M.Ed. Drama in Education Specialism

Trinity College Dublin

Application deadline: 31st of May
Tuition fee:
  • € 6,370 / Year (EEA)
  • € 9,600 / Year (Non-EEA)
Start date: September  2015
Credits (ECTS): 90 ECTS
Duration full-time: 12 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Part-time, Full-time

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The Master in Education (M.Ed.) (Drama in Education) programme is available by Summer School. As this is a modular programme designed specifically to support distance learners and international students, prospective applicants may choose one of the following study modes.

Option 1: Full-time*

4 modules and 20-25,000 word dissertation completed in one year
Most of the taught component is completed through attendance at a summer school during July.

Option 2: Part-time

4 modules and 20-25,000 word dissertation completed over two years
The taught component is completed in year 1 through attendance at a summer school and supported by on-line learning, and the dissertation is completed during the second academic year.

Option 3: Part-time

4 modules and 20-25,000 word dissertation completed over three years
The taught component is completed in year 1 (2 modules studied) and year 2 (2 modules studied) through attendance at two summer schools and supported by on-line learning. The dissertation is completed during students´ third academic year.

*Note: full time students are required to be based in Dublin during their academic year of study.

Aims of the programme

Drama is both an art form in its own right and also a highly effective teaching and learning methodology, which has been shown to operate successfully in formal and non-formal educational settings. Students will be introduced to the philosophies underpinning this creative educational approach, to its history, and to a wide range of drama and theatre in education techniques and to their use in diverse educational contexts.


The taught component contains four modules, with each module containing approximately 25 hours of contact time. Modules 1, 2 and 3 are held in Trinity College, Dublin during two very intensive weeks in July with subsequent work being carried out during the year. During the summer school period, workshops, lectures and seminars are also held during many of the evenings and on both Saturdays.

The course is taught by tutors with international reputations in the field of Drama and Theatre in Education. Students will be involved in practice focused workshops and seminars covering approaches to drama in formal (primary, secondary and tertiary level) and non-formal educational settings. Tutorial support is built into the Summer School programme, and each student is entitled to tutorial time with a tutor to discuss assignments and academic progress. Tutorial support is also provided during the academic year by telephone, post and email. Module 4 is delivered on-line.

Typically, students on this programme register for option 2 and take the first four modules in year one, complete the related assessments from home, and those students who have attained a satisfactory level in their module assignments and are eligible to progress to the dissertation year, attend for a second, week-long Summer School the following July, in preparation for masters level study. This is a research year and students will be involved in the writing of a dissertation under the guidance of an assigned supervisor. Students are required to submit their dissertation within twelve months normally.

Students wishing to progress to the masters dissertation must achieve an average of 50% or above in the taught component of the programme. Those students who for any reason do not wish to continue to the dissertation on the M.Ed. programme may, after satisfactorily completing four modules, apply to exit with a Post-graduate Diploma in Educational Studies.

Taught component:

* Module One: Drama in Education (I)

Topics covered in this module include:

The nature of the art form and key components in drama; drama games and movement exercises; role playing and improvisation; teacher-in-role; depiction; fictional framing; drama conventions (such as hot seating, voices in the head, angels and devils, conscience alley, questioning in role, role on the wall); dramatic storytelling; facilitating group and whole class work; drama and second language learning; historical overview of drama in schools and current approaches to drama in schools; Augusto Boal and Theatre of the Oppressed.

* Module Two: Drama in Education (II)

Topics covered in this module include:

The work of Dorothy Heathcote and Gavin Bolton (such as Mantle of the Expert; Rolling Role; Brotherhoods, self spectator, frame distancing, internal coherence); building investment; questioning and negotiating strategies; distancing techniques; belief, emotion, thought and imagination in drama; ways into drama; structuring drama sequences for learning; dealing with social, political and value issues in drama; approaches to text; using drama across the curriculum; drama and early years education; drama and students with special educational needs; assessing and evaluating drama; the use of ICT in drama.

* Module Three: Advanced Issues in Drama and Theatre Education / Academic Writing

Advanced issues in drama education will cover such topics as the process of devising and staging theatre; Brecht, Bond and Stanislavski and their relevance to Drama and Theatre in Education; ways of knowing in drama (Vygotsky, Piaget); the social origins of drama; dialogism and drama; and the semiotics of drama and meaning making in a cultural context.

During the Summer School, students will be introduced to the major conventions in professional and academic writing and research methodology in preparation for completion of their coursework assignments.

* Module Four: On-line Reading Seminar

The on-line reading assignment is designed to allow students to formulate an overview and assessment of varying methods and approaches to drama teaching. In-depth reading is organised around a structured theme, which requires critical evaluation of the readings, and students are encouraged to establish contact with a number of other students on the programme with whom they will share and critically discuss their responses to the texts (peer-buddies). This reading module seeks to increase students´ critical awareness, ability to discuss theoretical concepts, relate theory to practice and engage in the learning of others.


Applicants are normally expected to hold a good honours degree and have at least two years experience in the field of education.

English language requirements: * IELTS: Grade 6.5
* TOEFL: 230-computer based, 570 paper based
* Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English: Grade C
* Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English: Grade C

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 6.5
CAE score: (read more)

Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) is part of the Cambridge English suite and is targeted at a high level (IELTS 6.5-8.0). It is an international English language exam set at the right level for academic and professional success. Developed by Cambridge English Language Assessment - part of the University of Cambridge - it helps you stand out from the crowd as a high achiever.

200 (Grade A)
TOEFL paper-based test score : 570


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