Professional Study - DRAM8990

Looking for a different module?

Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2021 to 2022
Spring Term 7 30 (15) Angie Varakis-Martin checkmark-circle


This module explores the interconnectedness between academic research and professional practice in theatre and performance. Students explore research questions through work-based learning in the first half of the term. This can take the form of either a placement or shadowing with a venue or company, which the student has arranged in the first part of the course, potentially supported by Erasmus international placement funding for a placement in Europe. Alternatively, this work-based learning activity may be based on a less formalised, but still primary mode of research of a specific venue, company, or theatre practitioner, emphasising the first-hand generation of research material through direct observation, interviews, and analysis. Students may select, according to their own interests and specialisms within the vast field of European theatre, a company, venue or practitioner of their choice, and individually negotiate the terms and opportunities to carry out this study. The convenor of the module will provide support in this initial negotiation if needed, and will also offer students connections with the Department's network of professional theatre-makers. The convenor will also provide support throughout the placement where needed.
In the second half of the term this learning is deepened through lectures on professional practice. The module will be convened by one member of staff who will bring in external speakers as appropriate, allowing students to approach theatre as a profession and contextualise the notion of theatre industry. Topics covered in class will typically include basic theatre industry knowledge for emerging artists, such as theatre funding structures, fundraising strategies, writing grant applications, casting mechanisms, CV/personal statement writing, basic marketing, basic budgeting. The module will be assessed through a combination of practical tasks, such as a grant application or a project pitch, and a reflection on the placement or essay on the individual research.


Contact hours

Contact hours: 42
Private study hours: 258
Total hours: 300

Method of assessment

Main Assessment Methods:

Work-based Learning Plan and Report/Essay (3,000 words) (60%)
Professional Portfolio (3,500 words) (40%)

Reassessment methods:
Like for Like

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List:

Barrett, Estelle and Bolt, Barbara, eds (2007), Practice as Research: Approaches to creative arts enquiry. London: I. B. Tauris.
Dean, Peter (2002), Production Management: Making Shows Happen - A Practical Guide. Marlborough: Crowood Press.
Freeman, John (2009), Blood Sweat and Theory: Research Through Practice in Performance. London: Libri.
Johns, Christopher (2004), Becoming a Reflective Practitioner. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
Kershaw, Baz and Nicholson, Helen, eds (2011), Research Methods in Theatre and Performance. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
Nelson, Robin (2013), Practice as Research in the Arts: Principles, Protocols, Resistances. Basingstoke; New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
O'Brien, Dave, (2014), Cultural Policy: Management, Value and Modernity in the Creative Arts. London; New York: Routledge.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. Assess contextual frameworks of theatre production and performance, such as social environment, audience demographics, institutional structures, cultural policies, artistic ideologies;
2. Plan and conduct in a self-directed and independent way a critical investigation into professional practice that productively applies theories, concepts and discourses to advance the understanding of theatre-making;
3. Engage critically, practically and effectively with processes of production and performance, drawing on a range of research methodologies to support their investigation;
4. Evaluate discourses in the field of theatre studies and their relevance within, and application to, processes of production and performance;
5. Record, document and analyse performance practices and processes, thus generating and digesting primary source material.
6. Conceive and write professional project proposals, CVs, funding applications, promotional copy and any other material required to work as a theatre-maker in Britain

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

1. Interact effectively with others, through negotiation and collaboration in a professional context;
2. Exercise initiative, take personal responsibility and discipline to define, set up, support, manage and realise a project over a sustained period of time within specified resource allocations;
3. Critically synthesise and evaluate information and data to produce innovative insights and conclusions;
4. Organise, present, articulate and disseminate advanced ideas appropriately and effectively, and in a sophisticated way that advances knowledge and adds value;
5. Solve problems autonomously and identify opportunities to apply and enhance their learning independently.


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
Back to top

University of Kent makes every effort to ensure that module information is accurate for the relevant academic session and to provide educational services as described. However, courses, services and other matters may be subject to change. Please read our full disclaimer.