English (ENGL) 381

Creative Writing in Prose (Revision 4)

ENGL 381 Course Cover

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Humanities

Prerequisite: ENGL 211 and ENGL 212, a final grade of “B” in ENGL 353, and permission of the professor.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

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ENGL 381 is not available for challenge.

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The focus of English 381: Creative Writing in Prose is your work and its development. Progress depends on engagement, patience, and perseverance, as well as a desire to do things well. You bring the desire, talent, and creativity. This course does its best to encourage those values, but its main role is to expand your sense of technical understanding as you shape the material that arises for you within the various assignment prompts and parameters.

To get the most from this course, you need to believe that your writing can be improved by study, dedication, and feedback. It is equally important to remember that writing should be fun and inspiring. Compelling fiction results from both work and inspiration; you cannot have one without the other.

Students are expected to have a sound background in literature and proven essay-writing ability. Before contacting the professor with your request for approval to register, please read Readiness for ENGL 381. This document also provides further information about the course.

Readiness for ENGL 381


  • Unit 1: Scene and Narrative Summary
  • Unit 2: The Very Short Story
  • Unit 3: Added Complexity
  • Unit 4: One More Revision


To receive credit for ENGL 381, You may fail only one of the creative writing assignments (1, 4, 6, 8, and 9) and still receive a pass for the course. A fail is any mark below 50 percent.
You may fail only one response to a peer draft (assignments 2 and 7) and only one craft study (numbers 3 and 5) and still receive a pass for the course. A fail is any mark below 50 percent.

Activity Weighting
Assignment 1 Pass/Fail
Assignment 2 5%
Assignment 3 5%
Assignment 4 10%
Assignment 5 5%
Assignment 6 20%
Assignment 7 5%
Assignment 8 25%
Assignment 9 25%
Total 100%

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

Course Materials


Mills, Mark. Crafting the Very Short Story: An Anthology of 100 Masterpieces. Upper Saddle River: Pearson, 2003.

Neuleib, Janice, Kathleen Shine Cain, and Stephen Ruffus, eds. Engl 381 Creative Writing: Stories, Craft, and Study. Boston: Pearson Learning Solutions, 2016.

Richards, David Adams. Nights Below Station Street. Toronto: Newmac Amusement Inc., 1988.

Simpson, Leanne. Islands of Decolonial Love. Winnipeg: ARP Books, 2013.

Other Materials

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

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 4, June 9, 2016.

View previous syllabus