Plunge into Poetry

Ref: C2337816

This course will focus on a selection of poems from 2 recently published collections. A booklet of the relevant poems will be given to each student. This year's collections will be 'Say Something Back' by Denise Riley (shortlisted for the 2016 T. S. Eliot Prize) and 'Waiting for the Past' by Les Murray (a leading Australian poet). Through sharing ideas about these poems we shall explore what lies beneath the surface meanings. You will be encouraged to participate in discussion, sometimes with the whole class, at other times working in pairs. Some comparison with poems from other periods will be included and you will also be given the opportunity to make your own choices from the anthology, Being Human.

Course aim

To share ideas on a selection of recently published poems in ways which encourage everyone in the group to participate and widen their appreciation of poetry.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • demonstrate a wider knowledge of contemporary poetry
  • justify why I prefer some poems to others
  • show a knowledge of poetic techniques
  • describe the relationship between form and content in poetry

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support your learning
  • Discussion will form a central part of the course. Students will be encouraged to share their ideas with others.

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning
  • You will be encouraged to consider other students work and give your opinions and suggestions

What else do I need to know?

  • It would be helpful if you had a note book and a folder in which hand-outs can be kept.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • 'Being Human' ed. Neil Astley, published by Bloodaxe 'Say Something Back' by Denise Riley is published by Picador 'Waiting for the Past' by Les Murray is published by Carcanet It is not necessary to buy the above texts.

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • You could progress to Higher Education courses. Follow link to the PEARL website for information

Download full Course information sheet

Plunge into Poetry


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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