Drama BA (Hons) 2017-18

This course also available for 2018-19 entry
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Florence Maclennan

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About the course

Our drama department offers a dynamic and creative environment in which you can develop your skills in well-resourced facilities.

All of the staff in the department are active researchers, and most come from a background of professional practice in the fields of drama, theatre and performance. This means you will have the opportunity to learn from people who have first-hand knowledge of working in professional performance spheres. Our course focuses on contemporary theatre and performance and allows you to develop breadth of understanding alongside specialist practice-related skills.

The wide range of production activity ensures that in each term of your university career you'll have the chance to be involved in staff and student-led performances. You'll be able to work with internationally renowned theatre companies, which in recent years have included Slung Low, IOU Productions and Northern Broadsides, and practitioners such as Professor Sir Patrick Stewart, John Britton, Andrew Morrish and Nicolas Nunez who have previously visited the department.

Drama at Huddersfield is housed in a fantastic converted Victorian church and associated buildings. The building is often a hive of activity such as rehearsal, performance, discussion and research. There are two large studios, a third smaller one, rehearsal rooms, contemporary technical facilities, computer rooms and plenty of social space where you can plan your next production or discuss your next research task.

In the National Student Satisfaction Survey 2015, 91% of students said they were satisfied with the course.

[h]What our Extermal Examiners say[\h] "Strong practical work with an exceptional festival of student performances in the final year."
 Dr Julian Waite

"The programme of study has clarity and consistency, and it shows evidence of a high level of engagement with the concerns of both pedagogy and professional practices."
 Dr Colette Conroy

Start date:
25 / 09 / 2017


3 years full-time
5 years part-time

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for this course are normally one of the following:

•  BBB at A Level including a minimum grade B in a relevant subject, preferably Drama, Theatre or Performance Studies

•  DMM in Performing Arts or related subject BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma and the demonstration of good critical analytical ability

•  120 UCAS tariff points from a combination of Level 3 qualifications including a minimum grade B at A Level in a relevant subject, preferably Drama, Theatre or Performance Studies

•  Pass Access to Higher Education Diploma with 45 Level 3 credits at Merit or above including modules in a relevant subject, preferably Drama, Theatre or Performance Studies

•  International Baccalaureate with an overall score of 31 points including modules in a relevant subject, preferably Drama, Theatre or Performance Studies.

Applicants will be invited to attend a Selection Day, at which they will participate in a workshop by way of audition. Some applicants may also be invited to interview.

You must provide evidence of practical and theoretical interest in drama.

Other suitable experience or qualifications will be considered. For further information please see the University's minimum entry requirements at http://www.hud.ac.uk/undergraduate/howtoapply/entryrequirements/

Please note: UCAS points are based on the new UCAS tariff, introduced for courses starting in 2017/18.


Admissions Tutor

Tel: +44 (0)1484 478455

E-mail: drama@hud.ac.uk

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Places available:
(this number may be subject to change)

Huddersfield, HD1 3DH

Course content

See what current Drama student Caroline has to say about her course.

Year 1

Core modules:

Creative Devising

You’ll have the opportunity to experience a range of workshops in creative and performance practices which are intended to develop your ability to create performance material collaboratively and from a range of starting points other than traditional play scripts. Assessment takes the form of one or more practical projects and a written report or portfolio.

Text into Performance

You’ll have the opportunity to explore the ways in which a play script can form the basis for a live theatre production through working together as a company to stage a short text. Questions of character, structure, meaning and dramaturgy can be explored through the challenge of staging the work. Assessment takes the form of the practical project and a written report or portfolio.

Option modules:

Choose two from a list which may include-

Models and Theories of Performance Practice 1A

What is performance? How do we read performances? What place do performance and theatre have within the broader culture? This module is designed to introduce you to a range of important analytical and theoretical perspectives used in the interpretation of performance. The module aims to help you to be able to critically analyse a variety of theatrical and performance practices, and their relationship to different cultural, economic, historical and political contexts. A weekly workshop/lecture/seminar will introduce you to the theories that will underpin the rest of your studies. The assessment of this module is based entirely on coursework consisting of written and presentational assignments.

Models and Theories of Performance Practice 1B

This weekly workshop/lecture/seminar introduces you to a range of historical performance practices from the late-Victorian period to the present. The seminars are designed to encourage you to probe and debate the issues raised with reference to texts taken from a range of cultures and periods. Each week you will be asked to examine theatrical play texts and performances in historical context using theories of performance. You will have the opportunity to gain insight into how conceptions of character and plot converge and/or diverge over time and explore how social, political, and artistic ideas have affected theatre over time. The assessment of this module is based entirely on coursework consisting of written and presentational assignments.

Year 2

Core modules:

Models and Theories of Performance Practice 2a

This module focuses on the analytical study of contemporary performance practices. Through a series of workshops, lectures and seminars, you will be encouraged to use particular critical concepts to analyse and critique the work of a range of innovative theatre practitioners, including companies, directors, writers and performers. The assessment of this module is based entirely on coursework consisting of written and presentational assignments. Practitioners previously studied include Marina Abramović Forced Entertainment, Nicola Canavan, Ariane Mnouchkine, Tim Crouch, IOU Theatre, Mojisola Adebayo, Orlan, Split Britches, Augusto Boal and the Wooster Group.

Theatre and Performance Making

You’ll be asked to choose from a range of production projects, each offering the opportunity to specialise in a different aspect of theatre, drama or performance. Each project will culminate in a live public production or equivalent event; for example, a performance of an existing playtext, or a devised physical theatre piece or a series of theatre-in-education workshops delivered in schools. Assessment takes the form of the practical project and a written report or portfolio.

Specialist Practice

You’ll be asked to choose to undertake a training project in one of a range of theatre skill areas, such as directing, performing, writing for performance, technical theatre, or workshop facilitation. A programme of training will help to prepare you to undertake an independent project which demonstrates your skills and understandings. The assessment of this module is based entirely on a skills presentation and a practical project.

Option modules:

Choose one from a list which may include-

Models and Theories of Performance Practice 2b

This module concentrates on the uses of theatre. You will have the opportunity to explore new practical and theoretical material including a range of Applied Theatre practice and ideology, introduced through lecture-workshops. You’ll then be encouraged to go on to develop researched case studies of contemporary practitioners and practices, concentrating on the uses of Drama, Theatre and Performance. You are encouraged to develop knowledge of practitioners and practices that sit outside of mainstream theatre and performance culture. The assessment of this module is based entirely on coursework consisting of written and presentational assignments.

Year 3

Core modules:

Process and Performance Project

The aim of this module is to allow you to engage in depth with a single staff directed process and performance. You will be expected to feed into your work the most relevant areas of skill and knowledge which you have gained elsewhere on your course. In preparing and rehearsing for one or more performances, you will be expected to practise, to extend, to contextualise and to develop the physical, creative, intellectual and practical skills necessary. Assessment takes the form of an individual contribution to a final performance event or other presentation and an individual portfolio.

Critical Context: Perspectives on Contemporary Drama, Theatre and Performance

This is a lecture and seminar series which presents you with a range of critical perspectives on examples of contemporary drama, theatre and performance. You’ll be encouraged to develop research in two areas of interest and assessment is based on coursework.

Option modules:

Choose one from a list which may include-

Practice and Research 3

This module takes the form of a Working Party research process in which you’ll have the opportunity to individually research a particular focussed topic and then collectively design and deliver your research in a group panel session within a student organised conference. Research methodologies can include practice-as-research – using studio-based or fieldwork explorations. You’ll be asked to present the results of the research in a group symposium, and will be assessed entirely on the writing of an abstract, a research summary or provocation, and on your contribution to the curatorship of the symposium.

Practice Analysis: Final Year Project

The Final Year Project is an opportunity to demonstrate practical skills in a significant theatre or performance role. Building on skills developed through earlier study, you will be able to negotiate a practical project that may focus on performing, directing, applied theatre practice, writing or technical and production skills. With input from a supervisor, you will then be asked to work largely independently to deliver the agreed project. Many of the practical projects appear in the Department’s annual Festival. Research and critical reflection on the practice is also developed in the module, which is assessed through a creative practical presentation and a written portfolio.

Critical Context: Dissertation

In this module, you’ll be asked to carry out an extended piece of independent research, and write a 7,000 word thesis. In keeping with traditional academic practice, you’ll then be asked to defend the thesis in an oral examination. The thesis and oral form the assessment for this module.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

We review all optional modules each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let students know in good time the options available for them to choose for the following year.

We will only change core modules for a course if it is necessary for us to do so, for example to maintain course accreditation. We will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before you begin the relevant academic year.

Sometimes we have to make changes to other aspects of a course or how it is delivered. We only make these changes if they are for reasons outside of our control, or where they are for our students’ benefit. Again, we will let you know about any such changes as soon as possible, usually before the relevant academic year. Our regulations set out our procedure which we will follow when we need to make any such changes.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England is the principal regulator for the University.


Each year our first year students work with a professional theatre company which develops a project exclusively with our students for a two and a half week residency at the University, culminating in a performance on the University campus.

Career opportunities

95% of graduates from this course go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating. Drama graduates have gone on to work in the performing arts, in television, touring theatre, and running their own performance companies.

A selection of companies that have employed Huddersfield graduates in recent years include BBC One, ITV, Channel 4, Lawrence Batley Theatre, BBC 6 Music, Royal National Theatre and Point Blanc Theatre Company*. Some have chosen postgraduate study or additional vocational training in specialist areas, whilst a significant number successfully gain teaching qualifications and enter the teaching profession. *Source: Linked In.

Teaching and assessment

20.3% of the study time on this course is spent in lectures, seminars, tutorials, workshops etc. Given the diverse nature of the experiences offered by a Drama degree, assessment takes a range of forms. There are no written examinations, but rather an emphasis on coursework. You submit work for assessment at intervals throughout the year. Most modules have elements of both written and practical assessment with the balance between these varying according to the learning outcomes and content.

Practical work takes several different forms; for example you'll experience practical workshops and performance projects lectures and seminars, and one-to-one tutorials. You'll demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the subject through a range of assessments: performances and other creative practical working processes, research-based practical presentations, essays, scripts, portfolios and working notebooks or dissertations. Your module specification/course handbook will provide full details of the assessment criteria applying to your course.

Your module specification/course handbook will provide full details of the assessment criteria applying to your course.

Feedback (either written and/or verbal) is normally provided on all coursework submissions within three term time weeks – unless the submission was made towards the end of the session in which case feedback would be available on request after the formal publication of results. Feedback on final coursework is available on request after the publication of results.

Huddersfield is the UK's only university where 100% of the permanent teaching staff are fellows of the Higher Education Academy.


Housed in a converted Victorian church building, Drama at Huddersfield provides modern and inspiring facilities |http://www.hud.ac.uk/courses/supporting/dram/facilities/index.php?ippref=00000462]. The Milton Building has two large performance studios which are architecturally spectacular and supremely flexible; most of the other seminar and rehearsal rooms have stained glass windows, high ceilings and curious gargoyles, providing a stimulating and creative working environment.

Our work in this inspirational setting is supported by technical staff and contemporary technical facilities such as 3D design equipment, video editing, projection and other multi-media performance facilities, computerised lighting and sound equipment. Studios One and Two are both used primarily as in-house teaching and performance spaces, where you'll have the opportunity to practise, watch and critique your own and other students' work. In addition, Studio One is a touring venue, hosting work by contemporary companies whose work can be studied as part of the curriculum. We have close links with Huddersfield's Lawrence Batley Theatre and have previously used their three performance spaces for our own public productions.

How much will it cost me?

In 2017/18, the part-time tuition fee for UK and EU students at the University of Huddersfield will be £950 per 20 credit module (see Fees and Finance for exceptions). Tuition fees will cover the cost of your study at the University as well as charges for registration, tuition, supervision and examinations. For more information about funding, fees and finance for UK/EU students, including what your tuition fee covers, please see Fees and Finance. Please note that tuition fees for subsequent years of study may rise in line with inflation (RPI-X).

If you are an international student coming to study at the University of Huddersfield, please visit the International Fees and Finance pages for full details of tuition fees and support available.

Please email the Student Finance Office or call 01484 472210 for more information about fees and finance.

Further study

Progression to a postgraduate course is dependent on successful completion of your undergraduate studies, there may also be minimum qualification requirements such as a first class or higher second (2.1) degree. Please check the course details to confirm this.

You may be interested in studying: Drama, Dance and Performance (MA by Research)

How to apply

Research community

Research plays an important role in informing all our teaching and learning activities. Through research our staff remain up-to-date with the latest developments in their field, which means you develop knowledge and skills that are current and highly relevant to industry.

Drama research focuses on practical explorations and developing innovative ways of teaching and training. Our academic staff and postgraduate researchers conduct research around areas of actor training, psycho-physicality, ensemble, creativity and improvisation. Other areas of interest include performance magic, theatre and learning disability, new writing forms and contemporary political theatre. There are currently two research groups in Drama, the Centre for Psychophysical Performance Research and the Magic Research Group.

For more information, see the Research section of our website.