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Unit information: Approaches to Poetry in 2015/16

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Unit name Approaches to Poetry
Unit code ENGL10026
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Wootten
Open unit status Open




School/department Department of English
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

This unit will train students in skills necessary for the critical appreciation of poetry. It will explore such matters as voice, genre, poetic form (stanzaic form, metre, rhyme, etc) and historical context. The unit will serve as a basis for the study of poetic texts within the later literature units in the English single and joint honours degree programmes. Texts studied will be from a wide historical range.


  • To develop a sound knowledge of the terminology of literary criticism of poetry
  • To gain an understanding of the way in which form influences meaning, and vice versa
  • To have a richer and more sophisticated enjoyment of poetry.

Intended Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course students should:

  • Be familiar with a wide variety of poetry
  • Be familiar with some of the larger changes that constitute the literary history of English poetry
  • Be able to use the standard terminology of literary criticism of poetry
  • Be able to construct a reasoned argument about a poet(s) or poem(s) supported by appropriate use of evidence and analysis, and close attention to form and technique.

Teaching Information

3 lectures and 1 tutorial per week.

Assessment Information

  • 1 formative essay of 1,000 words
  • 1 summative essay of 2,000 words

Reading and References

Detailed reading lists will be provided by individual tutors at the start of the academic year.