Skip to main content

Unit information: Introduction to Performance Studies in 2023/24

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing, student choice and timetabling constraints.

Unit name Introduction to Performance Studies
Unit code THTR10008
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Sedgman
Open unit status Not open
Units you must take before you take this one (pre-requisite units)

None

Units you must take alongside this one (co-requisite units)

None

Units you may not take alongside this one
School/department Department of Theatre
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Unit Information

Year 1 of the course is designed to lay foundations in performance studies, introducing key concepts, theories and approaches. These are supplemented by seminars to focus on critical and textual analysis and small group tutorials to develop new study skills needed for study at university. In this unit students are introduced to a range of performance forms and methods of analysis. This unit will develop close analytical skills by considering topics including but not limited to:

  • Definitions: what is performance and what is theatre?
  • Defintions: who is the performer and who is the actor?
  • Defintions: what is the play text?
  • Definitions: performance spaces and spectatorship.
  • Definitions: what are the contexts of performance?
  • Liveness: performance in a mediatized age.
  • Semiotics of performance and theatre.
  • Analyzing performance: reading the signs and analyzing events.
  • How does critical theory help us to analyze performance?
  • Why does theatre history matter?

Lectures, seminars, screenings and online discussions will explore contrasting ways in which elements of performance forms have been configured in different periods and cultural contexts, in order to establish conceptual vocabularies and theoretical frameworks, which students can use to analyse creatively the complexities of performance in practice.

  • to introduce students to key areas in the study and analysis of performance forms;
  • to undertake a close investigation of selected historical and contemporary performance forms;
  • to encourage critical understandings of the crucial components of performance forms;
  • to explore how elements of performance forms have been configured in different periods and cultural contexts;
  • to establish conceptual vocabularies and theoretical frameworks for the creative analysis of the complexities of performance forms in practice;
  • to introduce a range of approaches to the teaching and learning of performance analysis.

Your learning on this unit

On successful completion of this unit students will

  1. be able to identify key areas in the study and analysis of performance forms;
  2. be able demonstrate an understanding of the issues involved in a close investigation of selected historical and contemporary performance forms;
  3. be able to demonstrate a critical understandings of the crucial components of performance forms;
  4. be able to explore effectively and critically how elements of performance forms have been configured in different periods and cultural contexts;
  5. be able to deploy conceptual vocabularies and theoretical frameworks in their creative analyses of the dynamics of performance forms;
  6. be able to demonstrate effective academic research and writing skills.

How you will learn

This unit will be taught using a blended teaching approach. A combination of synchronous and asynchronous lectures, seminars and group tutorials will introduce students to the core theories, approaches and academic skills necessary to a transition to studying performance at Higher Education level. Students will complete formative assessments and receive peer and tutor feedback in preparation for the summative assessment. Formative assessments will include:

250 word review of performance

500 word critical analysis of performance

1,500-word literature review

How you will be assessed

2,000-word essay (100%) (ILOs 1-6)

Resources

If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. THTR10008).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

Assessment
The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.

Feedback