Essex Country Houses

Ref: C2227429

We will look at a selection of Essex country houses, their architecture and social history, and the impact of some national events on the houses and their occupants. This will cover the late medieval period to nearer the modern day. The course mainly concentrates on certain owners and the houses during their ownership, but mention will also be made of servants and estate workers who have left behind some indication of what life working at a grand house was like. We will find out how the fortunes of the houses and their owners directly relates to the political, economic, social and religious life of this country: some owners lived through turbulent and often dangerous times. others enjoyed relatively peaceful occupation, but all had their stories of life during their occupation - and of the national events that took place. This course will be of interest to anyone who enjoys learning about country houses and their history, whether they live in Essex or not.

Additional information about this course

No skills or experience needed

Course aim

Each week we will consider a country house in Essex. All of the houses we will look at - and their owners - have played their part in the nation's history.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • You will need your own personal email address so that you’re able to login to the WEA’s digital learning platform: WEA Canvas. You will need to be able to understand how to follow URL links to pages on the internet. If you want to understand more about Canvas please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • You will need to be able to follow links to join our WEA live video learning platform: WEA Zoom. If you’d like to understand more about our video learning platform, Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline and http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • This course is for a group of around 15 students studying in a live video-learning platform conference and an online digital learning environment platform from the comfort of your own home.
  • This is a live lecture delivered by a subject specialist in an online webinar video learning platform. You will need to be able to access the internet on a device with speakers or earphones. There will be opportunities to take part in discussions and chats. If you’d like to know how to use Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers
  • The course is for anyone who is interested in country houses generally, whether or not they live in Essex.

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

  • Discuss the lives of at least two of the country house owners we will consider.
  • Identify how two World Wars affected country house life.
  • Summarise the impact of the late 19th century economic problems on country estates.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas will be used to provide resources or to support lessons, enable assessment, provide learner feedback and for other activities for individuals away from the course. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • Most of your learning will take place in your class, but one or two sessions will be online using WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas, working by yourself or engaging with other students. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • 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

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • You will be able to keep a record of your progress and achievement using photos, audio, text or documents uploaded into the WEA’s digital learning platform, WEA Canvas.
  • Your tutor will provide written, text and audio feedback recorded in WEA Canvas, WEA’s digital learning platform.
  • You will be able to keep a digital portfolio of your work on WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas.
  • 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?

  • What you need: You will need an internet connection, speakers, a microphone and a webcam so that you can use our video learning platform, Zoom. If you’d like to understand more Zoom please visit: http://bit.ly/ZoomSpec
  • You will also need access to the internet outside of your sessions. You could do this using a smart phone, tablet, laptop or a desktop computer (at home or through a library etc.).
  • You will need a personal email address to join the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas so that you can receive resources, record your progress and achievement and to work with others and share ideas. If you want to understand more about our digital learning platform please visit: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • Course members may wish to bring a notebook and pen in addition.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • Pre-course reading is required: resources will be made available to you using the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • You will have access to course resources and links to wider learning through the WEA’s digital learning platform, Canvas: http://bit.ly/WEAonline
  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation
  • For example, course members may wish to undertake further research into the history of one (or more) of the country houses studied, or may wish to study one (or more) of a house's owners in greater depth. Course members may also be interested in further history courses offered.

Download full course information sheet

Essex Country Houses

Enrolment Conditions

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 2019
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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