10 Free Literature Online Courses

There are hundreds of free and paid online courses in literature. This small list consists of some of my favourites regarding platforms, easily accessible, specific topics, university providers and availability which I can confirm ☑️

1 🌷Jane Austen: Myth, Reality, and Global Celebrity

Map of south-east England showing locations of importance to Jane Austen© Shutterstock/Pingebat 2018

I found this course a bit hard. However, Jane Austen’s journies are still worth following. I love the gardens and mansions. Her museum, in Bath Somerset in the UK, is also a must-see. 🇬🇧 This course is provided at FutureLearn by the University of Southampton

Follow in Jane Austen’s footsteps at ‘Historic England‘ and become a contributor whether with photographs or reviews while traveling and exploring this stunning source! I’m positive that soon we’ll be all around the most amazing stunning views worldwide…

Discover the fascinating story of author Jane Austen, from her own life in Hampshire to what she means to a global audience today.

The British Council website has many lesson plans for teachers and students, in case you wish to use them. ‘Pride and Prejudice’ is only one out of many ready to use in your classes may you wish.

Pride and Prejudice – Lesson plan’s answer key 🔑 from the British Council website

2 🌷Fairy Tales: Meanings, Messages, and Morals by the University of Newcastle Australia 🇦🇺

“Little Red Riding Hood”

Build your skills in literary analysis and creative writing by exploring the meaning of fairy tales.

Build your skills in literary analysis and creative writing by exploring the meaning of fairy tales. This course is part of the program Stories in Context: Fiction, Drama, Film, which is one of the building blocks that leads to a degree in Bachelor of Arts. Find out more.

3 🌷How to Read a Novel by the University of Edinburgh

We are the oldest department of English Literature in the UK, one of the longest established in the world. Edinburgh is the first UNESCO World City of Literature, a fantastic literary city that many greats of English and Scottish literature have called home.

Get underneath the skin of a novel by understanding some of the main building blocks of modern fiction.

The four novels explored for this course are:

  1. Girl by Edna O’Brien
  2. Sudden Traveller by Sarah Hall
  3. Travelkers by Helon Habila
  4. Ducks, Newburyport by Lucy Ellmann

4 🌷The literature of the English Country House by the University of Sheffield

Financial help from the University – bursaries are available if you’re a UK student.

Take a journey through the literature of English country houses from the time of Thomas More to Oscar Wilde.

5 🌷Penshurst Place and the Sidney Family of Writers

Lancaster University

Lancaster Words Festival at Lancaster University

In the 16th century, Penshurst Place was the home to the Sidney family, renowned for their literary works in the age of Shakespeare. The family, including Lady Mary Wroth and her uncle Sir Philip Sidney, wrote poetry and prose that still appeal to audiences today.

6 🌷Poetry: How to Read a Poem

University of York

Discover what poetry can tell us about human emotion and learn key ideas and techniques for understanding and interpreting verse.

7 🌷Shakespeare’s Hamlet: The Ghost

Topic(s): Shakespeare, theater, culture, literature, Europe

An exploration of the haunting figure at the heart of one of William Shakespeare’s most famous plays.

A man in a hat and cloak looks with uncertainty toward a woman in white, who looks back at him.

8 🌷Exploring books for children: words and pictures

Free statement of participation on completion

More about this course

Many people have fond memories of the stories they encountered in childhood, perhaps especially of those wonderful picture books and illustrated tales that fired our young imaginations and transported us to magical worlds. To an adult’s eye, some picture books may seem remarkably simple, even oversimplified. However, in this free course, Exploring books for children: words and pictures, you will learn how children’s books use words and pictures together in remarkably sophisticated ways to communicate both to young and older readers, drawing on examples from the classics, such as Beatrix Potter’s Tales of Peter Rabbit, and from contemporary children’s authors such as Anthony Browne, author of Gorilla.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • understand how images communicate meanings to the readers of children’s books
  • understand the role of cultural knowledge in making sense of images
  • understand how words and pictures can reinforce or contradict one another in a text, with interesting results
  • recognize the work of some famous illustrators for children
  • understand how the use of images in children’s books has changed over time and what it means to create books for the specific audiences of children and their carers.

Miss Potter is a 2006 biographical drama film directed by Chris Noonan and it is based on the life of children’s author and illustrator Beatrix Potter and combines stories from her own life with animated sequences featuring characters from her stories, such as Peter Rabbit. Full movie

9 🌷Exploring Virginia Woolf’s Between the Acts with a free statement of participation on completition

Introduction. This free course, Exploring Virginia Woolf’s Between the Acts, is designed to explore the historical context of the final work of Virginia Woolf, one of the most significant modernist writers of the twentieth century.

10 🌷Reading Cookbooks: from The Forme of Cury to The Smitten Kitchen

Online courses in literature are also available from the Department for Continuing Education at the University of Oxford, most of them with a course fee of £300.00 but available for less and starting in September 2020.

Published by

Ana Santos, Portugal 🇵🇹 & United Kingdom 🇬🇧

I'm a seek learner and curious teacher in constant self - improvement mode. Currently celebrating diversity, multilingualism, people, and their culture. After three years of living in Southeast Asia, and China, I'm moving to the UK to take care of my lifelong project on education: leadership and management! I dedicate this website to my boyfriend and mentor, who taught me about courage, to my 11 years old Thai student, June, from whom I learned what teaching is about, and to all my Chinese students from the Han majority and all 55 minority groups across China. May God bless your ways, in safety. A foreign language curious, human and woman, a traveler. A daydreamer!