Higher Drama

Course Overview

In Higher Drama pupils use the knowledge and understanding gained in the National 5 course to create original work and performance from text while gaining a depth of understanding about professional theatre and production skills. Opportunity to enhance literacy and numeracy skills is also provided through essay composition and practical production skills.

Course Content

The Higher Drama course consists of two units – Drama Skills and Production Skills.


Devising from stimulus to create an original piece of work in unit one, pupils collaborate in small groups and take responsibility for writing and directing a section of a play for performance. In unit two pupils can specialise in two production roles from the following, Acting, Lighting Design, Sound Design, Set Design, props design Costume design and Make-up design to contribute to a text based performance.  In preparation for the final exam pupils choose a text and two production roles to specialise in for the practical exam.


The Drama Skills unit has two outcomes which are assessed July to October.  This unit involves writing a script and producing the script for performance.

1 The candidate will apply complex drama skills by:

1.1 Responding to stimuli, including text, to develop ideas for drama.

1.2 Exploring form, genre, structure and style

1.3 Developing and communicating ideas

2 The candidate will contribute creatively to the drama process by:

2.1 Planning, devising and directing a drama.

2.2 Using complex acting skills in order to portray character

2.3 Evaluating their own work and that of others

The Drama: Production Skills Unit has two outcomes which are assessed October to December. This unit involves using text based work to develop skills in a specialised design area and producing a performance to demonstrate these skills.

1 Explore complex production skills in drama by:

1.1 Responding to stimuli, including text, to communicate ideas for a production

1.2 Selecting ideas for their chosen production roles

2 Apply complex production skills in drama by:

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

2.2 Demonstrating complex production skills within selected production roles

2.3 Evaluating their own work and that of others

The course concludes with a practical and written exam. The practical element is worth 60% of the final grade and pupils will choose two contrasting text extracts to perform for an external examiner. The written exam is worth 40% and comprises of two essays, one performance analysis and one based on a text studied in class.


The drama department supports a positive homework policy.

Homework is set each week; this may be in the form of essays, script writing or folio work. Pupils must maintain a folio for each unit which will need to be updated with notes and research regularly. During the summer holidays pupils must write their section of script and add research to their folios. Essays are an essential element of the course work and prepare pupils for the final written exam. In addition, pupils must be prepared to make regular visits to the theatre to support critical written analysis of productions. The drama department arrange several theatre visits throughout the year.

Recording and Reporting

The units are internally assessed using the folio and performance as evidence which will form the basis for the comments in the pupil report issued to parents in March while the S5/6 parent’s night in mid-November provides an opportunity to discuss successes and/or concerns.



Mrs MacPherson


Performance Analysis Essay DUE Tuesday 13th December

Discuss and analyse the ways in which TWO of the following reflect the social, political and historical climate of the time/era which the theatrical presentation that you have recently seen is set:





Your analysis must include details of the dramatic impact achieved and the audience response


SO, WHAT IS THE QUESTION ASKING FOR? - CHOOSE TO WRITE 5 PARAGRAPHS (OR MORE) ON THE ACTING SKILLS IN 'THE RIVALS' and how they had an impact on the audience, relate the acting skills to the social, political and/or historical climate of the time. Then write 5 papragraphs on the Costume and how this impacted the audience and relate it to the social, political and/or historical climate of the time. Justify why you think these things and use the PEER system. You don't need to quote but you can use the reviews to back up your answer highlighting audience impact.


Use the P.E.E.R system that we have studied in class…

POINT – Make you point

EXPLAIN – Explain why this point is relevant to the question you are being asked

EXAMPLE – Use an appropriate quotation from the play to back up your POINT

REFER – Use the KEY WORDS in the question to relate back to the question asked.




Mrs Moss


Higher Homework

Summer assignment

All pupils need to find opportunities to meet up to discuss progress with your group. You must complete your section of the script over the holidays and maintain and update your folio with all notes and research. 



Mrs MacPherson/Mrs Moss