English 500 Learning Outcomes

Scholarly research and dissemination

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • use common research tools and databases in our discipline and in your sub-discipline effectively and with awareness of their strengths and limitations.
  • use keywords, subject headings, search strings, and Boolean operators proficiently.
  • describe the medium, scope, content-type, and in-built tools of a finding tool, reference work, database, or collection.
  • locate primary documents in archives and rare book libraries.
  • locate print and digital surrogates of primary documents.
  • recognize the research questions (implied or stated), warrants (implied or stated assumptions), main claims, methodologies, and types of evidence in a scholarly argument.
  • articulate your own research question, warrant, claim, methodology, and evidence.
  • identify key conferences and publication venues in your field (journals, presses, moderated blogs, scholarly websites).
  • plan the steps required to develop a research question into potentially publishable paper.
  • recognize established and emerging forms of peer review.

Enumerative (reference) bibliography

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • articulate the rationale behind citation systems
  • recognize which aspects of citation are variable and therefore governed by a citation system like MLA or Chicago.
  • choose a medium for saving your sources and research notes effectively (i.e., a medium that works for you).
  • record metadata about your sources precisely and accurately.
  • critique and possibly even contribute to metadata in a catalogue, finding aid, or bibliographic database.
  • produce an exhaustive enumerative bibliography.

Analytical/descriptive/historical bibliography, textual criticism, editorial practice

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • deploy the vocabulary listed in the “Glossary of Bibliographical and Textual Terms” (Williams and Abbott 142-170).
  • understand and articulate the difference between literary criticism, various forms of bibliography, textual criticism, and scholarly editing.
  • understand the difference between works, texts, and documents (digital or material).
  • put the rise of the printing into historical context
  • understand why knowing the transmission of texts matters to literary criticism.
  • understand the basics of how handpress books were composited, imposed, quired, and bound.
  • understand how the advent of the machine press affected book manufacture.
  • grasp the issues at stake in understanding, preserving, and archiving born-digital literary materials (this field is a moving target, so we can’t expect to master it in this course).
  • parse a basic bibliographical description of a book from the handpress period.
  • read a catalogue description of an artifact in UVic’s literary archive.
  • name and identify the varieties of scholarly editing, their rationale, and the types of editions produced thereby.
  • find resources for the study of palaeography as your research interests demand
  • understand the basic principles of mark-up of texts
  • undertake a diplomatic transcription using a set of transcription rules
  • encode a short text in TEI, using an XML template and a pre-determined TEI tagset

Disciplinary issues in English and aspects of professional life

By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • enter the academic conversation.
  • write a “state-of-the-art” footnote.
  • choose a sub-discipline in our field (if you are in one of the concentrations or on the 598, 599, or PhD tracks)
  • position your work with respect to developments in the field
  • identify the tone and scope of the academic conversation in a particular venue
  • call upon basic time management and prioritization skills
  • ask for a letter of reference