BA single honours or in combination with another subject Drama 2020/21

Year of entry

You will explore drama as a practical and academic discipline. Through an exciting programme of productions, lectures, seminars, theatre visits, workshops and masterclasses with practising industry professionals, you will gain valuable experience in acting, directing, applied drama, contemporary and performance practices. There are also opportunities to engage with sound, lighting and stage management.

90% of our most recent Drama students were in jobs or further study 6 months after finishing their course.

Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2016/17

Drama offers you a range of opportunities to develop practical, directorial, creative, and intellectual skills in the contemporary world of drama. You will learn a range of acting and performance techniques, have opportunities to explore texts, spaces and creative ways of presenting and/or staging performance.

Top Reasons to study this course:

  • Dynamic and engaging ways of thinking about texts, spaces and presentations of performance
  • Opportunities to work with creative practitioners such as Helen Paris (artistic researcher)
  • Opportunities to see and engage with a range of performances at local theatres and as part of the Canterbury Festival

Students on this programme are also eligible to apply to study for a self-funded year in North America as part of their degree.

You will also be able to work collaboratively with other students who study Music and Dance.

You can study French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish as part of, or alongside, your course.

more info

This course offers you an exploration of drama as a practical and academic discipline, gaining valuable experience and skills in acting, directing, stage management, applied drama, and contemporary theatre making. You will develop these skills through workshops, productions, and seminars. You will be encouraged to sees as much drama as possible on stage and screen.

Students of Drama are eligible to apply to study for a year in North America as part of their degree.

This course usually appeals to students wishing to pursue a career in acting, directing, stage management and applied drama/drama in education, or to those interested in postgraduate study, or in pursuing a career in other areas of the creative arts industry and related fields.

Other information

Students on this course benefit from trips, workshops and opportunities to work with professional companies.

Core modules

Year 1

Introduction to Text in Performance (20 credits)

The module will focus on an introduction to a range of modern texts, practical methodologies, and rehearsal techniques.

Perspectives on Performance 1 (20 credits)

This module develops your skills in reading and analysing dramatic text and live performance with reference to key theoretical frameworks (e.g. semiotics and reception theory); you will also be introduced to the field of performance studies examining the intersections of performances and everyday life.

Introduction to Stagecraft (20 credits) (single honours only)

This module will serve as an engaging and primarily practical way of introducing fundamental design concepts for theatre that traditionally fall under the banner of stagecraft.

The Actor and The Ensemble (20 credits) (single honours only)

The module will concentrate on a variety of means by which an actor can develop and expand his/her skills through a study of techniques focused on improvisation and composition such as Viewpoints.

Theatres of the World: The Roots of Theatre (20 credits)

This module will be focusing on different understandings of theatre practice across cultures, intercultural theatres and a historical understanding of theatre traditions that have changed the history of world theatre.

Interdisciplinary Module: Devising (20 credits) (single honours only)

This module focuses on interdisciplinary working and the devising process in groups with students from music, performing arts, dance and drama.

Year 2

Perspectives on Performance 2 (20 credits)

You will explore the politics of identity using examples from performances, placing the emphasis on issues of space and the body.

Contemporary Performance Practice: Advanced Text in Performance (20 credits) (optional for combined honours)

The module engages with established practices and key theories relating to dramaturgical processes in preparing text for performance.

Year 3

Practice as Research or Dissertation (40 credits)

You can choose to engage more practically or in the written form as you explore an area of interest in greater depth.

Professional Practice (20 credits) (optional for combined honours)

The module aims to prepare you for professional roles in the theatre and related industries. It aims to provide the environment for you to develop practical knowledge and understanding of the principles of professional practice that operates in the discipline, as well as some of the opportunities that are available to you within the profession.

Optional modules

There are a range of option modules to choose from likely to include:

Year 2

Theatres of the World: European Theatre (20 credits)

The module familiarises students with dramatic traditions developed in Europe. Through studying a range of seminal plays and practitioners from across the continent, you will develop a critical understanding of the plays’ dramatic devices and content, and will be able to situate them within their respective cultural, social and historical contexts.

Theatres of the World: African Theatre (20 credits)

This module develops students’ understanding of diversity of theatre and performance traditions in Africa. You will examine the works of key playwrights and dramatists from different geographical regions in Africa and will develop a critical understanding of the plays’ dramatic conventions, theatrical devices and content; you will also be able to situate these within their respective cultural, social and historical contexts.

Contemporary Performance Practice: Directing (20 credits)

The module will enable you to appreciate the responsibilities of a director in the production process, as well as the evolving nature of the role. You will explore various techniques and approaches for directing a performance.

Stage Management 1 (20 credits) (single honours only)

This module is designed to introduce you to the concepts and processes relating to stage¬managing live performance events. You will explore the very specific roles relating to managing performance for large¬scale events together with examples of how those roles conflate to a more all-encompassing single management role for small performance companies.

The Actor and Verse (20 credits)

You will gain awareness of techniques that will help you to analyse and perform verse in order to meet the demands of heightened style. The range of texts chosen for study will further develop your understanding of the relationship between the text and its performance and your ability to respond to specific textual and performative conventions.

The Actor and the Object (20 credits) (single honours only)

You will gain awareness of techniques that will help you to explore and perform a piece of stylised dramatic text and meet the demands of stylised characterisation. Voice and movement sessions will focus on voice and body as tools with which to perform stylised emotions and characterisation, while developing your awareness of kinesics, vocalics, and verbal aspects of communication.

Approaches to Applied Performance (20 credits) (single honours only)

The module will primarily focus on the application of drama techniques for intervention in educational settings and/or with young audiences. The first weeks will be dedicated to the study and practical exploration of relevant theories and methodologies from applied theatre practice and arts management, covering a range of contexts including Theatre in Education (TIE) and Theatre for Young Audiences (TYA).

Contemporary Lighting Techniques (20 credits) (single honours only)

This module will focus on extending the awareness of design methodologies and the practical implications of providing lighting provision for a variety of performance genres beyond those of basic theatrical drama. The module will consider lighting provision for events such as rock shows, contemporary dance and musical theatre.

Global Experience (20 credits)

You will explore arts and culture in another country including a short trip abroad.

Interdisciplinary module ¬ Arts and Politics (20 credits) (single honours only)

You will examine the incorporation of political agendas into theatre, music, and dance.

Interdisciplinary module ¬ Arts and the Individual (20 credits) (single honours only)

You will consider key influences from individual artists and practitioners across the arts.

Year 3

There is a range of option modules to choose from, likely to include:

Theatres of the World: British Theatre (20 credits)

The module will be focusing on the study of post¬war and contemporary theatre examples by an array of British playwrights such as John Osborne, Harold Pinter, Sarah Kane, Debbie Tucker Green, Martin Crimp and theatre companies such as Stan’s Cafe and Joint Stock. It will be covering a range of theoretical approaches and themes including identity politics and stylistic innovation.

The Actor and the Production (20 credits)

This module will engage you in the creative and collaborative process of staging and performing a dramatic text for a public audience. Throughout an intensive actor¬training period, you will re-explore key acting techniques, and engage with selected contemporary texts that are recognised as posing the greatest challenges for the actor.

Stage Management 2 (20 credits) (single honours only)

You will focus on company stage management and the logistics of stage management in a professional context. Emphasis will be placed on professional development and employability, and you will build a portfolio of practical experience to evidence engagement with the professional process.

Contemporary Performance Practice: Postdramatic Devising (20 credits)

The module will primarily focus on postdramatic techniques of characterisation and storytelling including the use of persona, autobiographical performance, collage and adaptation. It will be drawing on existing practice by theatre collectives and practitioners such as The Wooster Group, Stan’s Cafe, Reckless Sleepers, Bobby Baker and Forced Entertainment.

Practising Applied Performance (20 credits) (single honours only)

The module will primarily focus on broadening your understanding of applied performance by introducing you to the broad area of practice, such as the application of performance in the context of heritage, healthcare, social inclusion, environment, and management. In the first weeks, you will explore theories and practices related to applied performance within these contexts as well as their social, political, ethical and environmental implications.

Interdisciplinary module: Community Arts Project (20 credits)

You will work as interdisciplinary teams and create a community based arts project, sharing and applying skills, knowledge and understanding of arts to the context and the practicalities of project development, management and delivering a project.

Interdisciplinary module: Multimedia Performance (20 credits)

This module is designed to explore the rapidly emerging and diversifying field of multimedia performance and interactive performance installation. Multimedia performance embraces a new technology as means of extending both the self and place.

We equip our graduates to tackle diverse roles in a wide range of professions including contemporary theatre making, acting, directing, stage management, applied drama, as well as pursuing postgraduate study in drama or a related field. Our graduates will also possess a range of transferable skills gained on the course which are highly valued and sought after for work in fields other than drama and the arts.


Tuition Fees for 2020/21 have not yet been finalised. Course webpages will be updated with Tuition Fee information once these have been agreed.

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any Library Fees and Fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

Course specific costs

Field Trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) Additional travel cost only (as tickets paid for) for trips using local theatres if part of a module or an enrichment activity. Travel is paid for by the School of Music and Performing Arts if using a theatre/going to an exhibition/event beyond the local area and the trip is part of a compulsory activity.
DBS / Health Checks If students have the opportunity for a commissioned project where a DBS check is needed then they would have to pay for this themselves. There is a charge for this of £52.
Clothing / Kit A basic dance kit for those students taking the dance strand at cost to student.
Learning Materials If students want costumes and props for performance work then these are paid for by students.

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.


You will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and practical workshops and be exposed to an even number of practical and study-based modules.

You will have access to specialist facilities and equipment for Music and Performing Arts throughout your course including practice and rehearsal spaces, instruments, studio spaces, performance spaces, and specialist software.

You will have access to a range of online and other library resources and will receive training from library and study skills specialists supporting you throughout your degree.

Students choosing the Applied Performance modules will be asked to work with communities beyond the university environment (e.g. in educational or other settings). Students taking Stage Management will be able to complete a professional portfolio of activities carried that may show to future employers. Third year module Professional Practice also prepares you for your professional career as university graduates and is assessed by a professional portfolio and a career plan.

In year 2, you will have the option to undertake a trip abroad as part of the ‘Global Experience’ module. Throughout your programme you will also have the option to undertake Work Related Experiences including responding to briefs, putting your learning into practice in community settings, and learning from professionals in masterclasses and workshops. All programmes are informed by the University’s Learning and Teaching Strategy 2015-2020.

The Drama course has recruited students from all over England, Croatia, France, Cyprus and other European countries.

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars, workshops or other timetabled sessions you will continue learning through self-study.  Typically, this involves undertaking research in the library, working on group projects with peers, and preparing for coursework assignments, workshops and seminars. Your module tutor will direct you towards specific readings and/or activities to complete before class. You will be often expected to work in study groups to enhance a peer-learning and collaborative environment.

If you choose the Dissertation or Practice as Research modules in year 3, you will undertake independent research and will work under the supervision of a member of the course team.

Overall workload

Your actual contact hours will depend on the optional modules you select but you will normally have between 12-14 contact hours per week in lectures, seminars, and workshops. In addition, you will meet with your Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) on a regular basis to receive pastoral and study skill support. In addition, there will be other, extra-curricular theatre activities to attend that will support and enhance your learning.

For every 20-credit module there is 50 hours of contact time and it is expected that there will be 150 hours of additional study time to undertake directed tasks, readings, rehearsals, research and assignments.

Academic input

Our Drama team comprises highly qualified academics who have a range of expertise and experience, as performers, directors, applied theatre practitioners and theatre researchers.

All our permanent Drama BA programme staff are research-active and have experience in delivering research-led teaching and they are at the level of Senior Lecturer or above. You can find out more about the current teaching on our Our Staff’ page that holds information about all staff in music and performing arts.

You will also be taught be other specialist staff with industry experience in specific areas such as Voice, Feldenkrais, directing and acting.

Students are assessed through a range of assignments incorporating a variety of modes such as presentation/performance, essays and reflections. There are no formal exams in any of the BA Drama modules.

The course provides you with opportunities to test your understanding of the subject informally before you complete the formal assessments that count towards your final mark. Each module normally contains 'formative' assessments for which you receive feedback from your tutor.

There are also formal or 'summative' assessments including a range of coursework assessments such as essays, reflections, proposals, portfolios, performances, presentations and your final year major project. The grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark.


You will receive feedback on all assessments.

Feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module tutor.

There are target setting opportunities regarding assessments and feedback facilitated by your personal academic tutor (PAT).

We aim to provide you with feedback within and 15 working days of hand-in or performance date.

The Daphne Oram creative arts building is now open. This building will be equipped with the latest technology and bespoke learning spaces for our arts and humanities students.

You will enjoy the use of a performance studio theatre with full lighting rigs and tech room and a ‘concert’ hall. We work with a number of professionals for masterclasses and workshops and have partnerships with Canterbury Festival and the Marlowe – giving you access to free tickets to a number of performances.

The Drama programme is taught at Canterbury Christ Church University’s Canterbury Campus in the heart of the historic city of Canterbury, less than 100 yards from the Cathedral. The University is 10 minutes from the train stations in Canterbury and Canterbury is 56 minutes by train from London St Pancras station.

Our main campus in Canterbury has city centre facilities on its doorstep and, of course, you will benefit from all the new arts building has to offer.

We work with industry stakeholders aligned to the continued development of our teaching programme and research and consultancy work, including artists from Bread and Goose Theatre Company, Reckless Sleepers and Propeller Theatre Company. Our students will also have the opportunity to engage with one of the School’s Artistic Researchers Helen Paris from Curious Theatre Company.

All of the Drama team are members of The Standing Conference of University Drama SCUDD


Full-time study

Apply via UCAS

Part-time study

Apply directly to us


Full-time study

Need some help?


For advice on completing your application please contact the Course Enquiry Team:

Email: courses@canterbury.ac.uk
Tel:+44 (0)1227 928000 (0)1227 928000


Contact our International Team

Fact file

UCAS course code

  • W402 Drama

UCAS institution code

  • C10


  • 3 years full-time

    6 years part-time


  • September 2020

Entry requirements



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Last edited: 28/08/2019 12:19:00