The aims of the Drama Department of Sacred Heart College are as follows;

  • To promote as far as possible, Drama as an appealing and enjoyable subject through the following mediums: Drama as a discrete subject; as an active learning agent throughout the wider school curriculum; School Production; Local Competitions; Visiting Workshops; and Theatre Visits,
  • To provide the pupils with the opportunity to develop an ability to use drama to make sense of the world by engaging emotionally, imaginatively and intellectually in the exploration of cultivation and human issues,
  • To provide pupils with the opportunity to develop an ability to use dramatic skills appropriate to audience context, purpose and task,
  • To provide pupils with the opportunity to develop the ability to demonstrate a critical understanding of their own work and that of other people.


Teaching Staff
  • Mrs A Conway
  • Mrs M Boyd
Performing Arts

Performing Arts is a growth industry in Northern Ireland. It encompasses drama, dance, music and any genre that involves performing to an audience. From the latest global blockbuster to local drama groups and street theatre, performing arts forms an important part of our leisure industry.


Performing Arts relies as much on production as performance. The show can’t go on without the work of technicians, managers, choreographers, designers, promoters, agents and administrators. Performing arts offers roles for those who prefer the technical aspects as well as those who aspire to entertain others with their talents.


Participating in Performing Arts develops self-confidence, self-awareness, personal discipline and creativity. Studying the performing arts enhances our ability to:

  • interpret and apply ideas;
  • receive direction and criticism; and
  • understand the demands placed on professionals in the industry.


Performing Arts is a collaborative discipline involving teamwork and self-management, which are important aspects of any role. It offers students the opportunity to develop production and performance skills and their own personal style.


The Performing Arts industry offers diverse employment opportunities in, for example, dance, drama, music, theatre, film, television, puppetry, costume design, set design, direction, sound engineering, lighting, make-up or special effects.


Key Stage 3

Drama enables pupils to explore, develop and express ideas and concepts which will help them make sense of reality.


Drama is a life skill and a creative art form. It helps pupils develop their ability to use voice, movement, gesture and facial expression, in acting, mime, dance drama and improvisation. They can express and manage their thoughts and feelings – shared and experienced – while working in a safe and controlled environment.


The development of these skills encourages self-confidence and self-awareness. It promotes the development of the individual in a group context: roles and ideas are negotiated, problems solved and decisions made together. Drama often leads to performance for a wider audience.


Young people should have opportunities, through the contexts opposite, to use dramatic skills appropriate to audience, context, purpose and task. They should have opportunities to:

  • engage with a range of stimuli to develop critical and creative thinking skills;
  • adopt a role;
  • take part in improvisation;
  • devise scripts and use drama forms and strategies effectively to explore and present ideas;
  • employ sign, symbol, metaphor and image;
  • engage in movement and/or dance;
  • experience live and recorded drama and respond to a variety of texts;
  • begin to develop an appreciation of theatre styles, genres and vocabulary;
  • explore characterisation through use of masks, costume, props, puppets and electronic media;
  • evaluate their own and others’ work.
  • research and manage information effectively to investigate issues, using Mathematics and ICT where appropriate;
  • show deeper understanding by thinking critically and flexibly, solving problems and making informed decisions,
  • using Mathematics and ICT where appropriate;
  • demonstrate creativity and initiative when developing ideas and following them through;
  • work effectively with others;
  • demonstrate self-management by working systematically, persisting with tasks, evaluating and improving own performance.
  • communicate effectively in oral, visual, written and ICT formats, showing clear awareness of audience and purpose.


GCSE Drama helps students develop an understanding of many creative and challenging activities.

Candidates are free to choose any of the controlled assessment options offered in this specification, including:

● Devised Thematic Work

● Physical Theatre

● Costume

● Lighting and Sound

● Improvisation

● Set Design

● Make-up and Masks

● Stage Management.


Assessment for the controlled assessment takes into account the student's contribution during the preparation period as well as their final performance or design. Teachers are also able to choose which texts they choose for study and they are able to take students to any live theatre production in preparation for the terminal written exam.


The content of this specification provides a smooth transition to A-level courses in Drama and Theatre Studies.


Unit 1: Written Paper – 1 hour 30 mins; 40%

The written paper comprises three sections:

A – Practical work completed during the course

B – Study and performance of a scripted play

C – Study of a live theatre production seen


Candidates must answer Question 1 from Section A and choose one further question from either Section B or Section C.


Unit 2: Practical Work; 60%

Candidates are required to present practical work for two controlled assessment options, each with a weighting of 30% (60 marks each).


Controlled assessment options:

● Devised Thematic Work

● Improvisation

● Physical Theatre

● Costume

● Properties

● Puppets

● Sound

●  Acting

● Theatre in Education

● Set Design

● Make-up

● Masks

● Lighting

● Stage Management





GCE Performing Arts has two levels: AS and A2. Students can choose to take the AS course as a stand-alone qualification without progressing to A2. To obtain the full A Level qualification, they must also complete the A2 course.


In Unit AS 1, students develop their skills and apply them to practical contexts. They must produce a portfolio of evidence, including research, a skills audit, a risk assessment and a record and evaluation of their work.


Unit AS 2, consists of planning and realising a Performing Arts event. Students produce a supporting document to record their work as they plan, develop and realise their performing arts event.


In Unit A2 1, students learn about planning for employment in the Performing Arts industry. They produce a promotional portfolio and take part in an interview. Performance students have an audition and production students give a presentation.


In Unit A2 2, students form a production company to research, plan, promote and realise a Performing Arts event in response to a commission brief. They produce a record of work, which includes a research report, promotional materials and evidence of tasks completed. Students continue in their production or performance role and, as a group, perform their arts event.


This specification aims to help students to:

  • acquire knowledge and understanding of the processes and products of the Performing Arts industry;
  • acquire skills and techniques in specialist areas;
  • apply skills and techniques in work-related contexts; and
  • analyse and evaluate their own and others’ practice and ideas.


Jobs directly related to a degree in Drama and Theatre:


Stage Manager

Arts Administrator

Drama Teacher

Drama Therapist

Television Production Assistant

Radio Presenter

Theatre Director


Jobs where a degree in rama and theatre may be useful:

Youth & Community Worker

Personnel Manager

Social Worker


Marketing Manager

Charities Administrator



Transferable Skills

Studying Drama develops transferable skills which many employers and course administrators outside of Drama consider more beneficial than the specific course content.


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