BA(Hons) Drama

Three Drama degree students performing in a play
Entry year
Course code
Tariff points
Creative and Cultural Industries
City Campus
Three years full-time
Full-time; Part-time
Programme leader
Dr Amanda Penlington

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Page last updated 4 July 2022


Choose from a wide selection of modules to focus on areas of theatre making that you're passionate about such as writing, directing, devising physical theatre and acting.

Accreditations and partnerships:

Why study drama?

Increasingly, independent professional theatre is about making your own work.

A contemporary company needs to write, devise, direct, tech, and perform original theatre. Individuals may excel in one of these areas, but they also need a good working knowledge of everything else.

It's all about sharing skills and working as a group to create exciting live performances.

Why UWE Bristol?

BA(Hons) Drama is perfect for those who love theatre making and appreciate a challenge.

Work closely with our supportive theatre community to share ideas and work collectively on productions.

Develop your talent on a path of discovery through every facet of theatre. Choose from a wide selection of modules to become a theatre maker with a wealth of experience, abilities and creativity.

Focus on the areas of expertise you're passionate about such as writing, directing, devising physical theatre, and acting. Specialise in directing, technical theatre or writing and graduate with the degree title Drama with Creative Writing, Drama with Technical Theatre or Drama with Theatre Directing.

You'll have a wealth of opportunities to develop personally and gain real-world experience. We work closely with the local theatre network and support you to form your own theatre company, producing your own extra-curricular work and making the most of our rehearsal and performance space.

As a writer, director, technician, and/or performer, you'll write, devise and produce original performances for your assessed final year projects, which will then be featured in our end of year public Degree Show. Specialist masterclasses led by staff and industry professionals will give you the chance to develop specific skills in areas such as puppetry, auditioning and stage combat.

City Campus is a creative powerhouse that spans the city of Bristol and is made up of Bower Ashton, Spike Island, Arnolfini and Watershed.

Drama uses specialist spaces at the Arnolfini and theatre facilities at Bower Ashton Studios.

Shaping the course towards the areas of theatre making you're most interested in, through your modules and assessments, you'll emerge as a confident and creative drama professional, one also equipped with soft skills such as collaboration, networking and organisation, and ready to thrive in the real world.

Read about Jake's experience of this course

Where can it take me?

Graduate ready for a career in theatre, television, film or education.

You may also choose to progress to further study with one of the country's prestigious theatre schools such as the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA) and Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).



You will register onto BA(Hons) Drama. As you progress through the course you will have the opportunity to specialise in a specific subject.  Depending on your module choices, you could graduate with one of the following awards:

  • BA(Hons) Drama
  • BA(Hons) Drama with Creative Writing
  • BA(Hons) Drama with Technical Theatre
  • BA(Hons) Drama with Theatre Directing.

The optional modules listed are those that are most likely to be available, but they may be subject to change.

Year one

You will study:

  • Introduction to Actor Training
  • Introduction to Physical Theatre
  • Introduction to Creative Writing
  • Introduction to Performance Texts and Contexts.

Year two

You will study four optional modules* from:

  • Acting for Stage
  • Devising Physical Theatre
  • Playwriting
  • New Shakespeares
  • Inventing Modernism.

Final year

You will study:

  • Final Year Project.

Plus three optional modules* from:

  • The Creative Writing Project
  • Acting for Screen
  • Avant-Garde Theatre
  • Contemporary British and American Drama.

*The combination will depend on your chosen course pathway.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved, we will inform you.

This structure is for full-time students only. Part-time students study the same modules but the delivery pattern will be different.

Learning and Teaching

There aren't any lectures or written exams - you'll be taught through three-hour workshops.

In your final year, you'll attend workshops dedicated to helping you put together applications and the audition process.

Develop your professional and creative practice, with practice-led teaching; and craft your research skills, working with academics and practitioners helping to shape new thinking in the field.

Develop enterprise skills, exploring different audiences and contexts for your work, and building a compelling portfolio to take to employers.

In year three, you can choose to devise and produce a final year show, or work on a more traditional-style dissertation.

Your portfolio will be shaped towards the aspect of theatre you want to progress in, whether that's a showreel for acting, a portfolio for writing or a CV for directorial work.

Gaining broad experience across different aspects of theatre work in years one and two, you'll then have the option to specialise in Year three, and graduate with one of the following degree titles:

BA(Hons) Drama with Creative Writing

With an emphasis on building your creative and writing skills, you'll develop your understanding of how plays work by creating them yourself.

BA(Hons) Drama with Technical Theatre

Looking more at the technical side, you'll unpick the different elements that go into theatre making, from sound to lighting, to produce professional quality shows.

BA(Hons) Drama with Theatre Directing

If you're interested more in directing, we'll support you to build those skills, starting with individual scenes and progressing onto directing your own play.

BA(Hons) Drama

This pathway is for students wanting to develop skills as a general theatre maker, with knowledge of writing, producing and directing, and the ability to move easily between these three areas.

See our full glossary of learning and teaching terms.

Approximate percentage of time you'll spend in different learning activities*:

YearScheduled learning and teaching studyIndependent studyPlacement study

*Calculated from compulsory and optional modules (where applicable) each year

Get involved

Take part in our Drama Society, audition for high-profile events and attend regular workshops with industry professionals.

Apply for advice and scratch performance space, to keep your theatre company going after graduation.


The way your work will be assessed depends on which modules you choose.

You can be assessed through live and filmed performances, portfolios of writing, written reflections, presentations and essays. Every performance will be double or triple marked.

See our full glossary of assessment terms.

Approximate percentage of marks awarded by each assessment method*:

YearWritten exam assessmentCoursework assessmentPractical exam assessment

*Calculated from compulsory and optional modules (where applicable) each year



You'll have a wealth of opportunities to develop personally and gain real-world experience through our strong links with Bristol theatres.

Formal placements aren't part of the course but we encourage you to find your own extra-curricular work and provide open access to rehearsal and performance space.

Study facilities

BA(Hons) Drama is based at our City Campus in the heart of Bristol.

City Campus at Arnolfini offers studio and teaching spaces and technical facilities on Bristol's harbourside, as well as access to the ground floor auditorium for performance workshops.

You'll also use the resources available at other City Campus sites. This includes Bower Ashton Studios, which has a working theatre and houses the main library dedicated to the creative and cultural industries, as well as a number of student support services.

A mix of traditional and hands-on learning environments helps you quickly take on essential knowledge and skills, standing you in good stead for your professional career.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.


Careers / Further study

Tailoring what and how you study, you can shape the course towards the area of drama you want to move into.

Our graduates go onto careers in theatre, television, film, arts management, education and business (including marketing).

Some take postgraduate courses at the prestigious Bristol Old Vic Theatre School (BOVTS), the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA), the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and the Central School of Speech and Drama.

Get inspired

Our award-winning careers service will develop your employment potential through career coaching and find you graduate jobs, placements and global opportunities.

We can also help find local volunteering and community opportunities, provide support for entrepreneurial activity and get you access to employer events.

Visit our employability pages to learn more about careers, employers and what our students are doing six months after graduating.

See also:

The Guardian - what to do with a degree in drama studies


Supplementary fee information

Additional costs are for items you could need during your studies that aren't covered by the standard tuition fee. These could be materials, textbooks, travel, clothing, software or printing.

Learn more about costs.


Typical offers

  • Tariff points: 112
  • GCSE: Grade C/4 in English Literature or Language, or equivalent. We do not accept Level 2 Key Skills, Functional Skills or Certificates in Adult Literacy and Numeracy as suitable alternatives to GCSEs.
  • English Language Requirement: International and EU applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.0 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

    *The university accepts a large number of UK and International Qualifications in place of IELTS. You can find details of acceptable tests and the required grades you will need in our English Language section. Visit
  • A-level subjects: No specific subjects required.
  • EDEXCEL (BTEC) Diploma: No specific subjects required.

    For information on required Guided Learning Hours please see our minimum entry requirements page.

  • Access: No specific subjects required.
  • Baccalaureate IB: No specific subjects required.
  • Irish Highers: No specific subjects required.
  • T Levels: No specific subjects required.

Entry requirements

International applicants

For country specific entry requirements please find your country on the Country Information pages. If you are applying to study at UWE Bristol and require additional support to meet our English language requirements, you may be able to attend one of our pre-sessional English courses. Read more about our Pre-Sessional English Programme.

Selection process

Applicants will be required to attend an interview. For more details on the process, please visit our selection page.

Read more about entry requirements.

How to apply

Read more about undergraduate applications.

For further information


UWE Main Campus

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