Module code: THE2037

Module Overview

This module serves as an introduction to the conceptual and practical concerns of scenography. Principally, this is focused around a series of seminar discussions and practical workshops that deal with the role of design in/and/as performance. The module is designed to allow students to experiment with how the spatial and material aspects of performance work, both in support of a production and how they affect a participant-spectator. The module is centred on a number of workshops that aim to structure your experiments into scenography. These workshops focus can focus on any number of methods inclusive of stage architecture, sound, lighting, costume, projection and digital design. The students understanding of these tasks will be evidenced though presentations shared as part of the weekly sessions. Students will also receive feedback on their progress through the module and how they engaged with the material.

Module provider

Guildford School of Acting

Module Leader

HANN Rachel (GSA)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

JACs code: W440

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content:

  • Examine definitions of ‘scenography’

  • Experiment with a range of different approaches to spatial and material performance design

  • Contemplate the role of environment design within the communication of performance ideas and concepts

  • Consider the role of costume within the dramaturgical construction of performance

  • Reflect on your personal learning through a series of tests and experiments

  • Argue the role of design within the creation and encounter of performance practice

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Practical based assessment Group Exhibition 100

Alternative Assessment

Individual Portfolio (100% Weighting)

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate knowledge acquired about practitioners engaged with scenography, past and present. It also offers students the opportunity to show skills in analysis and the use of scenography in performance, and to offer up experiments of their own for similar interrogation.


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of a group exhibition that aims to represent and demonstrate an informed position on design principles. The exhibition format encourages the students to be creative in how objects, materials and technologies can communicate ideas alongside concise textual statements. The focus of the exhibition is on developing and refining a creative vision that articulates the groups influences, argument and research through a practical element (e.g. a poster, a video, an installation, an audio track or other use of creative media). As such, the group exhibition addresses all three learning outcomes and is representative of 100% of the grade for the module.


Further support for the final assessments will either be provided through developmental workshops, one-to-one or small group tutorials, and/or in-class feedback - depending on the module tutor.


Using the exhibition format, the students should evidence:


  • Understanding the context of a specific practice as evidenced by relevant research

  • The creation of a coherent and tangible creative / practical vision

  • The demonstration of a specific skills or skills to realise that vision

  • An understanding of why that creative vision is culturally relevant and necessary now

The format and length of the group exhibition will be negotiated with the module leader in relationship to available resources and timeframes. All citations from academic texts that students use in their exhibitions must be referenced according to the rules of the Harvard system. A bibliography must therefore be provided as an appendix to your exhibition, laid out according to the Harvard system.

Formative assessment


In preparation for the summative assessment exercise, studenrs will present in their groups research into a specific theatre design technique. The broader aims of these formative presentations are to ensure that the students

  • understand both the required and further reading;

  • understand the marking criteria and how it applies to this assessment;

  • have an opportunity to prepare for the summative assessment.


The exact format of these presentations is at the discretion of the module leader and may include a ‘flash talk’ or ‘PechaKucha’-type model.

Module aims

  • Introduce the key ideas and practices that informed contemporary thinking on ‘scenography’.
  • Experiment with a range of different approaches to spatial and material performance design.
  • Critically reflect on how material practices condition and communicate an intellectual idea.
  • Reflect on your personal learning through a series of practical workshops and seminars.
  • Support the creation of a design idea that questions how scenography is encountered, read or made within contemporary performance practice.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Have an understanding of a specific theatre design technique. CK
002 Articulate and frame creative thinking through specific examples with specific contexts. CKT
003 Reconsider and reframe their understanding of theatre and performance and challenge their engagement with these by creating a design idea (which may or may not be hypothetical). KPT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy for this module is designed to provide students with experience of design techniques and aligned conceptual frameworks. The focus of the module is on being able to articulate a creative vision and demonstrate how this could occur. The lessons will focus on a particular techniques/areas, but students will be encouraged to continually question why they are engaging with these techniques and to what ends. The formative presentations provide a platform for feedback and give students practice for their final assessment. Students are then able to focus, in groups, on developing an exhibition that responds to a critical line of enquiry.

The learning and teaching methods include:
Lectures or lecture+seminar
Practical group workshops
Group critique and discussion
Independent research

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: THE2037

Other information

Under the three term structure that commences from academic year 2019/0 – this module’s delivery falls in Semester 1 due to the teaching occurring in Teaching Block 1.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Theatre and Performance BA (Hons) 1 Optional A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.