Centre for Continuing Education

HSC English Advanced Preparation Course - Module C: Craft of Writing

HSC English. The smart way to prepare for your HSC.

This HSC English preparation course focuses on English Advanced Module C: The Craft of Writing.

This new one-day course begins with revision of the Syllabus and Prescriptions followed by an overview of the NESA-published Sample Questions and Marking Guidelines for English Advanced Module C.

Students will revise:

  • alternative question formats (one part or two)
  • possible forms for the provided stimulus (quotations, statements or extracts from texts)
  • options for the type of response (imaginative, discursive, persuasive, informative or reflective).

Brief reference will be made to the English Standard Module C rubric, highlighting the higher-order Advanced course specific requirements (eg the aesthetics of language and the emotion evoked by texts).

Following the overview, close analysis and discussion will focus on the short prescribed texts, using selected extracts (to be provided). These will be grouped and analysed collectively as models of 1) persuasive, or 2) discursive, or 3) imaginative writing, as a strategy to clarify the examination requirements of these different forms of response. Analysis will focus initially on form and structure, then narrow-in on the specific figurative, rhetorical and linguistic devices within these different types of text used for different purposes, audiences and contexts.

As attention shifts to these specific devices, students will review both key terminology and literary examples, including allusion, imagery, narrative voice, characterisation and tone (revising key terms for Paper 1—Section 1: short-answer questions). To enhance students' understanding and evaluation of these devices, links will be drawn to key texts prescribed for Modules A and B. By analysing devices across different texts, and across different types of texts, students will learn to redeploy and adapt them in their own responses, and to reflect on, articulate and justify their decisions and processes.

In between analysis and discussion of the Module C prescribed texts, students will have opportunities to apply and practise the devices and processes (above) in short, structured writing exercises. Explicit guidance will be provided in interpreting questions, integrating a stimulus, and structuring the response.

The final focus explores the general themes and ideas raised by the prescribed texts, their use of cultural, historical or political references, and how students can replicate or cultivate these ideas and links to context in their own writing.

Related critical material including the perspectives of others, and sample examination materials and the English Textual Concepts resource provided by NESA will further support individual student responses.


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

  • analyse and respond to the Syllabus and Prescriptions for the HSC Advanced English Module C: The Craft of Writing
  • differentiate and respond in different text forms—discursive, persuasive, imaginative, reflective
  • replicate and redeploy devices used in the prescribed texts within their own writing
  • understand that key literary devices (eg style or character) include a sub-set of other elements: eg style (semantic choices, form, structure, point of view, etc); character (point of view, focalisation, imagery, dialogue, etc)
  • make appropriate semantic choices to describe literary devices, stylistic choices or aesthetic features in their own or others' texts.


  • Critical analysis of language forms, features and structures of the prescribed short texts.
  • Evaluation of the suitability of language forms, features and structure for different purposes, audiences, contexts and meanings.
  • Experimentation with the strategic adaptation and application of language concepts and literary devices in different contexts.
  • Examination strategies for: question/stimulus analysis; anticipating and preparing for different types of question (eg ideas-focused, text-specific, or a specified literary device or stylistic feature); integrating the provided stimulus in the response; and scaffolding/structuring the response.

Intended audience

HSC English Advanced students.

Delivery style

Small classes. Lecture and workshop style. Group discussion for interactive exploration of the texts and informed personal student responses. Students will also read and discuss sample HSC examination material provided by NESA.


A course booklet is included. Please bring along your text to class.


NESA English Advanced Syllabus 2017
EA 12-1, EA 12-2, EA 12-3, EA 12-4, EA 12-5, EA 12-6, EA 12-7, EA 12-8

Getting Through Your HSC: A Practical Guide

While you progress through this journey and also the conclusion of your schooling life, we know you’ll have a lot on your mind – exams, future study, careers – but remember, while keeping focused on these bigger goals and aspirations, it’s also important not to forget your own health and well-being.

For tips on staying motivated and keeping focused, dealing with anxiety, keeping healthy, relaxation, pre-study exercise and more, read our article Getting Through Your HSC: A Practical Guide.


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HSC English Advanced Preparation Course - Module C: Craft of Writing

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