Using Creative Writing as an Alternative Mode of Inquiry in Teaching and Research
Dr Matthew Cheeseman (English)
What is this about?
This paper discusses the use of creative writing as a mode of inquiry, specifically as a means of inquiring about the UK student experience. It is based on a module designed for Erasmus and Study Abroad students studying English at the University of Sheffield, adopting a creative writing methodology previously developed within the department. By using creative writing as a reflective mode of inquiry and not as an artistic pursuit, the module is designed to encourage students to comment on Higher Education (HE) and student experience from the psychological, emotional perspective that creative writing privileges. Exchange students are thus encouraged to 'voice the other'. Post-module recorded focus groups with students and anonymous module assessments suggest the methodology has been effective and especially useful in allowing mixed ability exchange students to empathise with both the positives and the negatives of a neoliberal, monetized HE system.
How will colleagues benefit?
Colleagues will not only gain an insight into research into teaching at the School of English, but they will also learn about how to incorporate creative writing as a mode of inquiry within their own teaching. Colleagues will also be given the opportunity to reflect on knowledge and the means by which it is co-produced with students at the University of Sheffield.