This course covers both devised and scripted drama and builds on the knowledge and practical elements developed at KS3. As well as developing your performance skills the course aims to develop a wide skill set, such as:
The qualification is divided into three components:
Unit 1: Devised Drama (a non-examined practical unit)—30% of the overall qualification)
Topics include: working from stimulus such as song lyrics, photographs, art, newspaper articles, artefacts and poetry.
Unit 2: Presenting and Performing Texts (a non-examined practical unit—30 of the overall qualification)
Topics include: Beautiful Thing by Jonathan Harvey, DNA by Dennis Kelly, Bouncers and Shakers by John Godber (and many other published texts)
Unit 3: Drama Performance Response (1 hour 30 minutes—40% of the overall qualification)
Topics include: Blood Brothers by Willy Russell and a Live Theatre Review of a recently watched performance.
Some people think that the only worthwhile reason to be studying GCSE Drama is to become an actor or director. Because Drama isn’t a very content-heavy subject and you don’t learn loads of facts, it has a reputation as being an easy subject that isn’t particularly useful. However, what people forget is that practical subjects like Drama allow you to develop hugely valuable skills which you will continue to use throughout your life, in and out of work. Here is a run through of the skills you will develop and perfect throughout your Drama studies:
Drama will teach you how to work as a team, sharing ideas, working from the ideas of others and compromising so that a project can move forward. Drama will allow you to develop your patience, ability to compromise and communication skills.
You will learn in depth skills about body language, this skill makes you more aware of how your body language is a communication tool and makes you more able to adapt your behaviour for various situations. It’s not so much about acting as being aware of your body language and how to adapt to distracting, uncomfortable or sensitive situations such as university and job interviews.
Analysing Drama productions allows you to develop your critical thinking skills. This is useful for a number of jobs and is great if you are planning on taking English Literature, Media Studies or Film Studies at degree level. Also, it allows you to think more critically about the film, television and theatre that we all consume on a daily basis.
You will gain in confidence. This is a really important one because Drama gives you the opportunity to push yourself to perform. You will be able to grow in confidence, develop your performance skills and overcome the fear of making mistakes in a fun, creative and supportive environment.
So to answer where can it lead: it will support you in any future career as it will give you empathy, effective communication and confidence to deal with so many situations. Drama supports careers where you work closely with people such as medicine, law, journalism and social care.
For roles linked directly to Drama: actor, director, performing arts specialist, teaching, production design, lighting and sound design, theatre and television production roles.