LITR277: Introduction to Short Fiction
Section: E51     (eLearning)

About This Course

Semester and YearSummer III 2013 / (6 weeks): Jul 8, 2013 to Aug 15, 2013
(See "Getting Started" below for details about orientation)


James Freeman   Email:
Phone: 215-968-8155

Course Credits

3 credits

Time Requirements

Plan a minimum of 15 - 22 hours per week for your coursework. While online learning courses provide flexibility in time, geography, and travel, the work required for successful completion is identical to that for the face-to-face course.   Your instructor may specify additional time requirements in the "Other information" field below or during your orientation.

Delivery Mode

Web-based course

Official College Course Description

The complete college course description can be viewed at:

Student Characteristics

Open to self-motivated, self-disciplined students who can handle college-level work and study independently.

Instructor Provided Course Syllabus

A sample Course Syllabus is typically available in WebAdvisor's "Search for Sections" results. A Course Syllabus explains how the instructor will conduct the class and may include: course policies, grading guidelines, assignment due dates, etc.

Student Requirements

This course has the following requirements for students:
  • There are no special requirements for this course

Getting Started With This Course


This information has expired. If you are looking for current course information you must go to the current semester course information page.

Accessing Your Course

Canvas (by Instructure)

Your course is using Canvas. If you are new to Canvas, please visit the Canvas Basics course space to become familiar with Canvas prior to the start of your course. No login is required to access this space.

You will be able to login to Canvas about two weeks prior to the start of your class. However, your course becomes available as of 1 AM on the official course start date.

Logging In

Log in to your Canvas course space at

  • Username: Your username is the same for every system at Bucks.
  • Password: your Bucks Network password (used to log into any Bucks campus computer or to access any Bucks Library online database from off campus.)

If you do not know your Bucks Username, you can retrieve it by using the Find Your Username Form. Enter your Name, Birthday (mm/dd/yyyy) and either your 7 digit student ID number OR your social security number, then click Submit. Your Bucks username will display on the screen.

Note: Students are uploaded to Canvas several times a day. If you registered late, you won't be able to access Canvas until the next upload takes place.

Purchasing Your Books and Other Course Materials

While you may purchase your books and other course materials from the provider of your choice (using the ISBN number available through the course's academic department where applicable to ensure the correct version), both the campus bookstore and our online bookstore, guarantee that they stock the correct version for your course.

Approximately 3 weeks prior to the start of the session you can use the link below to see the list of books that have been selected by your instructor. If you have any questions about the course materials listed, please contact your instructor or the academic department directly.

Click this link to see the book list for your course.

Other Information about the Course

Litr. 277 Summer II, 2014

Introduction to Short Fiction, Canvas e-learning

July 8—August 15, 2014

James A. Freeman, Professor, Language&Literature Department

Penn Hall Room 127 - Instructor’s Office (215-968-8155)

Penn Hall Room 105 Department Office (215-968-8150)

Instructor’s e-mail:

Department web pages:

Office Hours: via Canvas Inbox and BCCC webmail

Course Syllabus:

Required Text: “The Story and Its Writer,” (8th Ed), Ann Charters, Editor. 8th edition ordered to facilitate free accompanying e-supplements.

Optional: “Irish Wake: In Loving Memory of Us All;” “Ishi’s Journey from the Center to the Edge of the World, both by Jim Freeman (a collection of stories and a short historical novel; any royalties donated to BCCC student scholarship).

Disability Accommodations: In compliance with the Bucks County Community College policy and equal access laws, appropriate academic accommodations can be made for students eligible for such support. Students are encouraged to register with the Disability Services Office (215-968-8463) to verify their eligibility for appropriate accommodations. Please speak to your instructor about any requests for academic accommodations or other concerns prior to or as early in the Summer session as possible.

Cheating & Plagiarism: The expectation at Bucks County Community College is that the principles of truth and honesty will be rigorously followed in all academic endeavors. This assumes that all work will be done by the person who purports to do the work without unauthorized aids. In addition, when making use of language and some idea not his or her own, whether quoting them directly or paraphrasing them into his or her own words, the student must attribute the source of the material in some standard form, such as naming the source in the text or offering a footnote. (Source: BCCC Catalog 2008, College Policy Regarding Cheating and Plagiarism, p. 159+). It is assumed and occurs in the vast majority of cases that BCCC students will always do their own original work and properly document all sources cited or used. Just had to get that out front early: I start with trusting you!

Student’s Responsibility to Retain Course Materials Students are always responsible for retaining copies of their own work and/or correspondence, including that posted to a web course space. Student access to a Bucks County Community College web course space is available only during the stated semester/session as indicated by the College’s academic calendar. All web course sites, including content, are routinely removed from the server at the conclusion of each semester/session.

Overall Course Description:

The main objective of this course is to learn about the elements of short fiction. Emphasis will be placed on reading, discussing and writing critically about fiction as we expose the interconnections between literature and life. A special feature of this course is to understand and appreciate 19th and 20th century Realism in literature: we will trace events leading to this literary period, and we will examine even more recent literary movements as we study short fiction. Women and minority authors as well as non-Americans will often be featured. We will paint a short fiction canvas quickly with both wide and detail brushes (Canvas pun intended).

This is primarily a student-centered online discussion course, suited to various learning styles, so attendance and online participation are, of course, essential. Three or more Summer II session days without posting by “midterm” may result in an instructor initiated withdrawal from the course; four or more days without meaningful activity may cause failure. On each Summer II session day, a designated student will take online class summary notes that will be presented online for discussion blog on the subsequent class day. This will solidify our understanding of the foundational knowledge we gained in our previous day’s lessons.

Each student will co-lead at least one e- panel discussion blog on an author of short fiction and the author’s cultural history, sociological and literary criticism responses (graded holistically as an A, C or F and worth 1/4 of our grade). Roles on the panel are explained in a supplemental handout/attachment. In addition, we’ll do two expanded and formalized journal entries as short essays (350-550 words), frequent writerly short essay reading responses (a total of 1/8 of our grade), a 700-800 word essay before midterm (1/4 of the grade), and a 700-800 word essay in the last days of the e-session (1/4 of our grade). The handout/attachment “How to Write a Literary Analysis Essay” will help with these projects, as will model papers, and the grading rubric I will provide in advance. As a supplement to the required readings, I will recommend optional ones. No “bonus points” for participation will be awarded after each discussion because daily posting discussion is mandatory, but a cumulative subjective evaluation of each student’s overall participation will be made: another optional extra credit feature will be attendance at any writer’s events at BCCC, Bucks County and elsewhere and to post a journal write-up of the event using our literary terms from the seven Canvas Learning Modules: the elements of literature.

To this end of knowledge of fiction and fictional literature, each student will be required to keep a Canvas online journal blog for writing brief reactions to assigned readings before each class online discussion of the commonly assigned model stories (also graded holistically as an A, C or F and worth 1/8 of our course grade). Many students will also use their journals to take notes and to generate ideas for both in and out of class essays. You’ll get journal guidelines, a journal template, and a syllabus of required readings and work for Summer II online and via pre-summer hard-copy handouts from me if you’d like to advance plan. Please contact me by 6/5/13 if you wish to come to campus to prepare. For this reason, I recommend purchasing your textbook(s) before the start of the session and to check the early release of the course syllabus. Please read this document carefully and please also consider referring to the College’s and the Language & Literature Department’s policy handout(s) and BCCC catalogue information on Academic Integrity and accommodations for disability, etc., merely summarized above. These are available in the Newtown Campus Dept. office, Penn Hall room 105, M-F, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm.

This course can be, and will be, insightful and fun. Here’s to having a great semester together exploring short fiction via Canvas e-group thinking! Individual guidelines, course format and syllabus to follow on early 2013 Summer II Canvas release.

Kind note for context on the study of Literature and fiction… I believe this, fellow readers.


Major Premise: Knowledge is Power.

Minor premise: Literature is Knowledge.

Conclusion: Literature is Power (over one’s well being and happiness especially).

Please see the soon-to-be posted department grading standard, course schedule and course format. We will have some fun and do some deep learning with fictional literature this Summer II, 2014 session!