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Drama & Theatre Studies at Tring School

Course description

Awarding Body: Edexcel

Option Blocks: B and C 

As gaining a university place or employment becomes increasingly competitive, employers and universities are not just looking for exeptional exam results but creative independent thinkers and individuals who are confident, organised and have emotional intelligence. Drama and Theatre Studies develops and encourages all of these attributes as well as striving for academic brilliance.

This rigorous and challenging course enables students to explore play texts and influential theatre practitioners' ideas and theories, develop devising skills, experience a wide variety of theatre performance and workshops, track the development of theatre throughout history and to enhance performance skills. Drama and Theatre Studies is a course which successfully combines the academic and practical approach to study. It is suitable for those interested in a career where communication, analysis and evaluation are crucial as well as those who want to pursue a career in drama.

Students should be prepared to give up some of their own time to attend rehearsals, workshops and theatre visits. In Year 13, a weekend residential is organised to help prepare for the Unit 4 written paper.

Course content

AS Level

Unit 1 - Exploration of Drama and Theatre Content summary: this unit introduces students to the content of plays written for the theatre. They will learn how to analyse plays in a variety of ways so that they become familiar with the way plays can be interpreted for realisation in performance.

Unit 1 Assessment: This internally assessed unit requires students to explore two contrasting play texts, chosen by the centre, in a practical and active way. At least one of the plays must be explored in the light of a recognised theatre practitioner. Students are also required to experience a live theatre performance and submit an evaluation. A set of Exploration Notes must be submitted.

Unit 2 - Theatre Text in Performance Content summary: this unit offers students the chance to demonstrate skills in a performance environment. The knowledge and understanding gained during the study of two plays in Unit 1 can now be applied with a view to delivering a performance to an audience.

Unit 2 Assessment: This is an externally assessed unit. The first section requires students to offer either a monologue or duologue. The second section requires students to contribute to a performance of a professionally published play by a known writer. This play will be different to those studied in Unit 1 and will be directed by the teacher. Students may offer either acting or a design form and must also provide a concept of the interpretation of their chosen roles or designs.

A2 Level Unit 3 - Exploration of Dramatic Performance Content summary: this unit requires the creation of a unique and original piece of theatre. The knowledge and understanding gained in the AS units can now be applied to a created production. Students will be assessed on both the process of creation and the finished product in the form of a performance to an invited audience.

Unit 3 Assessment: Students will be assessed on the research and development of their work as well as the final performance in front of an identified audience. They are also required to complete an evaluation on both the process and performance of their work.

Unit 4: Theatre Text in Context Content summary: this externally written unit requires the detailed study of one set play text and one prescribed historical period of theatrical development.

Unit 4 Assessment: this externally assessed unit takes the form of a 2 hour and 30 minute written paper in three sections. Sections A and B require students to explore one play, from a choice of three set play texts, from the point of view of a director in both an academic and practical way. In Section C a selection must be made of one from a choice of three historic periods of theatre history. A live performance of a play from the chosen period must be experienced and evaluated and a comparison made with the original staging conditions of the play.

Entry requirements

B or above in GCSE Drama and a C or above in GCSE English Language.

For Year 13 students need to achieve a D grade or above to continue onto A2, however students will be judged individually. If it is felt that a student has consistently failed to apply themselves and has failed to meet their FFTD prediction they will be asked to leave the course.


Unit 1: Internally assessed - 40% of the total AS marks (20% of the total GCE marks)

Unit 2: Externally assessed - 60% of the total AS marks (30% of the total GCE marks)

Unit 3: Internally assessed - 40% of the total A2 marks (20% of the total GCE marks)

Unit 4: Externally assessed - 60% of the total A2 marks (30% of the total GCE marks)

Financial information

Across 2 years:

Essential books - 25. Can be purchased second hand from previous drama students.

Optional books - 35. Can be purchased second hand from previous drama students.

Essential theatre trips - 50

Optional treatre trips - various, depending on what is on. Approx. 25 per trip.

Optional Year 13 residential - 150

Future opportunities

This course is highly regarded by universities and requires a high level of personal commitment; it can be extremely rewarding in terms of students' personal development, general knowledge and interpretative skills

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Tring School directly.

Last updated date: 12 November 2012
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 year