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Applied Theatre MA

Applied Theatre MA

Theatre can transform lives, which is why this programme offers you the opportunity to combine a passion for theatre with a belief in social justice.

A ground of drama students against a black backdrop. They are dressed in casual grey clothes and are blowing white feathers out of their hands.

This exciting practice-based programme gives you the opportunity to develop advanced skills and knowledge in the use of theatre in participatory, community and social contexts. Through workshops, studio practice and community-based projects, you will develop compositional, reflective and research strategies to progress your portfolio of practice as both thinking and 'doing' practitioners.

York campus

  • Duration – 1 years full-time | 2 years part-time
  • Start date – September 2021
  • School – School of the Arts

Minimum Entry Requirements

    2:2 undergraduate degree in a related subject

    Interview and a brief presentation

Tuition Fees

    UK and EU 2021-22 £6,500 full time

    International 2021-22 £12,750 full time

The York St John Experience

Course overview

On our postgraduate Applied Theatre course, you will focus on exploring and developing your creativity. Study a range of techniques and theories on specialist modules and engage with various communities in different social contexts. Your individual practice will be at the centre of what you do.

You will grow your professional profile in the field of applied theatre by engaging in a range of well-established York St John University local, regional and national partnership projects, adding new skills and experiences to your repertoire.

MA Applied Theatre partnership projects include:

  • ConvergeA York St John partnership with the NHS that offers educational courses to local people who use mental health services, taught by our staff and students on campus.
  • York St John Prison Partnership ProjectThis creative arts partnership lets you work with women at HMP Newhall and HMP Askam Grange on weekly drama and singing projects in prison.
  • Shakespeare on Screen in PrisonsThis is a national partnership project with the York St John Prison Partnership Project. It allows you to work on drama residencies in prison exploring the digital provision of the Donmar Warehouse Shakespeare Trilogy films.
  • It's Not Ok: A national Theatre in Education and digital resource project with York St John and the NSPCC. This partnership invites you to work on delivering the project in schools across the region.
  • Moving Minds: This project invites people living with Dementia and their friends, family members and carers onto campus for a weekly movement class.
  • York Theatre Royal: Our partnership with this local company allows you to on placement with their weekly youth theatre and community projects facilitated in the theatre and across the city.

Course structure

Level 1


Credits: 20

Compulsory module

Explore and test the connections between theory and practice. You will examine the possibilities for generating and communicating knowledge through practice. Become a practitioner who can communicate research through practice.

Credits: 40

Compulsory module

This is an opportunity to develop new skills, techniques and knowledge in applied and socially engaged theatre. Making work with and for diverse communities in a range of social contexts, and to extend your individual practice and professional profile.

Credits: 120

Compulsory module

On this module you will engage with the production of a significant work or body of works that represent the culmination of your skills, knowledge and creativity. Along with this body of practice you will develop reflective, critical and contextual work that articulates and communicates an understanding of your practice.

Entry requirements


Minimum Entry Requirements

    2:2 undergraduate degree in a related subject

    Interview and a brief presentation


Entry onto this postgraduate course requires a minimum of a 2:2 undergraduate degree in a related subject.

If your undergraduate degree is not in a related field but you have extensive experience of arts practice, your application will be considered.

International Students

If you're an international student, you'll need to demonstrate experience, or qualifications equivalent to those above.

If your first language is not English you must show evidence of English Language competence at IELTS level 6.0 (with no skill below 5.5) or equivalent.


For certain activities a Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check may be required (for instance if working in schools or with young people). It is your responsibility to obtain DBS checks as appropriate.

Interview and portfolio 

Entry onto this postgraduate course is subject to attending an interview.

At interview you will be asked to give a presentation which will:

  • Demonstrate your readiness for graduate level practice
  • Show evidence of your engagement with critical thinking.

You will also be asked to complete a portfolio. This portfolio should show examples of previous and current theatre and performance practice. 

We are happy to arrange interviews via Skype for overseas students.

APEL policy

If you can't meet these minimum requirements it may be possible to take into account evidence of Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL) as an alternative method of meeting the programme’s entry requirements. In such a case, appropriate references and records of employment might be presented to support the applicant’s case for admission.

Fees and Funding

UK & EU 2021 - 22

The tuition fee for 2021 entry to this postgraduate course is £6,500 for full-time UK/EU, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students.

For UK/EU, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students studying part time, the tuition fee for 2020 entry to this postgraduate course is £3,250 per year.

Postgraduate loans are available to help you pay for your master’s course. Find out more about postgraduate funding opportunities.

International (non-EU) 2021 - 22

The tuition fee for 2021 entry to this postgraduate course is £12,750 for international students.

Due to immigration laws, international students on a Student Visa must be studying full-time. For more information about visa requirements and short-term study visas, please visit the International Visa and Immigration pages.

More information about funding your studies is available on our International Fees and Funding page.

Tuition Fees

    UK and EU 2021-22 £6,500 full time

    International 2021-22 £12,750 full time

Alumni Scholarships

If you are an alumni of York St John University we have scholarships available to help you continue your studies.

Scholarships for Alumni

Additional costs and financial support


Whilst studying for your degree, there may be additional costs related to your course. This may include purchasing personal equipment and stationery, books and optional field trips.


View our accommodation pages for detailed information on accommodation and living costs.

Apply for this course

You can apply directly to the course via our ‘Apply Now’ links. Please select the variant of the course that you intend to undertake (e.g. full-time or part-time) as the link will take you to a customised form for the specific course. You will need to create a login and password and complete the online form. Please contact two referees in advance of submitting your application as an automated request will go out as soon as you submit, and your application will not be reviewed until both references are in place.

Apply Now: Full-time

Apply Now: Part-time

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