In the Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022, we are ranked in the top 20 UK universities for Communication and Media (20th out of 88) 


BA/BA (Hons) Theatre and Film

If you love theatre and film you can study them both in depth on the only course of its kind in Scotland. You will enjoy practical work-based learning opportunities.

And… ACTION! Film and theatre are thriving industries, creatively and commercially. This course gives you a unique chance to study these two exciting disciplines in depth and in tandem, developing your passion for live and recorded dramatic performance and preparing yourself for a rewarding career.

Why QMU?

  • Learn academic theory and practical production skills for two disciplines on this innovative course, the only one of its type in Scotland.
  • See your film work screened on the big screen at the end of year show at the Edinburgh Filmhouse (subject to selection).
    We have superb on-campus resources: performance spaces, rehearsal studios, a film editing suite and TV studio.
  • The creative and cultural powerhouse of Edinburgh is right on your doorstep, inspire yourself at its film festivals, theatrical productions, and the International Festival and Fringe. There are plenty of internships available for you to learn real-world skills.

About the course

You will learn about the histories of theatre and cinema, and examine the key critical cultural and political debates. You will explore the spaces of the stage and studio, stage and screen performances and the genres, narratives and authorship of plays and screenplays. We study the economics and management of theatre and cinema within the creative industries.
Year One modules will give you a broad understanding of how theatre and film work as creative industries. You start your study of theatre and film narrative and performance, and gain experience of creative production.

Year Two examines questions of genre and creativity alongside the theory and practice of stage performance.

In Years Three and Four you will look at key periods, movements and practitioners in theatre and film drama, alongside modules in areas such as adaptation, comedy, playwriting and Hollywood cinema. You can create your own production projects and choose additional, optional subjects such as photography or community theatre.
Alongside the course’s academic core you will have plenty of opportunity to gain production experience from Year One, and can specialise in practice areas in later years.


You can opt to study for an honours degree over four years or an ordinary degree over three years. You will complete a range of modules each year as outlined.


Year One

  • Media Production: Skills and Techniques
  • Introduction to the Study of Theatre and Performance
  • Introduction to Theatre Production
  • Studying Cinema
  • The Origins of Theatre
  • Media Production: Video Project

Year Two

  • Media Production: Storytelling
  • Contemporary Scottish Theatre in Context
  • Film Genre
  • British Theatre since 1945
  • Client Project
  • Creative Writing for New Media

Year Three

  • Current Debates in Performance Theory
  • Arts Funding in its Policy Context
  • Designing a Research Project
  • Global Film Cultures
  • plus two options

Year Four

  • Modernity on Screen
  • Creative Enterprise in the Performing Arts
  • Dissertation
  • plus two options

Years Three and Four options:

  • Photography and Visual Culture
  • Screenwriting
  • The Video Essay
  • Student Initiated Module
  • Experiential Learning Placement
  • Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror
  • Scotland on Screen
  • Popular Music
  • Film and the Family
  • Radio and Audio Media
  • Photography Practice
  • Storytelling in Convergent Media
  • Television Drama
  • The American West in Popular Culture
  • Film Festivals
  • Food in Film and Media
  • Problematic; Criticism, Culture and Social Justice
  • The Only Way is Ethics: Art, Participation and Ethics
  • Performance Art Practice (by application only)
  • Site and Sound
  • Writing for Radio
  • Creative Learning and the Community
  • Producing for the Stage
  • Directing for the Stage
  • Directing, Designing and Performing Shakespeare
  • Directing, Designing and Performing Contemporary Plays
  • Decoding Dress: The Cultural Significance of Costume
  • Staging the 20th Century: How Scenography Built the Modern Imagination
  • Advanced Theatre Production

The modules listed here are correct at time of posting (April 2021) but may differ slightly to those offered in 2022. Please check back here for any updates.

Teaching, learning and assessement

You learn through lectures, seminars, individual work and group work, where you will be producing a range of performance events and production material. Assessment methods include portfolios, presentations, essays, short films, screenwriting and playwriting, amongst others. 

Below you can read about Teaching and Learning Activities and Assessment Activities. We believe this will give you a good indication of what the course will be like, but the exact balance of activities may differ depending on the academic year and on the modules you choose.

Teaching and learning activities

Our Teaching and Learning Activities are focused on building your confidence, developing your problem-solving skills and preparing you for a successful career. Here you can read about how much time you should expect to spend undertaking these activities for this course along with a general description of the activity for all courses.


You are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and in some cases practical workshops or laboratories. Seminars enable you to discuss and develop your understanding of topics covered in lectures in smaller groups.

Independent Learning

When not attending lectures, seminars, practicals or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the Learning Resource Centre, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for examinations. You independent learning is supported by a range of excellent facilities, including the Learning Resource Centre and the Hub.


Courses with placements give you the opportunity to put what you are learning into practice and to observe and work with a wide range of individuals and groups of people in diverse settings. Some courses offer placement opportunities in the UK and overseas.

Assessment Activities

Assessment Activities provide you with opportunities to test your understanding of the subject and receive feedback on your performance. Here you can read about how much of your final mark is based on each type of formal assessment for this course along with a general description of the activity for all courses.


Assessment by written examinations normally takes place at the end of each module or semester, but they may also happen during modules.


Coursework assessments take place in a variety of ways, including assignments, essays, reports, portfolios, project output and your level 4 Honours project. We aim to provide you with feedback on your assessment within 20 working days of the submission date.


Practical assessments can include oral presentations, performance, practical skills assessment, costume design and construction, film making, lab work or clinical practical skills depending on the nature of the course.



Frequent work-based learning opportunities will help you to build your theoretical studies into invaluable real-world skills.

Exchange opportunities

In Year Three you have the opportunity (subject to availability) to study for one semester at a university overseas. For more information, see Exchanges and Study Abroad.

On December 24th 2020, the UK Government announced that as an outcome of Brexit negotiations, the United Kingdom would not be seeking to participate in the Erasmus+ successor programme.

From 2022/23 Queen Margaret University will no longer operate under the Erasmus+ scheme. Over the coming year we will be working with new and existing partners on study abroad and exchange opportunities for the 2022/23 academic year and beyond.


Our graduates have used the specialist skills they learned on the course as a springboard to careers in theatre, film, teaching, postgraduate study and professions demanding communication and creativity. This course will give you the confidence and skills you need to direct the story of your own life.

Entry requirements

Scottish Higher: Standard - AABB, Minimum - BBBB

A Level: BBB

Irish Leaving Certificate: H2 H3 H3 H3 H3

International Baccalaureate: 30 points

International: IELTS of 6.0 with no element lower than 5.5.

Required subjects: We prefer you to have a good pass in English, Drama or Media Studies at Scottish Higher/A Level. English required and Maths preferred at Nat 5/GCSE.

Mature/Access: Related Access course, see:

We welcome applications from mature students with other relevant qualifications and/or experience.

Direct Entry:

Year Two

  • HNC/HND in a related subject with B/CB in the graded unit
  • Scottish Higher: BC at Advanced Higher in relevant subjects plus BB at Higher
  • A Level: BBB in relevant subjects

Year Three

  • HND in a related subject with CB in the graded unit may be considered.

For details of related HNC and HND courses, see:



Associate student places


Professional registration/ accreditation


Teaching staff, class sizes and timetables



For more information, please see ‘How we teach and how you’ll learn’.

Awarding body

View Open Day presentation

Please note:

The delivery of this course is subject to the terms and conditions set out in our 2022/23 Entry - Terms and Conditions (Undergraduate).

Teaching staff may be subject to change.

Course Overview

3 or 4 years full-time
Start Date
September 2022
On campus
Study Abroad
School of Arts, Social Sciences and Management
Fees & Funding