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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 10-Jan-24

Spring 2024 | ENG-1310-VM01 - Introduction to Literature

In Person Class

Standard courses meet in person at CCV centers, typically once each week for the duration of the semester.

Location: Montpelier
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Thursday, 11:45A - 02:30P
Semester Dates: 01-25-2024 to 05-02-2024
Last day to drop without a grade: 02-11-2024 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 03-24-2024 - Refund Policy
This course has started, please contact the offering academic center about registration


Roger Cranse
View Faculty Credentials
View Faculty Statement
Hiring Coordinator for this course: Jennifer Gundy

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following CCV General Education Requirement(s) for the current catalog year:
VSCS Arts & Aesthetics
CCV Writing and Research
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

In this course, students read a culturally diverse selection of fiction, poetry, and drama with an emphasis on how to study literature: understanding plot and character, identifying themes and the author's point of view, and analyzing techniques in prose and verse. This course fulfills the research and writing intensive requirement. Students must complete a final research paper with a grade of C- or better in order to pass this course. Prerequisite: English Composition.

Essential Objectives

1. Describe the formal elements of the novel, short fiction, poetry, non-fiction, and drama.
2. Define literary elements such as theme, character, plot, imagery, setting, point of view, and symbolism.
3. Analyze how writers use formal and literary elements to express ideas, emotions, and cultural values.
4. Identify figurative uses of language such as irony, metaphor, and personification from a wide range of literary works.
5. Describe the cultural and historical context of selected works of literature and explain the impact of global and/or cultural diversity on the development of these works.
6. Discuss the contributions of selected works of literature to social change, thought, and/or well-being on an individual or collective level.
7. Write short reaction papers and analyses of a wide range of selected literary works, critically editing drafts for precision and clarity as well as correct mechanics.
8. Demonstrate information literacy skills: distinguish between and utilize both primary and secondary sources; perform library and web-based literature searches; and evaluate data and resources for credibility, reliability, and validity.
9. Demonstrate the ability to apply either APA or MLA citation styles in academic writing by parenthetically citing sources in the text and correctly compiling them in the relevant end sources page.
10. Compose, revise, and edit a final paper that includes a thesis, integrates five or more scholarly and professional sources, including primary and secondary evidence as needed, to address an academic research question and demonstrate writing proficiency by achieving a grade of C- or better.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

This course uses one or more textbooks/books/simulations.

Spring 2024 textbook details will be available on 2023-11-06. On that date a link will be available below that will take you to eCampus, CCV's bookstore. The information provided there will be specific to this class. Please see this page for more information regarding the purchase of textbooks/books.

The last day to use a Financial Aid Advance to purchase textbooks/books is the 3rd Tuesday of the semester. See your financial aid counselor at your academic center if you have any questions.


  • Close reading of short stories, a novel, non-fiction literature, poetry, and a play.
  • Class discussion of reading materials.
  • Instructor explication of formal literary elements including point of view, imagery, figurative language, setting, theme, character, plot, and voice.
  • Screening of films with literary elements.
  • Five Writing Activities.
  • Two online Discussions.
  • A final Long Paper with a literary topic.

Evaluation Criteria

  • Five Writing Activities - 10 points each
  • Two online Discussions - 5 points each
  • One Long Paper - 40 points

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments




Week One(January 25, 11:45 am – 2:30 pm)

  • Introduction to the course, including Syllabus and Canvas
  • Readings:

oExcerpt,The Blue Starby Robert Ferro


o“Caught Napping” by Nicole Holofcener

  • Introduction to James Baldwin
  • Homework for February 2
    • Read “Sonny’s Blues” by James Baldwin (handout)
    • Writing Activity 1, Robert Ferro




Week Two(February 1)

  • Discussion of “Sonny’s Blues”
  • Screen Baldwin-Buckley Debate, 1965
  • Readings:
    • “My Dungeon Shook” by James Baldwin
    • Poetry

o“Shooting an Elephant” by George Orwell

  • Introduction to Kristen Roupenian
  • Homework for February 8
    • Participate in Discussion 1, James Baldwin

oRead “Cat Person” by Kristen Roupenian (handout)





Week Three(February 8)

  • Discussion of “Cat Person”
  • Introduction to Tim O’Brien
  • Readings:
    • “Boyfriend” by Junot Diaz
    • “Looper” by Roger Cranse
    • Poetry
  • Homework for February 15
    • Writing Activity 2, Kristin Roupenian
    • Read “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien (handout)




Week Four(February 15)

·Discussion of “The Things They Carried”


oExcerpt fromDispatchesby Michael Herr

o“Baguettes and the Forever War” by Roger Cranse



·Homework for February 22

oWriting Activity 3, Tim O’Brien





Week Five(February 22)

·ScreenPride and Prejudice


Homework for February 29

    • Read pages 3 – 96 in Richard Russo’sMohawk




Week Six(February 29)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings:
    • Poetry of Sharon Olds
    • “Marrakech” by George Orwell


·Homework for March 7

    • Read pages 97 – 230 in Richard Russo’sMohawk




Week Seven(March 7)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings:
    • Poetry of Sharon Olds
    • “A Modest Proposal” by Jonathan Swift
  • Homework for March 14
    • Read pages 233 – 318 in Richard Russo’sMohawk
    • Participate in Discussion 2, Sharon Olds




Week Eight(March 14)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings/Listening:
    • “Roy Spivey” by Miranda Joy
    • Poetry
  • Homework for March 21
    • Read pages 319 – 418 in Richard Russo’sMohawk




Week Nine(March 21)

  • Discussion ofMohawk
  • Readings:
    • “Education of a Knife” by Atul Gawande
    • “Los Angeles Notebook” by Joan Didion
    • Poetry
  • Homework for March 28
    • Writing Activity 4, Richard Russo




Week Ten(March 28)

·Introduction to the Long Paper


o“Buried Homeland” by Aharon Appelfeld


·J. S. Bach birthday, March 31, 1685 – screen video

  • Homework for April 4
    • First draft of Long Paper due April 4




Week Eleven(April 4)

  • ScreenA Room with a View
  • Homework for April 11
    • Continue work on Long Paper
    • Writing Activity 5,A Room with a View




Week Twelve(April 11)

·Flipped session – revise your Long Paper

·Introduction to Tennessee Williams


oTennessee Williams’Cat on a Hot Tin Roof



Homework for April 18

oFinal Long Paper due April 18





Week Thirteen(April 18)


oTennessee Williams’Cat on a Hot Tin Roof


  • Homework for April 25

    • TBD




Week Fourteen(April 25)

  • Readings and discussion,Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • ScreenCat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • Homework for May 2
    • May 2 is theiron deadline for all class work.




Week Fifteen(May 2) – Final class

  • ScreenCat on a Hot Tin Roof
  • Final discussion and farewells!


End of semester, no assigned homework, but please keep reading! RC


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Participation Expectations

·Attendance at every class is required. If you must be absent for personal emergency or serious illness, contact me ahead of time by e-mail or in-person. More than three unexcused absences will result in a grade of "F."If you areexperiencing cough, fever, or shortness of breath, do not come to class; your absence will not count against you. Email me and I will work with you to devise a plan to make up the missed class work.

Missing & Late Work Policy

To be determined individually.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.