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Students taking part in a drama class

Drama: Theory & Practice

Why this course?

Approval from GTCS as a route to a second teaching qualification

This is a unique programme, the only one in Scotland, which offers qualified teachers the opportunity to gain the required 80 credits in drama, which will enable you to provisionally register with the GTCS to teach the subject at all levels in secondary schools.

The course has been given the approval of the GTCS as another route into gaining a second teaching qualification.

Although aimed specifically at qualified teachers, we also welcome other applicants with an interest in developing their knowledge and practice of drama/theatre.

The course combines theory and practice where you’ll demonstrate the knowledge you gain on the modules through written analysis and criticism. You’ll then apply that theory to underpin the movement, directorial and performance fields studied.

What you'll study

You'll study four 20 credit classes (two each year). You may be eligible for credit for relevant previous study. Where this is the case, in consultation with the course leader, you'll study three out of four classes.

The classes are:

  • Greek Theatre to the National Theatre of Scotland
  • Directing in the Theatre
  • Dramatic Work in Performance
  • Studio Theatre Performance

Work placement

Once you successfully complete the programme, you’ll be able to apply to the GTCS. If all other GTCS conditions have been met, you’ll gain provisional registration to teach drama in a secondary school.

Course content

All four classes are compulsory unless you can provide evidence of prior learning. In those circumstances, in consultation with the programme leader, you'll study three out of four compulsory classes.

Year 1

Semester 1

Greek Theatre to the National Theatre of Scotland

This class is designed to first introduce stage-centred dramatic criticism with theory and performance being given equal value. It then develops and examines the evolution of theatre representation from Classism to Expressionism.

Semester 2

Directing in the Theatre

The syllabus of the class is designed to first introduce and consider theatre as an event including its independence from the dramatic text (Sauter, 2000). It then develops and examines the theatrical event and resultant collective tension of an audience.

Year 2

Semester 1

Dramatic Work in Production

The class is designed to develop your experience of the totality of the theatrical performance including spatial organisation as defined by Edward T. Hall (1966) and the pursuit of the ‘shared illusion’ (Brook, 1968). The class then develops and examines the emotional shift of performers in rehearsal.

Semester 2

Studio Theatre Production

The syllabus of the class is designed to develop your understanding and experience of a broad set of theatrical practices and to select a text-based or devised work and stage this for an invited audience. Focus will be on the unity of stage and audience.

Learning & teaching

Module delivery will combine seminar presentation and discussion with workshop activities. You'll be encouraged to critically analyse and respond creatively to the tasks set. Audio-visual material and internet sources will be integral to the workshop sessions with key reading and workshop themes distributed at the start of the programme.


Classes one and two have two assessment points with the first assessment in each having a group element.

The second assessment is entirely an individual submission. It includes theatrical documentation for a piece of dramatic text chosen by you which is supported by an analytical essay.

Class three has two assessments. The first assessment has a strong practical group focus with supportive individual essay and the second requires you to direct a short piece of dramatic text, supported by a critical essay.

Class four has one assessment where you're required to produce a 40 – 45minute performance, supported by an individual analytical essay on that performance.

Entry requirements

  • entry open to teachers registered with the General Teaching Council for Scotland
  • considerations will be given to other applicants who can provide evidence of relevant Higher Education qualifications

Fees & funding


  • £695 per 20 credit class

How can I fund my studies?

Applicants may be able to apply to have their fees paid by the local authority the work for.

Please note

The fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.


Qualified teachers who take and successfully complete this programme can apply for provisional registration with the GTCS to teach drama in a secondary school.

The conditions for full-registration with the GTCS apply ie 95 days teaching drama under supervision.

Contact us


Drama: Theory and Practice

Qualification: , Start date: Aug 2019, Mode of delivery: attendance, part-time

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