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Acting BA (Hons) at Drama St Mary’s is a rigorous, full-time course that equips you for a career in acting.

  • Drama St Mary's - unlike other drama schools - does not charge an audition fee
  • Free pre-UCAS applications auditions and interviews with constructive feedback
  • Central London showcases
  • Drama School Training in a university context, offering personal support and tutorial supervision

Why study Acting?

This course helps you develop practical, holistic acting skills. Our new blended learning delivery model looks to maximise face-to-face contact, with the majority of work scheduled in our campus studios. Face-to-face teaching is supplemented with a full programme of online learning activity. We regularly review our offer to ensure that we can continue to work in a COVID-secure environment and students can expect in excess of 18 hours of scheduled classes each week.

Our Voice and Movement classes develop the core skills you will need as an actor. Acting classes hone your imagination, technique and stage and screen craft. In the Performance classes you can be playful, experimental, spontaneous and collaborative. The Contextual Studies stream investigates where your work fits into the wider world, both past and present.

In your first year you will build a firm base for your training. This serves as a base for developing your craft in year two through in-house productions and workshops. In your final year you begin your career with public productions, links to industry professionals and a graduate portfolio.

Why St Mary's?

Drama St Mary’s is The University Drama School. We provide the best of Drama School practical training in a university setting. You can enjoy all the best bits of being at university – the campus services, accommodation and being part of a community of students and societies.

Our Greater London campus is on the doorstep of numerous local theatres, and we even have our own theatre at The Exchange.

We have regular guest lectures from leading industry names, and plenty of successful graduates now making a living in the acting profession.

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Course lead

Mark Griffin
Head of Department - Humanities and Creative Industries

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Entry requirements

96-112UCAS points required

Check how many points your grades are worth

Calculate your total UCAS points

80 UCAS points should include at least two B grades at A Level (or equivalent). 

We will make you an offer if you are within the tariff band range and you meet subject-specific requirements (where applicable).

For undergraduate programmes we will take into account subjects studied at Level 3, your GCSEs (or equivalent) profile, relevant non-academic achievements outlined in your personal statement, references and your motivation for study.

International requirements

International students should check our country-specific pages for equivalents. If English is not your first language you will need to achieve an IELTS score of 6.0 overall with no less than 5.5 in any section (or equivalent).

Auditions and interviews

Auditions and interviews are part of the application process for BA Acting. You will be asked to perform a two-minute monologue of your choosing (classical or contemporary) and be interviewed about your interest in the course and your possible routes for development beyond graduating. There are also opportunities on these days to take part in a group workshop, meet the whole staff team, other students already on the programme and tour the facilities.

There are also opportunities on these days to take part in a group workshop, meet the Acting staff and current students, and tour the facilities.

We also offer pre-UCAS auditions on Open Days where you can audition, receive feedback and be informed whether you would be accepted onto our courses (should you choose to apply to us through UCAS). If you're interested in Pre-UCAS auditions please join us on an Open Day, where you can sign up.

2022 entry audition dates

  • Saturday 12th March, 10am
  • Saturday 19th March, 10am
  • Saturday 30th April, 10am

UCAS Personal statement support

Create your UCAS personal statement through our online builder and we'll email you a copy of your completed version at the end.

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Course content

Year one

  •  Core
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Year two

  •  Core
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Year three

  •  Core
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Please note: it is possible that a module listed on the website will not be able to run due to reasons beyond our control. For more information please refer to our course information disclaimer.

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Career opportunities

By the end of this Acting degree, you will have had a professional training appropriate to a career in theatre and be equipped with creative, analytical, communication, team-working and organisational skills relevant to a wide range of graduate employment.

Recent graduates have found employment as actors both on stage and on screen including American television or London’s West End.

The Careers Service has more information on careers and postgraduate study options available to Acting students who have started their studies at St Mary’s.

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How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

You'll be taught on our beautiful and historic campus located in Twickenham, London.

The course is predominantly (90%) taught through practical classes and workshops, as well as rehearsals for productions.

The Contextual Studies strand of the degree is taught in lecture seminars (10%) throughout the course and links to the work you do in practical classes, giving you a wider understanding of the theatre.

Class sizes are usually 20 to 25 students, and year three productions run in casts of 10 to 12. 

Teaching breakdown

Learning on the course is made up through a combination of:

  • Contact time: 64%
  • Guided learning: 18%
  • Independent study: 18%

Independent study is a key feature of your degree and is crucial to furthering your knowledge.

You will receive your timetable a week before teaching is due to start at the latest.

Assessment methods

Acting, Performance, Voice and Movement modules (comprising 90% of the course) are assessed through practical exercises, performances and workshop demonstrations. The Contextual Studies modules are assessed by essay (two essays across three years) and graduate portfolio in your third year.


We adhere to the university’s policy of providing feedback on assessments within three weeks.

See how your final degree mark is calculated...

Compensated passes

Please refer to the information on compensated passes throughout your degree as outlined in the academic regulations.

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Fees and funding

2023/24 fees

  • Home: TBC
  • International: TBC

*Please note: these fees are annual and may increase in line with inflation each year subject to the Governments review of Higher Education Funding

Information about tuition fees, student loans and funding your studies can be found within our fees and funding section.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken.

For further information about additional costs please see our additional costs webpage


The Stage are offering two tuition fee scholarships for the Acting BA (Hons) degree programme. The scholarships will cover the full cost of tuition fees for three years of study.

A range of additional scholarships and bursaries are available to new undergraduate students. This includes:

Living costs

A guide to your living costs has been created by our Student Funding Team.

Accommodation costs vary depending on whether you opt for an en suite room and on-site catering. Take a look at our accommodation options and the prices you can expect to pay.

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Meet your lecturers

Meet the team

  • Mark Griffin
    Head of Department - Humanities and Creative Industries
  • Tina Bicât
    Costume Technician
  • Dan Ford
    Programme Director - Acting
  • Francesco Gabriele
    Lecturer - Drama
  • Heather Hartnett
    Senior Lecturer - Drama
  • Sola Oyeleye
    Senior Lecturer - Drama
  • Dr Michelle Paull
    Associate Professor in Drama
  • Kasia Zaremba-Byrne
    Programme Director - Acting

Academic spotlight

Francesco Gabriele (Lecturer - Drama)

Francesco Gabriele

Drama St Mary's is a great, small and friendly environment filled with creativity. A hidden gem in UK Actor's training. 

When I started to teach Acting for Screen, I was very inspired by the commitment and professionalism of all the staff and by the talent of the students. I think that's fantastic that students have the chance to experience rigorous Conservatory training, without missing the overall University experience.

Read Francesco's story

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Further information

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Visit the campus

Upcoming open days

Attending an open day is a fantastic opportunity to get an insight into what life is like as a St Mary's student. During the day you'll have the chance to:

  • Speak to current students to hear about their experiences so far
  • Meet your future academics to put a name and a face to who you'll be learning from
  • Take a tour of the University and the on-campus accommodation options
  • Get involved with activities going on across campus as you explore new surroundings

Book your place now

Campus tours

There are plenty of opportunities for you to explore the campus, even if you can't make it to an Open Day. We run campus tours every Wednesday at 12pm. If you'd like to join us for one of these tours please register your place for your preferred day.

Virtual tour

We know that for it's important to you to see where you'll be living and studying before you make your decision. However, we also know that for many people it's not always easy to make it to the campus.

That's why we've developed a virtual tour of campus, allowing you to explore that facilities and the beautiful views that we have to offer.

Launch the virtual tour

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UCAS Application Timeline