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Comedy

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - single honours

  • UCAS codes: Institution B20, Course TT15 or RTFA (with professional placement year)

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Comedy
School
College of Liberal Arts
Campus or location
Newton Park and related sites in Bath
Course length
Three years full time, or four years full time with professional placement year.
UCAS codes
Institution Code: B20
Course Code: TT15 or RTFA
Campus Code: A,BSU

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes.

View "typical offers" for more information.

Discover your route into the comedy industry by making and sharing your work.*

  • Devise, write and perform your original material across the spectrum of comedy genres.
  • Perform live and film your pilot in our contemporary multi-camera television studio.
  • Become a versatile comedic performer who can also make the transition to dramatic acting.

*New for 2018 entry, this course is subject to final approval.

Comedy at Bath Spa responds to increasing employment opportunities for comedy writers and performers in the entertainment sector.

We step back to give you the hands-on experience you need to flourish within your specialism, whether that's sitcom writing, or creating a piece of broadcast-standard comedy, then bringing it to life in collaboaration with Film, Television and Digital Production students for a GALA showcase attended by industry guests.

As a Comedy graduate, you’ll be well-versed in a range of genres including stand-up, sitcom, panel show, street performance, physical comedy, sketch, high comedy and satire. You'll also have real-world experience of live performance in a range of venues and circuits.

You'll develop a host of skills applicable to a broad range of careers and routes into further study, including physical performance, vocal performance and freelance comedic writing. You'll learn self-promotion, using digital media created during the course to develop and expand your valuable networks.

What you'll learn

Overview

The Comedy programme at Bath Spa enables you to develop and write sketch shows, monologues, comic plays and stand-up, then perform live across the stand-up club and festival circuit. You'll create videos and podcasts, enter writing competitions and collaborate on devising, writing and filming an original sitcom pilot using our state-of-the-art facilities.

Rigorous practice and contextual theory will enable you to enhance your academic writing and research skills while exploring a range of contemporary comedy genres. You'll gain valuable experience of current industry practices and record high-quality material for a showreel.

Regardless of the industry, humour is omnipotent. That's why we've devised a unique optional module that explores the link between communicating in comedy and communicating in business, using techniques taught to companies including Google, Channel 4, M&C Saatchi, UBS and Bank Paribas.

Course structure

Year one
Learn the fundamental concepts, structures, principles and vocabulary that demystify comedic practice. Develop the discipline of writing for performance through the lens of modern satire and observational humour. Gain a practical understanding of the dynamics of performance and acting methodologies supported by skills training in voice, movement and improvisation. Test your knowledge and skills through the creation and performance of original comedic material on a weekly basis, within a supportive studio environment.

Year two
Continue to create and perform original comedic material on a regular basis in a range of performance venues. Further extend your contextual knowledge and develop your skills in academic writing and critical thinking. And apply your skills and understanding through practical exploration of specific comedy genres. This year, you'll also have the opportunity to study the link between communicating in comedy and communicating in business. 

Year three
Finally, year three will prepare you for your future career within the industry. Experienced professionals provide networking opportunities and advice on the routes you could follow as you move towards writing and performing professionally. Skills classes teach you how to present your work online, create a profile and presence via social media, develop successful actor audition techniques, enter festivals, get comedy gigs and approach broadcast media.

How will I be assessed?

You’ll be assessed through:

  • Solo and ensemble performances
  • Solo and collaborative comedic writing
  • Weekly performances
  • Self-reflection
  • Critical and contextual analysis.

In your final year of study, you'll identify your comedic persona and seek to emphasise and exploit the unique qualitites that differentiate you from your competitors as you progress into industry. You'll write an extended research essay, using this opportunity to articulate your future comedic direction and to critically analyse your emerging comedic practice.

How will I be taught?

You'll be taught through a range of activities including lectures, workshops, weekly performances, seminars, skills classes, rehearsals, tutorials, work placements and theatre visits.

Opportunities

Work placements, industry links and internships

You’ll benefit from visits from industry professionals, as well as networking opportunities and advice from those experienced in the comedy industry on the routes you could follow as you move towards employment. 

Careers

As a Comedy graduate, you'll have identified your distinctive comic voice and will have the tools to write and perform to a professional standard.

You'll be creating and presenting your work on professional platforms that reach beyond the University, and you'll have the ability to showcase yourself both online and on stage.

You'll have a clear knowledge and understanding of the live and broadcast comedy industries, and how to successfully navigate this highly competitive field and exploit the opportunities therein.

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

You'll benefit from use of teaching and rehearsal facilities on the Newton Park campus and also Burdall's Yard, a specialised and atmospheric performance venue in Bath city centre that is particularly well-suited to less conventional or more intimate cabaret or comedy performances.

Facilities include:

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
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

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

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

2018/19 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £13,900
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 2022

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2020
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We’re looking for dynamic individuals with an interest in exploring a wide range of performance forms.

On your application form you should refer to:

  • Your experience, skills and interests
  • The performance work, plays or books that have influenced your thinking
  • The shows in which you have performed
  • Why you think Comedy at Bath Spa is the right 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 - grades BCC including Grade B in Drama, Theatre Studies, English or related subjects accepted
  • BTEC - Extended Diploma in Drama, Theatre Studies or Performing Arts grades Distinction, Merit, Merit (DMM) accepted
  • International Baccalaureate - a minimum of 26 points required in addition to evidence of additional qualifications or experience in Acting, Drama or Theatre Studies
  • 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) accepted in addition to evidence of additional qualifications or experience in Acting, Drama or Theatre Studies.

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.

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

Suitable applicants will be invited to audition at our Newton Park campus between December and March.

The interview process will focus primarily on your:

  • Group skills
  • Aptitude for taking part in workshop activities
  • Spontaneity and creativity
  • Interest in comedy practices.

More information will be sent via email on invitation to audition.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Pat Welsh
Email: p.welsh@bathspa.ac.uk

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk