Electronic Literature

Undergraduate course

Course description

Objectives and Content

Electronic literature is literary fiction and poetry created for the computer and the network. Genres of electronic literature, while focused on poetics, have connections to other forms of digital culture such as network art and computer games. In this course, students will read works of electronic literature as for instance hypertext fiction, digital poetry, and interactive fiction. Students will also study theoretical and critical studies of electronic literature.

Creative practice is an important component of the course, and all students will participate in the production of collaborative work of electronic literature, either created from scratch as a website or similar, or modifying an existing work of electronic literature. The necessary technical skills will be taught as needed. Students will also receive practical training in analyzing electronic literature, in particular in analysis of how the elements that are common in electronic literature, such as images, motion, time and space and interactivity influence the text of experience and reader experience, and how this also problematizes our understanding of traditional narrative and poetry.

Learning Outcomes


The candidate has knowledge...

  • of the genres of electronic literature and their history
  • of key works of hypertext fiction, digital poetry, and interactive fiction
  • of how visual, kinetic, temporal and interactive features work in narrative and poetry in electronic literature, and how they complicate our understandings of the reader and of the literary in general
  • of basic principles within programming


The candidate can...

  • use theories of electronic literature in own interpretations of specific works
  • write specifically for digital environments
  • discuss how coding and design can be elements of writing practice

General competence

The candidate can...

  • reflect upon their own creative practice and use feedback to improve their work
  • use creative strategies for conveying academic content

ECTS Credits


Level of Study


Semester of Instruction


Place of Instruction

Required Previous Knowledge
Recommended Previous Knowledge

Dikult103, Dikult105, Dikult205.

Generally, bachelor students should have taken all courses at the 100-level in Digital culture before starting the 200-level.

Credit Reduction due to Course Overlap
Access to the Course
The course is open to students at the bachelor programme in Digital Culture and exchange students. Other students at bachelor and master programmes at The Faculty of Humanities may apply to take the course if there is capacity (via email to studieveileder.lle@uib.no). After the registration deadline (1 September), applicants that have attended as regular students before the deadline, with preparations, will be eligible to participate in a random selection for available spots.
Teaching and learning methods

There are twenty weeks in a semester, where ten weeks usually have classes. A week with classes will usually contain two classes lasting two hours each. The class schedule will be available by the beginning of the semester.

It is important that the students take part in the orientation meeting in the beginning of the semester.

The students must be prepared for the classes and seminars, as the classes always include the students and there always will be discussions around the class topics. At times, homework will be given.

The work effort is standardized to 20 hours a week from the beginning of the semester until the exam, also in lecture-free weeks. These hours must be spent on lectures, laboratory exercises, seminars, reading specialist literature, homework, writing compulsory assignments and obtaining relevant material from the library and online (books, articles, videos).

It is expected that the time during teaching-free weeks is used for own reading and preparation for the exam.

The students can be invited to relevant guest lectures and events organized by Digital Culture.

If fewer than five students are registered to a course, the department might reduce the teaching, please see the department's guidelines regarding this on Mitt UiB. Regarding a course where this is a possibility the students get information about this at the beginning of the semester, and before the deadline regarding semester registration 1.September.

Compulsory Assignments and Attendance

Attendance is mandatory in all class activities. Course participation is approved by the course coordinator. If absences exceed 25%, the student cannot take the exam.

The student must take part in a collaborative practical project.

The student must choose a work of electronic literature which will be presented in class and which the student shall write a critical description of at around 400 words.

The written assignment must follow academic practice for i.e. argumentation and citation.

The obligatory assignments (collaborative work, presentation, and the written description) must be approved by the course responsible before the student can take the exam. The student will receive the result and a short comment on the assignment before the exam. If the assignment is not approved, the student will get another try.

Forms of Assessment
A self-made work of electronic literature, with an introduction to the work of 1,500 words that sets the work in a critical context.
Grading Scale
Grade scale A-F. An explanation of the scale can be found on Mitt UiB.
Assessment Semester
Reading List

The teaching material will be a combination of electronic literature and theoretical texts about these works and about electronic literature in general. The texts include books, articles and various online resources.

The works of electronic literature are available online or installed in Digital Culture's computer lab.

All material is usually in English. Students can use and refer to sources in other languages ¿¿in assignments and exams.

The list of compulsory and recommended subjects, as far as this is known in advance, is available on Mitt UiB before the start of the semester and is updated continuously as needed. The books will be available at Akademika before the start of the semester, or downloadable as e-books.

Course Evaluation
Course evaluation: Evaluation will be conducted in accordance with the University of Bergen's quality assurance system.
Examination Support Material