Acting – BTEC

Specification title

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Performing Arts (Acting) – Equivalent to 1 A Level

Entry requirements

Ideally you will have successfully completed a Level 2 Drama/Acting qualification prior to starting this course; however, this is not compulsory; BTEC courses are suitable for a wide range of abilities.


The BTEC Level 3 Acting course is suited to students who have an appetite to develop their skills and knowledge in Acting. There is a particular emphasis on performance and you will study a wide range of theatre styles.

This is a vocational course – in other words, it is practical and takes a real-world approach to learning. You should enjoy going to see professional theatre and taking part in practical workshops.


Some students thrive during the pressure of exams; others often fail to achieve their potential due to worries or nerves. On a BTEC, your progress is measured throughout the course, allowing you to reflect on your own performance on a continual basis.

Some of the work you will be expected to produce will be in written form, but you will also be required to demonstrate your skills and knowledge in practical situations.

Each unit is split into assignments and you will have criteria to meet at a Pass, Merit or Distinction level.

Course structure

The 1 A level course is made up of four units:

Externally Assessed Units

  • Unit 1: Investigating Practitioners’ Work
    How long: The set task will be completed in three hours within the assessment period
    Creating the task: You will be provided with the set task booklet for a six-week term time period in order to carry out investigation and critical analysis in advance.
  • Unit 3: Group Performance Workshop
    How long: The final evidence will be completed in 5 hours under supervised conditions.
    Creating the task: You will be provided with the set task booklet in January in order to prepare for the development and completion of your group performance and your digital process log

Internally Assessed Units

  • Unit 2: Developing Skills and Techniques for Live Performance
  • Plus one other unit selected in line with the strengths of the group: (Classical Theatre, Acting Styles, Improvisation, Variety Performance, Movement in Performance.)

The 2 A level course has a total of eight units

The 3 A level course has a total of 13 units


The BTEC Level 3 Acting course is a two-year qualification broadly equivalent to one, two or three GCE A level, depending on the pathway chose, and can be taken alongside other more traditional qualifications.