This MA addresses the historical, political, theoretical and ethical issues of applied theatre and develops your ability to contextualise, critique and create.
Our aim is to prepare students to be collaborative, responsive, imaginative, politically engaged and culturally aware artist practitioners. The course is aimed at newly-emerging practitioners with a background in theatre, education, activism or social change, as well as at more established practitioners who want to reflect, refresh and develop their skills. We actively encourage the sharing of skills and expertise among our multi-national group of students. We prioritise applicants with some experience in the arts, education, activism or social care, and it is rare that we take applicants directly from their first degree.
Together we explore the ways in which theatre and performance is created by diverse groups of people in a variety of community, social and educational settings: in schools or on the streets, in children’s homes and elderly care, in conflict zones, conferences, crèches and youth clubs, pupil referral units and prisons, women’s refuges and refugee centres, hospitals and hostels – anywhere groups of people meet and interact.
Applied theatre is an umbrella term for a range of exciting worldwide performance forms concerned with personal and social change.
The term embraces: theatre of the oppressed, community theatre, theatre-in-education, drama in education, theatre for development, prison theatre, intercultural arts, intergenerational arts, theatre in museums, archives and heritage sites, story-telling, reminiscence theatre, conflict resolution. The work often moves across art forms. This is not a definitive list, as it is a field that is dynamic and changing.
The MA considers case studies from the UK and from across the globe. Central to this investigation are: questions of identity; representation; discrimination; health; equality; human rights; opportunity; access; social inclusion/exclusion; participation; ethics; evaluation and documentation; aesthetics and the role of the artist.
The course is structured so that practice and theory constantly respond to one another, through practical classes and seminars. All students undertake a placement in a recognised host organisation where you'll work with experienced practitioners, and learn from the inside how participatory arts organisations function.
We have active partnerships with many companies, and the majority of the tutors, including the convenor, are active artists, with a variety of arts practices in performance, community and social settings.
In the autumn term we look at the roots of Applied Theatre in Education, in Social and Political Change, and in Community. Classes include work with Geese Theatre on their use of mask in Prisons, Drama and Theatre in Education techniques with Gail Babb of Talawa Theatre, intergenerational arts practices with Convenor Sue Mayo, and the use of Drama to explore Domestic Violence, with Tender. Throughout this term students are also engaged in skills-sharing sessions in order to pool their knowledge and expertise.
In the Spring Term Tutor Raj Bhari, from Talk for Change, leads a module on creative approaches to Community Cohesion, Conflict Resolution, and the artist as activist. We have a short festival of art forms, with classes in song, puppetry and dance- and a residency shared with students of the MA in performance making, working across modules with artists of distinction from within the Goldsmith’s staff and beyond.
Throughout the practical sessions we work with students to develop their facilitation, devising,- project planning and management skills with attention to issues such as group dynamics; power and leadership; inclusion; accessibility; equality; conflict; intercultural practice; safe space and the ethics of touch.
In the summer term students design and lead a weekend of workshops for a public audience.
Histories, Theories and Contexts seminars
This contextual strand enables us consider the thinking behind our embodied knowledge. Through a series of seminars, we consider: the development of applied methods from political theatre; radical and celebratory arts; drama and theatre-in-education; community theatre; prison theatre; therapeutic creative practices and the legacy of Augusto Boal. We study the growing body of writing on applied theatre and its practitioners, and theatre theory. We consider local and international case studies; we read, discuss, watch videos and experience live performances.
Complementary Contextual lectures
Students also choose a lecture based Option module from one of the other exciting MA programmes. Previous modules have included, African Theatre, Performance Praxis, Radical Performance, and The Reflecxtive Practitioner. Our students can also take a specialist applied module led by Danny Braverman, on Disability Theatre, examining the scope and radical nature of disability theatre.
The Convenor, Sue Mayo, supports students to locate and develop a placement in a recognised host organisation. On the placement students further the skills they have practiced on the programme, whilst dealing with the challenges of a professional context. Placement hosts include London Bubble, Magic Me, Resonate. Greenwich & Lewisham Young People's Theatre, Talawa Theatre, Pan-arts, Crisis, Ovalhouse, Green Shoes Arts, The Young Vic, MIND, CEN8, Lewisham Youth Theatre and Spare Tyre.
As part of our commitment to student’s employability, we offer up to five workshops covering various areas directly relevant to workplaces where drama may be applied; for example: planning and managing projects, child protection and working with vulnerable adults, ethics, evaluation, setting up a theatre company or working as an independent artist.
The MA Applied Theatre has five points of assessment:
These assessments count towards 80% of the final mark.
The remaining 20% is derived from assessment of the two shared complementary/contextual modules, which include Disability Theatre, Performance Praxis, African Theatre, Musical Theatre and Cultural Theory.
If you’re passionate about using theatre to help stimulate processes of change in the lives of individuals and communities then this is the course for you.
You’ll gain the skills to become an applied theatre practitioner. Through practice and theory you will explore applied theatre in all of its forms including community theatre, theatre-in-education, theatre and health, prison theatre, theatre for development and the arts therapies.
You’ll gain a broad understanding of some of the wider issues faced by applied theatre practitioners including ethics, boundaries, evaluation, policy and funding and have the opportunity to apply your learning in a placement context.
Core modules will look at practice-based workshop techniques and the development of facilitation skills; concepts and theories underpinning applied theatre and interventionist practice; and research training. You will also choose from optional modules that will allow you to pursue your personal interests.
Our purpose-built landmark building [email protected] houses two professional-standard and publicly licensed theatres that regularly host work by both students and visiting theatre companies – one of which is a technically advanced research facility.
Find out more about [email protected].
Our School includes rehearsal rooms, two black-box studios, costume construction and wardrobe stores, a design studio and scenic workshop, video editing and sound recording suits as well as computer aided design.
Our links with external organisations are among our biggest strengths, giving you the chance to take performance to different environments outside of the university context. We’re always developing new relationships with partners in different contexts to offer you more opportunities to participate.
Opera North, West Yorkshire Playhouse, the National Media Museum, Leeds City Council, Red Ladder Theatre Company, Limehouse Productions, Phoenix Dance Theatre, the National Coal Mining Museum for England, HMP New Hall, Blah Blah Blah Theatre Company, the BBC and HMP Wetherby are all among our partners.
Core modules allow you to develop the skills to facilitate workshops with different groups of people in a variety of contexts, along with an understanding of the historical and philosophical underpinnings of applied theatre practice, the key ideas within this practice and some of the complex issues that can arise.
As you progress through the course you will have the opportunity to apply your practical and theoretical learning within an applied theatre context through a placement. This may be with an established applied theatre organisation or in a setting where applied theatre is practiced such as a hospital, school or young offenders’ institute.
Alongside these modules you will develop research skills through a core module alongside students on other programmes within the school. You’ll explore a range of research methods and consider the roles and responsibilities of the researcher, ethics, data gathering and analysis. You are also able to choose an optional module to further pursue your own personal areas of interest.
In the latter part of the programme you will work closely with your supervisor to undertake a research project on a topic of your choice, allowing you to demonstrate the knowledge and skills you’ve gained. This could be a conventional written dissertation or a piece of practice-led research with a written commentary.
If you choose to study part-time, you will study over a longer period and take fewer modules in each year.
We use a range of teaching and learning methods including practical workshops, group learning, lectures, seminars, tutorials and fieldwork. Independent learning is central to this programme, allowing you to integrate your learning and develop your understanding and skills.
You’ll be assessed using a range of methods including practical assessments, written work, presentations and reflective logs. This diversity allows you to begin to integrate theory and practice, develop a range of skills and become a reflective practitioner.
Applied theatre is a wide field, which is constantly developing in response to social and economic changes.
This programme will equip you with a range of skills within the area of applied theatre. You’ll have an understanding of applied theatre and its use as an intervention as well as advanced skills in communication, collaboration, presentation, analysis and research. You’ll be able to set up, lead and facilitate workshops as an applied theatre practitioner with diverse groups of people in a variety of health, social and community contexts.
You may decide to apply your learning in the context of arts administration or arts policy work. You may wish to further your understanding by undertaking specialist professional training in areas like the arts therapies (dramatherapy, dance movement psychotherapy, music therapy or art psychotherapy), play therapy, teaching; or pursue your research interests at PhD level.
We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.
The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.
The MA in Creative Writing and Education has been designed for writers of poetry, fiction and life-writing who are interested in education and learning. If you are keen to publish your own writing or you're looking to use your creative writing to help people learn or just developing your skills and knowledge then this programme could be right for you.
The MA in Creative Writing and Education offers you the chance to:
You may be given the opportunity to contribute to:
Who is the programme aimed at?
You might be a teacher who writes; a writer who works in education; a poet, a novelist, a short story writer or an author of autobiography who wants to learn more about the connections between creative writing and education.
The Spoken Word Education Training Programme is led by Jacob Sam-La Rose (Artistic Director). All Spoken Word Educators need to first apply to the MA in Creative Writing and Education programme and, if they are accepted, they will then be interviewed for the Spoken Word Education Training programme.
Full-time: you will complete 4 modules in one year plus a dissertation, amounting 180 credits – full details of the modules are in the Overview section below. This can mean committing yourself to attending evening seminars and lectures twice a week in the autumn and spring terms for 10 weeks, and a number of one-to-one tutorials for your dissertation.
Part-time: you can spread your modules for the course over two years. This could mean attending seminars/lectures once a week during the autumn and spring terms for the two years, and then spacing your dissertation tutorials over two terms.
You'll have the opportunity to develop your own creative writing practices and explore a range of educational approaches towards creative writing.
You'll work with practising and published creative writing lecturers and education lecturers in collaboration with professionals working in local cultural institutions.
You'll participate in creative and life writing workshops and research creative writing pedagogies in classrooms and educational settings.
You have to complete 180 credits points, made up from:
Practitioners who already have existing M-level credits may transfer these on to the MA.
Assessment for the Workshop in Creative and Life Writing module is by the submission of a piece or pieces of creative or life-writing of 5,000 words plus a critical account of how you have structured and developed your work.
Assessment for the Educational Studies modules is by the submission of assignments.
You'll also be assessed on a project-based dissertation.
The programme will enable you to develop creative writing skills to a potentially publishable level, participate in local cultural events as writers, and develop advanced theoretical and critical skills in creative writing pedagogy.
The programme provides and enhances continuing professional development in creative writing for educators and teachers, opening up opportunities to work with local cultural institutions and schools, and enriching current professional practice.
Previous students have helped their careers by doing this MA, going on to work in business, arts organisations, theatre, Spoken Word and diverse educational settings. Previous students include Niall Bourke who won the 2015 Costa Short Story Award, Joshua Seighal shortlisted for the National Literacy Trust Award 2015 and a number of students have published their academic research in prestigious scholarly journals.
Feedback from the students is overwhelmingly positive, with many saying doing the MA has been a life-changing experience.
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.