Drama Studies and Geography
- Award: BA/BSc (Hons)
- UCAS code: WL49
- School: Schools of Music & Performing Arts, and Science, Society & Management
- Fees and Finance Information
- Course length: 3 years full-time
- Campus: Newton Park
- Drama Course Handbook (PDF)
- Drama Course Handbook (PDF)
- Geography Course Handbook (PDF)
- Geography Course Handbook (PDF)
The Drama programme offers specialised, creative arts and combined study pathways for students who wish to explore the immensity of drama as both a performance medium and an applied subject.
Drama provides you with a range of exciting modules to choose from. These explore drama from the perspectives of making theatre and performance, text study and applied theatre.
Drama is a broad based programme that allows you to identify where your place in the immense world of theatre and performance might be. It is not a vocational training course. Drama will equip you with writing, presentational, communication and collaborative skills invaluable in many professional and vocational areas.
Why study Drama?
Why study drama?
- To prepare for careers where drama-based skills are in demand and for further studies in drama, including drama teaching
- To make theatre and performance with others
- To watch, think and write about drama
Year one. You will study processes involved in taking text from page to stage. You will explore the relationship between theatre and society through the ages, examining ideas underlying dramatic texts, performance conventions and scenography. And you will attend and critique plays and other kinds of performance as well as undertake skills classes (specialised students).
Year two. In theatre companies, inspired by your studies of key directors and companies, you will create your own work. You may also lead workshops and otherwise apply drama in community settings. And you may choose from a range of studies within Exploration modules. These studies may include musical theatre, physical theatre, stand-up comedy, American acting and so on.
Year three. You will research and write a dissertation on a drama topic of your choice and undertake a performance project (specialised students). Again, you may choose from a range of studies within specialised study modules, for instance experimental performance, staging Shakespeare and site-specific performance.
Year one modules are:
- From Page to Stage
- Introduction to Theatre History
- Contemporary Performance
- Drama Skills
- Musical Theatre Practice 1
Year two modules are:
- Making Performance
- Theatre History 2
- Exploring Drama 1 and 2
- Creative Entrepreneurship
- Creative Activism
Year three modules are:
- Performance Project
- Specialised Studies 1 and 2
- Drama as Protest
Assessment methods include essays, dissertations and other written assignments, seminar presentations, performances, group work, and professional development portfolios.
You can choose from a wide range of offerings incorporating content ranging from theatre history to physical theatre and extending to encompass such areas as experimental theatre and site-specific performance.
The approach to teaching Drama at Bath Spa combines academic study with practical workshop-based classes which bring theoretical ideas to life. Facilities include the purpose-built University Theatre building, which incorporates a fully equipped theatre and three studios. You’ll be taught by distinguished staff who are practising theatre and performance artists.
Academic study combines with practical, workshop-based sessions that help bring theoretical ideas to life.
Our purpose-built University Theatre building houses rehearsal studios and a full working theatre that stages a wide range of performances.
Bath Spa Live, the production arm of the School of Music and Performing Arts, provides a lively milieu of performance on and off campus. There are also active links with Bath Theatre Royal and the Ustinov studio.
All full time applications are through UCAS.
Please contact our Admissions team (see above)
280–320 UCAS Tariff points including A-Level Drama, Performance Studies or Theatre Studies at min grade B.
Drama will equip you with writing, presentational, communication, and collaborative skills invaluable in many professional and vocational areas. Often, after undertaking a PGCE, graduates become drama or primary teachers. Following graduation, some students choose to pursue their interests further through postgraduate study in theatre-making, applied drama, acting or directing. Others use the knowledge gained to launch careers working with theatre companies or venues, or go on to find employment in the charity, media, business and government sectors. Drama graduates have gone on to work for such theatre companies as The Naturals, The Wardrobe Ensemble and The Plymouth Theatre Royal.
What students say...
Drama at Bath Spa provided me a world of knowledge, confidence and new friends. The diverse nature of the course acted as platform for countless ways to express myself and to learn from my tutors and peers.
2012 Drama Graduate Katy Muir
I absolutely loved my time at Bath Spa on the Drama course. I made so many friends and had so much fun…the highlight for me was getting the chance to direct a full scale production. Also, the staff are friendly and approachable. I was very sad to leave.
2012 Drama Graduate Lucy Plant
The variety given in the second and third year of drama studies really helped me to create a course that I could take ownership of. The knowledge and support from all lecturers and fellow students encouraged me to develop both the skills I already had and those I gained during my time at Bath Spa. I would recommend this course to anyone interested in Drama.
2012 Drama Graduate Natasha Cook
Bath Spa has got it right with this course, as it offers a comprehensive exploration of a wide range of theatrical styles and genres. The knowledge and expertise that Drama allows you to develop makes you stand out in the jobs market.
2012 Drama Graduate Luke Davies
Geography is about places and people. It is about understanding why 'here' differs from 'there', how people's lives vary in these different places, and how our own lives are dependent on people and places, near and far.
Geography is the 'best of both worlds', as it combines the earth and social sciences through exploration of themes including sustainability, development, climate change and geomatics (GIS) methods.
Why study Geography?
Studying Geography expands your understanding of the interactions people have with the environment, both physical and human. An ability to link environmental processes and social and spatial behaviours is a defining feature of geographical practice. As a result, Geography is clearly important in understanding today’s pressing global and local issues from climate change to sustainable development. At Bath Spa you learn geographical concepts, theories and knowledge and also gain skills that can improve your career prospects. Geography graduates are valued by employers for this unique combination.
At Bath Spa, we take an integrated approach to Geography, so you will gain an understanding of both the human and physical aspects of the subject. However, a key feature of our course is that you can specialise more in the physical or in the human side as your interests, abilities and career plans evolve.
The course allows you to do both physical and human Geography or to specialise in one or the other after Year 1.
Fieldwork is an integral part of your learning and underpins our commitment to a relevant, interesting and useful degree. There are various field days during modules, as well as residential fieldwork options in the UK and overseas in Years 2 and 3. You will visit places and landscapes such as Avebury, Mendip, the Somerset Levels, the Welsh National History Museum, the Royal Geographical Society in London, and the Jurassic Coast of Dorset. Residential courses currently go to Spain, the Lake District and Northern India.
A special feature of our course is the opportunity to gain valuable experience, and academic credit, through volunteering in the local community. You can also study abroad for one term, either in a European university or further afield in Australia or the USA.
Your first year (level 4) is centred on a core double module (40 credits) Environment, People and Place. This deals with what makes Geography an exciting, varied and applied subject. The module offers an integrated approach to the study of the geo-social and earth sciences and what makes this module special lies in our attention to developing skills as well as knowledge: you will learn how to use the technologies, methods, techniques and equipment that geographers need to use, with increasing confidence. You will also start to build your employability profile under our guidance. The practical application of subject knowledge is the underlying philosophy of this module.
In addition to the core module we usually offer these options (all 20 credits) from which you can choose one or two:
- Investigating Earth Environments;
- Global Development;
- Visualising Society;
The remainder of level 4 is made up with at least 40 credits from a complementary module of your choice, such as Biology, Sociology, Criminology, or an interdisciplinary module focusing on Sustainability in Life and Work.
Your second year (level 5) also centres on a core double module (40 credits) titled The Enterprising Geographer. The aim here is for you to acquire specialist skills in geographical research methods, human and physical, and to extend your abilities as a team player and as a professional. The Enterprising Geographer puts the subject and the sectors it serves in historical context and highlights the relevance of geographical knowledge to many different professional sectors. Your research skills are developed through two extended research projects where you will apply your growing mastery of your subject to real-world problems and issues. This module also gives you the chance to engage with the Royal Geographical Society and other professional bodies as we begin to help you map out potential career paths. The rest of your studies are optional, and the usual module choices are (you can choose four):
- River and Coastal Systems;
- Climate Change and Sustainability;
- Environmental Hazards;
- Geographical Fieldwork (includes a residential fieldtrip to Northern India);
- Global Cities;
- Criminology and Criminal Justice;
- Work Placement;
All optional modules are 20 credits each.
In your final year (level 6), you take the skills and knowledge perfected throughout the degree to design, conduct and write up your very own geography Dissertation (40 credits). There is a huge variety in choice in what you do for a dissertation and throughout the study you will benefit from one-to-one tuition and expert guidance. The rest of the third year is made up from 20 credit optional modules such as these (you can choose four):
- Coastal and River Management;
- Advanced Geographical Fieldwork (includes a residential fieldtrip);
- Development and Disasters;
- Globalisation and Work;
- Global Mobility, Risks and Environmental Justice;
- Identities and Inequalities;
- Community Engagement (includes a local volunteering placement).
You will experience a variety of different assessment methods throughout your degree. These include essays, industrial project reports, scientific project reports, presentations, posters, field-craft assessments, reflective items, time-constrained tests and examinations. These will give you a rich and diverse skills learning experience, be of real benefit in the search for a good career, and be useful in your professional activities.
Each module will have a different set of assessment items, and not all will include an examination. These assessment items enable you to demonstrate that you have achieved the learning outcomes.
Good teaching is important to us, and our graduates and consistently rate the quality of teaching on the course highly. In our friendly department you will benefit from small classes, specialist expertise, and up-to-date technologies, including ArcGIS, GPS survey instruments, campus river gauging and digital ‘met’ stations. Our rural site is a superb ‘natural laboratory’ where you will learn a range of scientific techniques including field sampling and the use of laboratory instruments for sediment and water analysis. Through your degree you will also develop 'people' skills such as communication, team work and critical thinking - skills that are highly valued by employers.
Geography encourages your learning through a variety of formats: lectures, seminars, team work, laboratories, IT workshops, and in the field - for 'hands on', real life experience.
Our location, nestled in a parkland valley setting just outside Bath, is a beautiful and unique 'natural laboratory' in which to pursue environmental education and we make the most of the setting. We have all the latest technologies and learning resources and Geographers have access to IT laboratories with geographical software such as ArcGIS and Idrisi. In addition there is a comprehensive stock of field and laboratory equipment. Practicals take place in well-equipped science laboratories or out in the grounds of the Newton Park campus. You will find free wireless internet access is available in the Department and across our campus. We subscribe to an extensive range of online journals so you can access the latest geographic research in seconds.
Other resources available include Leica Smart Rovers, handheld Global Positioning System devices, survey seismograph, Russian and standard sediment corers, teaching microscopes, stream flow meters, particle size analysis kits, digital Schmidt hammers, digital weather station, campus stream gauging station, digital dictaphones, digital video cameras and laptops. Do please note that not all field courses are run every year and that all off-campus events and their funding are subject to annual review. Also, module availability may vary over time - if a particular module is of interest and you want to know more, just get in touch with us and we'll be happy to help!
The Department hosts two active research groups covering physical and human geography, ensuring that your teaching is informed by up-to-date, specialised staff expertise. The research groups often inform dissertation ideas for students and you will benefit from our annual Research Seminar Series which includes external guest speakers and is open to all.
All our academic staff are professional geographers who undertake research and scholarship at the cutting edge of their discipline, publishing papers in international journals, textbooks for undergraduate use, and speaking at international conferences, as well as making media appearances. All research undertaken is of direct benefit to students. Indeed, some of our work is about enhancing the learning of geography at university. Students have co-authored papers with members of staff, and some have remained with us to carry out postgraduate research leading to doctorate level.
Teaching quality excellence
We are proud of the quality of our teaching in Geography at Bath Spa. During your degree you will taught by experienced, specialist staff, who undertake research in their specific areas of expertise, as well as into the learning and teaching of different aspects of geography.
Subject tutors regularly attend Professional Development Workshops that inform curriculum development and we regularly attend academic and commercial conferences. We subscribe to industry societies and their journals, such as the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers (RGS-IBG), the Association for Geographic Information (AGI), the Development Studies Association (DSA), Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry Society (RSPSoc), American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS), the British Cartographic Society (BCS), GIS Professional, GIM International.
All full time applications are through UCAS
Want to know more about studying Geography at Bath Spa? We have Open Days and Visit Days throughout the year. If you can't make any of those, we are also happy to arrange individual visits for you to have a look around at the facilities and ask any questions you may have. You can get in touch using the contact details adjacent. We hope to see you here soon!
Please contact Dr Rebecca Schaaf, Subject Leader for Geography: firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a look at our related courses:
260–320 UCAS Tariff points with minimum 80 points from geography or a related subject such as science, sociology, economics.
We welcome applications from mature students with an Access to HE qualification. If you have non-standard qualifications we will consider any prior learning and professional experience in your application.
Our graduates possess a diverse range of skills, knowledge and expertise, suitable for many careers and occupations. This is due to the great appeal of your geographical skill-set to employers. Environmental bodies, utilities, planning, police and armed forces, retail and financial services, heritage management, local government and school teaching are typical destinations. Many geography graduates are hooked on the subject and undertake further study, including doctoral research here in the department.
The opportunity to undertake a work placement as part of your degree is an excellent way of gaining some experience in the workplace, while guest speakers from industry contribute to your learning experience throughout the course. This engagement with potential employers will stand you in good stead for making those all-important career decisions when you move into the world of work.
Since 2010, employers such as Geomatics Group, At-Bristol, Discover Battle, Shaw Ocean Discovery Centre and The Ministry of Defence have recruited graduates from this course. Students have also gone into roles including Assistant Geomatics Surveyor, Renewables Developer, Business Analyst, Oceaneer and Press Officer.
What students say...
Tim Johns, Geography, graduated July 2012:
“I thoroughly enjoyed my course at Bath Spa University and would recommend it to anyone interested in pursuing a career in the environmental industry. Academically, the course was fantastic and offered the opportunity to learn a diverse range of skills that would equip anyone with the necessary attributes to enter the world of work, or pursue postgraduate studies. At Bath Spa my learning was not just restricted to the classroom; I had the opportunity to undertake a live Dissertation project working in conjunction with the Environment Agency. This was an invaluable experience giving me the opportunity to work with industry professionals. My advice to those starting their studies would be to take full advantage of the facilities Bath Spa has to offer, including the excellent support from staff and tutors. Just remember from the offset… you have to work hard to play hard and all things are achievable no matter what!”
We take the views of our students very seriously, and evaluations of each module are undertaken each year, incorporating feedback from all students. You will also have the opportunity to represent your peers at committee and board meetings that meet regularly to discuss the shape and evolution of your course.
Please look at the video clips to see what our students have said about studying Geography at Bath Spa University.
Alice - second year Geography student
Read about the activities and achievements of our students and staff in our annual Geography Newsletter: