Ch 9: WEST Middle Level Humanities: Literary Genres

About This Chapter

In preparation for the WEST-E Middle Level Humanities exam, use the videos in this chapter to review the genres of fiction and non-fiction literary works. Study the genres of folktales, drama, mystery, modern fantasy, epic poetry, tragedy and comedy.

WEST Middle Level Humanities: Literary Genres - Chapter Summary

Use this chapter to review the characteristics of the different literary genres. Follow along with our professional instructors in this series of short, engaging lesson videos as they explain some of the elements and history of these genres. Once you've completed this chapter, you should be prepared for questions on the Washington Educator Skills Test-Endorsements (WEST-E) Middle Level Humanities about:

  • Differences between literary forms of fiction and non-fiction
  • Novels, novellas and short stories
  • Fables, folktales, myths and legends
  • Styles and elements of drama and mystery
  • Authors and novels of modern fantasy
  • Heroes and stories of epic poetry
  • Characteristics of tragedy in literature
  • Characteristics of comedy

Since these lesson videos are mobile-device friendly, you can watch them at your own convenience. When you finish these lessons, take the quizzes that accompany them to test your understanding of the material and discover topics you need to review further before you take the exam. Use the jump feature in the timeline to skip over the material you've already mastered and return to those main concepts to improve your understanding.

WEST Middle Level Humanities: Literary Genres Objectives

The WEST-E: Middle Level Humanities is a computer-based certification exam used to assess future middle grades educators' knowledge of English language arts and social studies. Taking this exam involves completing two tests with 55 multiple-choice questions each. You can take both tests at the same time, in a 2.5-hour testing session, or break them into two 1.25-hour testing sessions. Of the material covered by first test, 42% belongs to the domain of Reading Process and Comprehension and includes some questions about the characteristics of literary genres.

12 Lessons in Chapter 9: WEST Middle Level Humanities: Literary Genres
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Literary Genres: Definition, Types, Characteristics & Examples

1. Literary Genres: Definition, Types, Characteristics & Examples

In this lesson, you will learn what is meant by the term genre. In addition, the main types of literary genres will be described, with examples given for each.

Literary Fiction: Definition & Examples

2. Literary Fiction: Definition & Examples

Literary fiction is fiction that has value and merit in the social world. Learn about what makes fiction 'literary' through descriptions and famous examples.

Types of Fiction: Novels, Novellas & Short Stories

3. Types of Fiction: Novels, Novellas & Short Stories

Learn how fiction is organized by length into three categories: novels, novellas and short stories. Explore the general characteristics of each type, and learn about some famous examples.

Short Stories: Definition, Characteristics & Examples

4. Short Stories: Definition, Characteristics & Examples

We've all read short stories, such as 'A Country Doctor' by Franz Kafka or Edgar Allan Poe's 'The Tell-Tale Heart.' In this lesson, you'll learn more about the characteristics of the short story and explore some noteworthy examples by American and European writers.

Non-Fiction as Literary Form: Definition and Examples

5. Non-Fiction as Literary Form: Definition and Examples

Although non-fiction might seem fairly straightforward, there are quite a few different genres within non-fiction that are easy to confuse. With this in mind, we'll consider the similarities and differences between biographies, autobiographies and memoirs, essays, and journalism.

The Fable, Folktale, Myth, Legend: Differences and Examples

6. The Fable, Folktale, Myth, Legend: Differences and Examples

In this lesson, learn about fables, folktales, myths and legends, stories that entertain and serve instructive or educational purposes. Discover how these types of stories differ from one another and about their prevalence throughout the world.

What is Drama? - Terms, Time Periods and Styles

7. What is Drama? - Terms, Time Periods and Styles

Ever wonder why we use the word 'drama' when referencing people who overreact to a situation? Discover the definition of drama, its different styles, and why your friends might belong on the stage in this overview of the dramatic genre.

Mystery Genre: Definition, Characteristics & Elements

8. Mystery Genre: Definition, Characteristics & Elements

In this lesson, we'll define the mystery genre of detective writing and examine some of the characteristics and elements that make this genre unique, such as the use of dramatic tension.

What is Modern Fantasy Literature? - Definition, Authors & Novels

9. What is Modern Fantasy Literature? - Definition, Authors & Novels

Wizards, werewolves, and all manner of wondrous places wait for you in this lesson! Come discover modern fantasy literature and meet some of the authors and their works that have made the genre what it is today.

Epic Poetry: Definition, Heroes & Stories

10. Epic Poetry: Definition, Heroes & Stories

Learn about epic poetry in the ancient world. Explore two epic poems, ''Gilgamesh'' and ''The Iliad'' and discover the information these poems contain about the cultures that created them.

Tragedy in Literature: Definition, Characteristics & Examples

11. Tragedy in Literature: Definition, Characteristics & Examples

In this lesson, you will focus on the literary tragedy, its characteristics, and how it moves the reader. You'll also examine some examples of tragedies, both ancient and modern.

Comedy Genre: Definition & Characteristics

12. Comedy Genre: Definition & Characteristics

Comedies are designed to make us laugh - sometimes even until we cry - but what actually defines a 'comedy'? Get a quick reminder in this lesson, where you'll learn the definition and take a closer look at the characteristics of this hilarious literary genre!

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
Not Taken
Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
Not Taken

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Other Chapters

Other chapters within the WEST Middle Level Humanities (Subtests 1 & 2)(052/053): Practice & Study Guide course

Support