Help! I’m having technical problems

Please email [email protected] if you’re having issues with CAMPUS or the Poetry School website. If it’s a local technical issue (i.e., with your computer, not our website) then please seek advice or help from a friend.

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What happens if everyone on my course is much better than I am?

‘Better’ is very subjective. Our online courses are designed to be non-partisan, as we believe the best kind of educational experience we can offer is one where all types of student can meet and collaborate meaningfully with one another regardless of how they each self-identify (beginner, amateur, pro). There will be some poets in every…

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Will I receive a certificate at the end?

Unfortunately we don’t do those. If you’re interested in something fully accredited, and you’re based in the UK, we do offer a Writing Poetry MA.

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I desperately want to do a particular course, but I can’t make the live chats. Can I still do the course?

We’re happy to be flexible with individual course arrangements. Just let us know before or after you’ve enrolled and we will try accommodate you onto your course the best way possible. It’s not always feasible, but we do what we can. If you’re based abroad, then we offer a range of International Courses each term…

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The activity I want is fully booked – what can I do?

Contact us and ask to be put on a waiting list – if any places come free, we will let you know.

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Lost property?

Lost property will be kept in the office at 1 Dock Offices, Surrey Quays Road, Canada Water, SE16 2XU. Please call or email us if you believe you have left something in the classrooms.

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What should I do if I can’t make a class session?

Contact us on 0207 735 5391 or send an email to [email protected] and we will inform the tutor.

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What is your refunds policy?

If you cannot attend a course a full refund will be made as long as cancellation is received four weeks before the course start date. After this period, we are only able to give you a refund if the course has sold out and we are able to fill your place. Refunds cannot be given…

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What are some good books on poetry?

The best way to start to start learning about poetry is to read as much about it as you can. Here’s a list of our recommended ‘how to’ primers and textbooks: Adrienne Rich, What Is Found There: Notebooks Alfred Corn, A Poem’s Heartbeat Anne Carson, Decreation: Poetry, Essays, Opera Anne Stevenson, Five Looks at Elizabeth…

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How can I meet other poets?

The Poetry School has a social network for poets called CAMPUS, which is free to join. There you can meet other poets online and share your work, get free feedback and encouragement, and recommendations on what to read next. If you’d rather be offline, the Poetry Library has an essential selection of resources on reading…

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Are certain types of people better suited to being a poet?

Poetry is everywhere and everything is a potential subject for poetry. Catching the spark of a poem can be difficult for some, innate for others, but there is no one way or type of person that is better suited to being a poet. Every poet finds their own style in time, and finding it is…

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Do I need an English degree to be a poet?

You do not need a degree in English Literature or intensive regular tuition to start writing poetry. At the very least you need (a) something to write with (b) something to write on (c) a love of poetry, but not much else apart from your unique experience of the world and a basic motivation to…

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Can poetry be taught?

Yes, poetry can be taught and poetry education can be used to empower poets to develop personally and professionally.

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What is poetry?

There is no one answer, and many, many people have their own ideas. Here are some definitions we like: ‘Literary work in which the expression of feelings and ideas is given intensity by the use of distinctive style and rhythm’ – OED ‘Poetry is a heightened imagistic use of language that does things to the…

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Will you look at my poems and tell me what you think?

Poetry School staff can’t comment on your poems, but a one-to-one tutorial or manuscript assessment with one of our poet tutors will give some in-depth individual attention to your poems.

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I’m already publishing and performing poetry – what can you do to help me?

We have an expanding programme of projects and activities which seek to address the continuing professional development needs of practising poets, from residencies to enhanced publishing, editing and performance opportunities and beyond. Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest details.

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Will the Poetry School help me become a poet?

Since 1997, when the Poetry School was founded, our students have gone on to publish in magazines and online; they’ve produced pamphlets and books as poets and editors with publishers from the smallest independents to the largest commercial houses; they’ve won multiple prizes and awards; they’ve become poetry tutors themselves; they’ve moved on to take…

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How do I teach for the Poetry School?

Please send us details of your publication record and teaching experience and the ideas you have for courses and workshops you’d like to teach. If your ideas for the programme are a fit for ours, we will start to make joint plans. Download this ‘Teaching for the Poetry School for the First Time’ hand out…

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Can I do more than one course at the same time?

Certainly, but please be aware that the more courses you do, the more work you will take on, and you must be responsible for prioritising every lesson. Also – please be aware that some face-to-face courses run at the same time and cannot be taken simultaneously.

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There’s a particular poetic subject I want to study / particular tutor I want to work with – can you help?

Contact us and let us know what or who it is. If it’s a subject or tutor which would fit into our programmes, we will try and make it happen. Our programming ideas often come from student suggestions.

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Why do you pick particular venues? Could we have fewer students in a class?

The most common issues raised in our feedback surveys are about venue choice and number of students in a group. Students obviously prefer comfortable, central venues; and fewer students in a group to allow for lots of individual attention from the tutor. It’s our constant task to find affordable, accessible venues in all the locations…

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Can I apply a concession retrospectively?

Unfortunately not. Concessions must be applied at the time of booking. If the concessionary rate is not available online, please call us to book your place.

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Do you offer concessions for those on low incomes?

Our concession 2 rate reduces the cost of a course by up to 20% and is available for those in receipt of Job Seekers Allowance, in full time education or under 25, with proof of status. We also run a hardships and bursary scheme for those who cannot afford the full price of a course….

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Can I pay in instalments?

We are happy to discuss instalments for all five and ten week courses and seminars. An initial payment will need to be made to secure your place and the level of instalments will be decided on a case by cases basis, but we are usually able to arrange up to three instalments.

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Why are some courses ‘by application’?

For some courses, we need to check that all participants are at the same level to ensure that it is equally productive for the whole group, and that the tutor can give the best possible guidance.

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