Online Taster: Ballad Writing

Ref: C3530392

An introduction to ballad writing, the oldest way of telling stories in verse. Learn something of their history, hear excerpts from some of the more well-known ballads, focusing on those by the Cornish poet Charles Causley, and learn how to write them yourself

Course aim

To introduce ballad writing, the oldest way of telling stories in verse

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers
  • This session could be particularly valuable for those who want to expand their knowledge of written and spoken English

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

  • Explain the history of the ballad
  • Show how poetry can be turned into song
  • Recognise and apply the poetic tricks used by Charles Causley
  • Tell a story in ballad form
  • Write my own ballads

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
  • Those on the course can select a ballad of their own and read it to the group

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • 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?

  • As this is an online course, you will need use of a computer and be able to download and use free video conferencing software in order to participate in this course. Participants will also need pen and paper.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • Not essential, but desirable to find a ballad and read it to the group. This can be your own work

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member

Download full course information sheet

Online Taster: Ballad Writing

Is this course right for me? Request more information

This course has been cancelled.


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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