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ENGL 2310 Syllabus

Course Syllabus

ENGL 2310 - Early World Literature (formerly World Literature to 1650)

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

Reading representative and significant works of world literature from ancient literature to 1650, including literature from the rich traditions of Africa and Asia; discussion of the literature within its social and historical context.

Course Outcomes:

Upon successful completion of this course, students will:

  • Understand and explain the literal or concrete meaning of a work
  • Understand and explain a figurative or abstract meaning and the applied meaning of a work
  • Recognize and explain the abstract meaning as a theme of a work
  • Recognize and identify various elements and genres of literature
  • Explain relationships between literary elements in one work and those of other works
  • Explain relationships between literary elements and the cultures from which the authors come
  • Compare and contrast relationships between themes and/or cultures and the student’s own values
  • Write acceptable essays about primary literary sources (the works themselves). Acceptable essays have appropriate organization, well-developed paragraphs, support from the text, few language errors, and proper documentation.
Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

Prerequisites: ENGL 1010 and ENGL 1020

Course Topics:
  • Earliest of texts: Epics, poetry, creation texts
  • Greek Epics and Tragedies to Roman adaption
  • Asian Epics & Poetry
  • Religious Texts and Heroes
  • Heroes in around the world: Europe, Africa, Asia and in between
  • Poetic changes in East and West
  • A revolution of knowledge and the change in perception
  • Political challenges and changes
  • New World Myth: quiz, discussion
Specific Course Requirements:

Students should have a working knowledge of how to operate in the online/Desire2Learn environment. They should also have competent word processing skills and be capable of creating documents according to MLA style guidelines.

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:
  • College Dictionary (suggested: The American Heritage Dictionary) approximately $5.
  • Reliable Internet Access
Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Testing Procedures:
  • All quizzes and exams will be available through the Desire2Learn interface. No proctors are necessary for quizzes or exams.
  • The quizzes are available for a set period of time, usually for 4-6 days. They have a specific deadline date, which will be listed on the course schedule.
  • You will only be able to submit answers to the quizzes once, and the quizzes will be timed. All reading for the quiz should be completed before starting the quiz.
  • Successful submission of a quiz allows the student to participate in the discussion for that topic.
  • Exams will be available for a set period of time, usually 4-6 days. They have a specific deadline date, which will be listed on the course schedule.
  • You will only be able to take the exam one time, which will be timed and automatically submitted at the end of the allotted time unless voluntarily submitted earlier. Studying and reading for the exam should be completed prior to opening the exam.
Grading Procedures:

The grade for this course will be based upon several types of assessment tools: reading quizzes, discussions, journal entries, essay work, and two tests.

Frequent reading quizzes will be used to ensure the student have adequately read and understands the material presented in the textbook and in online materials. These quizzes will include objective questions (usually multiple choice) focused on specific details of the reading assignments.

The student will also participate in discussion forums to share perspectives with classmates and to evaluate the perspectives of others. Discussion suggestions will be provided as a starting point, but any element of the unit's reading material is acceptable discussion material. Since the most effective techniques for analyzing and learning about literature come from writing and discussing what we have read, a large portion of your grade will come from these discussions. Additionally, these discussions focus on helping students meet several of the course objectives. The student's discussions will be graded on BOTH frequency of participation in each forum and quality of input. The instructor will also be an active participant in the discussion forums.

The essay work will involve researching context and criticism of the works being analyzed in the student's paper, as well as exploring the student's comprehension and interpretation of the ideas in the works read for class. The essay, then, will offer an in-depth analysis of the student's comprehension and interpretation of themes, literary elements, and commonalities in the literature we have read, placing them in the context of the student's real-world environment. Specific requirements will be revealed in the individual assignment guidelines.

A journal of twelve (12) entries will be submitted near the end of the term. Each entry will be a 1-2 page personal reflection of one of the assigned readings in the course. Students will demonstrate deeper engagement and thoughtfulness with the works they select for journal entries than might otherwise be required for a quiz or assignment.

Two exams will assess the student's understanding of basic literary concepts and his/her ability to analyze the literature he/she has read in the course. These exams will consist of short answer and long answer type questions.

Grading Scale:
1700+ PointsA
1500-1700 PointsB
1300-1500 PointsC
1100-1300 PointsD
under 1100 PointsF


Assignments and Projects:
1 Midterm @ 200 points200
33 Discussions @ 12 points each (lowest 6 dropped)324
35 Quizzes @ 11 points each (lowest 5 dropped)330
2 Papers @ 300 points each600
12 Journal entries @ 25 points each300
1 Final @ 300 points each300
Total Points2054

Details of each assignment are included on Checklists for each unit. All units include readings in the textbook and some reading in the course content. Points for each assignment are listed above in Graded Items (i.e. 11 points per quiz, 12 points per discussion, 200 points for the midterm, 300 points per paper and the final, and 25 points per journal entry).

  • Introduction: syllabus quiz, Mic Check & Welcome (with bonus opportunity) Campbell’s “The Hero’s Adventure”
  • Earliest of texts: Epics, poetry, creation texts
    • Epic of Gilgamesh: quiz, discussion
    • Egyptian worship, love poetry, Old Testament texts and Hammurabi: quiz, discussion
  • Greek Epics and Tragedies to Roman adaption:
    • Iliad: quiz, discussion
    • Odyssey: 4 quizzes, 5 discussions
    • Medea: quiz, discussion
    • The Cave and Metamorphosis: quiz, 2 discussions
    • Aeneid: quiz, discussion
  • Asian Epics & Poetry
    • Ramayana: quiz, discussion
    • Ashvaghosha: quiz, discussion
    • Confucius and Chuang Tzu: quiz, discussion
    • Li Bai: quiz, discussion
  • Religious Texts and Heroes:
    • Luke: quiz, discussion
    • Koran: quiz, discussion
  • Paper 1
  • Midterm
  • Heroes in around the world
    • 1001 Arabian Nights: quiz, discussion
    • Beowulf: quiz, discussion
    • Dante’s Inferno: 2 quizzes, discussion
    • Canterbury Tales: 2 quizzes, 2 discussions
    • Sunjata: quiz, discussion
  • Poetic changes
    • Chinese to Japanese: quiz, discussion
    • Metaphysical: quiz, discussion
  • A revolution of knowledge and the change in perception: Don Quixote 6 quizzes, 2 discussions
  • Political challenges and changes:
    • The Prince: 2 quizzes, discussion
    • Macbeth: quiz, 2 discussions
  • New World Myth: quiz, discussion
  • Paper 2
  • Journal
  • Exam 2
Class Participation:

An essential part of the learning experience in this class is based on your participation, and your involvement affects not only you but your classmates as well. Participation includes more than just reading the assignments and completing the quizzes, homework, and essays. It involves discussing the readings with your peers and your instructor in the discussion forums.

  • The discussion board is available to you to engage in class-wide explorations of your individual explorations and responses to the literature. If you don't understand something, make sure you include this in your post to a question on the discussion board. In all likelihood, someone else in the course will be able to help you understand what you may not be able to figure out on your own. 
  • These discussions are NOT optional. You should post a question in the subject line in the discussion first, but that is only the first step to beginning a discussion thread. A discussion implies interaction. Read other students' responses and reply to each other's postings with your own individual insights, examples, and probing questions. A large part of learning is sharing insights and perspectives with others. Your instructor will monitor the discussions, provide feedback to postings, and add probing questions that are suggested by your own responses.
  • Use all resources available to you in order to learn as much as you can in this course. If you need to use a picture, video, or song to best accomplish what you mean, then do so.
  • Communication is key, so feel free to ask questions.
  • In addition to the graded discussion forums, there is a "General Discussion" forum where you can continue interesting discussions once the graded one is closed, or you can use it to ask questions that might not seem relevant to the ongoing discussion in one of the graded forums. You might even use it to share interesting insights or a piece of news or information you heard that is related to our course material.
  • In addition to the discussion forums, the email system is available for you to communicate privately with the instructor.
  • Don't forget: the instructor is a valuable resource for you to use, too.
Late Policy:

D2L is set up so that late work will not be accepted. If you have a serious emergency and know that you will not turn in the assignment on time, you must let your instructor know in advance of the due date, or at the very least, on the date that the event occurs as long as it is before or on the due date. Your instructor will not accept any late work if you have not first discussed the problem with him/her, and he/she reserves the right to refuse late work if he/she does not deem your excuse valid. If the submission is allowed, late work will be reduced one-half letter grade per day it is late. All work must be submitted through the Dropbox in D2L to be considered for a grade (or in the proper channels; no work will be accepted through email). No late work will be accepted after four days from the time it was originally due.

Pay close attention to your course Calendar. Login to the course a minimum of three times a week.

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on July 27, 2018