Teaching the Narrative Essay: Embedding the Elements of Fiction


  • Pham Thi Hong An Faculty of English Linguistics and Literature, University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam National University




Literature and language learning; elements of fiction; the narrative essay; teaching writing


The narrative essay belongs to chronological order, a way of organizing ideas regarding their occurrence in time. As a result, it requires a different set of writing skills from other types of essays: it is built out of sequential events of the narrative, not main ideas and supporting details. However, it is realized that the two writing coursebooks, Reason to Write (Intermediate) by Oxford (2005) and Great Writing 4 by Heinle Cengage Learning (2014), construct relatively vague guidance for students to build a narrative essay accordingly. This action research is, therefore, to bridge that gap, suggesting a literary approach to teaching that essay: embedding elements of fiction in the process. In this paper, the benefits of the method are discussed in terms of students’ language, organizational, and critical thinking skills. The findings from the students’ essays and surveys prove positive, from which insights are then taken into consideration. The implications of the method are that there exist opportunities and possibilities for applying literary theories into English teaching and learning.




How to Cite

Pham, T. H. A. (2021). Teaching the Narrative Essay: Embedding the Elements of Fiction. Proceedings of the AsiaCALL International Conference, 621, 27–39. https://doi.org/10.2991/assehr.k.211224.004

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