BA Drama and Film Studies

Year of entry: 2023

Overview

Degree awarded
Bachelor of Arts (BA)
Duration
3 years
Typical A-level offer

ABB including an essay-based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics.

Typical contextual A-level offer
BBB including an essay-based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics.
Find out more about contextual admissions.
Refugee/care-experienced offer
Applicants who have been in local authority care for more than three months or have refugee status may be eligible for an offer two grades below the standard requirements.
Find out more about contextual admissions.
Typical International Baccalaureate offer
34 points overall. 6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects

Full entry requirements

How to apply
Apply through UCAS

Course overview

  • Take advantage of the opportunities offered on the Drama course but focus more specifically on the study of film and television.
  • Top 5 in the UK for Drama and Cinematics (Complete University Guide 2023).
  • Study course units on theatre and film history and theory, as well as practical course units in filmmaking.
  • Tailor your studies as you progress; select from our breadth of course units to expand both your theoretical and practical understanding of screen and stage.
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Study Drama and Film Studies at The University of Manchester

Open days

We are pleased to announce that we are returning to hosting on-campus open days in the summer and autumn.

Please see open days for the dates, registration, and other information.

If you're a prospective student, you can also find out more about student life by chatting with our student ambassadors at a time that suits you, and ask any questions you may have about life at Manchester. 

Please check our Coronavirus FAQs for the most up to date information regarding events. 

You can also look at our virtual open day content to help you learn more about the University.

Fees

Fees for entry in 2023 have not yet been set. For entry in 2022 the tuition fees were £9,250 per annum for home students, and are expected to increase slightly for 2023 entry.

Policy on additional costs

All students should normally be able to complete their programme of study without incurring additional study costs over and above the tuition fee for that programme. Any unavoidable additional compulsory costs totalling more than 1% of the annual home undergraduate fee per annum, regardless of whether the programme in question is undergraduate or postgraduate taught, will be made clear to you at the point of application. Further information can be found in the University's Policy on additional costs incurred by students on undergraduate and postgraduate taught programmes (PDF document, 91KB).

Contact details

School/Faculty
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Contact name
Jamie Clark
Telephone
+44 (0)161 275 4987
Facsimile
+44 (0)161 275 3098
Email
Website
http://www.alc.manchester.ac.uk/subjects/drama/
School/Faculty overview

See: About us

Courses in related subject areas

Use the links below to view lists of courses in related subject areas.

Entry requirements

A-level

ABB including an essay based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics.

Contextual offer

BBB including an essay based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics.  for applicants who meet our contextual offer criteria.  For further information and to check eligibility visit our Contextual Offers page.

AS-level

AS level results are not considered as part of the standard admissions process at The University of Manchester.

Unit grade information

The University of Manchester welcomes the provision of unit information where available.  Like all other information provided by applicants this may be taken into consideration when assessing your application.  Unit grades will not normally form part of an offer conditions.

GCSE

Applicants must demonstrate a broad general education including acceptable levels of Literacy and Numeracy, equivalent to at least Grade C or 4 in GCSE/iGCSE English Language and Mathematics. GCSE/iGCSE English Literature will not be accepted in lieu of GCSE/iGCSE English Language.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

International Baccalaureate

34 points overall. 6,5,5 in Higher Level subjects

Other international entry requirements

We accept a range of qualifications from different countries. For these and general requirements including English language see Accepted entry qualifications from your country

Scottish requirements

We normally require grades AABBB in Scottish Highers.  In addition, one Scottish Advanced Higher is normally required at Grade B.  Where a pre-requisite subject is required at A-level, then this Advanced Higher should be in that subject.

English Language and Mathematics not taken at Higher/Advanced Higher must have been achieved at SCQF level 5 (minimum National 5 grade C / Intermediate 2 grade C / Standard Grade Credit level grade 3).

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the Academic School(s) to which you plan to apply.

Welsh Baccalaureate

The University welcomes and recognises the value of the Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced Diploma/Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate and usually requires two A Levels or equivalent to be included within this.

The minimum grade required will normally be the same as the lowest grade listed in the A Level entry requirements.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.

AQA Baccalaureate

The University recognises the benefits of the AQA Baccalaureate and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills.

In making offers, the University will focus on the three A Levels taken within the AQA Baccalaureate. Students need to check the standard A Level requirements for their chosen course.

The units of broader study, enrichment activities and the Extended Project are considered to be valuable elements of the AQA Baccalaureate and we would therefore strongly encourage students to draw upon these experiences within their personal statement.

Foundation year

The University recognises a number of foundation programmes as suitable for entry to this undergraduate programme:

Applicants completing the INTO Manchester in partnership with The University of Manchester international foundation programme are required to achieve ABB in academic subjects and grade A in the EAP with writing, speaking, listening and reading grade B.

Applicants completing the NCUK International Foundation year are required to achieve ABB in academic subjects and grade A in the EAP with writing, speaking, listening and reading grade B.

Please read this in conjunction with our A-level requirements, noting any pre-requisite subjects.

For all other foundation programmes please see this list of approved UK foundation programmes .

Pearson BTEC qualifications

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma: we consider the National Extended Diploma for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to this course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Extended Diploma with grades Distinction, Distinction, Merit, in a Humanities-related subject.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma: we consider the National Diploma for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to this course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Diploma with grades Distinction, Distinction, plus one A-level at Grade B in an essay-based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Foundation Diploma: we consider the National Foundation Diploma for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to this course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Foundation Diploma with a Distinction grade, PLUS one A-level at Grade B in an essay-based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics, PLUS an EPQ or AS at Grade B.

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate: we consider the National Extended Certificate for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to this course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full National Extended Certificate with a Distinction grade, PLUS two A-levels at Grades BB (one of these A-levels should be in an essay-based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics).

The University of Manchester welcomes applications from students who have achieved legacy BTEC qualifications (pre-2016) such as the BTEC Extended Diploma, BTEC Diploma, BTEC Subsidiary Diploma, and BTEC Certificate.  The grades required are likely to be the same or vary similar to the new BTEC qualifications (first teaching 2016, awarded 2018). Please contact the Academic School for clarification.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the academic School(s) to which you plan to apply.

OCR Cambridge Technical qualifications

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Diploma (CTEC):  we do not consider the Technical Extended Diploma for entry to this course.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Diploma (CTEC): we consider the Technical Diploma for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Diploma with grades Distinction, Merit, plus an additional level 3 qualification such as an A Level at grade A in an essay-based subject such as English Literature, History or Politics .

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Foundation Diploma (CTEC): we consider the Technical Foundation Diploma for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Foundation Diploma with grades Distinction, Distinction, plus an additional level 3 qualification such as an A Level/A Level at min. Grade B an essay-based subject such as English or History, PLUS an EPQ or AS Level at grade B.

Cambridge Level 3 Technical Extended Certificate (CTEC) : we consider the Technical Extended Certificate for entry, preferably in a subject relevant to the chosen course.  Entry requirements are based on achievement of the full Technical Extended Certificate with grade Distinction, plus two additional Level 3 qualifications such as A Levels at grades BB, one of which must be in an essay-based subject such as English or History.

The University of Manchester will consider applications from students who have achieved legacy CTEC qualifications (pre-2016) such as the CTEC Extended Diploma, CTEC Diploma, CTEC Subsidiary Diploma, and CTEC Certificate.  The grades required are likely to be the same or vary similar to the new CTEC qualifications (first teaching 2016, awarded 2018). Please contact the Academic School for clarification.

If you require further clarification about the acceptability of this qualification please contact the Academic School(s) to which you plan to apply.

Access to HE Diploma

We require a QAA-recognised Access to HE Diploma (a minimum of 60 credits overall with at least 45 at Level 3), with merit or distinction in a subject area relevant to the chosen course.

The specific course requirements are a minimum of 30 credits with a Distinction grade, plus 15 credits with a Merit grade, all in a Humanities-related subject. Where possible, 15 of the Distinction credits should be in the pre-requisite subject required for A-levels.

Applicants to Languages programmes are also required to have a minimum of GCSE grade B/6 in a modern language or in English Language.

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

The University recognises the benefits of the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and the opportunities it provides for applicants to develop independent study and research skills. Although the Extended Project will not be included in the conditions of your offer, we strongly encourage you to provide information about the EPQ in your personal statement and at interview. A number of our academic Schools may also choose to take your performance in the EPQ into account should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.

Core Maths

The University recognises the value of Level 3 Core Mathematics qualifications. Core Mathematics is not a compulsory element of post-16 study and as a result we will not normally include it in the conditions of any offer we make. However, if a student chooses to undertake a core mathematics qualification this may be taken into account when we consider a student's application, particularly for courses with a distinct mathematical or statistical element that does not require A Level Mathematics. Academic Schools may also choose to take a student's performance in Core Mathematics into account should places be available in August for applicants who narrowly miss the entry grades for their chosen course.

Where a course requires applicants to have at least grade 6/B or higher in GCSE Mathematics we would be likely to consider a pass in Core Mathematics at a minimum grade C or B as an alternative way to fulfil this requirement. Where an A Level in Mathematics is required then Core Mathematics will not be accepted in lieu of an A Level.

A Level and GCSE Mathematics requirements for our courses vary according to subject so we advise students to contact the academic School, who will clarify whether a student's portfolio of qualifications is acceptable for entry onto the chosen course.

Home-schooled applicants

If you are a student who has followed a non-standard educational route, e.g. you have been educated at home; your application will be considered against the standard entry criteria of the course for which you are applying. You will be required to demonstrate that you meet the specified academic entry requirements of the course. We will also require a reference from somebody who knows you well enough, in an official capacity, to write about you and your suitability for higher education. If you are a home schooled student and would like further information or advice please contact the academic School for your chosen course who will be able to help you. 

Non-standard educational routes

Mature students are some of our most well-equipped learners, bringing skills and attributes gained from work, family and other life experiences.  Students come from a whole array of backgrounds, study every kind of course, undertake full-time and part-time learning and are motivated by career intentions as well as personal interest.  There is no such thing as a typical mature student at Manchester.

The application process is the same as for other prospective undergraduates.  If you require further clarification about the acceptability of the qualifications you hold please contact the academic School(s) you plan to apply to.  Further information for mature students can be found here ( http://www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/mature-students/ )

English language

All applicants to the University (from the UK and Overseas) are required to show evidence of English Language proficiency.  The minimum English Language requirement for this course is either:

  • GCSE/iGCSE English Language grade C/4 or;
  • IELTS 7.0 overall with no less than 6.5 in any one component, or;
  • An acceptable equivalent qualification.

Please note that if you hold English as a second language iGCSE qualification, we may also require you to offer one of our acceptable equivalent English Language qualifications or achieve a higher grade in your iGCSE than the one stated above. Please contact the academic School for clarification.

The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) requires that every student from outside the UK and the EU must show evidence of a minimum level of English Language in order to be granted a UK visa (Tier 4 visa) to study at undergraduate or postgraduate level. This level is often referred to as the 'B2 level'.

Additionally, our individual Schools may ask for specific English Language proficiency levels that are necessary for their academic programmes. In most cases these requirements are likely to be higher than the B2 level. Further information about our English Language policy, including a list of some of the English Language qualifications we accept, can be found  here .

English language test validity

Some English Language test results are only valid for two years. Your English Language test report must be valid on the start date of the course.

Application and selection

How to apply

Apply through UCAS

Advice to applicants

Potential candidates are expected to demonstrate why they have chosen this particular degree in their personal statement and express why the course interests them.

Applicants submitting mitigating circumstances

If you are submitting information about mitigating circumstances that have affected, or are likely to affect, your academic performance, you should include this in the referee's report.

We cannot usually take into account information that is supplied after an adverse decision has been made on an application by the admitting school.

(Examples of mitigating circumstances include family illness, problems with school facilities or an unusual curriculum followed by your school of college.)

How your application is considered

We welcome applications from a wide range of entry routes, including mature students and overseas applicants.

In the first stage of the application process, we will consider your application including looking at your achieved and predicted grades, personal statement and references. if these are satisfactory,  your application will proceed to stage 2 where we will invite you to interview. After interview, the admissions tutor for the programme will make a final decision on the application.

Interview requirements

if you are offered an interview, it will usually run for 20 minutes and will be a one to one discussion with a member of the Drama or Film department. It is our aim that the interview should be a relaxed but informed conversation - we are not seeking to set traps and trick questions for you! However, we are keen to determine your ability to discuss and think about drama and film studies critically as well as wanting to gauge whether you will thrive on the kinds of modules, approaches and experiences that studying Drama at Manchester entails.

Returning to education

We welcome applications from mature students and will consider them on an individual basis.

Deferrals

We welcome applications from candidates who intend to defer entry.

if offered an interview, we might ask you about your plans for deferral and how a year out might feed in to your future studies or provide you with experiences you might be able to draw on during a Drama related degree.

We do ask that applicants let us know as early as possible if they are intending to defer. This helps us to adjust the number of offers we make, in order to achieve the required number of students in a given year.  

Re-applications

If you applied in the previous year and your application was not successful you may apply again. Your application will be considered against the standard course entry criteria for that year of entry.  In your new application you should demonstrate how your application has improved.  We may draw upon all information from your previous applications or any previous registrations at the University as a student when assessing your suitability for your chosen course.If you are applying for a place for the same year of entry through UCAS Extra, you should provide additional evidence of your suitability for the course. If you are applying through clearing you are required to meet the clearing requirements. In both UCAS Extra and clearing the places will be subject to availability.

Transfers

We welcome applications from applicants transferring from other institutions. Each application will be considered on merit, providing we have enough places to accommodate them. Enquiries should be made to the admissions administrator for the subject (see contact details). We will require your current transcripts and a reference from your tutor.

Course details

Course description

BA Drama and Film Studies will give you the opportunity to benefit from our teaching and research in Drama while focusing on the study of film and television.

You'll take courses on theatre and film history and theory, as well as practical courses in filmmaking, benefiting from teaching informed by recent innovations in theatre, performance and film studies, and by historical practices.

We also offer the opportunity to choose film options from a variety of course units, and to study video-making.

Our comprehensive facilities include the purpose-built Martin Harris Centre, home to the John Thaw Studio, a fully staffed, adaptable performance, rehearsal and workshop space.

You will also be able to draw inspiration from the creative beating heart of the city itself, home to countless ground-breaking arts organisations and events - from Manchester International Festival, the world's first festival of original work, to HOME, the largest multidisciplinary arts centre outside of the capital.

You can also take advantage of strong links to partner organisations throughout the city, including TiPP (Theatre in Prisons and Probation Research and Development Centre), based here at the University, and Community Arts North West.

You also can engage with professional practitioners working in the cultural industries through your coursework and through extracurricular events.

Special features

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Laying it Bare

Placement year option

Apply your subject-specific knowledge in a real-world context through a placement year in your third year of study, enabling you to enhance your employment prospects, clarify your career goals, and build your external networks.

Study abroad

You may apply to spend one semester studying abroad during Year 2.

Exchange partners are offered through the Erasmus Exchange scheme (in Sweden) and the Worldwide Exchange scheme (eg USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, and Singapore).

Study an additional subject

Flexible Honours may allow you to study an additional arts, languages or cultures subject.

Societies

Join The University of Manchester Filmmaking Society, which exists to provide a platform for aspiring filmmakers attending the university to meet, exchange ideas and create their own cinematic productions.

Join The University of Manchester Drama Society, which is for anyone with an interest in drama, be that acting, directing, writing, filmmaking, costume, set building, stage managing or just watching. One of the largest in the Student Union, the society has links with many of Manchester's award-winning theatrical venues, including the Contact Theatre and the Royal Exchange Theatre. Each summer the society showcases at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Teaching and learning

Manchester is distinct from an acting conservatoire; rather than offering purely vocational training, we bring together theory and practice in the study of Drama as cultural process and artistic discourse.

Your studies will encompass stage and screen, the ancient and the contemporary, the mainstream and the avant-garde.

You'll develop skills in critical thinking, creative problem solving, and the clear articulation of ideas, learning through lectures, seminars, practical workshops, masterclasses and group work.

You will engage with the theories and techniques of practitioners past and present in our dedicated studio spaces.

Practical work is generally workshop-based and not all projects culminate in public performance.

Coursework and assessment

Assessment includes:

  • coursework essays;
  • written examinations;
  • research reports;
  • practical tests;
  • learning logs;
  • web contributions;
  • oral presentations;
  • small-scale practical assignments;
  • a final-year dissertation or research essay.

Course content for year 1

Study core units in the theory and practice of drama, focusing on historical, contextual and theoretical analysis.

Gain a foundation in film through core units in dramatic form and content on screen and the essential theoretical concepts of cinema including narrative, genre, authorship, photography, mise-en-scene, editing, music, and performance.

Course units for year 1

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Theatre & Performance 1 - Texts DRAM10001 20 Mandatory
Theatre & Performance 2 - Concepts DRAM10002 20 Mandatory
The Art of Film DRAM10031 20 Mandatory
Performance Practices 1 DRAM10101 20 Optional
Performance Practices 2 DRAM10102 20 Optional
Introduction to Early Film Histories DRAM13331 20 Optional
Introduction to World Cinema SALC11002 20 Optional

Course content for year 2

Develop awareness of the relationships between screen, culture and society across film, television, and new media.

Select from a broad range of options, from the history and ideology of film music to documentary filmmaking.

Course units for year 2

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Screen, Culture and Society DRAM20041 20 Mandatory
Contemporary British Cinema DRAM20031 20 Optional
Black on Screen DRAM20092 20 Optional
Post-Thatcher British Theatre: New Writing Since 1992 DRAM20102 20 Optional
Performing America DRAM20221 20 Optional
Dramaturgy: Professional Practices DRAM20291 20 Optional
A Score is Born: History and Ideology in Hollywood Film Music DRAM20711 20 Optional
Devising for Performance DRAM21041 20 Optional
Devising for Performance DRAM21042 20 Optional
Introduction to Documentary Film Practice DRAM21091 20 Optional
Varieties of Shakespeare DRAM21131 20 Optional
Playmaking DRAM21141 20 Optional
Solo Performance DRAM21232 20 Optional
Drama in Education DRAM21252 20 Optional
Horror Film: Genre, Periods, Styles DRAM21262 20 Optional
Virtual Realities DRAM21282 20 Optional
Theatres of Spontaneity DRAM21401 20 Optional
Performance and Climate Change DRAM21882 20 Optional
Discipline and Punish: The Modern Prison on Stage and Screen DRAM21902 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 19 course units for year 2

Course content for year 3

Continue to tailor your studies through optional units spanning subjects such as mockumentaries, movie adaptations, and more.

You can also pursue specialisms within drama such as directing or writing.

Conduct personal research in a subject of your choice for your dissertation or extended dissertation.

Course units for year 3

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Long Essay in Drama DRAM30000 20 Optional
Dissertation in Drama/Film (Semester One) DRAM30001 0 Optional
Dissertation in Drama/Film (Semester Two) DRAM30002 0 Optional
Docufiction Filmmaking DRAM30062 40 Optional
Applied Theatre: Theatre in Prisons DRAM30111 40 Optional
Writing For Performance DRAM30211 40 Optional
Directors Project DRAM30412 40 Optional
Social Lives of Cinema DRAM30842 20 Optional
Extended Dissertation DRAM30990 40 Optional
From Documentary to Mockumentary DRAM31011 20 Optional
Falstaff and Gandalf go to the Movies: Adapting Fantastic Texts to Screen DRAM31041 20 Optional
Contemporary Theatre-Making DRAM32001 40 Optional
Gender and Sexuality on the 20th Century Stage DRAM32022 20 Optional
Screen Acting & Stardom DRAM33302 20 Optional
Theatre, performance and care: studying artful care and careful art DRAM33461 20 Optional
Postcolonial African Theatres DRAM33541 20 Optional
Screening the Holocaust GERM30482 20 Optional
Displaying 10 of 17 course units for year 3

Facilities

Home to Music and Drama at Manchester, the purpose-built Martin Harris Centre for Music and Drama includes:

  • the John Thaw Studio Theatre, a flexible, fully equipped performance space with seating for 150 people;
  • workshops, rehearsal rooms, and screening rooms, including sound and video-editing suites;
  • the Cosmo Rodewald Concert Hall, an acoustically designed auditorium seating up to 350 people;
  • the Lenagan Library, our dedicated performing arts library.

The University is also home to internationally renowned cultural assets such as:

  • the multi award-winning Whitworth Art Gallery;
  • the John Rylands Library, home to one of the world's finest collections of medieval illuminated manuscripts and rare books;
  • Manchester Museum, home to important prehistoric, classical, and ethnographic collections.

Globally renowned for its arts and cultural offer, Manchester is home to the second highest concentration of theatres in the UK, as well as Manchester International Festival and the £110 million development, The Factory.

Learn more about facilities

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: dass@manchester.ac.uk

Careers

Career opportunities

Study Drama with us and you'll learn to interpret and critically analyse theatre, performance and film, create original work for live performance and demonstrate a high level of transferable skills - especially in interpersonal communication, group work, leadership and creative problem solving.

You'll find our graduates in a broad range of occupations - a fact that underlines their considerable adaptability and aptitude for collaborative work, effective communication, and negotiation.

These include roles in the theatre, film, television and radio, journalism, teaching, and applied theatre.

Some of our most recent graduates are currently pursuing further study in Film Studies, Creative Writing, and Screenwriting. Our graduates have gone on to work in a variety of industries, including positions in:

  • applied theatre;
  • television and radio;
  • theatre;
  • film and broadcast;
  • journalism;
  • teaching at schools, colleges, and universities;
  • community arts and arts administration;
  • law and business management.

Our award-winning careers service provides a wealth of tools, advice, development opportunities, and industry links.

You'll have access to dedicated, subject-specific support throughout your studies and for up to two years after graduation.

Our undergraduate courses are also designed to provide an easy transition into postgraduate study, if desired.

We offer a wide range of specialist master's courses within the University and even offer fast-tracked enrolment to high-achieving undergraduate students.

Our students can take part in our Stellify programme alongside their degrees, developing professional and leadership skills while contributing to their local and global communities through volunteering.