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In drama, it is our aim for every student to be confident, work collaboratively and to explore their creativity. We seek to:

  • Develop essential skills and techniques that are used to create purposeful work in drama when exploring social, cultural and historical themes and issues;
  • Help students appreciate the communication opportunities that drama provides;
  • Provide students with an understanding of the wider value of drama beyond the classroom.


Key Stage 3

What will students learn?

Students will learn how to work confidently and collaboratively to explore their creativity in relation to the topic or text that is being studied.  They will learn key drama vocabulary through essential practical skills and techniques and they will be able to know, understand and apply vocabulary to their work in the correct context.


How will students be taught?

Students will be taught through whole class, individual and small mixed ability group work to explore their drama. Appropriate time will be given to explore and apply learning with an emphasis placed on students taking ownership of their work and taking pride in its creation. Students will regularly participate in performance and evaluation of their work, making connections through observation of successful outcomes.


How will students be assessed?

Students will be assessed in a variety of ways which include their verbal contribution to lessons, informal quizzing, observation of lesson work and more formal practical assessments.

Key Stage 4

What is GCSE Drama about?

All the world’s a stage, and a qualification in GCSE Drama will prepare students for the role of a lifetime by providing them with the skills to communicate clearly and confidently, work closely with others and perform under pressure. This course is an enjoyable and practical approach to drama, with the emphasis on learning through doing. By following the GCSE Drama course, students will gather knowledge and understanding of drama and theatre and of the influences that inform the way drama is devised and structured. It allows them to improve their performance skills, by creating their own work and preparing existing texts for performance. Students will become multi-skilled, giving them the opportunity to progress further in their education. 


What will students learn, and how will they be assessed?

GCSE Drama will equip you with a range of skills much sought after in the wider world of work and education. GCSE Drama will:

  • Develop ways of communicating confidently and creatively
  • Encourage cooperation and the understanding of others
  • Provide the skills of working with others – you can choose to work individually, in pairs or in a group for all units
  • Introduce the tools and the language of drama
  • Look at actions and their consequences in a dramatic setting
  • Explore the creative work of the designer, deviser and director…as well as the performer


The course consists of three units:

Component 1: Understanding Drama

Component 2:
Devising Drama

Component 3:
Texts in practice


Knowledge and understanding of drama and theatre

Study of one set play (currently Blood Brothers)

Evaluation of live theatre

What’s assessed?

The process of creating your work

Performance of your work

Evaluation of your work


Performance of two extracts from one play

Teachers will suggest suitable plays to look into


Written exam:
1 hour and 45 minutes
80 marks
40% of the GCSE

How it’s assessed

Devising log (60 marks)
Performance (20 marks)
80 marks
40% of the GCSE


Performance of extract 1
Performance of extract 2
40 marks in total
20% of the GCSE


A: Multiple choice

B: Four questions on a given extract of the play

C: one essay style question (from a choice) about the live theatre you have seen


This is a practical component where you are put into a small group to create an original piece of drama which is to be performed to an audience.


This is another practical component where you work in a small group to rehearse the extract of the play. Your teacher helps to direct you, and you perform your work to an audience.


How will students be taught?

Students will be taught by a mixture of whole-class teaching, practical drama exercises, practical performances and structured written notes. Workshops are provided and led by current practitioners and learners also get the chance to talk to actors and directors in pre- and post-performance talks during theatre visits. Use of lighting, sound and video recording equipment are all common practice within the Drama department.


Examination board & course type

AQA - GCSE Drama (8261)


What can studying this course lead to?

There are many things you can go on and do with a GCSE in Drama as it provides you with a range of skills to progress further in your education and the work place. GCSE Drama will prove valuable to anyone considering a future role or position that requires creativity, confidence, communication, team work and/or leadership skills. You could go on to take an A Level in Drama, Theatre Studies or Performance Studies, or a BTEC National in Performing Arts Practice.


Revision Advice

A subject specific guide featuring key content, recommended resources and the specifications we cover in that particular subject can be downloaded below:



Teacher to contact for further information

Miss H L Patrick


Contact Us

Northgate High School
Sidegate Lane, Ipswich, IP4 3DL

Tel: 01473 210 123