Encountering Poetry (Q3296)

30 credits, Level 4

Autumn teaching

This module introduces the study of literature at university. We will reflect on and create close critical readings of poetry across a range of genres and periods, from the Renaissance to the present day, exploring works with very different forms, historical contexts, and political purposes.

Key questions for discussion are:

  • what is a poem, and how has this changed over time?
  • Who creates poetry, why, and for whom?
  • How has poetry engaged with the world and sought to change it?

Authors studied may include T. S. Eliot, John Milton, Frank O’Hara, Christina Rossetti, William Shakespeare, Jean Toomer, and M. NourbeSe Philip. We will guide you through the habits, skills, and methods of the degree programme so that you can get the most out of your time here.


48%: Lecture
52%: Seminar


100%: Coursework (Essay, Report)

Contact hours and workload

This module is approximately 300 hours of work. This breaks down into about 55 hours of contact time and about 245 hours of independent study. The University may make minor variations to the contact hours for operational reasons, including timetabling requirements.

We regularly review our modules to incorporate student feedback, staff expertise, as well as the latest research and teaching methodology. We’re planning to run these modules in the academic year 2024/25. However, there may be changes to these modules in response to feedback, staff availability, student demand or updates to our curriculum. We’ll make sure to let you know of any material changes to modules at the earliest opportunity.


This module is offered on the following courses: