facebook BA (Hons) Dance and Drama – Bath Spa University

Dance and Drama

BA (Hons)

Undergraduate degree - combined honours

Key facts

Award
BA (Hons) Dance and Drama
School/s
Bath School of Music and Performing 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: WW5K or SE75
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 CCC with grade C in Drama, Theatre Studies, English or related subjects.

View "typical offers" for more information.

Build the skills you need to become a creative and articulate dance professional.

  • Experience rigorous practical training in choreography, technique and performance.
  • Gain industry experience and contacts with weekly classes from our extensive network of professional dance artists and companies.
  • 100% of recent Dance graduates were in work or further study with 81% in professional / managerial level jobs.*

Immerse yourself in an exciting and challenging artistic environment. By studying Dance at Bath Spa University, you’ll be part of an exciting training programme with a strong practical focus.

Creativity and performance lie at the heart of the course. These, as well as the breadth of opportunities we offer, make our Dance course distinctive. The course suits creative individuals who are looking for a degree that is both physically and intellectually stimulating.

Find out more about our Dance department or read below for more course information. 

*DHLE 2017. The sector average for professional / managerial jobs or graduate level study within six months of graduating (Drama, Dance and Cinematics) is 63%.

“I truly feel lucky that I spent three years in a place where all my aspirations and ideas, even the craziest ones, were respected and supported. This course gave me everything I needed to become a skilful dancer and a creative artist.”

Delicia Sefiha, BA Dance graduate

“I could not be more proud to say that I was trained at Bath Spa, and no matter where we are or what we do, the course has not only set us up for the 'real world' but has been invaluable in shaping our artistic thoughts and confidence.”

Sarah Dyke, Dance graduate

What you'll learn

Overview

You’ll find yourself immersed in a world of exciting choreographic opportunities, broadening your understanding of performance making. You’ll regularly present your work in a variety of performance projects, with lots of opportunities to work alongside professional artists and companies. We’ll encourage you to develop a critical and analytical mindset that will support your creative enquiry.

Technique forms an important part of the course, full-time dance students benefit from four to five classes in the studio on a regular basis. Cunningham and Limon­ based classes, somatic practice and contact improvisation are all part of your technical training and give you the chance to develop into a strong and confident dancer.

Each year you’ll take performance modules with visiting professional companies. As part of this, you’ll take part in intensive projects that build your skills as a maker and performer. We’ll introduce you to the exciting world where dance intersects with other art forms to make performance work.

Please note, if you choose to study dance as a combined award, you won’t study all the available modules. You can choose to study a joint degree, or you can place greater emphasis on one subject by taking it as a major.

Course structure

Year one
Your first year will be a fast-paced, challenging experience that builds your skills in the key areas of performance, creativity and critical thinking. You’ll work on regular performance projects, creating solo, small group and large ensemble work. We introduce you to new ways to think and move that will help you to broaden your skills as a dance artist.

Regular sessions with visiting companies and artists will help you expand your understanding of the dance industry and inspire you to think about your own career aspirations.

Year two
You’ll stretch your creative and performance skills in exciting new directions. A wide range of practical sessions will deepen your understanding of how performance work can be created for different contexts; we encourage you to see yourself – and the work you make – within a broader perspective.

The visiting guest artist programme continues to provide you with inspirational workshops and residencies that help to build your knowledge of the field and inform your artistic practice.

Year three
You’ll focus on developing a specialist area. Modules allow you to follow a specific pathway that supports your interests, such as performance, choreography, teaching, dance movement therapy. You’ll embark on a large scale performance project, as well as completing a work placement with a professional dance organisation and undertaking an independent project that you design and manage to completion.

Regular individual tutoring, with specialist dance careers staff, will help you build a plan for after you graduate. We pledge to continue to support you as part of our graduate alumni scheme, no matter how long ago you graduated.

How will I be assessed?

We’ll assess your work in a variety of ways such as practical performances, presentations, portfolios and essays. Practical projects may be assessed on your creative process, the final product or both.

How will I be taught?

The course has a strong practical focus with workshops, technique classes and choreographic laboratories. These are led by qualified staff and visiting choreographers and artists.

Digital technology plays a significant role in the course; we apply it to creative practice as well as using it to teach. Screendance, and the integration of digital media in live performance work is a distinctive feature of the course.

Opportunities

Study abroad

You’ll have the opportunity to study in a wide range of locations around the world. Our students have completed Erasmus+ and Exchange programmes in a variety of countries including the USA and Spain.

Work placements, industry links and internships

Guest artists and companies

Previous guests who have worked with our students include: Jasmin Vardimon Dance Company, Bedlam Dance Company, Earthfall , Impermanence Dance Theatre, Lila Dance, Karla Shacklock Dance, Wendy Houston, Alexander Whitely, Protein Dance, Maresa von Stockert, Jean Abreu, Laila Diallo.

Careers

Our dance graduates work in a range of professions including:

  • Performance
  • Choreography
  • Community dance work
  • Teaching
  • Dance movement therapy
  • Arts management / administration

Graduates have been employed by organisations including: Earthfall Dance, Maresa Von Stockhert, Bath Dance, Institute for Contemporary Interdisciplinary Arts, Hofesh Shechter, Pretty Good Girl Dance Theatre, Theatre Bristol, Karla Shacklock Dance, Royal Academy of Dance, Zinc Arts, Citrus Arts, Kapow Dance and numerous schools, colleges and universities.

Performances and events

As a Bath Spa dancer, you'll be part of a busy events calendar that will allow you to both participate in and watch professional dance performances. We’ll encourage you to participate in dance festivals and exhibitions, and you’ll have the opportunity to apply for choreographic platforms and screen dance festivals. 

Professional placement year

Overview

This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for, and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.

Preparation

Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

"The Bath Spa dancers were an absolute delight to teach, and very responsive to material... I’ve gone on to hire a Bath Spa graduate dancer to participate in my professional dance project, where she will perform across the South West."

Steve Johnstone, Off The Map Dance Company

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The course is taught at our Newton Park campus.

You’ll work in our dance studios, which are fully equipped for choreography, performance and work with digital media. We regularly host professional performances and workshops from leading dance artists in the University Theatre

Bath Spa University offers many other excellent facilities including:

Resources

You can hire out equipment using SISO, Bath Spa University’s free equipment loan service. We provide a huge variety of equipment including laptops, ipads, projectors and cameras.

Our greatest resource is, perhaps, the professionalism and experience of the tutors who teach on the course and our professional associates and partners.

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

International students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

All students full time - with professional 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. This applies to UK, EU and International students.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

We are looking for individuals who are:

  • strong and confident performers;
  • creatively open-minded and willing to take artistic risks;
  • good team players;
  • passionate about dance and prepared to work hard to see results

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 CCC or higher, including Grade C in Dance, Performing Arts or related subjects accepted  
  • BTEC - Extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) or higher in Dance, Performing Arts or related subjects accepted
  • International Baccalaureate -  A minimum of 26 points will be required in addition to evidence of further experience/ qualifications in dance or 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)  in addition to other qualifications and experience in Dance
  • Graded Dance qualifications above Grade 6 also accepted in addition to other qualifications listed above.

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 pages.

Interview and portfolio guidance

If you apply, we’ll ask you to attend an audition day so that we can assess your suitability for the programme. The audition gives you a chance to demonstrate your physical dance skills and your creative abilities. Your personal statement is your chance to show your skills and experience in dance. We want to know about what inspires you and what you hope to achieve with your training.

Auditions will consist of:

Technique Class
We are looking for commitment, enthusiasm and physical evidence of dance training to an appropriate level (alignment, accuracy, energy).

Creative Workshop
We are looking for creativity and imagination, the ability to work as a group and to create and present work in a contemporary style.

Course Overview/ Q&A Session
This session should clarify what you can expect from the course in terms of practical and written requirements, workshops, projects and placements. We will also be able to answer individual questions to help you to decide whether this course is right for you.

Eligible applicants will be invited to auditions at our Newton Park Campus between December and March.We do not charge an audition fee.

"I can't thank you all enough for all of your help and support. Since returning to Ireland, I have got so much work..."

Eimear Byrne, BA Dance graduate

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Michelle Elliott
Email: m.elliott@bathspa.ac.uk

Three year course
With placement year

Explore your creative identity with our Drama degree.

  • Pursue your passions. Choose to specialise, broaden your skills-base or combine Drama with another subject you love.
  • Experiment, reflect and innovate. Learn by making, producing, performing, directing and collaborating.
  • Graduate with a host of skills valued in a range of industries, from theatre to media to education.

Studying Drama at Bath Spa gives you the performance, critical and creative skills you need to launch yourself into a variety of exciting careers.

You'll explore your creative identity through core and optional modules in areas of practice such as play production, performing, writing and directing, and topics such as Shakespeare, musical theatre, physical theatre, applied theatre and media and performance.

Among many of the options open to you will be acting, directing, education, theatre production, arts administration, or arts therapies; you could also choose to progress to further study, for example in as Directing, Creative Producing, Performing ShakespeareClassical Acting, Creative Writing and Scriptwriting

“The Drama department has been excellent in supporting us and offering advice and support when needed. The course was a springboard into the professional world of Drama.”

Simon Crispin, third year Drama student

What you'll learn

Overview

You’ll study plays, practitioners and genres that have been particularly influential in shaping contemporary theatre and performance. We give you the opportunity to explore:

  • Theatre practitioners
  • Playwrights
  • Performance making
  • Writing, directing and performing.

The course also includes a focus on:

  • Plays and musical theatre productions in the University Theatre
  • Theatre in education performances and workshops in local schools
  • New plays written by students
  • New and existing works devised, directed and performed by students.

Course structure

Year one
Build the foundations. You’ll gain skills in working with play texts as part of a theatrical ensemble, performing and directing, theatre production and performance; these will underpin your work in years two and three. 

Year two
Apply your skills. You’ll work with local practitioners, collaborate with local venues and learn from visiting professional companies and artists. You'll also have the opportunity to apply yourself in a variety of performance projects. Our focus is allowing you to create original work, while you explore your particular areas of interest such as physical theatre, applied theatre, musical theatre and theatre production.

Year three
Develop your specialisms. Increasingly, you'll define and manage your own work, and carry out research into an area of drama or performance of your choice. You may explore topics such as performance, staging gender, modern American drama, staging Shakespeare, musical theatre, theatre for social change, media and performance, and devising. There's also the opportunity to collaborate with staff on projects relating to their areas of expertise. 

How will I be assessed?

We use a variety of assessment tasks across the programme, including:

  • Public performance
  • Playwriting
  • In-class performance of devised or published work
  • Oral presentations
  • Performance of backstage/technical roles
  • Critical reflection
  • Working as part of an ensemble
  • Script analysis
  • Devising
  • Individual and group research projects.

How will I be taught?

You'll be taught through a range of activities including lectures, workshops, 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. Previous visitors have covered a range of specialisms including: playwriting, directing, acting, television production, theatre in education, and children’s theatre. We also have partnerships with local venues, local schools and local community groups.

You'll also get the chance to take part in Dramafest – a festival of performance that's devised and run entirely by students. This event typifies our way of teaching, which is to enable you to experience a wealth of roles and approaches so that you can find your passions and choose to specialise in them if you wish. 

Drama students create the material for Dramafest, then perform and produce it. They design and construct the sets. They take on roles in stage management, publicity, and health and safety. In doing this, they gain transferable skills such as project management, collaboration and teamwork, that they can use in a range of careers.

Dramafest will be a chance for you to discover your strengths and define your own roles within a project; an invaluable skill in the workplace. Find out more about opportunities within the Drama department on our interest area page.

Careers

We equip you with creative, collaborative, writing, presentational and communication skills that are useful in many professional and vocational areas.

Some graduates choose to pursue postgraduate study, especially in teaching, or vocational training. Recent graduates have gone on to study Master's degrees at Central School of Speech and Drama, Yale Theatre School and the Royal Academy of Music.

Other graduates launch careers in the creative industries, including working with theatre and media companies. Some of our Drama graduatesare now:

  • Founder of an award-winning theatre company
  • Executive Director of a theatre school
  • Principal of an Academy of Performing Arts
  • Dramatherapist and Tutor.

Professional placement year

Overview

This optional placement year provides you with the opportunity to identify, apply for, and secure professional experience, normally comprising one to three placements over a minimum of nine months. Successful completion of this module will demonstrate your ability to secure and sustain graduate-level employment.

By completing the module, you'll be entitled to the addition of 'with Professional Placement Year' to your degree title.

Preparation

Before your Professional Placement Year, you'll work to secure your placement, constructing a development plan with your module leader and your placement coordinator from our Careers and Employability team.

How will I be assessed?

On your return to University for your final year, you'll submit your Placement Portfolio, detailing your development on your placement.

“Because of the staff and resources at Bath Spa University, I feel confident that I will reach my potential.”

Ashley McGinty, third year Drama student

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 from use of Burdall's Yard, a specialised and atmospheric performance venue in the City Centre that is particularly well suited to less conventional or more intimate cabaret, theatre or comedy performances.

Facilities used by BA Drama include:

Fees

UK and EU students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £9,250
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

International students full time

2020/21 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £14,500
Year 2 Published Jan 2021
Year 3 Published Jan 2022

2021/22 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2021
Year 2 Published Jan 2022
Year 3 Published Jan 2023

2022/23 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2022
Year 2 Published Jan 2023
Year 3 Published Jan 2024

All students full time - with professional 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. This applies to UK, EU and International students.

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 drama and performance forms. You’ll typically have CCC or above at  A-Level including a C grade, or above, in Drama, Performing Arts or English.

On your application form you should refer to:

  • Your experience, skills and interests
  • Performance work, plays or the books that have influenced your thinking
  • Shows in which you have performed
  • Why you think Drama 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 CCC including Grade C in Drama, Theatre studies, English or related subjects accepted.
  • BTEC -  Extended Diploma in Drama, Theatre Studies or Performing Arts grades Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) 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.

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 drama practices.

More information will be sent via email on invitation to audition. We do not charge an audition fee.

Admissions service: +44 (0)1225 876 180
Email: admissions@bathspa.ac.uk
Course leader: Roy Connolly
Email: r.connolly@bathspa.ac.uk

Three year course
With placement year

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk