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Acting

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - single honours

  • UCAS codes: Institution B20, Course W410 or RTFD (with professional placement year)
  • Acting handbook

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Acting
School
College of Liberal Arts
Campus or location
Newton Park
Course length
Three years full time, or four years full time with professional placement year.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: W410 or RTFD
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. Typical offers include A level grades  BCC -CCC with Grade B in Drama or Theatre Studies.

We do not charge an audition fee.

View typical offers for more information.

Immerse yourself in an innovative and stimulating artistic environment. We aim for you not only to seek work, but also to create it.

  • Immerse yourself in critically-engaged and rigorous practical training across live and recorded media.
  • Engage with industry professionals: practitioners, directors, theatre and recorded media specialists.
  • Identify your unique creative skills and professional focus.

Acting at Bath Spa University aims to produce physically and vocally versatile, creative and employable performers. Over three years in our prestigious acting school, you’ll work with our dedicated staff in a variety of genres and repertoires, from classical to contemporary.

Innovative collaborations with Theatre Production, Music, and Film, Television and Digital Production students will enrich your experience. And, by working with directors, practitioners and industry professionals in both live performance and recorded media, you’ll develop professional working relationships and vital networking skills.

Your final year is entirely dedicated to professional development. You’ll become part of OnSet, the University’s production company, which is supported by Bath Spa Live. Intense professional focus makes this a highly specialised award for students seeking careers in the industry.

What you'll learn

Overview

This is a challenging course that reflects the considerable stamina and continued application required to become the actor that you want to be. Our excellent teaching and research reputation guarantees rigorous practical training balanced with research and analytical skills.

Daily technical classes develop your voice, singing, movement and comedy skills to a professional level. In acting classes and performance projects, you’ll explore the key processes and practitioners that inform contemporary approaches to acting. Acting for camera training is practical, skills-based and industry-aware. Underpinning the practical work is an emphasis on the vital interaction between academic research and acting processes.

Equip yourself to succeed in an increasingly competitive profession. You’ll develop creative and transferable skills to become an independent thinker and motivated artist.

Course structure

Year one introduces you to the key practitioners and processes that underpin actor training. Technical classes will develop professional-level movement, vocal and comedic skills that will enable you to work effectively both as an individual and as a member of an ensemble.

Year two develops the interpretation, analysis and performance of text. Equally, as an actor/creator, you’ll develop an understanding and application of a range of theatrical approaches to make meaningful and imaginative work of your own. Alongside your technical classes, you’ll receive acting for camera training and stage combat classes designed to enhance your skills base.

Year three is your apprentice year. You become a member of OnSet productions, a professional company that produces work across a range of live and recorded media. Skills classes prepare you for entry into industry; you’ll develop a professional profile involving digital and personal presentation skills, headshot, CV, audition technique, casting breakdowns and self-taping.

Your core module places you strategically in a series of professionally staged plays, self-generated making projects, film projects (sitcom, Graduate film, Acting for Microphone) and rehearsed play readings.

You can choose either a 5,000 word academic file based on your ‘Making Project’ or a traditional dissertation.

How will I be assessed?

You’ll be assessed through performance work, essays, evaluations and presentations. Over the three years, 80% of assessment is practical and 20% is written.

How will I be taught?

You’ll learn in a wide variety of settings, including regular practical skills and acting classes, seminars, workshops, tutorials, rehearsals, blogs and journals, group discussion, and collaborative learning.

The course is teaching intensive; over 50% of your 1200 hours are spent in class and you’ll have an average of 18 formal contact hours per week. You need to compliment this with equivalent hours of independent study and preparation.

"When necessary, I was supported and guided through every aspect of the course and University life; was given every opportunity to diversify my skills and hone my craft; all with a focus on employability and creativity in equal measure. The staff, students, setting and community of Bath Spa’s BA Acting course were simply outstanding."

Alex Knight, Acting graduate

Opportunities

Work placements, industry links and internships

We work with professional practitioners, producers in theatre, film and television, as well as innovative theatre companies and established regional and national theatre venues.

The course has a successful professional partnership with The Theatre Royal Bath. Recent collaborators include: playwright Phillip Ridley; directors Ian Nicholson, Matt Ball and Max Barton; Dan Horrigan of Sky of the Bird; Dr Rebecca Loukes from RedCape; Oliver Jones from Creativity Works and Blind Eye Theatre Company; Toby Peach, Associate Artist - Artistic Director of Birds Anonymous Theatre Company; Pigdog Productions; David Glass; and Ed Viney, who was Creative Associate at the Bush Theatre and Director in Residence at the National Theatre Studio.

List of current alumni careers

Graduates have established successful theatre companies with tours and residencies in London, Edinburgh, the South West, as well as international festivals. Others are working in film and television, including Strictly Come Dancing, a Bollywood Movie, C4’s Skins and Tim Burton's Dark Shadows. Employers such as Warner Bros, Euro Disney, The Unicorn Theatre and The Theatre Royal (Bath) have recruited graduates from this course.

Other graduates engage in further study, or work actively in allied performance roles, such as artistic directors, writers, directors, arts officers and teachers.

Graduate successes

Liam Madden – 2016 Graduate
Part of a national anti-bullying tour. After which he directed an all female production heading for  Brighton, Bath and Camden Fringe in 2017.

Leo Garrick
On tour with English Theatre Company, touring Sweden, Spain, Holland and Belgium so far and heading to Portugal.

Amanda Phippen – 2016 Graduate
Involved in filming for Dawn French's new 4 part comedy Delicious for Sky 1.

Alex Hayes – 2014 Graduate
Artistic Director of Bell Beyond Theatre Company based in Italy.

Will Gibson – 2014 Graduate
Doing a world tour of Taming of the Shrew currently in China, with TNT Theatre Company/ The American Drama Group.

Dominic Thompson and Jess Melia – 2016 Graduates
Artistic Directors of Gritty Theatre Based in The Midlands.

Connor Allen – 2015 Graduate
Artistic Director of Pandemonium Performance - premier of  Fear In The Dark!, a promenade show around Abney Park Cemetery.

Toby Gibbs – 2015 Graduate
Working with a theatre company called PIE currently engaged in a TIE tour

Sam Freeman – 2014 Graduate
Currently in the role of James in 'Our Baby' by Eleonora Fusco at The Bread & Roses Theatre, London.

Stephen Horncastle – 2014 Graduate
Recently performed in the Cambridge Shakespeare Festival.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

  • Commons
  • Fully equipped studios
  • State-of-the art television studios
  • University Theatre
  • Burdall’s Yard
  • Additional rehearsal spaces

"I urge anyone interested in acting to look into training here at Bath Spa, you will find yourself and reach goals that you may never think you could reach."

Lauren Burgess, Acting graduate

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2019

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2020

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

UK and EU students full time - with placement year

During the placement year, the fee is reduced to 20% of the full time fee. Otherwise, fees are the same as for full time study.

International students full time

2017/18 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £13,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2018
Year 3 Published Jan 2018

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2018
Year 2 Published Jan 2019
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

2019/20 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2019
Year 2 Published Jan 2020
Year 3 Published Jan 2021

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We look for artistic and intellectual potential. Are you curious about your subject, hard-working, imaginative and playful? Do you enjoy working with others and are you hungry to learn?

If so, then this is the course for you.

Typical offers

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - A level grades  BCC - CCC with Grade B in Drama, Theatre Studies or Performing Arts.
  • BTEC- Extended Diploma Distinction, Merit, Merit (DMM) accepted in a related subject.
  • International Baccalaureate - A minimum score of 27 points with evidence of involvement in drama and performing arts.
  • Access to HE courses - Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher) with evidence of involvement in drama and performing arts.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants
IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

Course enquiries
For further information about the programme or other enquiries, please email us at admissions@bathspa.ac.uk.

How do I apply?

Ready to apply? Click the 'apply now' button in the centre of this page.


Need more guidance? Head to our how to apply webpages.

Interview and portfolio guidance

We invite all eligible candidates to attend an audition.

Auditions begin at 9am and run to around 5pm. There are seven elements to the day:

  • Brief welcome
  • Movement workshop
  • Text workshop
  • Monologue presentations
  • Q&A about the programme
  • Campus tour
  • Interview

Candidates must prepare a contemporary monologue. You’ll receive further information if you are invited to audition.

The audition panel consider the academic reference, academic qualifications and personal statement of each candidate, as well as the work in the sessions. In the interview, the workshops and monologue presentation elements are considered and the panel score each candidate against the following criteria:

  • Responsiveness to ideas and direction;
  • Creativeness of responses;
  • Spontaneity demonstrated in tasks;
  • Proficiency of skills;
  • Depth of comprehension; and  
  • Approachability.

We do not charge an audition fee.

Overseas students must present two contrasting monologues via the internet in Windows or Quicktime compatible video. The monologues should be performed and recorded for the specific purposes of audition and not be edited work from other videos. The panel will also interview the candidate via phone or Skype.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Ellie Nixon
Email: e.nixon@bathspa.ac.uk

Image credits: Production images by Nick Spratling. Headshots by M.A.D Photography.

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk