We started programmes that include practical work experience for undergraduate and PhD students.
Establishing Creative Writing Studies as an Academic Discipline. New Writing Viewpoints.
We hired colleagues in Canadian, modernist, transnational and indigenous literatures and are now hiring in media studies, cognitive linguistics, critical race studies and African diasporas. We produce field-defining research, placing us in the top 30 English departments in the world. But enrolments have slumped. Since , our total majors have reduced by 41 per cent. It is often suggested that the economic recession of led many parents to encourage their kids to enrol in programmes that ensure reliable and steady jobs.
But is this the only reason for the current crisis? Last year, we surveyed a cross section of our students to ask why they decided to become English majors. Training in writing and research and the opportunity to participate in work experience were among the least selected reasons. The difference here is striking: at the point of declaring the major, only half of our students are aware of the skills they will develop; once in the programme, they become fully aware that they are learning these skills.
Responses to another survey of close to first-year students from across the university enrolled in our introductory courses were also interesting. Asked if they would consider becoming English majors or minors, more than half said they would never consider English as a primary major, citing a perceived heavy workload, high expectations especially around writing ability or personal unsuitability.
Only a quarter said yes, with love of literature again being the main reason. But a third said they would consider English as a secondary major or minor because they found the material intriguing, because the professor was enthusiastic and engaged, or because they sensed that the programme would help them develop practical skills. After assessing these results and comparing them to recent research in the psychology of major selection, we concluded that declining enrolments in English have little to do with the content of what we teach or the methods we use to teach it.
What is to be done, then? We recognise that students who select a major because they love the subject do so because they also have the economic wherewithal to assume the employability risks that such a choice might entail. Our students become particularly animated when we expose them to the diversity of our research practices. When we are confident about the value of literary, linguistic and humanities research in our increasingly complex, uneasy world, our students feel confident about it too.
What we need to do, then, is to find ways to make students feel that they will gain skills, knowledge and, above all, confidence just by being in our programmes. Happily, though, we are familiar with the techniques. In our work and in our teaching, we value the complexity of literary and other forms of representation and show how that complexity can be marshalled to positive, social ends. Whether this comes about through academic critical essays or creative group presentations, it still models the kind of engaged work that university graduates will be expected to do.
Alexander Dick is an associate professor and chair of the majors programme and Patricia Badir is a professor in the department of English language and literatures at the University of British Columbia. Hong Kong society often prides itself as the centre of English proficiency in eastern Asia. But two things have changed.
The other is the broadening out of curricula in Hong Kong, in pursuit of student enrolments. Even though a minuscule number of Hong Kong students take English literature as a subject for the state exams at the end of secondary school, English still has the second highest intake each year among all humanities subjects in my university, with only Chinese language and literature taking in more students. Most English departments have both literature and linguistics sections; students take courses in both and can specialise in either.
However, in the English literature sections, the main focus may no longer be on bringing students up to speed in terms of the traditional canon. While elective and compulsory courses in traditional areas such as Romanticism and modernism are still quite popular, change is being driven by the fact that English departments must shape their offerings to the needs of society and students.
For instance, they now get money for attracting students from outside their discipline. Hence, they must devise general education courses that can attract such students; we now have very popular modules in superheroes, crime fiction and popular song. Courses in topical cross-disciplinary areas, such as the medical and digital humanities, are also popular. But it is complicated. With the glut of new MAs in Hong Kong and new short transfer programmes, their primary degree is no longer a great predictor of where someone will work, and surveys suggest that English graduates end up scattered across the employment sector.
Still, all programmes are being asked to start internships for students, so we in English try to work with charities, galleries and other cultural organisations where we have connections. Impact has also become the big determinant of research success. Since impact can be demonstrated by testimonials and outreach activities, research that engages with the public is increasingly important. However, since English is not integral to life outside the university, either in Hong Kong or mainland China, proving impact is difficult. Outreach activities for English department lecturers, for instance, are often limited to school visits and readings at the vibrant local creative writing groups.
Another major factor determining the nature of research in Hong Kong English departments is relevance to the Hong Kong and China context. However, it is almost impossible to win a research award by focusing solely on an anglophone writer. Between 70 and 80 per cent sometimes more of research grants awarded each year in the humanities focus on topics related to Hong Kong or China. The Belt and Road project, for example, has been targeted from all kinds of research perspectives in Hong Kong humanities departments.
Academics with specialisms in English literature and language must likewise be very creative in terms of fitting those specialisms into the needs of communities in both Hong Kong and China — especially with the Chinese government now making more funding available to Hong Kong researchers. English departments also offer important spaces for work in creative writing, comparative literature, world literature and world Englishes. And lecturers and teachers are creatively enhancing the role that it can play in the community through creative writing, practical skills workshops and comparative cross-cultural projects.
English will, of course, never occupy the place it once did, when Hong Kong was a British colony. But the fact that the academy itself still prioritises research in English over, for example, research in Chinese means that English will always have an important place in the Asian university.
Lennard Davis wonders whether activist academics have wrongly prioritised exuberantly bad behaviour over the hard graft of working for real change. Proposed new law not as tough as some feared — but critics argue focus on Dutch ignores benefits of studying in English. Skip to main content. The state of the discipline: English studies.
May 2, Twitter: lendavis , BobEaglestone and ellekeboehmer. Share on twitter Share on facebook Share on linkedin Share on whatsapp Share on mail 4. Source: Getty edited. Coding might get you a first job, but an English degree makes your career. Read more. Related articles Graduate earnings rarely afford good policymaking. By David Willetts. How near is biology to completing the puzzle of life? Indeed, the process of creative writing, the crafting of a thought-out and original piece, is considered by some to be experience in creative problem solving. Despite the large number of academic creative writing programs throughout the world, many people argue that creative writing cannot be taught.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Academic discipline concerned with creating literature. This section needs additional citations for verification. Relevant discussion may be found on the talk page. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Foundation of Creativity. Harper's Series on Teaching. Archived from the original on Retrieved In Dana, Robert ed.
Iowa City: University of Iowa Press. The New York Times. Karl Kirchwey, who graduated from Yale in , recently became the director of creative writing at Bryn Mawr College, after having run the Unterberg Poetry Center at the 92nd Street Y for over a decade. The New Yorker. Archived from the original on August 30, Not in United States?
Choose your country's store to see books available for purchase. See if you have enough points for this item. Sign in. This book advances creative writing studies as a developing field of inquiry, scholarship, and research. It discusses the practice of creative writing studies, the establishment of a body of professional knowledge, and the goals and future direction of the discipline within the academy.
This book also traces the development of creative writing studies; noting that as the new discipline matures—as it refers to evidence of its own research methodology and collective data, and locates its authority in its own scholarship—creative writing studies will bring even more meaning to the academy, its profession, and its student body.
The Craft of Research, Fourth Edition. Wayne C. Oprah Winfrey and the Glamour of Misery. Eva Illouz. Irene L. The Education of a Graphic Designer.
Steven Heller. Linda Adler-Kassner. Ann L Cunliffe. Originality, Imitation, and Plagiarism. Martha Vicinus. Richard H. Power and Identity in the Creative Writing Classroom. Ann Langley.
Leadership: The Key Concepts. Antonio Marturano.
Creative Writing Studies : Practice, Research and Pedagogy
Media Literacies. Michael Hoechsmann. Empty Labor. Roland Paulsen. Literacy in a Digital World. Kathleen Tyner. Audience Analysis. Professor Denis McQuail. Everyday Writing Center. Anne Ellen Geller.
The Age of Sharing. Nicholas A. Understanding Organizational Culture. Mats Alvesson. The Routledge Companion to Visual Organization. Emma Bell. Management Gurus and Management Fashions.
New Writing Viewpoints leaflet by Channel View Publications - Issuu
Brad Jackson. Autoethnography as Method. Heewon Chang. Communication Studies. Dr Sky Marsen. Joel Bloch. Teaching Creative Writing. A Companion to Creative Writing. Graeme Harper. Social Science Research. Barbara Czarniawska. Storytelling Organizations. David Boje. Helping Doctoral Students Write. Barbara Kamler. Explorations in Consumer Culture Theory.