Higher Drama


Higher Drama provides opportunities for learners to develop their skills creating and presenting drama. The Course focuses on the development and use of complex drama and production skills. Learners will develop knowledge and understanding of the cultural and social influences on drama as well as being able to analyse a text.

The aims of the Course are to enable learners to:

♦ generate and communicate thoughts and ideas when creating drama

♦ develop a knowledge and understanding of the social and cultural influences on drama

♦ develop complex skills in presenting and analysing drama

♦ develop knowledge and understanding of complex production skills when presenting drama

♦ explore form, structure, genre and style

Course Details

This course consists of two core units as well as a practical and written examination.

Drama Skills

Outcome 1: Apply complex drama skills

  • Responding to stimulus, including text, to develop idea for drama
  • Exploring form, genre, structure and style
  • Developing an communicating ideas

Outcome 2: Contribute creatively to the drama

2.1 Planning, devising and directing a drama

2.2 Using complex acting skills to portray character to an audience

2.3 Evaluating own work and that of others

Students will, as a group, use creative drama skills to investigate and explore a variety of stimuli. They will then devise their own drama, taking individual directorial responsibility for an identifiable section and will present the end-product to an audience.

Production Skills

Outcome 1: Explore complex production skills in drama by:

1.1 Responding to Stimuli, including stimuli text, to explore ideas for a production

1.2 Selecting ideas for their chosen production roles

Outcome 2: Apply complex production skills in drama by:

2.1 Developing appropriate ideas and production skills within their chosen production roles.

2.2 Demonstrate complex production skills within selected production roles

2.3 Evaluating their own work and that of others.

The focus within this unit is exploring all the different production skills whether they be acting, directing or design skills. The learners will use these skills to enhance a drama presentation. Learners will work with others on a production in two areas: acting, directing, design, lighting, sound, costume, make-up and hair or props. They will learn how to evaluate their progress and that of other learners.


Component 1 — Practical Exam

The practical exam will have 60 marks (60% of the total mark). The practical exam has two sections.

  • Section 1 will have 50 marks.
    • For the performance in the chosen role of acting, directing or design.
  • Section 2 will have 10 marks.
    • These marks are awarded for the preparation for performance.

Component 2 — Written Exam

The question paper will have 40 marks (40% of the total mark). This question paper has two sections.

  • Section 1 will have 20 marks.
    • This section will deal with the analysis of a selected text which will be ‘The Crucible’.
  • Section 2 will have 20 marks.
    • This section will take the form of a written analysis of a performance that the learner has seen which will be, ‘The Curious Incident of The Dog In The Night-time’.

Total 100 Marks



In order to assess each unit there are a number of assessment tasks that are spread out across each unit. The times that they will be assessed are detailed on the time line below.

Drama Skills

Assessment Task 1 – Select one idea to develop into a performance piece from a range of stimuli. (Assessment Standard 1.1)

Assessment Task 2 – Discuss and make decisions as a group on storyline/plot, characters, setting, form, genre, structure, structure and style. (Assessment Standard 1.2, 1.3)

Assessment Task 3 – Direct their section of their play and make and acting contribution within other sections of the play. (Assessment Standard 2.1)

Assessment Task 4 – Apply complex drama skills to contribute to a drama in front of an audience. (Assessment Standard 2.2)

Assessment Task 5 – Evaluate the effectiveness of their use of drama skills in their rehearsal process and contribution to the drama. (Assessment Standard 2.3)

Assessment Tasks 1 & 2 will be recorded in a log book with information for Tasks 3 & 4 recorded in log books and a drama diary. The teacher will observe the pupil directing and will record one rehearsal as evidence. The final presentations will also be recorded. Assessment Task 5 will take the form of a written evaluation essay which will be marked and held as evidence.

Production Skills

Assessment Task 1 – Responding to stimuli including text. They must explore ideas for a production using a range of complex production skills. They should explore two production roles. They must pick two production roles and generate ideas. (Assessment Standard 1.1, 1.2)

Assessment Task 2 – Having selected their roles the pupils must apply their skills during the rehearsal process by communicating ideas and developing their performance concepts. (Assessment Standard 2.1)

Assessment Task 3 – Apply your complex production skills within a presentation of a textual extract to an audience. (Assessment Standard 2.2)

Assessment Task 4 – Evaluate your use of the complex productions skills and your contribution to the drama and that of others. (Assessment Standard 2.3)

Assessment Tasks 1&2 will be kept in a scrap book which will show evidence the pupils’ process from conception to performance. Both skills for Task 3 will be recorded and held as evidence. Finally Task 4 will take the form of a written evaluation essay which will be marked and retained as evidence.



 Term 1

Read and explore the Crucible

Summer homework – create plays from 5 given themes

Term 2 – Drama Skills

Devise and perform a play from the given themes. You will be given ownership of one scene to direct.

Fill in the Drama Skills Booklets throughout whilst keeping a Drama Diary.

Evaluate Drama Skills unit

Section 1 essays will be given for homework throughout

Term 3 – Production Skills

Choose a production role that you are interested in undertaking e.g. lights, sound, make-up & hair, costume, set, props.

Fill in the ‘Actor’s Production Skills’ booklet

Fill in the ‘Other Production Skills’ booklet

Perform both roles

Evaluate both roles

Choose what you would like to do for your final practical exam

  1. acting – 2 contrasting acting pieces lasting approx. 5 mins each
  2. Directing – need to choose an act/ scene of their choosen text to direct
  3. Designing – needs to focus on set design plus one other production area.

Section 2 essays will be given for homework throughout

Term 4 – Exam Season

Written and Practical Prelim

Preparation for Performance

Final Practical exam to take place