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BA (Hons) Acting & Performance, UCA Farnham

Acting & Performance BA (Hons)

Acting & Performance BA (Hons)

Farnham 3 years full-time, 4 years full-time

Course overview

Delve into the practical, artistic and academic aspects of acting and performance on our BA (Hons) Acting and Performance course at UCA Farnham, and become a confident and assured performer in front of the camera and on stage.

We pride ourselves on giving you the complete package in a course that covers all the different aspects of the craft. And thanks to our close links with Farnham Maltings, you’ll benefit from the venue’s extensive resources, large performance spaces and network of arts professionals, as well as the opportunity to see live and screened performances.

You’ll also make use of UCA Farnham’s extensive facilities – including its first-class Film and TV Centre, sound recording studios and film making equipment – and work collaboratively with fellow students on courses in Film Production, Music, Animation, Journalism, Media and Games Arts, ensuring you take your place in our vibrant and collaborative creative community.

You have the option to complete a Professional Practice Year as part of this course. This will give you the opportunity to develop your professional, academic and personal potential, equipping you to be confident and engaged in creative workplaces. Employers widely recognise these qualities, and a significant proportion of placement students are offered graduate-level jobs or go onto postgraduate study.

Our standard three year undergraduate degree for those who meet the entry requirements for higher education.

UCAS Code for 3 year/standard: W410

A four year degree programme, including a foundation year to help develop your creativity before you embark on year one of a degree.

UCAS Code for course with Integrated Foundation Year: W41A

A four year course, specifically designed to provide international students with the English language and creative skills before they embark on year one of a degree.

UCAS Code for course with Integrated International Foundation Year: W41C

A four year programme, which sees you spend an entire year gaining valuable industry experience prior to your final year of study.

UCAS Code for course with Professional Practice: W412

A five year course, including a foundation year to help develop your creativity before you embark on year one of a degree, and a year on a professional placement gaining valuable industry experience prior to your final year of study.

UCAS Code for course with Integrated Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year: W41B

A five year course, including an international foundation year concentrating on English language and core creative skills before you embark on year one of a degree, and a year on a professional placement gaining valuable industry experience prior to your final year of study.

UCAS Code for course with International Integrated Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year: W41D

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course details

Course Details

The content of the course may be subject to change. Curriculum content is provided as a guide.

UCA’s Integrated Foundation Year is designed to give you the skills you’ll need to start your degree in the best possible way – with confidence, solid knowledge of creative practice, study skills and more.

You’ll explore a range of creative techniques and develop your portfolio, with your chosen subject in mind. We’ll work with you throughout the year to ensure you’re on the right track and give you the tools to achieve your highest potential on your degree.

Find out more about the Integrated Foundation Year

For our students coming from a non-UK educational background, UCA has launched an Integrated International Foundation Year, based at UCA Farnham to bring students from around the world to one hub of creativity.

This year of preparatory study is designed to give you the skills you’ll need to start your degree in the best possible way – with confidence, solid knowledge of creative practice, study skills and the English speaking and writing skills you’ll need to succeed.

You’ll explore a range of creative techniques and develop your portfolio, with your chosen subject in mind. We’ll work with you throughout the year to ensure you’re on the right track and give you the tools to achieve your highest potential on your degree.

Find out more about the Integrated International Foundation Year

Year 1
For your first Launch Week, you’ll be introduced to studio etiquette, and the disciplines of movement and voice work, with vocal workouts, energetic movement material and drama games leading to an informal sharing of work on the final day.

Acting Skills 1
This unit will introduce you to a set of skills that will provide a robust foundation for the course and underpin a life-long process of learning for the professional actor and performer. You’ll cover: Movement – getting to know your own physical awareness and choices and using physicality in performance; Voice – you’ll explore body, breath and voice and how to use voice to interpret and work on a text, and how the use of voice work can inform acting choices; Text and Character – techniques to improve reading aloud and sight-reading, and; Improvising and Devising – group workshops to free you to work spontaneously and collaboratively, through games and other methods.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
The unit provides an opportunity for students to explore what is meant by equality, diversity, and inclusion and the implications of these concepts for creative practice. It will equip students to understand how our social identities (such as gender, race/ethnicity, class, disability, sexual orientation, and religion) contribute to the inclusion and/or exclusion of individuals in creative spaces.

Screen Acting
You’ll study the fundamentals of screen acting and film creation to make a five-minute non-dialogue film inspired by the film genre you have studied. You’ll develop your understanding of the craft of screen acting and how to convey emotion, thought, physicalisation and movement and storytelling on camera without using dialogue, and explore the basic skills of film including how to set up a camera for filming, framing, lighting and editing.

Opportunity - Stage Combat and Intimacy Co-ordination 1
For your first Opportunity Week, you’ll learn about intimacy practices as part of Stage Combat training. You explore the concepts of consent, soft and hard boundaries, rehearsal and repetition practices in order to create story-specific consistency. Non-armed stage combat will be explored with a specialist.

Approaches to Acting
Approaches to Acting introduces you to both the theoretical and practical approaches to creating a role. You will be introduced to the theory and practice of Konstantin Stanislavski, whose well-documented systems of preparation and rehearsal have had a lasting influence on actor training in the western world. Working on scenes from one of Anton Chekhov’s major plays; you will put the ‘Stanislavski System’ into practice and learn how to approach rehearsal as a mode of inquiry.

Professional Development 1
This unit will be the first to address marketing yourself as an actor and performer when you leave UCA. You will start to meet actors, casting agents and directors from industry who will discuss with you the work you want to make and be cast in.

Individual Performance Project
This final unit of Year 1 combines the skills you have learned throughout the year and anticipates elements of your Final Major Project. You’ll create a live solo performance lasting between five and seven minutes, comprising two different elements, from a monologue or piece of storytelling, a poem, a stand-up routine, a piece of movement or dance or a even a puppet show

ATOM Activities
ATOM activities are tiny pieces of individual learning that facilitate interdisciplinary exposure across the university. Collectively they form a small fraction of your curriculum that is determined through your own personal choice and interest.

PLE Digital Outcome
In this unit you will collate a digital record, reflecting on your learning journey through the first year of your degree. You will be identifying key points and developments within all units undertaken. We are interested in seeing a detailed account of your academic, technical and creative progress and development.

As a Year 2 students your Launch Week will involve welcoming new students to the fold, introducing them to the studio etiquette you learned in your first year, and engaging in vocal workouts, energetic movement material and drama games leading to an informal sharing of work on the final day.

Staging Dissent
Using examples of scenes from the plays influential and emerging writers, you will explore the underlying themes, subtexts and metaphors that writers employ to create meaning and depth in their work and how as an actor you interpret and translate these intentions into a performance.

The Conscious Practitioner
This unit aims to promote progressive values and attitudes to diversity and inclusion in creative practice. You’ll have the opportunity to explore global perspectives and influences on creative practice, drawing upon interactions with varied identities, cultures, politics, and histories. The unit will explore how beliefs, values and attitudes drive behaviour and practices. Students will reflect on the development of their own creative influences, perspectives, practices, and sense of belonging as developing creative professionals in global and contemporary spaces.

Acting Skills 2
Developing further the practical approach to acting and performance skills introduced in year 1, you will advance your screen acting, voice acting, creative and technical skills and focus on remote/ recorded voice skills. You’ll also be introduced to scriptwriting and get an overview of social realist filmmaking.

Opportunity - Movement for Camera and Intimacy Co-ordination 2
In Year 2 you experiment with creating movement for camera with the use of intimacy and boundary practices. The movement for camera will allow time to experiment with the frame and non-naturalistic filming techniques. As with year 1, this project is physical, fun and allows the consent and intimacy work to be developed away from sexually intimate scenes. These are always worked on with an intimacy coordinator and a risk assessment.

Professional Development 2
This unit has a focus on audition preparation and finding opportunities for work, helping you populate showreels with self-tapes and photographs. You’ll be introduced to the various avenues open to you for finding/attracting work as an actor, and practice techniques for auditioning.

ATOM Activities
This unit is an extension of your Year 1 ATOM Activities.

PLE Digital Outcome
You’ll build your industry community and professional networking footprint, creating a digital folder evidencing that you are actively engaging in sustainable professional development. You’ll showcase current and newly established professional networks and identify common interests.

Elective units
You'll also undertake two elective units across the year - choose from:

  • Animation: Industry and Technology – you’ll learn about the development of animation from early cinema to the contemporary, considering both technological shifts and the role of animation studios.
  • Transmedia Worlds - This unit brings together the concepts essential to the understanding of film, media and the performing arts through a consideration of adaptation and transmedia worlds.
  • Audio World building: Sound for Moving Image - The unit will give you the opportunity to explore different forms of sound in relation to genre, and develop your understanding of recording Foley and environments, directing voice artists, and mixing sound.
  • Immersive Production: Developing an Experiential Concept for Film and Television Production - The unit will give you the opportunity to explore cutting edge and future focused technology so that you have a broad comprehension of the expertise and skills required if you want to delve further into immersive media production
  • The Individual Performance Project – You’ll create a short live performance comprising at least two different elements, including things like a monologue, a piece of storytelling, a poem, a piece of dance/movement or a puppet show.
  • Theatre Production – You’ll work together with students from a wide range of courses to make a live theatre production.
  • Applied Music - In this unit you will deliberately expand who you share and create music with to include a wider sense of community.
  • Film Production – You’ll work together with students from a wide range of courses to make a short film, which could also include animated material or a game component.
  • Industry Insight: Crewing Up – Delivered at the Maidstone Studios, this unit gives you insight into the many roles in moving image production.
  • Shakespeare Festival - In this unit you will embrace the language of Shakespeare, staging performances of his work in in an outdoor festival setting at sites around UCA Farnham.
  • Showreels for the Creative Industries - This unit is designed to help you identify your career aspirations within the creative industries, and to build a professional showreel that best showcases your work.
  • Verbatim - you will learn about the history of Verbatim techniques in theatre. You will explore Verbatim texts and performance practices including ‘headphone’ theatre and documentary theatre practices.

If you opt to complete a professional practice year, this will take place in year three. You will undertake a placement within the creative industries to further develop your skills and CV.

While on your Professional Practice Year, you will be required to pay a reduced tuition fee for that year. This fee will be determined using government funding regulations. Based on current regulations, we expect this to be a maximum of 20% of the tuition fee rate that you are charged for your second year of study. You will also incur additional travel and accommodation costs during this year. The University will provide you with further advice and guidance about this as you approach your Professional Practice Year.

Please note: If you are an international applicant, you will need to enrol onto the course ‘with Professional Practice Year’. It will not be possible to transfer onto the Professional Practice Year after enrolment

Launch Week
As a final year student, Launch Week presents an opportunity to work with new and Year 2 students on the annual acclimation and ‘bootcamp’ activities, including vocal workouts, energetic movement material and drama games leading to an informal sharing of work on the final day. You can learn to mentor new students and if you’re interested in a career in teaching, you may opt to assist with class delivery.

Live Performance
This unit is the final directed performance of the course. Led by professional directors and senior staff, you will work on a live staged performance, to be shown to an invited audience.

Screen Performance
For the culmination of your studies in screen acting, you’ll work on a film performance through scenes (and monologues), from commissioned or published screenplays. Additionally, you are likely to be called upon to crew as required. Screen acting sometimes requires an intimate relationship with the camera as well as with your scene partner. You will be taught skills in creating intimacy safely and consensually.

Opportunity week - Professional Development 5
This is an intensive week of industry talks and networking opportunities. Speakers may include UCA alumni, stage and screen actors and directors, casting directors, Equity, Spotlight and more. The week will culminate in a tutorial where the student can reflect on the ideas and information and get personalised career advice from a member of the team.

Final Major Project – Practice as Research
This final unit engages you with several periods of sustained research on an individually negotiated subject. This will most likely be related to the contextual and/or theoretical concerns of your chosen areas of practice. Once you have your research title agreed, you’ll explore it through the following typical assessments:

  • An essay in which you’ll articulate your research
  • A performance project to practically explore and investigate the issue, concern, practice or theory of the topic
  • A viva voce to examine or discuss a critical reflection of the process you undertook for your research, the exploration of your analysis and your modes of expression

 

This course offers the opportunity to study abroad for part of your second year. To find out more about studying abroad as part of your course please see the Study Abroad section:

Tuition fees - 2023 entry

UK students:

  • Integrated Foundation Year - £9,250
  • BA course - £9,250

EU students:

  • Integrated International Foundation Year - £9,250 (see fee discount information)
  • BA course - £9,250 (see fee discount information)

International students:

  • Integrated International Foundation Year - £16,950
  • BA course - £16,950

If you opt to study the Professional Practice Year, for 2023 you will be required to pay a reduced tuition fee of £1,850 (UK students) and £3,390 (International students). You will also incur additional travel and accommodation costs during your Professional Practice year. The University will provide you with further advice and guidance about this.

Additional course costs
In addition to the tuition fees there may be other costs for your course. The things that you are likely to need to budget for to get the most out of a creative arts education will include books, printing costs, occasional or optional study trips and/or project materials. These costs will vary according to the nature of your project work and the individual choices that you make. Please see the Additional Course Costs section of your Course Information for details of the costs you may incur.

Further information
For more detailed information about our course fees and any financial support you may be entitled to please see our fees and finance pages.

The fees listed here are correct for the stated academic year only. Costs may increase each year during a student’s period of continued registration on course in line with inflation (subject to any maximum regulated tuition fee limit). Any adjustment for continuing students will be at or below the RPI-X forecast rate.

Industry placement
offer

Preparing graduates for successful careers underpins everything we do, and all students on this course may be offered support to identify and prepare for an industry placement according to their individual needs. We’ll draw on our wide range of contacts within the creative industries to help provide you with opportunities that align with your interests and future career aspirations.

Course specifications

Please note, syllabus content indicated is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change in line with our Student Terms and Conditions for example, as required by external professional bodies or to improve the quality of the course.

Facilities

This course has an on-campus performance space and study spaces for group working, tutorials, seminars and technical workshops. It is also in partnership with the Farnham Maltings and the larger performances are housed there. The Maltings is a leading performance venue located in the heart of Farnham with a network of professional theatre makers based there and regular live and screened performances which give Acting and Performance students a valuable live/screen experience every week.

Acting & Performance student workshop

Black Box Studio

Acting & Performance course space

Recording studio

Career opportunities

Career opportunities

Taught by lecturers with professional acting or directing experience, you’ll quickly learn what it takes to be an industry professional. Our degree course is designed by professionals to train contemporary actors, and our valuable industry links include:

  • Farnham Maltings
  • British Actors’ Equity
  • Drama UK (the body that oversees drama training across the country).

Alongside (or as an alternative to) theatre, TV, radio or film work, a portfolio career for the professional freelance actor may also include:

  • Acting in corporate films, and live role-play in business training
  • Forming a company to create and stage your own work
  • Commercials (film or audio)
  • Voicing computer games and animations
  • Creating original material for Image Capture projects
  • Community projects such as theatre in schools.

You may also like to consider further study at postgraduate level.

Jamahyl Chan-Ellis
Jamahyl Chan-Ellis

"The course has been an amazing, invigorating experience especially the whole university journey as a whole from moving from London to Farnham and adapting to a new environment and engaging with new peers"

Jamahyl celebrates National Theatre debut

Acting and Performance graduate Jamahyl Chan-Ellis shares his experience of his most prestigious job yet – performing at the National Theatre.

Read Jamahyl's story
Entry requirements

Entry requirements

BA (Hons) course
BA (Hons) course with Professional Practice Year

The standard entry requirements* for these courses are one of the following:

  • 112 new UCAS tariff points, see accepted qualifications
  • Pass at Foundation Diploma in Art & Design (Level 3 or 4)
  • Distinction, Merit, Merit at BTEC Extended Diploma / BTEC National Extended Diploma
  • Merit at UAL Extended Diploma
  • 112 new UCAS tariff points from an accredited Access to Higher Education Diploma in appropriate subject
  • 27-30 total points in the International Baccalaureate Diploma with at least 15 IB points at Higher level, see more information about IB entry requirements.

And four GCSE passes at grade 9-4/A*-C  including English (or Functional Skills English/Key Skills Communication Level 2).

Other relevant and equivalent Level 3 UK and international qualifications are considered on an individual basis, and we encourage students from diverse educational backgrounds to apply.   


BA (Hons) course with Integrated Foundation Year
BA (Hons) course with Integrated Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year

The standard entry requirements for these courses are one of the following:

  • 64 new UCAS tariff points, see accepted qualifications
  • Pass at Foundation Diploma in Art & Design (Level 3 or 4)
  • Merit, Pass, Pass at BTEC Extended Diploma / BTEC National Extended Diploma
  • Pass at UAL Extended Diploma
  • 64 new UCAS tariff points from an accredited Access to Higher Education Diploma in appropriate subject
  • 24 points from the International Baccalaureate, see more information about IB entry requirements.

And four GCSE passes at grade A*-C and/or grade 4-9 including English (or Functional Skills English/Key Skills Communication Level 2).

Other relevant and equivalent Level 3 UK and international qualifications are considered on an individual basis, and we encourage students from diverse educational backgrounds to apply. 


BA (Hons) course with Integrated International Foundation Year
BA (Hons) course with Integrated International Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year

For these courses you need to have completed 12 years* of schooling (with good grades) and show strong evidence of your ability to successfully complete the programme and progress onto your chosen degree. 


*We occasionally make offers which are lower than the standard entry criteria, to students who have faced difficulties that have affected their performance and who were expected to achieve higher results. We consider the strength of our applicants’ portfolios, as well as their grades -  in these cases, a strong portfolio is especially important.

Don't meet the international entry requirements or English language requirements?
You may be able to enter the course through the following entry pathways:

BA (Hons) course
BA (Hons) course with Professional Practice Year

For these courses, we’ll need to see an audition, this will be an individual piece (for a maximum of two minutes); either: a short piece of contemporary text (play or screenplay); or a piece of Shakespeare; or an original piece you have written. We’ll invite you to attend an Applicant Day so you can have your audition in person, meet the course team and learn more about your course. If you would prefer to upload your audition digitally, there is also the option to submit it online via your UCA Applicant Portal. Further information will be provided once you have applied.


BA (Hons) course with Integrated Foundation Year
BA (Hons) course with Integrated Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year

These courses don't require an audition. If you receive an offer, you’ll be invited to attend an Applicant Day where you can meet the course team and learn more about the course.


BA (Hons) course with Integrated International Foundation Year
BA (Hons) course with Integrated International Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year

These courses don’t require an audition. If you receive an offer, you’ll be invited to attend an Applicant Day where you can meet the course team and learn more about the course. 


More portfolio advice

 

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Please use the following fields to help select the right application link for you:
  • UCAS Institution

    C93

  • UCAS Code for 3 year/standard

    W410

  • UCAS Code for course with Professional Practice

    W412

  • UCAS Code for course with Integrated Foundation Year

    W41A

  • UCAS Code for course with Integrated International Foundation Year

    W41C

  • UCAS Code for course with Integrated Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year

    W41B

  • UCAS Code for course with Integrated International Foundation Year and Professional Practice Year

    W41D

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