BA (Hons) Theatre and Drama

If you want a career in theatre and media, our versatile Theatre and Drama degree will provide the right balance of theory and practice you need. You can study drama across a range of media, forms and genres. Our Drama course reflects the central principles and diverse disciplines that have influenced and defined live performance. It connects practice with theory, tradition with innovation, and personal creativity with collaborative projects.

The flexible nature of the course means that you can focus on your personal interests and career goals. You can choose from a range of modules that include performing, acting, directing, physical theatre, popular and musical theatre, improvisation, scriptwriting and theatre technology. What’s more, you’ll have the opportunity to study topics in which staff have specialist expertise such as Grand Guignol horror theatre, Elizabethan and Jacobean drama and site-specific performance, among others. Studying drama in Cardiff, you will benefit from being in the centre of a booming arts industry, from television production to independent arts venues, surrounded by countless opportunities during your drama course and after graduation.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
W403 Full-time 3 Years September Cardiff (ATRiuM) B
UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
W403 Full-time 3 Years September Cardiff (ATRiuM) B

Year One

  • Perspectives on Performance
  • Practical Lab
  • Professional Skills 1
  • Professional Skills 2

Year Two

  • Intersections
  • Production: Theatre Festival
  • Specialist Studies 1
  • Applied Drama

Year Three

  • Professional Practice & Employability
  • Specialist Studies 2
  • Specialist Studies 3
  • Research Project


This degree is structured to ensure that the theories, conventions and approaches covered in class are explored through academic and practical work.

We use a range of teaching methods, including lectures, seminars, workshops, intensive rehearsals, masterclasses with visiting practitioners, web-based forums, work placement projects, and hands-on training with technical equipment.


The work submitted for assessment by our students is equally varied and incorporates conference presentations, online portfolios, reflections on practice, and running workshops, as well as essays and performance work.


There is currently no accreditation associated with this course.


The University has impressive new arts facilities thanks to our £14.7m extension of the ATRiuM building. This building now has a 160-seat auditorium theatre with a sprung stage floor, full lighting rig, two brand-new dance studios and multimedia facilities. There are also four black box studio theatres, and professional film studios with ‘green screen’ and motion capture facilities, among other new facilities.


Dr Ian McNish, Drama Course Leader
Michael Carklin, Academic Subject Manager
Professor Richard Hand
Dr Hilary Ramsden, Senior Lecturer
Dr Marta Minier, Lecturer
Dr Nigel Long, Lecturer
Dr Geraint D’Arcy, Lecturer
Dr Jodie Allinson, Lecturer
Dr Lisa Lewis, Reader

The entry criteria below shows the qualification range within which the University will make offers. Most offers we make are at the top of the range, but we take all aspects of an application into consideration and applicants receive a personalised offer. Combinations of qualifications are acceptable and other qualifications not listed here may also be acceptable.

Drama audition

You will be asked to take part in a group workshop, which will guide you through a range of performance activities including the creation and devising of work and text based activity. The workshop will include some discussion and you will also have a chance to ask questions.

You do not need to prepare anything for the workshop but you are advised to wear or bring with you clothing which is suitable for practical work. For the purposes of the workshop assessment we ask that you bring a passport sized photograph of yourself so that the admissions tutors are able to clearly identify all participants. The audition will last around 60 minutes and will take the form of a guided discussion.

Typical A-Level Offer

BCC - CDD to include a relevant subject (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical Welsh BACC Offer

Pass the Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate Diploma with Grade C/D in the Skills Challenge Certificate and BC - CD at A Level with a relevant subject (this is equivalent to 104-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical BTEC Offer

BTEC Extended Diploma Distinction Merit Merit - Merit Merit Pass in a relevant subject (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points).

Typical IB Offer

Pass the International Baccalaureate Diploma with higher grades of between 655-445 to include a relevant higher subject (this is equivalent to 112-80 UCAS tariff points)

Typical Access to HE Offer

Pass the Access to HE Diploma with 60 credits overall – the credits should equate to between 106-80 UCAS tariff points (examples below)

45 Level 3 credits equating to 15 Distinctions, 24 Merits and 6 Passes in a relevant subject (106 UCAS Tariff Points)

45 Level 3 credits equating to 12 Distinctions, 6 Merits and 27 Passes in a relevant subject (80 UCAS Tariff Points)

Additional Requirements

GCSEs: The University normally requires a minimum 5 GCSEs including Mathematics and English at Grade C or above, or their equivalent but consideration is given to individual circumstances

International Entry Requirements

We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.

English Requirements

In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.

However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.

All fees are per year. Once you have started your course, your fee will remain the same for each year of study.

August 2017 - July 2018 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU:  £9000 
  • Full-time International:  £11900 

August 2018 - July 2019 Fees

  • Full-time UK and EU: TBC
  • Full-time International: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
Kit (Uniform and Equipment) £150
Rehearsal clothing/costumes. All academic years
Field Trips £200
Year 1
Field Trips £600
International Field Trip. Year 2 and/ or 3
Additional assessment or memberships £50
Grad Show/Production costs
DBS £57.2
DBS Clearance for Applied Drama activities (Optional module) This fee includes £44 for the enhanced DBS certificate, the Post Office Administration fee and the online administration fee.
DBS Updating Service £13
Whilst optional it is strongly recommended signing up for this service especially if you are likely to have placements each year and wish to pursue a career post University where a DBS check is a requirement. Please note the service has to be joined within 19 of receipt of your enhanced DBS certificate.
Other: Books £300
£200 for books across all academic years. £100 Students may be expected to travel to master classes/ conferences at their own cost

UK and EU students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year 1 of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU

Apply now 

Admissions statement

Theatre and drama graduates follow a wide range of careers. Many are employed in the media entertainment industries, others choose to start up their own production companies, while some enter the teaching profession.

The flexible and inclusive nature of the drama course ensures that our graduates have a highly developed range of transferable skills. This enhances their employability and career potential. Graduates can further their studies by applying for one of our postgraduate degrees.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.