Drama and Theatre Studies

Drama and Theatre inspires students to become independent theatre makers with the skills they need to go on to higher education, whether that is to study a course in drama and theatre or another subject. It will enable you to develop your interest and enjoyment in drama as a participant and a member of an audience, fostering an enthusiasm and critical appreciation of the subject. Students learn through experience, seeing theatre and making theatre for themselves. Students are introduced to a wide range of theatrical styles and contexts as they explore plays practically, devise and work on performances. Students will gain many invaluable skills, both theatrical and transferable, to expand their horizons.


This qualification is linear, meaning that students will undertake all non-exam assessment in the Year 13 and sit the written exam at the end of the course.


What will you be learning?

Year 12 & Year 13

Component 1: Drama & Theatre

Component 1 is a written exam in which students are assessed on their knowledge and understanding of how drama is developed and performed and on their ability to analyse and evaluate live theatre work of others. It is divided into 3 sections:

Section A: Drama through the ages

The focus is interpretation of specific aspects of a set play, adopting the perspective of a performer, designer  and director as appropriate to the question.

Section B: 20th and 21st century drama

The focus is how a set play might be interpreted in performance to create meaning for an audience from the perspective of director and on performance and design.

Section C: Live theatre production.

Students are required to demonstrate their understanding of how theatre makers collaborate to create theatre, communicating meaning to an audience.


Component 2: Creating Original Drama

This component is practical, students are assessed on their ability to create and develop ideas to communicate meaning as part of the theatre making process making connections between dramatic theory and practice and apply theatrical skills to realise artistic intentions in live performance. Students must complete two assessments:

• produce an individual Working notebook documenting the devising process

• contribute to a final devised, group performance. Starting points for the devised piece will be chosen by students and must be informed by the work and methodologies of one prescribed theatre practitioner.


Component 3: Making Theatre

This is a practical component in which students are assessed on their ability to apply

theatrical skills to realise artistic intentions in live performance and analyse and evaluate their own work. Students must practically explore and interpret 3 key extracts each from a different play and complete 2 assessment tasks:

• formally present Extract 3 to an audience applying the work and methodologies of one of the prescribed theatre practitioners

• produce an individual Reflective report analysing and evaluating their theatrical interpretation of all 3 key extracts studied.


How is it assessed?

We want students to have an inspiring experience of A-level Drama and Theatre. This qualification emphasises practical creativity alongside research and theoretical understanding. Each exam paper is designed to allow students to demonstrate their creativity and imagination in interpreting set texts and apply independent thinking as they evaluate a live theatre production.


Component 1:  40%, externally marked

Component 2: 30%, marked internally & moderated

Component 3: 30%, externally marked


Entry Requirements

5 x grade 9-5 GCSEs (including English language). A grade 5 or above in GCSE Drama and/or English is desirable, in addition to an ability to perform and experience of extra-curricular performance activities.


Progression to Higher Education

Higher education institutions value and respect the skills drama and theatre qualifications give students, ensuring they will be really well prepared for the demands of university and beyond. Students of Drama and Theatre develop skills that are not just essential for drama but applicable to a wide range of higher education subjects and in the workplace. This specification refines students' collaborative skills, their analytical thinking and their approach to research. Students grow in confidence and maturity as they successfully realise their own ideas and learn to evaluate objectively and develop a sound appreciation of the influences that cultural and social contexts can have on decision making. Whatever the future holds, students of A-level Drama and Theatre emerge with a toolkit of transferable skills preparing them for their next steps