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English (ENGL) 324
Shakespeare I (Revision 3)

Revision 3 closed January 7, 2008, replaced by current version.

Delivery mode: Individualized study. CD and DVD components. Online-enhanced.

Credits: 3 - Humanities

Prerequisite: ENGL 211 and ENGL 212 or equivalent first year English course(s)

Centre: Centre for Language and Literature

ENGL 324 has a Challenge for Credit option.

Course website


ENGL 324 is an introduction to the study of the plays of William Shakespeare and focuses on the histories and tragedies. Critical analysis of the works helps the student to comprehend the plays and to appreciate the achievement of the most important author in the literary tradition of the English- speaking world. The course will help you study the plays as literary texts and as live theatre. To critically analyse the plays we will use a variety of media: the printed texts of the plays, CDs of performances, the study guide with historical and critical commentary and DVD performances of two plays. The seven plays are: Richard II, Henry IV, Part One, Hamlet, King Lear, Antony and Cleopatra, Macbeth, and Othello.


To receive credit for ENGL 324, you must achieve a minimum grade of 50 percent on each assignment, 50 percent on the final examination and a composite course grade of at least “D” (50 percent). The weighting of the course assignments is as follows:

Essay 1 Essay 2 Essay 3 Final Exam Total
10% 30% 30% 30% 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Hamlet.1998. Sylvan Barnet, ed. New York: Signet.

Macbeth. 1998. Sylvan Barnet, ed. New York: Signet.

Antony and Cleopatra. 1988. Barbara Everett, ed. New York: Signet.

King Lear. 1998. Russell Fraser, ed. New York: Signet.

Othello. 1998. Alvin Kernan, ed. New York: Signet.

Henry IV, Part One. 1987. Maynard Mack, ed. New York: Signet.

Richard II. 1988. Kenneth Muir, ed. New York: Signet.

Tapes (audio and video)

Audiocassettes (set of four) University of Victoria, 1996.

Hamlet, Dir. Franco Zeffirelli. Warner Home Video, 1990.

Macbeth, HBO Video made for television, 1988.

Other materials

The course materials also include a study guide and student manual.

Special Instructional Features

Students must have access to CD and DVD players. Computer access to the Internet is optional.