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Performing Arts BTEC Extended Diploma Level 3 at Bolton College

Course description

Our full-time study programmes are designed to maximise your career prospects and widen your options for further or higher study.

On successful completion of the one-year BTEC 90 Credit Diploma, you may progress onto the Extended Diploma Level 3. This is a further opportunity to develop the skills and the Extended Diploma Level 3. This is a further opportunity to develop the skills and practices learnt in your previous year, within our Performing Arts Department.

During this course, you will be considered to be a young professional and given opportunities to develop your artistic and leadership skills further. You will be expected to work independently at times, with guidance from tutors, to lead your own performance projects.

Work experience is an integral part of our study programmes, enabling you to gain essential exposure to the world of work.

Course content

What you'll learn

You will study a further 9 units at Level 3 during this year. Some units will be studied with the whole level 3 Performing Arts cohort, which will involve some of the following:

Performing Arts Units (all students)

  • Historical Context of Performance
  • Musical Theatre Performance
  • Physical Theatre
  • Site-Specific Performance

You will also select a preferred performance pathway to specialise in and will study option units in either acting or dance. You will study some of the following:

Acting Pathway (Actors only)

  • Acting Auditions
  • Acting for Camera
  • Directing Theatre

Dancing Pathway (Dancers only)

  • Choreography
  • Dance
  • Dance on Film

You will continue to participate in a range of exciting performance projects. You may direct or choreograph your own performance work, working with your peers. You may also develop your own performance work for camera, producing a short film. You will work alongside industry professionals on external performance projects in order to provide valuable experience of working in the Performing Arts Industry.

Throughout the course, your tutors will provide plenty of help and support with preparing for auditions, ensuring that you are very well prepared for university auditions, ensuring that you are very well prepared for university auditions or performance job opportunities.

We encourage our students to continue their English & maths study to Level 3.

Elements of study

Your programme consists of the following elements:

  • Study of your chosen vocational subject (50% of your programme)
  • English and maths (continued until the achievement of GCSE grade 4 (C) or equivalent)
  • Employability skills (e.g. punctuality, attendance, communication and team work)
  • Work experience (giving you a taste of working life)
  • Tutorial & personal development (e.g. healthy living, volunteering and citizenship skills).

Entry requirements

You will need to have completed the Performing Arts BTEC 90 Credit Diploma Level 3 with a Merit or Distinction Profile.


There’ll be continuous assessment throughout the course. You’ll be assessed on your public performance and your written log books.

Financial information

Government-funded Further Education courses are usually free if you are aged 16-18 and are a British or European Union resident.  Financial help is available for some students, whose families are on low income. If you’re worried about the cost of going to College, why not pop in for a friendly chat with our Student Services team?

For any financial queries or information about available bursaries, feel free to contact Student Services at Deane Road by calling 01204 482 181/195 and asking for a member of the Student Finance Team; or alternatively, come by and see us – we’re here to help!

Future opportunities

After you have completed the course you could progress on to a higher education course at college or university, or apply for employment in the industry.

Check out opportunities at the University of Bolton by visiting

Following further study you could work as a:

  • Actor, entertainer or presenter and you could earn an average of around £34,000 per year depending on experience and role.
  • A Stage Manager, earning between £18,000 and £45,000 a year.
  • A Choreographer, with your salary dependent on experience, reputation and the production you’re working on.
  • A Lighting Technician, where you could earn up to £27,000 a year, depending on experience.

Further information

Our £75 million campus offers:

  • A fitness suite and sports hall
  • Apple Mac suites
  • Libraries
  • A theatre and dance studios
  • A café selling Costa coffee
  • Wella-approved hair salons

We also have a wide range of events throughout the year including showcases, enterprise activities and cultural celebrations.

Number 1 for Achievement Rates

We’re the number one General FE and Tertiary College for 16-18 achievement rates in Greater Manchester.

Ofsted Grade 2 ‘Good’

Ofsted also agrees; in February we were inspected and graded 2 for ‘Good’. Ofsted highlighted the fact that our learners develop good employability and personal skills and that a high proportion progress to Apprenticeships, employment or Higher Education.


We want to give you a positive experience at College and a rounded view of the industry you could one day be working in. So, during your time at College, you will have the opportunity to enjoy a range of activities, including:

  • Theatre Trips
  • Performances at high-profile events (such as the Bolton Food & Drink Festival)
  • Backstage Tours.


The College will support you throughout your time here; you will receive personal support from both your tutor and your Learning & Development Mentor. Support is also available from our dedicated Student Services team for personal, financial and careers guidance.

During their recent visit in February 2017, Ofsted commended the College for its provision of “well targeted information, advice and careers guidance, which meets individual needs and enables learners to make informed choices about the next steps in their learning and career”.

Open Events

Discover what Bolton College can do for you by attending one of our Young People’s Open Events at our Deane Road campus.

Thursday 12th October 2017, 4.30pm - 8pm

Wednesday 22nd November 2017, 4.30pm - 8pm

Wednesday 7th February 2018, 4.30pm - 8pm

Futures4Me Event

Thursday 28th September 2017, 3.30pm – 7pm

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 24 September 2017
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