1 year full time

Secondary Drama

The Secondary Drama PGCE is run by drama practitioners currently working in secondary schools. This means you'll benefit from our close links with a wide range of drama departments across Brighton & Hove, and East and West Sussex.

Teaching is done practically, with a clear pedagogical focus. Most taught sessions take place in the Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, a recently refurbished performance space on the Sussex campus.

As a teacher trainee, you're encouraged to participate in activities within the community (for example at local performance venues or museums in Brighton & Hove) and attend a day at a London theatre towards the end of the course.

Key facts

  • We develop our trainees’ skills as reflective practitioners using an innovative range of assessment modes that enable individuals to succeed.
  • We train teachers who demonstrate a strong core philosophy about effective children’s learning, and who are critically challenging and questioning.
  • Our employability records surpass national benchmarks: 100% of Primary trainees have found jobs year-on-year, and 100% have stayed in their roles over the last four years. All Secondary PGCE subjects exceed national expectations.

How will I study?

All teachers are prepared to meet a set of national professional standards, recognised by the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

In preparation for QTS, teachers prepare critical reflections of achievement, charting progress over the academic year. It includes evidence of lesson observations, engagement with professional development, and self-designed teaching and learning materials.

The main elements of the PGCE course are:

  • Professional Knowledge for Schools
  • Curriculum Studies
  • Professional Practice.

At all stages, assessment is shared between school-based professionals and University tutors.

Entry requirements

You must be a graduate of an approved institution of Higher Education or validating body from a course that is recognised as being equivalent to at least a lower second-class (2.2) undergraduate honours degree. You must also have passed the equivalent of GCSE English and Mathematics (Grade C) and complete professional skills tests in literacy and numeracy. Evidence of having gained these qualifications must be provided at interview.

How to apply for the PGCE
You should apply through UCAS Teacher Training. You must provide an appropriate written reference on your application form, which should be an academic reference if you are at university or college. If you finished your studies in the last five years, your principal referee should be a tutor or lecturer who can comment on your academic achievements and your personal qualities. If you finished your studies more than five years ago, your principal referee should be a responsible person who knows you well enough to write with authority about you, such as an employer. No candidate will be offered a place without being interviewed. Interviews serve not only as a selection device, but also as an opportunity for further explanation and questions. Unfortunately, we are unable to reimburse travel and other expenses incurred in attending for an interview.

Working with children
The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) provides, through a disclosure service, access to records held nationwide by the police and the DfE. As initial teacher education modules involve working with children, all prospective trainees must pay a fee to obtain a satisfactory DBS check before starting an initial teacher training course.

Mental and physical fitness to teach
All trainees must be screened for mental and physical fitness to teach by the Occupational Health Department at the University. A charge is made for the service.

Withdrawal of offer
The University will make all reasonable efforts to provide the course as set out in this prospectus. However, it may be obliged to withdraw an offer of a place if it cannot obtain sufficient placements for the school experience component of the course, where trainees are placed in a school within a 50-mile radius of the University or of the home of the student.

English language requirements

Higher level (IELTS 7.0, with not less than 6.5 in each section)

Find out about other English language qualifications we accept.

English language support

Don’t have the English language level for your course? Find out more about our pre-sessional courses.

Additional information for international students

We welcome applications from all over the world. Find out about international qualifications suitable for our Masters courses.

Visas and immigration

Find out how to apply for a student visa

Fees and scholarships

How much does it cost?


Home: £9,250 per year

EU: £9,250 per year

Channel Islands and Isle of Man: £9,250 per year

Overseas: £15,100 per year

Note that your fees may be subject to an increase on an annual basis.

How can I fund my course?

Postgraduate Masters loans

Borrow up to £10,280 to contribute to your postgraduate study.

Find out more about Postgraduate Masters Loans


Our aim is to ensure that every student who wants to study with us is able to despite financial barriers, so that we continue to attract talented and unique individuals.

Chancellor's Masters Scholarship (2017)

Open to students with a 1st class from a UK university or excellent grades from an EU university and offered a F/T place on a Sussex Masters in 2017

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Chancellor's Masters Scholarship

PGCE First-Generation Scholars Award (2017)

£600 maintenance award to PGCE students with a household income below £42,875

Find out more about the PGCE First-Generation Scholars Award

Sussex Graduate Scholarship (2017)

Open to Sussex students who graduate with a first or upper second-class degree and offered a full-time place on a Sussex Masters course in 2017

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Graduate Scholarship

Sussex India Scholarships (2017)

Sussex India Scholarships are worth £3,500 and are for overseas fee paying students from India commencing Masters study in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex India Scholarships

Sussex Malaysia Scholarships (2017)

Sussex Malaysia Scholarships are worth £3,500 and are for overseas fee paying students from Malaysia commencing Masters study in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Malaysia Scholarships

Sussex Nigeria Scholarships (2017)

Sussex Nigeria Scholarships are worth £3,500 or £5,000 and are for overseas fee paying students from Nigeria commencing a Masters in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Nigeria Scholarships

Sussex Pakistan Scholarships (2017)

Sussex Pakistan Scholarships are worth £3,500 and are for overseas fee paying students from Pakistan commencing Masters study in September 2017.

Application deadline:

1 August 2017

Find out more about the Sussex Pakistan Scholarships

How Masters scholarships make studying more affordable

Living costs

Find out typical living costs for studying at Sussex.


Meet the people teaching and supervising on your course.


Graduate destinations

100% of students from the Department of Education were in work or further study six months after graduating. Our graduates are employed as primary, secondary, and FE/HE teachers all over the world. Recent students have gone on to roles such as:

  • drama teacher, George Abbot School
  • dance and drama teacher, Trinity Church of England High School
  • drama and music teacher, St Philip Howard Catholic High School.

(HESA EPI, Destinations of Post Graduate Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2015)

Your future career

On graduation, you’ll have the skills and expertise to successfully start as a new teacher. We offer a support package to newly qualified teachers during their first year of teaching.

In addition, successful candidates can transfer up to 90 Masters-level credits on to the MA in Education.

Working while you study

Our Careers and Employability Centre can help you find part-time work while you study. Find out more about career development and part-time work

Contact us