Module code: ACT1031

Module Overview

Students will be expected to attend warm-up sessions and arrive appropriately prepared for physical and vocal work. Research and preparation will be necessary in pursuit of some of the modules aims. Students are required to warm up and dress appropriately for classes.

This module interrogates the landscape of vocal and movement expression for the actor. Using somatic awareness of the body in movement and voice, the student will experience a range of vocal and movement-based methodologies. Integrating student’s personal movement and vocal heritage, exploring movement and voice analysis will lead to the application of embodied learning. Embodied practise allows students to read and understand the body through movement and voice by responding and adapting to the needs of the body and the demands on the actor.

In the delivery of this module, GSA is guided by the UN's 17 Sustainable Development goals. We aim to promote good health and well-being by keeping to appropriate working hours and maintaining Equity-standard safe spaces. We encourage positive working ethics: collaboration, kindness, support, understanding, listening and integrity. We aim to recycle and repurpose sets, props and other production resources where possible, promoting a circular economy.

Module provider

Guildford School of Acting

Module Leader


Number of Credits: 30

ECTS Credits: 15

Framework: FHEQ Level 4

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

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 44

Practical/Performance Hours: 256

Module Availability

Year long

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

Indicative content for Embodied Movement includes:


  • Connecting to the body through experiential anatomy

  • An introduction to Laban’s principles of Analysis

  • The development of movement efficiency through somatic and embodied practices (including BMC Fundamentals and Yoga)

  • Use of Improvisation to enable the student to explore movement range, potential and expression.

  • Elementary exercises which develop good posture, placement, strength, flexibility and alignment.

  • A development and understanding of coordination and patterning through centre and floor work. (May include 5 Rhythms and release based dance practises)

  • Exploring ways of being, through an embodied understanding of Laban’s efforts for the actor

  • Exploring a character’s emotional journey through movement expression.

  • To understand the world of movement through observation and translation.

  • Encourage students to create a vibrant and truthful relationship with their imagination

  • Daily physical warm-up which may include Cardio-vascular fitness, Exercises for the development of core strength, Dynamic stretches to warm muscles and joints, Upper and lower body conditioning

  • Historical Dance

Indicative content for Embodied Voice includes:


  • Voice work is delivered via separate weekly classes: Practical voice, initially work tends to focus on posture and breathing, chanting and some singing.

  • Later work explores and aims to train the mind, body, imagination and emotions in the practice of making sound, establishing resonance and focussing the voice.

  • Further work explores and develops a range of expressions while integrating muscular clear articulation. Breath work underpins all work in the module so that the voice is fully connected.

  • Applied voice, may incorporate text and accent.

  • From the outset students are required to begin the process of understanding their own habitual voice use, and to challenge and develop their vocal capabilities.

  • The target is Optimum vocal function (OVF). This requires that the speaker allows his/her voice to function naturally and effectively in a wide range of everyday and professional situations, enabling the actor to communicate from a characters’ perspective.

  • Exploring an awareness of speech sounds, recreating accents, beginning with the self.

  • Voice work begins by exploring the authentic voice of self and moves towards an exploration and understanding of new sounds. 

  • Any material explored or chosen by students could reflect a global diversity and various forms.

It is developed via practical exercises, recordings, written materials and analysis of one’s own and others voices.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Practical based assessment Continuous assessment of in-class activities 100

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate a growing understanding of embodied movement and voice in the different areas of the module

The module is continually assessed through the three teaching blocks


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of a portfolio of workshop activities

Formative assessment and feedback will be given through a 1:1 session at the end of teaching block 1 and teaching block 2. In Teaching block 1 the tutor and student will agree SMART targets, which will be reviewed at the end of teaching block 2 and new targets set. Summative feedback will be in response to the previous targets and how they have been met.

Module aims

  • • To introduce key principles of anatomy through a range of experiential approaches and apply an embodied knowledge of anatomy and physiology to the student’s own movement and voice practise.
  • • To provide students with key vocabulary and terminology so as to improve how they articulate movement and voice both at an embodied and theoretical level.
  • • Ensure understanding of good physical practice in movement and voice.
  • • Inspire an open, generous and playful approach by integrating movement and vocal practises.
  • • To introduce student’s to analytical skills through the exploration of a range of movement and voice practises.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 • Adopt an embodied voice and movement practise for the actor KP
002 • Through self-reflection to evaluate embodied knowledge of voice and movement. CT
003 • Have acquired a stronger link between voice, movement and imagination. KPT
004 • Demonstrate greater physical awareness of movement and voice PT
005 • To apply key principles of anatomy and physiology to movement and voice practise. 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 is designed to:

Place an emphasis on the practical development of embodied skills that are required for extended and best practice in movement and voice in the profession.
Enable students to acquire versatility in their movement and voice skills and integrate their knowledge across all acting disciplines all of which lead on to a firm foundation moving toward the study at Level 5.

The learning and teaching methods include:

Practical, skills based and tutor led group sessions following traditional formats.
Visual, Audio and Kinaesthetic methods of learning – including use of VLE.

Movement (92hrs)

Voice (138hrs)

70 hours for personal enquiry throughout the year.

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: ACT1031

Other information

GSA delivers its provision across three teaching blocks, within the University of Surrey’s existing semester structure.

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Acting BA (Hons)(YEAR LONG) Year-long Compulsory 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 2023/4 academic year.