Birkbeck, University of London

Course Introduction

Arts and humanities courses at Birkbeck are ranked third best in London and 11th in the UK in the Times Higher Education 2015'16 World University Subject Rankings. Our School of Arts is in the top 5 in the country and our Department of English and Humanities is a top'rated research department in the areas of both English literature and creative writing. We offer an invigorating, innovative and creative educational experience, built on our international reputation for leading'edge research. You could be studying in a building that was once home to Virginia Woolf and frequented by members of the Bloomsbury Group ' now home to our School of Arts ' and be taught by leading novelists, dramatists and artists. Our School of Arts building in Gordon Square contains dedicated theatre studies teaching rooms and performance space. Based at the heart of one of the world's most exciting cities, we combine lectures, seminars and workshops with visits to theatres and other cultural and artistic institutions, and we frequently collaborate with leading arts, cultural, theatre and dance and performing arts organisations, allowing you to ground your studies in real'world practice. You will be able to attend events and seminars hosted by the Birkbeck Centre for Contemporary Theatre, enabling you to hear about and experience the latest research and practice from leading scholars and practitioners in the field. Our links to important theatre companies and artists directly inform work in class. Past speakers have included: Tim Crouch, Grayson Perry, Diane Torr, Lucy Bailey, Gemma Brockis, Roy Williams, David Edgar, Samuel West, Josie Rourke and Tom Stoppard. We offer a range of world'class research resources and study support services for our students. Birkbeck is different: classes are in the evening, so you can work, volunteer or do your own thing during the day. Record numbers of students are doing just that and getting a head start on their future careers.

Course Modules

Year 1: Theatre languages; portfolio on London theatre histories; preliminary English module. Year 2: Core module: theories of theatricality and performance. Years 2'4: 3 optional modules from a range including: censorship and anti'theatricality; community and youth theatre; cross'dressing in performance; empire and theatre; histories and theories of the audience; musical theatre; political theatre; technological performance; the ethics of directing; the West End; portfolios on: London theatre spaces (year 2); London theatre policies (year 3); contemporary theatre in London (year 4); 4 English modules. Year 4: Research project in either theatre studies or English; the theatre studies research project focuses on theatre in London.

Duration & Attendance Qualification Tuition fees
3 years
Full Time
BA (Hons) £13,000  Academic year. First year overseas fees
3 years
Full Time
BA (Hons) £9,000  Academic year. First year home fees

Qualifications required:

  • Mature entry
  • SQA Higher
  • GCE A-level
  • Tariff 120
  • SQA Advanced Higher
  • GCE AS-level
  • Course specific