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Writing Poetry (Blended) 2021-2022

(Blended learning creative writing poetry course. 20 weeks, one afternoon per week)


This course will boost your writing in a friendly, structured environment. It is suitable for both new and more experienced writers. In practical work guided by your tutor, you will explore the effects of techniques in published poetry and learn how to strengthen your own poetry through an understanding of craft. You will learn creative and critical skills and develop a stronger individual style.

Our Approach to Blended Learning

Work patterns and learning patterns are changing. To accommodate this new reality, we have developed a new blended learning structure for our courses and programmes. The online environment is a great medium for delivering ideas and structured discussion, but it’s easier to socialise if you’re sitting in the same room, so we’ve created a course of study that does both. You’ll spend the first three weeks of each academic year meeting up in person, then switch to online learning for the rest of term and meet up for the final week before Xmas and the first and last week of the Spring Term. This way we make the most of what online learning has to offer, get to know each other individually, understand the importance of working as a group, avoid going out on wet and dark winter days and reduce our carbon footprint. We think that’s a positive change!


This course will:

  • look at a range of poetic techniques such as compression, imagery, texture, line breaks, traditional forms, rhyme and metre.
  • consider the value of poetry in the contemporary world and our relationships with it.
  • cover a variety of topics such as writing practice, sound and texture, form and metre, imagery and editing
  • read and discuss works by poets such as Sylvia Plath, Emily Dickinson, Bernadette Mayer, Amiri Baraka, Frank O’Hara and Liao Yiwu
  • discuss methods of presenting poetry including publishing, performance and mixed media

As well as considering practical aspects of writing technique and exploring them through your own writing in class, you will be asked to bring in up to 50 lines of your poetry for constructive feedback from your tutor and fellow writers. Each student will workshop poems like this twice on the course, both times receiving constructive and detailed feedback from other members of the writing group and your tutor, who will provide written comments. You will also be expected to hand in poetry of up to 100 lines at the end of the course when work will again be read by the tutor, annotated and returned with supportive feedback both on your strengths and on how your use of poetic techniques might be enhanced.

Your Learning Space

Each writing group on the Creative Writing Programme has its own course page on our website. Once logged in to your course you will have access to course outlines, supporting seminar notes and a Writer’s Forum where you can chat with other writers in your group. Your tutor will add materials to your course page as the course progresses. Links for your online classes will be placed on this page. To access your online class, simply click on the link provided and your Zoom class will open on your desktop where you will be able to see your tutor and the other members of your group.

It is now a standard requirement that writers on writing programmes use computers for communication and the production of work. This has become more important now that online learning is being used more extensively. Writers should ensure that they have access to a desktop computer with a video camera and good internet connection.

What is required of me?

You will need to be able to make a six-month commitment. Over these six months you will need to organise a minimum of six hours per week for reading and the development of writing activities and exercises: this includes seminar time, writing time and reading time.

How are seminars structured?

Each weekly online or face to face seminar runs for two hours. Seminars will include a mix of discussion of work you have written whilst on the course and the discussion of published texts, group work, tutor led feedback and taught sessions.

Key Facts

Programme Length: One year in 20 taught sessions

Weeks 1-3 face-to-face, Weeks 4-9 online, Week 10 face-to-face

Xmas Break

Week 11 face-to-face, Weeks 12-19 online, Week 20 face-to-face

Time: Mondays 1pm – 3pm
Venue: The Phoenix, 10-14 Waterloo Place, Brighton, BN2 9NB
Term Dates

Autumn: 4th October – 17th December (Reading Week 25th – 29th October)

Spring: 10th January – 25th March (Reading Week 14th – 18th February)

Entry requirements: No formal qualifications required
Programme tutor: Verity Spott
Fee: £350 (Full Year Fee)

You can also pay in two instalments at the beginning of each term. Please note there is a small admin fee if you opt to pay per term

Fee: £185 (Autumn Term Only)

Fee: £185 (Spring Term Only)

To enrol

Choose one of the options in the links at the bottom of this page and click on it

Please ensure that you have read our Terms and Conditions. For further information on this course or our other programmes contact

Mark Slater