Course Descriptions & Syllabi

Course Descriptions & Syllabi

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Note: some or all of the courses in the subjects marked as "Transfer" can be used towards a transfer degree: Associate of Science and Arts or Associate of Engineering Science at DACC. Transferability for specific institutions and majors varies. Consult a counselor for this information.

Areas of Study | | ENGL107 syllabus

COURSE TITLE:Advanced Fiction Writing
DIVISION:Liberal Arts

An advanced study of contemporary fiction theories and techniques, including story and character development along with an introductory to publishing.

Placement in ENGL101 or consent of instructor.

This course is not available for web registration.

Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
  • Identify aspects of voice and storytelling craft in his or her fiction and analyze their effectiveness.
  • Identify several contemporary theories of fiction writing involving character development, scene and plot.
  • Analyze where their work fits within the range of these contemporary theories.
  • Craft a critique of his or her work.
  • Analyze the content of regionally or nationally distributed literary journals in order to better understand how to match their writing with potential publishers.
  • Demonstrate the ability to apply feedback when revising their works.
  • Demonstrate a growing understanding of their writing process.
  • Execute the process of submitting a story or excerpt from a longer work to Waiting for Rain.

Weeks 1-2: Current Theories in Fiction Writing
Weeks 3-6: Individual Voice
Weeks 7-12: Character, Scene and Plot Development
Weeks 13 and 14: Publishing and Submission

Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
Zen in the Art of Writing by Ray Bradbury
On Writing by Stephen King

See bookstore website for current book(s) at

Students will be evaluated in their ability to produce cohesive works of fiction which demonstrate an understanding of the theories of fiction discussed in class, in their ability to create a strong independent voice through their works, in applying the various tools in fiction writing, and in their ability to apply feedback on their works in a manner which further develops and refines their creative efforts. Students will be evaluated through the following methods:
  • Conferences: Students must meet with the instructor for a conference about their work.
  • Reading Journals: There are three assigned texts for the class. For each book, students will write a summary of each chapter and paragraphs reacting to the ideas presented in the chapter.
  • Project Proposal Paper: Students must submit a project proposal paper which outlines the following about the creative work they will produce over the course of the semester.
  • Portfolio: Students must submit a portfolio of their work which should contain at least 50% of it showing substantial revisions from previous work they have either submitted for review or brought to conferences to discuss. Additionally, students will include an introduction to their work which discusses why the revisions they made have strengthened their work, how the work shows their growth over the semester, and how they have applied specific concepts from Lamott, Bradbury, and/or King to their creative process as a writer and the effects that has had on their writing. Finally, students will include a brief statement explaining why they chose the work or excerpt they did for submission to Waiting for Rain.
  • Submission: Students must choose a work or an excerpt from their work which is three to six pages in length to be published in the DACC literary anthology, Waiting for Rain. Any excerpts should stand as independent works so that they are understandable for the anthology’s readers without them having prior knowledge of the whole work.
Participation in conferences 20%
Reading journals 15%
Project Proposal Paper 10%
Portfolio 50%
Submission to literary magazine 5%

90-100% A
80-89% B
70-79% C
60-69% D
59% and below F


Membership in the DACC community brings both rights and responsibility. As a student at DACC, you are expected to exhibit conduct compatible with the educational mission of the College. Academic dishonesty, including but not limited to, cheating and plagiarism, is not tolerated. A DACC student is also required to abide by the acceptable use policies of copyright and peer-to-peer file sharing. It is the student’s responsibility to become familiar with and adhere to the Student Code of Conduct as contained in the DACC Student Handbook. The Student Handbook is available in the Information Office in Vermilion Hall and online at:

Any student who feels s/he may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact the Testing & Academic Services Center at 217-443-8708 (TTY 217-443-8701) or stop by Cannon Hall Room 103. Please speak with your instructor privately to discuss your specific accommodation needs in this course.

Fall 2018

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