Subject Information


ELC2011 Advanced English Reading and Writing Skills

This LCR elective helps you become a more effective reader and writer. It focuses on developing students’ facility to read a variety of texts in a critical manner, both intensively and extensively; and to write texts that demonstrate knowledge and insight.

There are three individual assessments:

Reflective writing (20%)

The first part of the course covers extensive reading: a type of reading which is aimed at cultivating good reading habits, developing a sound knowledge of vocabulary and structures, and encouraging a liking for reading.

You will read a selection of titles of these genres: limericks, fables, short stories, fantasy, fairy tales, graphic novels, lyrics, and science fiction; and share your feelings and thoughts in class and on the e-learning platform.

You will submit a reflection of 400 to 500 words on text(s) that belong to one of the above genres for assessment.

Analyzing genres of writing (40%)

The second part of the course addresses critical reading: a type of reading which is more intensive in nature and is related to the ‘depth’ of what is learnt, cf. extensive reading for the ‘breadth’ of knowledge.

You will read and analyze texts of different genres and eras, from ‘older’ forms like philosophical and political writings to ‘newer’ media like advertisements. Emphasis is placed on style, interpretation, and the language devices employed by the writers.

You will sit an in-class assessment in mid-semester. The assessment comprises two parts, which are equally weighted. In Part 1, you will read four texts on a particular topic and answer several questions. Sample questions and further instructions will be provided beforehand to help you tackle this part. In Part 2, you will write an article of 400 to 500 words on the very same topic you have read about in Part 1. You can use the ideas from the four texts as well as your own views or arguments in your answer.

Feature article writing (40%)

The last part of the course introduces you to feature article writing: a type of journalistic writing more creative than traditional news stories and which deals with real events, issues and trends. You will learn about different features: human-interest, personality, and lifestyle that writers use in newspapers and magazines.

You will submit a feature article of 800 to 1000 words on a topic of your choice. As feature article writing is rather new to most students, your teacher will help by meeting with you in a consultation session and providing preliminary feedback on your draft article before you submit the final version for grading.

ELC2011 is well liked by students and teachers. Places are limited as we seek to schedule the in-class assessment for all students enrolled on the same date.

You are encouraged to check with students in your programme or faculty who have taken this subject previously. You can also contact the subject leader, Mr. Adam Tse at adam.tse@polyu.edu.hk