Theatre BA (Hons) - 2024/5

Awarding body

University of Surrey

Teaching institute

University of Surrey


FHEQ Level 6

Final award and programme/pathway title

BA (Hons) Theatre

Subsidiary award(s)

Award Title
Ord Theatre

Professional recognition

Council for Dance, Drama and Musical Theatre (CDMT)
Accredited by the Council for Dance Education and Training (CDET).

Modes of study

Route code Credits and ECTS Credits
Full-time URC13006 120 credits and 60 ECTS credits

QAA Subject benchmark statement (if applicable)

Dance, Drama and Performance

Other internal and / or external reference points


Faculty and Department / School

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences - Guildford School of Acting

Programme Leader


Date of production/revision of spec


Educational aims of the programme

  • To develop theatre students as digital citizens, supporting them to embrace the online skills and tools needed to participate in the online world.
  • To enable a geographically diverse cohort of students to share global and cultural insights into the social and ethical issues raised in theatre and performance.
  • To enhance students' understanding of the current theatre industry with a sustainable and globally responsible view of the future.
  • To equip students with informed views on the intercultural contexts of theatre and an ability to engage respectfully with a diverse range of people and practices.
  • To integrate theatre practice with theatre research, transforming students¿ awareness of work they have undertaken previously in training and / or practice.
  • To produce resourceful and resilient theatre graduates who take an independent and proactive approach to study, work, and life.
  • To complement the embodied skills of students¿ prior training and experience with digital skills relevant to theatre and theatre studies.
  • To deepen the theatre student¿s capacity for critical reflection as the future generation of interpreters, creators, teachers, researchers, and leaders.
  • To empower students with previous practical training and / or professional experience in theatre to develop their academic skills in theatre studies.
  • To offer students a flexible and transferable route to employability, upgrading their existing qualifications to a theatre degree at honours level.

Programme learning outcomes

Attributes Developed Awards Ref.
Establish knowledge and comprehension of a range of theatrical texts and performance conventions. KC Global & Cultural, Sustainability
Acquire knowledge and comprehension of a range of theoretical perspectives on theatre and performance. KC Global & Cultural, Sustainability, Employability
Increase knowledge and comprehension of the processes by which theatre and performance are conceived and realised. KC Global & Cultural, Sustainability, Employability
Broaden knowledge and comprehension of theatrical traditions and contemporary innovations. KC Sustainability
Analyse and evaluate the relationships between dramatic texts and their social, historical, and political contexts. C Global & Cultural
Apply critical thinking to theatrical work and articulate the written results with an independent academic voice. C Employability, Resourcefulness & Resilience
Develop an awareness of the global and cultural issues that impact on the nature of theatre and its performance. C Global & Cultural, Sustainability, Resourcefulness & Resilience
Identify areas of special interest within theatre studies and demonstrate resourcefulness and resilience through research. C Resourcefulness & Resilience
Reflect on individual, interpersonal, and professional skills to devise a strategic approach to future employability. P Employability, Resourcefulness & Resilience
Evaluate the effectiveness of one¿s own capabilities in producing scholarly and creative outputs online and in person. P Resourcefulness & Resilience
Create original work based on independent research and critically evaluate the outcome in relation to the brief. P Resourcefulness & Resilience
Build an awareness of professional sustainability and wellbeing within the creative industries. P Sustainability, Employability
Communicate clearly in written coursework and on digital platforms. T Digital, Employability
Formulate and express ideas in an objective and responsible manner. T Employability
Demonstrate a pro-active and self-regulatory approach to coursework. T Resourcefulness & Resilience
Synthesise verbal and written feedback on coursework from faculty. T Resourcefulness & Resilience

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Programme structure


This Bachelor's Degree (Honours) programme is studied over one year via online learning, consisting of 120 credits at FHEQ level 6. All modules are 15, 30, 45 or 60 credits and are either semester based or year-long. GSA delivers its provision across three teaching blocks, within the University of Surrey¿s existing semester structure.
Possible exit awards include:
- Bachelor's Degree (Ordinary) (300 credits)
- Diploma of Higher Education (240 credits)
- Certificate of Higher Education (120 credits)

Programme Adjustments (if applicable)



Opportunities for placements / work related learning / collaborative activity

Associate Tutor(s) / Guest Speakers / Visiting Academics N
Professional Training Year (PTY) N
Placement(s) (study or work that are not part of PTY) N
Clinical Placement(s) (that are not part of the PTY scheme) N
Study exchange (Level 5) N
Dual degree N

Other information

This programme is aligned to the University of Surrey¿s Five Pillars of Curriculum Design and design, namely (in alphabetical order), Digital Capabilities, Employability, Global and Cultural Capabilities, Resourcefulness & Resilience, and Sustainability. Specifically, these pillars are covered in this programme in the following ways:

Digital Capabilities: graduates from the programme will be multi-skilled professionals who can confidently use digital tools in their work and have a proactive attitude to lifelong learning and innovation, as the creative industries continue to develop and change. Hence building knowledge and confidence with digital skills will be embedded throughout the course. Students will engage throughout with the VLE, online recourses and database, and will use Microsoft Teams for production work and other information sharing) from the beginning of the programme. A very large range of industry specific software and hardware is used in all modules and in professional development students will create a personal website and think critically about their online presence and identity. Software and other resources are reviewed annually to ensure the programme keeps abreast with industry innovation and development and students are encouraged to be creative and innovative in their own use of digital technology.

Employability: employability is embedded and inherent in the programme throughout the students¿ journey. From Level 4 students begin to learn about the structures, systems, organisations, practitioners and companies that make up the global entertainment industry. They also begin to work with associate tutors and freelance creatives (such as designers and directors) who are professional practitioners, ensuring an introduction to the network of the entertainment industry. This work with professionals continues and increases through production work at Level 5 & 6, regular guest speakers and field trips and an introduction to industry organisations. Through the professional development modules, students are encouraged to reflect on their gaols and aspirations and undertake personal professional development planning to work proactively towards those goals. They will also create CVs and personal marketing materials and undertake mock interviews. In their final year students will be actively encouraged to undertake a professional placement. All placement and casual/vacation work opportunities which come to staff attention are publicised to the whole student body via the course Teams page. Finally, students will create their own website which will showcase their employability to companies, employers and practitioners globally. Throughout the programme we make use of the support and resources of the Surrey careers service.

Global and Cultural Capabilities: The entertainment industry is a global one and students are made aware of this from the beginning of their programme of study. Where possible, students are given the freedom to choose texts which reflect and engage with their own lived experience, perspectives and diversity and encouraged to develop their global, social, historical and cultural awareness. The student cohort is international and as such students share experiences and knowledge from their own backgrounds and cultures and learn to appreciate diverse perspectives. There is an expectation that students will keep an open mind, a willingness to learn and engage in discussion to broaden their understanding of the varying approaches of the global creative industries. Every effort is made to make production and performance work accessible and inclusive, supported by University Equality, Diversity and Inclusion guidance and Disability & Neurodiversity services.

Resourcefulness and Resilience: The process of creative theatrical productions, by its very nature, supports the development of resourcefulness and resilience in participants. Students undertake intensive classes, rehearsals and performance schedules which evolve their skillset through practice and enable and empower them to navigate uncertainty, deal with risks and challenges and pursue future goals both individually and through team working with others. ¿Real-world¿ production work schedules reflect the kind of resourcefulness and resilience that is needed to work effectively in the global creative industries, which in turn nurture students' self-management skills. Classes, rehearsals and performances require both independent and collaborative learning, peer support, problem-solving, communication, independence, perseverance, stamina, self-value and critical thinking, all of which promote resourcefulness and resilience. Students are supported throughout and beyond their training by expert staff with practitioner backgrounds, who are sensitive to the challenges to mental and physical health posed by the global and creative industries and can give advice and guidance on where to seek further help within both university and industry contexts ¿ again, empowering students to take control of their own learning and overcome any barriers to learning.

Sustainability: Sustainable practices in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals are central to theatre and entertainment production. All GSA productions are planned, designed and undertaken to meet high sustainability standards in line with current industry guidance and frameworks for environmental theatre practice. Students are challenged to ensure their practical work in all departments is as sustainable as possible and this is reflected in the assessed learning outcomes. Concepts of sustainability are embedded in all modules and student progress from knowledge and awareness of these at Level 4 to managing and innovating at Level 6. Students are encouraged to contextualise their learning by reflecting on their current and future social, cultural, ethical, political, economic and environmental impact from both a personal and professional perspective and to recognise a sense of shared responsibility.

Quality assurance

The Regulations and Codes of Practice for taught programmes can be found at:

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 2024/5 academic year.