Level 3 National Foundation Diploma in Performing Arts Practice

Start date(s):
6 Sep 2021
1 year
Level 3
Course Code:
Study Mode:
Full Time
Attendance Type:
Attendance Pattern:
Awarded by:
Framwellgate Moor Campus
Course costs:
16-18 - Free (UK & EEA)
19+ - £2882, your course may be free
(previous year's fees)


Course details may be subject to change

The Foundation Diploma in Performing Arts Practice is a practical based course which focuses on the development of acting, singing and movement skills.

On completion of the one-year Foundation Diploma in Performing Arts, you will naturally transition to the Extended Diploma in Performing Arts Practice.

Your experience is at the heart of the course; with opportunities to perform at the Gala, opportunities to visit London, Edinburgh Fringe Festival and local theatres.


Sweeney Todd 3

Students prepare for razor sharp performance

Performing Arts students are making sure their acting skills are razor sharp for their forthcoming production of Sweeney Todd.

FE Dance group 4

Ex student provides excellent work experience opportunities

Ex Drama student provides currrent Performing Arts students with excellent work experience opportunities. 

Lee Proud Workshop

Lee Proud Workshop

West End Choreographer delivered an inspiring insightful workshop to our Dance and Acting students.

Performing Arts London 2018 5

Students shine bright in London

Our performing arts students travelled to London for a week of exciting workshops and outstanding shows.


Throughout the course there will be an emphasis on skills development to enable you to build the necessary foundation to progress within the industry.

The following skills sessions will be the foundation for the course and will run throughout the year:
  • Voice for the actor
  • Singing
  • Improvisation
  • Physical theatre and dance.

These skills sessions will allow you to focus on developing your technical and interpretive skills across these areas. Lecturer and peer feedback will be instrumental in your progression in these skill sessions.

To enable you to apply and contextualise the skills your are developing, you will complete four assessments during the first year of the programme. The assessments are aimed at providing you with a range of genres to maximise performance and learning opportunities.

You will take part in performance workshops and large scale performances where they will have access to state-of-the-art facilities and will work alongside industry experts.


You will study a Performing Arts Skills Development module, which will include the following units:
  • Exploring Performance Styles
  • Creating Performance Material
  • Performing for an Audience.

You will also study The Performing Arts Industry module, which will include the following unit:
  • Planning a Career in the Industry.

After the first year you will transition to the Extended Diploma to study:
A Personal Performing Arts Profile module, which will include the following units:
  • Using Development Plans to Refine Skills
  • Producing a Personal Project
  • Using Material for Self-promotion and Networking

You will also study a Collaborative Performing Arts Project module, which will include the following units:
  • Undertaking a Defined Creative or Administrative Role
  • Using Creative Collaboration to Develop a Project
  • Producing a Collaborative Project.


Day and time of study will be confirmed before the start of your course.

Teaching & assessment

Assessment is carried out on a continuous basis and the course is delivered through a series of practical projects and assignments, including public performances.

The assignments will be both practical and theoretical throughout the year and you will be expected to set targets and make a record of this. Your work will be assessed internally and externally. You will record your work in your logbook which will help you organise your work and plan for rehearsals, assessments and performance work.

In order to ensure that you make the best possible progress on your course, you will have regular feedback from your tutor, in a constructive and supportive environment.

Industry links:

We are very proud of the strong industry links we hold with the West End, North East based casting agents and many external practitioners. Many of these links provide regular workshops. These sessions will provide you with an insight into the workings of the industry and what can be expected of you in the future.


Undertaking a work placement is a vital part of the course as it allows you to gain an insight into the industry you are studying to work in. A work placement is therefore mandatory and should be the equivalent of 70 hours (two weeks) – it can be taken at any point in the year.
It is strongly suggested that it be taken at the beginning of the year and in holidays to ensure you don’t fall behind in your academic studies.

One of our main placements is at Beamish Museum, this is highly sought after which means that places go very quickly; so in order to avoid disappointment it is best contact them at the beginning of the year. Placements are to be found on your own accord – tutors hold no responsibility for this but will happily guide you and give as much support as possible.

This 1 year programme provides a natural transition to Extended Diploma in Performing Arts Practice.

Upon completion of the 2 year programme, you could progress to study a relevant subject at university or drama school, or progress into employment or self-employment

Meet our students

Gustave Die - Dance 1

Gustave Die

Gustave has toured with various UK, International and European shows as a dancer.

Summer Rutter - Dance

Summer Rutter

Summer had heard about our outstanding success rates and was impressed by our industry standard facilities.

Evie Morson - Dance

Evie Morson

Evie found the content of our performing arts programme exciting. She is now at university, pursuing her dream to become a professional dancer.

Sophie Cat

Sophie Catleugh

Sophie is now studying at drama school

Joel McShane - Performing Arts

Joel McShane

Joel is now studying at The Royal Birmingham Conservatoire.

Ross Adams - Performing Arts

Ross Adams

Ross now stars in the soap opera, Hollyoaks, and has received an award for ‘Best Male Dramatic Performance’.

What else?

You can follow us on Instagram @ncdpamusic


Please note these prices are for the current academic year and may be subject to change for our courses starting in future years.

Additional Costs

You will be expected to purchase college stationary (notebook, pens, pencil).

You will need to wear black clothing which must be comfortable and suitable for practical sessions.

Interview Instructions

You will be invited to attend an interview. At this stage, you will demonstrate your performance ability and your suitability to the course will be assessed.

What you are expected to do at interview will be outlined in an audition pack that will be sent out prior to your interview date.

Entry Criteria

4 GCSEs at grade 4 or above. This will include English or maths at a minimum of grade 4 or Functional Skills level 2.

Alternatively, a L2 Diploma (equivalent of 4 GCSEs) in this subject at Merit. Students that are 19+ are required to have 2 years industry experience.