Theatre Practice I: Applied Drama (DRA3012)

StaffDr Erin Walcon - Convenor
Credit Value30
ECTS Value15.00
NQF Level6
Pre-requisitesDRA1004 Acting and Not Acting and DRA2067 Staging the Text
Duration of Module Term 1: 11 weeks;

Module aims

The module aims to:

  • Provide an opportunity for students to apply their drama skills within non-traditional theatre contexts
  • Create appropriate applications of drama in those contexts
  • Explore questions and issues raised by the expectations and demands of the role of the applied drama worker

ILO: Module-specific skills

  • 1. Develop an advanced understanding of the ways in which drama and theatre can be used to build dialogue with groups in the wider community, in particular with those who experience social exclusion
  • 2. Develop an informed awareness of the issues involved in applied drama work and an appreciation of what it means to be responsive in this context. Gain a critical awareness of the skills necessary for effective facilitation in the field of applied drama
  • 3. Gain a critical awareness of the skills necessary for effective facilitation in the field of applied drama
  • 4. Work creatively within a range of community settings and expectations

ILO: Discipline-specific skills

  • 5. Contribute research to small groups in effective presentations, evaluate visual evidence and develop advanced confidence in the ability to analyse, critique and manipulate complex material
  • 6. Work effectively with others in small task-oriented groups; initiate and sustain creative, analytic, and interpretative work
  • 7. Explore theoretical concerns through practice, and vice versa, and to synthesise findings in practical and written tasks. The ability to interpret research into physical practice and vice versa

ILO: Personal and key skills

  • 8. Develop advanced personal research skills using personal initiative; set personal objectives that are linked to a sense of challenge and extending boundaries. Identify and evaluate personal learning strategies that are self-critical as much as self-reflective
  • 9. Develop group cooperation skills, including the ability to give and receive constructive critical feedback, and improve communication skills and advanced analytic abilities in discussions
  • 10. Collaborate in various groups and group sizes, to learn elements of teamwork and presentation, to negotiate and manage conflict when appropriate and to demonstrate leadership skills when appropriate
  • 11. Balance self-direction and collaborative work. Adapt and design working methods for each new situation. Self-management, collaborative working skills, problem solving, critical analysis and valuing own and others' ideas and beliefs

Syllabus plan

Whilst the content may vary from year to year, it is envisioned that from the start students work as part of a small team on a project. This Project is a series of assignments that include

  • Researching a community context
  • Devising and facilitating an appropriate performance/drama workshop
  • Implementing it in the community
  • Group book review and individual facilitation: students work in small groups and cover between them 3 books relating to their project setting

Learning activities and teaching methods (given in hours of study time)

Scheduled Learning and Teaching ActivitiesGuided independent studyPlacement / study abroad

Details of learning activities and teaching methods

CategoryHours of study timeDescription
Scheduled learning and teaching activities66Studio-based contact hours
Guided independent study33Fulfilment of set tasks: self-directed sessions
Guided independent study48Academic research: reading, writing reflective logbook, research related to projects
Guided independent study153Placement and Project facilitation: planning, preparation and execution of practical work in community settings

Formative assessment

Form of assessmentSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Facilitation task15 minutes1-4Oral feedback
Book review2 hours5-11Oral feedback

Summative assessment (% of credit)

CourseworkWritten examsPractical exams

Details of summative assessment

Form of assessment% of creditSize of the assessment (eg length / duration)ILOs assessedFeedback method
Presentation601 hourallWritten feedback
Portfolio403500 words2,3,5-11Written feedback

Details of re-assessment (where required by referral or deferral)

Original form of assessmentForm of re-assessmentILOs re-assessedTimescale for re-assessment
PresentationPresentation or piece of written work1-11Referral/Deferral period
PortfolioPortfolio2, 3, 5-11Referral/Deferral period

Re-assessment notes

Deferral – if you miss an assessment for certificated reasons judged acceptable by the Mitigation Committee, you will normally be either deferred in the assessment or an extension may be granted. The mark given for a re-assessment taken as a result of deferral will not be capped and will be treated as it would be if it were your first attempt at the assessment.

Referral – if you have failed the module overall (i.e. a final overall module mark of less than 40%) you will be required to submit a further assessment as necessary. If you are successful on referral, your overall module mark will be capped at 40%.

Indicative learning resources - Basic reading

  • Baim, C. and Brookes, S and Mountford, A. (2002) The Geese Theatre Handbook: Drama with Offenders and People at Risk , Winchester: Waterside Press.
  • Cohen-Cruz, Schutzman (2006) A Boal Companion: Dialogues on theatre and cultural politics , Routledge.
  • Diamond, David (2007) Theatre for Living: the art and science of community based dialogue , Trafford Publishing.
  • Johnston, C. (1998) House of Games: Making Theatre from Everyday Life , London: Nick Hern Books.
  • Nicholson, H. (2005) Applied Drama, the gift of theatre , Palgrave.
  • Rohd, M. (1998) Theatre for Community, Conflict and Dialogue: The Hope is Vital Training Manual, Heinemann.
  • Taylor, Philip (2003) Applied Theatre: Creative Transformative Encounters in the Community , Heinemann.
  • Thompson, James (2003) Applied Theatre: Bewilderment and Beyond , Peter Lang.

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Key words search

Applied Drama, Applied Theatre, 'At Risk' Youth, Facilitation