autumn 2020
ENG-3192 Literary and Cultural Theory - 10 ECTS

Last changed 28.10.2020

Application deadline

Applicants from Nordic countries: 1 June for courses offered in the autumn semester and 1 December for courses offered in the spring semester. 

Exchange students and Fulbright students: 15 April for courses offered in the autumn semester and 1 October for courses offered in the spring semester.

Type of course

This course is intended for students in the master's programme in English literature and students in the master's programme in teacher education year 8-13 (lektorutdanning trinn 8-13, studieretning engelsk). This course may be taken as a single course by students who qualify for admission to the MA programme in English Literature.

Admission requirements

Bachelor's degree (180 ECTS), or equivalent qualification, in English literature, or a degree combining English literature and a closely-related discipline (minimum 80 ECTS in English). An average grade equivalent to C or better (in the Norwegian grading system) in the English coursework (80 ECTS) is required.

Application code: 9371 - Enkeltemner på masternivå (Nordic applicants).

Course content

We will read key texts of critical theory from the early to the late Twentieth Century. The course is premised on the idea that theory informs each and every act of reading and interpretation. We will unravel and discuss the central tenets of each movement and the evolution of theoretical ideas throughout the century. Our readings of critical theory will then be put to use by engaging with a number of works of fiction to which we will refer throughout the semester. Students will apply the different tools of interpretation learnt in the course to their reading of these texts.

Objectives of the course


  • Students will acquire a working knowledge of significant movements in twentieth century literary theory.  
  • Students will recognize the significance of theoretical thought to the appreciation and understanding of literature and culture.  
  • Students will learn methods of applying literary and cultural theories to works of literature;


  • Students will develop an ability to articulate the broader ways in which literary theory applies to their own culture, global culture, and their own lives;  
  • Students will learn to compare and synthesize the theories presented;
  • Students will demonstrate their ability to relate to theoretical concepts both orally, through class participation, and in written form, in their responses and paper; and
  • Students will locate, cite, and intelligently incorporate several sources into their final paper and shorter essays.

Language of instruction

Language of instruction and examination: English.

Teaching methods

The course will be taught over thirteen weeks of two-hour seminars. There will be teaching-free periods for academic supervision.

Quality assurance: All courses undergo an evaluation once in a 2-year period at the master's level.


Coursework requirements:

Five short written responses (1-2 pages) to the reading materials. The obligatory coursework requirements must be approved in order to take the final exam.

This course requires regular attendance. However, a distance learning version of the course will also be available. For students who miss more than 3 class meetings (or who wish to take the course as distance students), it will be possible to submit a 500-word response paper addressing the topic for each class meeting missed.

Assessment method:

A term paper of 12-15 pages.

All written work is based on the following standard: Times New Roman, 12, 1,5, 2,5 cm.

Performance in the course will be assessed on an A-F grades scale. Grades are A-E for passed and F for failed. A re-sit examination is offered in the event of an F grade. The deadline to register (in the Studentweb) for a re-sit examination is 15 January (for courses offered in the autumn semester) and 15 August (for courses offered in the spring semester). In the event of a re-sit examination, the student is allowed to submit a revised version of his/her term paper within a given deadline.


  • About the course
  • Campus: Tromsø |
  • ECTS: 10
  • Course code: ENG-3192