The Introduction to Poetry Course

Price: £ 465.00


An Introduction to Poetry Course

Master the Skills that Famous Poets Use

Discover your own poetic style and voice in a safe, supportive learning environment.

The Introduction to Poetry Course will take you on a creative journey, from the very first step of putting your thoughts and feelings down on paper to penning a complete and polished poem. If you have already dabbled in poetry, we will help you take the next step: getting your work published. 

Whether your goal is to see your name in print, share your poems with someone special, or just write to get something off your chest, we’ll help you transform your ideas into engaging and accomplished poetry.

The Introduction to Poetry Course Gives You...

Expert, Individual Feedback

Get prompt, honest, detailed feedback on every assignment from an award-winning writer. We focus on your unique writing strengths.

No Peer Reviews!

You will only be assessed by your tutor, a leader in their field. No more guessing and wondering how to write; you'll be guided line by line.

No Automated Marking

We use traditional methods of assessing work, as editors at publishing houses would. No generic feedback!

A Flexible Schedule

Work wherever and whenever you want. You can easily fit our courses around work and other commitments.

Relevant, Usable Content

Easy-to-digest course notes that capture a lifetime of writing experience, ready for you to apply to your own writing.

Ongoing Assessment

Your writing is assessed continuously as your course progresses.

Explore Your
Poetic Voice

The best way to develop your poetic craft

Work one-to-one with an award-winning poet who will guide you each step of the way, from poetic novice to confident practitioner. Discover the basic concepts and principles of poetry and how to apply them to your work. 

Your well-qualified, experienced tutor will guide you through this entertaining, easy-to-understand course, with practical tips on finding inspiration and editing your work to a professional standard. You will also get the opportunity to explore examples of well-written contemporary poetry. 

A lot of enjoyable writing practice will ensure you grow as a poet and improve your style.

By the end of the course, you’ll have more writing confidence, as well as five complete poems.

‘I had a great time on the course and produced the best writing I have ever done. My experience was profound and therapeutic. I learnt simple yet valuable ways to move from journaling to writing actual poetry.’

Cindy Jordaan, Introduction to Poetry Course

Course Overview

Start your course at any time – applications open all year round.


Price includes VAT

Other currencies will be converted at time of invoice



The assignments vary in length.



These modules cover around 45 pages of course notes.



Work at your own pace – up to a maximum of six months.


Working with an individual tutor means you can start the course at any time.


Basic writing skills are essential. Computer skills, e-mail and Internet access required. No previous tertiary qualification required.

Our Graduate Students' Successes

We are proud of our graduates who have achieved success. Here are a few among dozens of our creative writing success stories.

Tutors for this course

You can either select a tutor when you apply, or we will assign a tutor based on your area of interest.

Advanced Poetry Course Tutor Arja Salafranca at The Writers College

Arja Salafranca

Arja Salafranca has been a writer and journalist for over 20 years. She was the lifestyle and arts editor on The Sunday Independent from 2003 to 2016.

She has published three collections of poetry, A Life Stripped of Illusions, which received the Sanlam Award for poetry and The Fire in Which We Burn. Her third poetry collection is Beyond Touch (Modjaji Books/Dye Hard Press 2015), a co-winner in the poetry category of the South African Literary Awards in 2016. Her fiction has been published in local and international journals and anthologies, as well as online. Her debut collection of short fiction, The Thin Line, was published in 2010 (Modjaji Books) and short-listed for the Wole Soyinka Award. She has also edited two anthologies, Glass Jars Among Trees and The Edge of Things.

She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Wits University.

Majella Cullinane - Poetry Tutor

Majella Cullinane

Originally from Ireland, Majella Cullinane has lived in New Zealand since 2008. Majella has been shortlisted in numerous poetry competitions, and was the 2005 winner of The Sean Dunne Young Writer’s Award for Poetry (Ireland), and the 2007 winner of the  Hennessy’/XO Irish Times Award for Emerging Poetry (Ireland). She also won the 2017 Caselburg Trust International Poetry Prize (New Zealand).

Her 2018 debut novel The Life of De’Ath was shortlisted for the NZSA Heritage Book Awards and longlisted for the 2019 Ockham New Zealand Book Awards for Fiction. Her second poetry collection Whisper of a Crow’s Wing was published by Otago University Press and Salmon Poetry, Ireland, and was selected as The Listener’s Ten Best Poetry Books of 2018. She has published poetry, short stories, essays and reviews in Ireland, the UK, the USA and New Zealand. She was Robert Burns Fellow at the University of Otago in 2014, Sir James Wallace/Pah Homestead Writer in Residence in 2017, and a joint recipient of the 2019 Dan Davin Literary Foundation Writer in Residence. She completed a PhD in Creative Practice at the University in Otago in 2019 and is currently a Professional Practice Fellow in Creative Writing, also at the University of Otago. She lives in Port Chalmers. 

Course Curriculum

Module 1

An Introduction to Poetry: Where do poets find their inspiration? 

  • Where do poets find their inspiration? 
  • Line length and line breaks 
  • Assignments


Module 2

Figures of Speech in Poetry 

  • Why we use figures of speech 
  • Understanding metaphors, similes and poetic devices 
  • Assignments


Module 3

Rhythm and Rhyme 

  • Must a poem rhyme? 
  • Understanding rhythm 
  • Using assonance, consonance, alliteration and other sound effects 
  • Assignments


This course offers an advanced course option

What Our Students Say

Ashleigh JamesIntroduction to Poetry Course
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I loved the course! It was simple enough for beginners such as myself to understand and follow, but also challenging and stimulating. Fiona was an absolute joy to work with. I have so enjoyed exploring the world of poetry, and The Writers College afforded me that opportunity in ways that went far beyond my expectations.
Michelle SmithIntroduction to Poetry Course
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I thoroughly enjoyed the course and am very pleased with the poems that I produced. At times, I was challenged to write beyond my comfort zone, and I am grateful for this. My tutor was excellent and very kind. My original objective was simply to write more and be a better writer, and the course has definitely achieved that. So yes, it met my objectives. It has also inspired me to broaden my reading, writing and publishing horizons. I had a wonderful experience. The course challenged and inspired me.
Brady HeslopIntroduction to Poetry Course
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It forces you out of your comfort zone, which doesn’t just make you a better poet, it makes you a more honest person as well. Fiona Zerbst is truly great. She’s inspirational. I doubt the course would’ve been as fun without her. We all know the only way to become a better writer is to write – that’s what The Writers College does: it provides you with the opportunity to write your heart out.
Grace GoedhartIntroduction to Poetry Course
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I was very tentative and nervous when I started this course. Now I leave pleased at having endeavoured it but also determined to return to do another course in prose. My tutor was instrumental in not only giving excellent guidance but motivating me in a confident way. Overall I loved it; I learnt more than I expected and I challenged myself and was challenged in turn.
JacindaIntroduction to Poetry Course
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The course has been wonderful, I enjoyed it immensely! Liesl has been a wonderful tutor. Her comments, suggestions and feedback have been very intuitive and helpful. She has really helped me develop my writing practice and courage in writing from my personal experience.
Anthony EschnerIntroduction to Poetry Course
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I found the course to be very satisfying. I believe I learnt some very valuable things.
Laura-May RandellIntroduction to Poetry Course
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My experience on the course was great. The constructive criticism by my tutor helped me hone my skills. Her comments on my work motivated and inspired me greatly; any criticism she had was fair and always right. The course was awesome, I would seriously consider doing another.

Get These Additional Benefits

Lifetime Course Access

Benefit from free lifetime access to future course updates and access to our writing resources.

Join a Community of Writers

You will have access to our friendly Facebook community, daily writing tips and writing inspiration.

500+ Bonus Articles on Our Blog

A superb, constantly updated resource with articles on writing and interviews with writers.

Work at Your Own Pace

Our courses work around you. You can pace your course around your busy life.

Work Opportunities

Top students are invited to join our writers and editors for hire service.

Be the First to Know About Writing Competitions

We'll help you keep up to date with the latest competition announcements

Risk-Free 100% Money-Back Guarantee

We are so confident that you will love your course that if you’re not 100% satisfied with the quality of our training, simply ask for a refund within 30 days.

Complete the Application Form to Enrol on the Introduction to Poetry Course

You will receive an approval email and invoice within one working day.

*If the application form doesn’t submit, please contact admin and we’ll assist you.

Questions? We've Got Answers

The course consists of three modules. Detailed course notes covering the content of each module will be emailed to you. 

At the end of each section, you will be required to complete several writing exercises. 

Absolutely. You have direct communication with your tutor for the duration of the course. The more questions you ask, the more you will get out of the course.

You will get lifetime access to the course. You will also benefit from future updates and improvements to the course!

For the majority of our courses, only your tutor will see your work. It will remain completely private unless you get it published, a decision that is yours to make.

You will receive a Writers College Certificate upon successful completion of the course, provided you meet the following conditions: 

  • You must have completed all 15 assignments. 
  • The course must have been completed within six months of registration.
  • A minimum average of 50% for the course must be achieved.
  • Proficiency in the English language.
  • Basic computer skills as well as email and Internet access are required.
  • No previous tertiary qualification is required.

Because you will work with an individual tutor, you can start your course as soon as your application has been approved. There are no specific start dates as would be the case with a traditional college.

An application is usually approved within one working day. Once we receive proof of payment, your can start your course.

You could be starting your course today!

This course requires ongoing informal research. You will read poetry and journals to discover what moves your poetic spirit. Hopefully, this ‘research’ will become an ongoing pleasure that nourishes your writing for life. 

Additionally, there is the discipline of writing and reflection on the process of writing. A poet cannot wait for the muse. The muse waits for the poet. When you write, the muse shows up. Inspiration can be sought and achieved even when you are feeling uninspired. Because regular writing and rewriting is integral to the process of writing poetry, the course is designed in such a way that one module takes one month to complete. 

After studying each module, the exercises should take an hour or two per week to complete. Ideally, you should spend ten minutes a day writing in a poetry journal, a portion of which will be submitted in your final portfolio.

Once your application has been approved, you will receive notification of approval and an invoice via email. As soon as we receive proof of payment, your first module will be sent to you, as well as your tutor’s email address and your login details. Your tutor will also be in touch to welcome you.

Any work created on our course is owned by you. We will never make a claim to anything you produce. We follow the rule that copyright subsists with the creator (you).

'I have felt extremely encouraged to write by doing this course. I found my tutor helpful and available, supportive and encouraging and also able to give feedback about things that I needed to develop.'

Susan Green, Introduction to Poetry Course

Got More Questions?

We would love to help you choose the best course for you. Tell us what style of writing you want to develop and we'll give you some options.