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ENGL 3090 is a course at East Carolina University that covers four of Shakespeare’s tragedies. Although the four tragedies can vary depending on the professor, there are five main tragedies that will be chosen from: Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, Romeo and Juliet, and Macbeth. A Shakespeare course is required by all theater and English majors, and the course can fulfill elective requirements. As a junior level course, the class can be difficult, but if you follow the 5 tips then you will be sure to succeed.

1. Buy The Books!


There are many different versions of Shakespeare’s plays, but it is really important to get the version of the play that the professor uses. That way, you will not read unnecessary information that is left out of the professor’s version, nor will you miss out on any information included in the professor’s versions. Also, you should buy the books so that you can write in them.

2. Go To Class!


You have to go to class in ENGL 3090 if you want to pass. There is a quiz at the beginning of every single class that is on the assigned reading that you were supposed to do before coming to class. If you miss class then you are unable to take the quiz because there is a passcode that locks the quiz. The professor gives you this passcode at the beginning of class. Also, if you are missing class then you are not analyzing the plays along with the professor, which can hinder you when taking exams.

3. Read The Books!


Although it may be tempting to Sparknotes the plays, it is absolutely critical that you actually read the text (not No Fear Shakespeare either). The class is not an analysis of the stories behind the plays, but instead the class delves into Shakespeare’s strategies and the similarities that he imposes between plays. Therefore, it is not possible to do well in the class if you do not actually read the plays.

4. Take Notes And Underline Passages!


If you follow along during class, underline key passages brought up in class in your books, and take notes, then you will be fine in the class. There are two exams throughout the course, and each one is centered around the discussions in class. Therefore, if you follow along and write down key details, you will succeed on the exams.

5. Go To Office Hours!

There are two short papers that are assigned throughout the semester in ENGL 3090, and the grading can be rough. Therefore, it is necessary to go to the professor’s office hours a couple of times to have them look over it before you turn it in. The professor will give you insightful feedback, and as a result you will end up with a better grade than you would have gotten if you did not go to the office hours.


ENGL 3090 can be an extremely fun and exciting course, but no course is fun if you are not doing well in it. Learning and analyzing Shakespeare’s tragedies can be quite difficult, but the professor understands this, and if you follow the 5 tips given to you then you will likely succeed.


Matthew Jennette

I'm pursuing an English Education Major and Psychology Minor at East Carolina University. I'm in the Honors College, and I'm also an Access Scholar. I enjoy writing, and my purpose as a OneClass Blogger is to help future students get around East Carolina University and succeed in classes! I am very reachable, and if you have any questions about my articles or about East Carolina University in general feel free to contact me: Email Address: [email protected]

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