Dr Anthony Wilson
Senior Lecturer in Education / PGCE Primary English Subject Lead
+44 (0) 1392 724924
Baring Court BC205
Baring Court, University of Exeter St Luke's Campus, Heavitree Road, Exeter, EX1 2LU, UK
My research takes the view that poetry writing, like other forms of linguistic discourse and art forms, can be taught. I promote a pedagogy of gradual development. Therefore, as a published poet, qualified teacher, and researcher in poetry pedagogy, I research in this field from a hybrid perspective. I am engaged in many poetry related activities, including publishing, blogging, giving readings, visiting schools, leading inservice training with teachers, reviewing, and tutoring adults. I research within my field as both participant and observer and am interested in connecting with other poet-researchers in the field.
I am co-convener of the ESRC Seminar Series Poetry Matters. My recent work includes Choice and Control:Improving Writing Through Embedded Attention to Grammar, Teachers as Writers, a joint investigation with Open University and the Arvon Foundation, and Bath Festivals’ The Write Team, both on the impact of creative writers working in schools.
My research on teachers’ conceptualisations of poetry has been published in English Teaching: Practice and Critique, Language and Education, Thinking Skills and Creativity, and Research Papers in Education.
Making Poetry Matter, co-edited with Sue Dymoke and Andrew Lambirth and based on the Poetry Matters Seminar Series, is available from Bloomsbury.
My books of poetry are How Far From Here is Home? (Stride, 1996), Nowhere Better Than This (Worple Press, 2002) and Full Stretch: Poems 1996-2006 (Worple Press, 2006) and Riddance (Worple Press, 2012).
I have held writing residencies at The Poetry Society, The Times Educational Supplement, The Poetry Trust, Apples and Snakes and Tate Britain. My books include The Poetry Book for Primary Schools (1998) and Creativity in Primary Education (2015).
You can watch videos of me speaking and giving readings here.
Doctor of Philosophy (Education) (2004), University of Exeter
Master of Arts, Language and Literature in Education (Distinction) (1997) Goldsmiths, University of London
Postgraduate Certificate in Education (Primary) (1988), University of Greenwich
BA (Hons) (English) (1985), Queen Mary University of London
Research group links
My research takes the view that poetry writing, like other forms of linguistic discourse and other art forms, can be taught. It promotes a pedagogy of gradual development. As a published poet, qualified teacher, and researcher in poetry pedagogy, I occupy a unique position. I am therefore engaged in many poetry related activites, including giving readings, visiting schools, leading inservice training with teachers, reviewing, and tutoring adults (see esteem indicators). I therefore research within my field as both participant and observer, bringing to it a wide range of perspectives.
In 2011 I co-authored and am co-convener of the ESRC funded Seminar Series Poetry Matters. My current projects include working with Bath Festivals' The Write Team on a project about writers in schools. Creativity, Confidence and Challenge, The Write Team project report, can be downloaded here.
In the last three years I have published a paper on teachers' conceptualisations of the creative and the critical in poetry composition; 'Ways with words: teachers’ personal epistemologies of the role of metalanguage in the teaching of poetry writing' in Language and Education, which you can access here; and a paper on teachers' metaphors describing teaching poetry writing.
My books include:
Making Poetry Matter: International Research on Poetry Pedagogy. Dymoke, S, Lambirth, A. and Wilson, A. (Bloombsbury, 2013).
Creativity in Primary Education (3rd edition) (Sage, 2015).
The Poetry Book for Primary Schools (The Poetry Society, 1998).
Wilson, A.C. (2012) Love for Now. Exeter: Impress Books.
Lifesaving Poems (Bloodaxe Books, 2015).
Wilson, A.C. (2012) Riddance. Tonbridge: Worple Press.
Wilson, A.C. (2007) The Year of Drinking Water. Exeter: Exeter Leukaemia Fund. (Shortlisted in the Poetry Business pamphlet competition 2006).
Wilson, A.C. (2006) Full Stretch: Poems 1996-2006. Tonbridge: Worple Press.
Wilson, A.C. (2002) Nowhere Better Than This. Tonbridge: Worple Press.
Wilson, A.C. (1999) The Difference. Leiston: Aldeburgh Poetry Trust.
Wilson, A.C. (1996) How Far From Here Is Home? Exeter: Stride.
University of Exeter (GSE): membership of and participation in:
- Higher Education Academy
- UKLA (United Kingdom Literacy Association)
- EARLI (European Association for Research on Learning and Instruction) Writing Sig 12
- Poetry Matters ESRC Seminar Series co-convener
- NAWE (National Association of Writers in Education)
- The Poetry Society: Poetryclass
- The Poetry Archive
- 2010 Economic and Social Research Council
ESRC Seminar Series Grant on poetry pedagogy: Poetry Matters
- 2010 Arts Council
I am the co-applicant
- 2009 Paul Hamlyn Foundation
- 2008 Bath Festivals
- 1998 ESRC
A study of Poetry Writing Pedagogy at Key Stage 2
Publications by category
Publications by year
I teach on the following programmes:
PGCE Primary English
PGCE Primary English Specialism
PGCE Primary Educational and Professional Studies
MA Writing: The Future
MA Reading the World
I currently supervise four doctoral students:
- An Evaluative Study of Teaching Practice in the English Teacher Training Program at Rustaq College of Applied Sciences, Oman.
- Improving children's oracy skills: the dialogic effect of a philosophy intervention in primary schools.
- The Teaching of Writing to Early Writers: A Comparative Study of Multimodal Classroom Practices amongst Teachers in Malaysia and England.
- Teachers' perceptions of professional identity in UAE.
My previous PhD students included the following topics:
- Transformation through learning: An ethnographic case study of practices in a music-infused school.
- Enquiry into the enablers and barriers to health behaviour change through the use of narrative communication: The case for public health promotion in Nigeria
- Saudi students’ attitudes and preferences towards using dictionaries for learning English.
- An investigation of the preparation of teachers for language teaching at primary level: Implications for an initial Language Teacher Education programme in line with the European framework.
- How does the Cornwall SCITT (school-centred initial teacher training) programme contribute to the development of creativity as part of teacher identity in pre-service teachers?
I was shortlisted for a University of Exeter Outstanding Regional Impact award in 2011 for my involvement with Exetreme Imagination. I have been nominated for a University of Exeter ‘outstanding teacher’ award for the last five consecutive years.
I am interested in how far teachers perceive their practice to be 'creative'; and in the notions of creativity they believe in. I am also interested in exploring how far creativity can be modelled to children by teachers and what such practice might look like.
Supervision / Group
- Caroline Emeka-Ogbonna
- Sara Mills