, complaints, appeals, disciplinary procedures and academic misconduct.  Housing Problems including: disrepair, problems with your landlord, checking your tenancy agreement before you sign.  Money Issues including: problems with your student loan and debt.  Health and Wellbeing. Tel: (0113) 812 8400 E-mail: There are full details of all services available at: 2016/17 Undergraduate Course Handbook 22

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