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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Sharpened Visions: A Poetry Workshop by California Institute of the Arts

4.8
stars
1,365 ratings
552 reviews

About the Course

Why just write poems when you can write better ones? This course is built on the notion that the most exciting writing begins after the first draft. It is specifically for folks who believe that writing poems just to express oneself is like using the Internet just for email. After all, poetry can change the way you and your readers think of the world and its inhabitants; it can break new ground for language; turn a blank sheet of paper into a teeming concert of voices and music. Though any of us may have the potential to make that happen, having an understanding of how several tools of poetic composition can be used (and audaciously “mis-used”) gives you more ways to try (and if we do this right, we might surprise ourselves most of all). We'll cover key poetic terms and devices by studying poems by a handful of modern and contemporary poets and then get a chance to try our own hand at writing new poem drafts from a select number of prompts. Throughout the course you will have the opportunity to workshop your poem drafts and get feedback on your work, working towards a more polished poem....

Top reviews

VS
Jun 22, 2020

This was a superb workshop. I enjoyed myself thoroughly and learned a lot that came in my way. Grasping poetry devices taught in such an fun way was really awesome. The mentors were very supportive.

SM
Jun 11, 2020

Loved the course. Douglas Kearney is amazing as an instructor. I love poetry and this workshop has made me happy during the times of COVID 19. I thank CalArts for the encouragement and appreciation.

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76 - 100 of 556 Reviews for Sharpened Visions: A Poetry Workshop

By Sinisa R

Jan 22, 2017

Writing according to a prompt is not something my colleague poets like. Yet this course could teach them and you how great and new-approach poems you can be "forced" to create by that.

It will also show you how inspiring and experienced reviews you can get by a community, to push your work toward possibilities you wouldn't know about, without this synergy.

By Jia

Mar 24, 2017

I am very new to poetry and found the video lessons in this course very educational, as well as interesting and very light-hearted. I'm not interested in writing my own poetry at the moment but feel like I've broadened my education, and am now better able to assess what works and doesn't work in other people's poems. I'm very glad I watched the lessons.

By Lim S B

Apr 30, 2021

I am new to writing poems, and this course gives me some confidence to continue writing poems after the course. Thank you, DK!

I would also like to thank my peer reviewers, Raquel Plank of workshop two, and Kimberly Ward of final workshop. Both my fist submissions did not pass, and they gave very detail comments for me to rework on the poems. Thank you!

By David P

Aug 14, 2020

I enjoyed this course. The teacher's presentations were lively and informative. The peer grading doesn't work very well. Two times my grade was reduced because the grader made an error. There is a problem in the design of the assignments and grading system. Well, the grade doesn't matter to me. I wouldn't pay extra for the certificate, though.

By Elizabeth T

Nov 2, 2020

This was an exceptional course! The instructor had a great sense of humor and dramatic flair which made the class very enjoyable. There was a lot of useful information that was presented in a clear fashion. The assignments were useful and I found myself giving the prompts a lot of thought. I would love to take another course with this instructor.

By Patrick F

Mar 25, 2021

This poetry helps me a lot in terms of technicality and musicality in creating poetry. You learn from this workshop through recorded video lectures with Doug and from the given prompt assignment that peer - viewed by real people who into poetry. Highly recommended for students and individuals who want to improve their writing skills in poetry.

By Genna-Marie K

Jun 6, 2020

Despite dabbling in writing poems for more than ten years, I found the prompt extremely engaging and enlightening! This course is wonderful for beginners who have never written a poem in their life or for people who have spent decades playing with words. I feel a refreshed appreciation of what I can do with my poetry. Thanks for the experience!

By Angeliki T

Feb 23, 2021

I enjoyed this course to the fullest! From learning theory on poetry to reviewing my peers' assignments. It helped me evolve as a poet and writer and I will certainly keep on writing and helping others as well, with reviewing each other's works! Doug is a very comprehensing tutor and I enjoyed each one of the lectures! I wish I could re-do it!

By Pamela

Mar 12, 2020

I loved this course! I thought the videos were funny and engaging. I'm new to the formal study of poetry, though I have written a number of bad poems over the years. This course gave me a solid foundation on which to build, and some good prompts to use for future poems. The peer-reviewed workshops were helpful and I got some relevant feedback.

By Gabrielle L

Jul 27, 2021

The course is fulfilling! The instructor is engaging and brings life to the lessons with his personality. I learned a lot of new things in this class all the while it refreshed me of stuff I already knew but just didn't know how to apply in writing yet. All in all, it's been great! Thank you to CalArts, Mr. Kearney, and Coursera for this!

By Parv S

May 25, 2018

This course is really helpful in the terms as it dissects a good amount of poetry and its techniques and is presented in a real fun way. Also the poetry prompts given are really amazing and the poetry that you get to read of other peers is also just an add on. Really a beautiful course. I just wish it was more longer and had more to it.

By Merlynna H

Oct 6, 2015

Course was very informative. I gain added insight. I am so much more knowledgeable now. Poems, Rhyme, Meters, and Revision. I am glad that I took this course. What I have gained insight into, I will use. Thanks to a good instructor. for all the poetic Information and I enjoyed the workshop. I completed on today, 10-05-2015.

"Thank you"

By Nicole H

May 13, 2018

A great set of courses for beginners or just people who would like to polish their writing with the community of writers here. Doug is a great teacher, both entertaining and efficient in teaching. I will be entering college this fall and wanted to have a stepping stone, and I believe it worked fairly well. Amazing and useful course.

By C. N K

Aug 22, 2017

This is a generous, enlightening, and entertaining poetry course taught by one of the most engaging and skilled instructors you will find online. Whether you are an old hand or just finding your feet, this workshop will help you write with a deeper understanding of what a poet can do and with greater awareness of what a poem can be.

By Bibek A

Mar 16, 2020

This is an extremely helpful course for beginners. Anyone who wants to learn the craft of writing poetry and get to the bones should definitely enroll. I've had so much fun and had time to learn plenty of new ideas. Above all, Douglas is such an energetic and vivacious instructor. Kudos to him and the makers of this course module!

By Cristian E

Oct 27, 2020

It's really a great course for anybody who wants to get started in poetry. And even for people who have experience writing poems, Douglas' videos are fun and many concepts are explained well. Also, there are good resources and the peer revision system is key to know things about the writers' poems they may not have discovered.

By Glenn M

Nov 7, 2018

I am just over half way though this course and it is amazing. The content is great. Doug's video lectures are enjoyable, enthralling and thought provoking. I continue to amaze myself as to what i do and don't know.

I am learning more than i anticipated with a short course. Keen to see where my new found knowledge leads me...

By roseanne l

Feb 1, 2021

This was my first introduction to Coursera. The instructor, Douglas Kearney is interesting, inspiring and intelligent. His approach towards his passion for poetry is engaging and infectious with curiosity for his subject matter. Bravo!!! I more than highly recommend this course and wish there were many more offered by him.

By Cat M

Mar 13, 2018

This course was very enjoyable! It made me love poetry even more. The prompts were interesting and I looked forward to them every week. As a shy person, I was a bit worried about the peer reviews, but everyone was friendly and helpful! The only thing I can think of to make it even better would be more course material! :)

By Stéphanie P R

Dec 3, 2020

I absolutely LOVED the course and the teacher. It really opened my eyes and sensibility, besides giving me lots of tolls I can use for a more aware composition proceess. Thank you very much! And thanks again to my mates, who really helped me finding the blind spots in my poems and finding better ways of finishing them!

By Akbar K

Dec 4, 2016

Have been writing poetry for many years, This course has given me ways to see the poetry, examine it, improve it . . . truly sharpened my vision in the workshop. The course and the guide were technically sound with excellent communication, Thank you Douglas & CalArts.

Loved it. . . do go for it if you are still deciding.

By Sandra O

May 1, 2016

At first I thought this course was going to be rather simplistic but it was anything but that. I loved the exercises we had to do. I really got into them and it was the first time I felt inspired to try my hand at writing poetry. The teaching was great--he has a great future ahead of him in entertainment I would say!

By Aaliya T

Sep 25, 2017

I would recommend this impeccable course to all those who aspire to write poetry and who are already great poets too! This course helped me to learn a lot of techniques and hacks to writing a good poem. Overall, I had a great experience writing for the weekly prompts and enjoyed the lecture videos a lot. Cheers!

By Domingo M

Sep 15, 2015

I learned a lot at a demanding level. I enjoyed, in particular, reviewing peers and getting feedback. It is very different from my old school days back in Germany. I will continue to write poems and now I have more tools in my tool-box from which to choose to make it happen -- with a vengeance.

Thanks!

Domingo

By Jenifer S

Aug 9, 2015

An entertaining and instructive course on the basics of poetry, with strong invitations for experimenting with different elements of writing poetry, relevant and current. As a former English teacher I highly recommend this for introduction, review, or refinement, to accompany a poetry unit ages 16 and up.