The University of Southampton
Courses

FILM2013 Technical and Creative Writing

Module Overview

This is a practical module, which requires you to engage and experiment with a range of written forms across different media for a variety of audiences. You will be encouraged to explore technical and creative forms of writing, to produce work which is imaginative, technically sound and professional.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• familiarise you with a range of writing styles, appropriate to successful communication in the marketplace and other public arena • equip you with a foundational knowledge of some key requirements of forms of technical writing • provide you with an opportunity to develop techniques for employing creativity in the writing process • embed the processes of drafting, revising, proof-reading and editing in your writing practice • demonstrate how an idea may be translated into various written forms to suit different occasions and audiences • encourage you to respond in a disciplined yet creative manner to a brief

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • the practices of professional editors, and the advanced rules and conventions of English, narrative structures and other devices
  • various creative and professional genres, such as screenplays, short stories, film reviews, newspaper articles, and reports
  • various styles and conventions and their effectiveness
  • ways of generating ideas creatively
  • the stages necessary when planning and producing a finished product in response to a brief
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • identify the appropriate form(s) of written communication for a particular context
  • demonstrate clear effective and persuasive written communication skills
  • organise time and activity in response to a brief
  • work effectively as part of a team
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • write an appropriate series of texts, using creative devices such as dialogue, monologue, poetry, and rhythm
  • critically examine and report on the planning work that precedes your final written text
  • review and analyse your own and others’ work in a professional manner
  • plan the different stages of the preparation of a piece of writing

Syllabus

This is a practical module, which requires you to engage and experiment with a range of written forms across different media for a variety of audiences. You will be encouraged to explore technical and creative forms of writing, to produce work which is imaginative, technically sound, and professional. The module will begin by considering how successful communicators use the written word, concentrating on prose forms. We will survey how unambiguous, clear prose can be achieved alongside a review of proofreading techniques, editing skills and advanced rules of grammar. Following this consolidation of technical skills, we will explore a variety of genres and consider how specific conventions may assist in the construction of meaning. We will experiment with achieving particular effects, with a view to persuade or attract an audience. You will develop your skills and awareness of the writing process, through a range of exercises covering a selection of diverse forms, such as promotional pieces, speeches, journalistic articles, reviews, news releases, reports, scenes for radio, plays, or films, short stories, poems, and monologues. You will be encouraged to experiment with written forms and presentation styles, and to develop areas of particular interest in your portfolio.

Special Features

The module invites a guest speaker who is an industry professional in one of the fields studied on the module, e.g. a journalist. Former students have commented that the portfolio is useful to show potential employers at the interview stage.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching methods include • workshops that combine tutor-input with practical writing exercises. • lectures, to introduce key issues • small group work, to write collectively, and to generate constructive feedback on others’ writing Learning activities include • generating material and ideas for a specific piece of writing • planning and implementing a strategy for completing a piece of work • peer review and feedback • editing and revising pieces of writing • reading, commenting on, and marking your peers’ work to embed the parameters of each task

TypeHours
Independent Study114
Teaching36
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

Hicks, W (1998). English for Journalists. 

J. Casterton (1986). Creative Writing: A Practical Guide. 

Pape, Susan, and Sue Featherstone (2006). Feature Writing. 

Dodds, Robert . H (1969). Writing for Technical and Business Magazines. 

Morley, David (2007). The Cambridge Introduction to Creative Writing. 

Pape, Susan, and Sue Featherstone (2005). Newspaper Journalism. 

Elbow, Peter (1981). Writing with Power: Techniques for Mastering the Writing Process. 

Hicks, W. et al (1999). Writing for Journalists. 

Singleton, John, and Mary Luckhurst, eds (1990). The Creative Writing Handbook: Techniques for New Writers. 

Assessment

Assessment Strategy

Assessment Method One draft piece, started in the workshop, and based on the content of the current or a previous class, and read to the group. The students in the group will mark the piece, using the mark sheets supplied, which detail the marking criteria for the task. The tutor’s mark will count for 50%, and the group’s mark for 50%, of each student’s work. In addition, the tutor will moderate the group’s marks. This task is compulsory but formative, so no marks will be entered for it. Instead, each student will be allowed to select the best two of their three class assignments for submission. One draft piece, started in the workshop, and based on the content of the current or a previous class, and read to the group. The students in the group will mark the piece, using the mark sheets supplied, which detail the marking criteria for the task. The tutor’s mark will count for 50%, and the group’s mark for 50%, of each student’s work. In addition, the tutor will moderate the group’s marks. One finished piece, (such as a newspaper article, a short scene, a poem, or a film review), together with all supporting work (such as planning, research, drafting, and revision materials). A critical commentary of 2,000 words on the five pieces selected. Relationship between the teaching, learning and assessment methods and the planned learning outcomes • The module uses a workshop system to facilitate student learning through activity. • It also encourages students to work between classes in producing materials and sharing these with their peers. • The tutor will introduce new ideas and concepts and provide examples. • Peer group support and co-operative working will encourage team-building skills and appropriate forms of critique, while reinforcing good time management.

Formative

Draft piece

Summative

MethodPercentage contribution
Critical commentary  (2000 words) 40%
Finished piece 20%
Finished piece 20%
Finished piece 20%

Referral

MethodPercentage contribution
Assessment tasks  (4000 words) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Linked modules

Prerequisites are any one of these three modules: FILM1001 Introduction To Film 1: Hollywood 2016-17 or FILM2006 Introduction To Film Studies 2016-17 or ENGL1079 Stage And Screen 2016-17

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