Course resource help for English Literature and Creative Writing

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Need help? Contact your librarian

Please get in touch if you have any queries about:

  • finding information and resources for assignments
  • finding online resources
  • referencing your sources

Joanna Cooksey

I'm currently hybrid working, so will sometimes be on Headington campus and sometimes working from home. Please email in the first instance. If you need a 1-to-1 appointment we can then arrange one either face-to-face or via Zoom or Google Meet. My usual working hours are 8.00 - 16.00, Monday - Friday.


Citing your sources (also called referencing) is an essential part of your academic work and is explained fully on our library referencing webpage.

If you are a student in English Literature, Drama or Creative Writing, you will need to use the MHRA referencing style in your assignments, projects and dissertation. 

Check the guide Reference with MHRA which shows you how to create footnotes and bibliographies, and how to reference different types of sources.

Outdoor study scene with chair, desk, books and laptop

How to

New students

How to find and borrow books
  • Use LibrarySearch to look for books- check our video guide to LibrarySearch on the right.
  • Finding your material shows you how to understand call numbers and look for books on the library shelves.

  • Borrowing and returning tells you about borrowing books.
  • Finding books and eBooks for English Literature, Drama and Creative Writing Word file and PDF highlights key areas of the library for these subjects.

Find sources for your assignments

Check the Google slides (on the left) for tips on how to find resources for your English Literature, Creative Writing and Drama assignments.
These guides may also help:
When you're doing a dissertation or MA Project:

How to use JSTOR

An archive of full-text articles from a range of academic journals with good coverage of literary journals. It also includes open access eBooks.

JSTOR research tools:

Highly recommended for anyone studying Shakespeare is JSTOR's Understanding Shakespeare tool that lets you look up quotations from a Shakespeare play and find JSTOR articles that reference them.

Try the Text Analyser tool (BETA) available on the database home page. You can upload an article and the tool will find similar content in the database. 

How to use MLA International Bibliography

EBSCO is a web platform that gives you access to the literature database MLA International Bibliography and several others that may be useful. All of these databases work in the same way.

Key database for in-depth research in literary studies, MLA can help you find articles, books and book chapters.

A large database covering all subject areas. It contains lots of full text articles and is an excellent resource for any topic. Combine it with MLA to broaden your search - see the video guide for details.

How to use Performing Arts Periodicals Database

Discover BoB (Box of Broadcasts)

BoB is an online service which gives you access to thousands of recorded TV, radio programmes and films from an online archive. These includes many plays in production - see the playlist on the right for examples.

Through BoB you can:

  • View programmes, browse the TV listings and ask for upcoming programmes to be added to the collection.
  • Create your own playlists.
  • Create your own clips from programmes and include them in presentations.

Follow the link above to access BoB. Click on 'Sign in', then type Oxford Brookes University in the Where are you from? box. The first time you access BoB, you will be prompted to create an account.

Help with using BoB

Learn more from these How to use BoB videos.

Trying to find a specific programme on BoB? Click on the 'Search options' link under the search box where you'll see filter options.

Check Reference with MHRA for guidance on how to reference BoB programmes correctly.

Discover Digital Theatre+

Digital Theatre+

Collection of drama & theatre resources including essays, recordings of live performances & interviews with theatre practitioners. A key resource for Drama students.

NB There were changes to Google Chrome in December 2022 that mean you will need to update your browser in order to continue watching content on Digital Theatre+. 

Photo of production of Negative Space from Digital Theatre+
Photo of production of Negative Space from Digital Theatre+

Explore Special Collections

The Special Collections Reading Room is located within the Headington Library. It holds unique collections of resources for teaching and research.

Check our Special Collections page for details for details of how to access the Reading Room and a link to the Archives catalogue.

Of particular interest to English Literature and Creative Writing staff and students are the , collections relating to Publishing and Literary Prizes. These include:

  • Booker Prize Archive - The Archive encompasses the administrative history of the prizes from 1968 to date, including the Booker International and Booker Russian Novel prizes, as well as one-off prizes such as the Golden Man Booker - awarded in 2018 to celebrate 50 years of the main prize. The collection comprises a diverse range of material, including correspondence, publicity material, copies of both the Longlists and the Shortlists, minutes of meetings, photographs and material relating to the awards dinner (letters of invitation, guest lists, seating plans). Embargoes of ten or twenty years apply to certain categories of material, examples include all material relating to the judging process and the publishers' submissions.
  • Andre Deutsch Collection
  • Early Children's Book Collection
  • Publishing in Africa
  • Steve Hare Penguin Collection

Exploring the Booker Prize novels

We have a reference collection of all the shortlisted Booker Prize titles in the Headington Library on Level 4 (Zone D). In addition we hold loan copies of many of the shortlisted titles - these are filed in the normal book sequence on Level 4. 

Resources from the Booker Prize archive from an exhibition

Study smarter

Oxford Brookes Poetry Centre Collection

The Oxford Brookes Poetry Centre Collection was set up in collaboration with the Poetry Centre to showcase contemporary poetry. 

Much of the Collection comprises books that have been shortlisted for poetry prizes in the UK, Ireland and USA:

  • TS Eliot Prize for Poetry awarded by The Poetry Book Society
  • Forward Prize for Poetry, Best Collection awarded by the Forward Arts Foundation
  • Irish Times Poetry Now Prize
  • National Book Award for Poetry (USA) awarded by the National Book Foundation
  • PEN Award for Poetry in Translation awarded by PEN America
  • Corneliu M Popescu Prize for European Poetry in Translation

The books can be found in the Headington Library on Level 4 (Zone D) and they can all be borrowed. They don’t have a standard call number, instead they have a label indicating the year of the relevant poetry prize shortlist. The books are grouped by year on the library shelves.

ignitionpress pamphlets

The Collection also holds the poetry pamphlets published by ignitionpress, a poetry imprint set up by the Poetry Centre in 2018 with the aim of publishing poetry from emerging and established international writers.

Oxford Brookes Poetry Centre

The Poetry Centre is based within the School of English and Modern Languages at Oxford Brookes. It actively promotes poetry through its Weekly Poem initiative which showcases the work of independent presses and their poets. It also offers podcasts featuring local poets and hosts an annual programme of events including conferences, research seminars, workshops, exhibitions, readings, and community projects.

In February 2016 the Poetry Centre celebrated its inaugural International Poetry Competition with an event at Oxford Brookes and in 2018 it established the award-winning imprint ignition press.

Follow @brookespoetry on Twitter

Poetry prize shortlist logos
Collection of ignition press pamphlets
ignitionpress poetry pamphlets