2 Year Vocational Sixth Form in Performing Arts with Acting (level 3)


Why train as in performing arts at a school

when you can train in performing arts at a drama school?

If you have a successful drama school on your doorstep with a great reputation, surely it would be madness to look for performance training anywhere else?  We are thrilled to be able to offer this FULLY FUNDED 2 year course in Performing Arts with Acting for students who are considering a professional career in the industry.  Equivalent to an extended BTEC/3 A-Levels, this Oxford, Cambridge and RSA (OCR) highly vocational qualification provides those aged 16-19 years with a level 3 award.  The course runs Monday – Wednesday 9.00am – 4.30pm and is based at Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts (the biggest arts centre outside London); you’ll be in the hub of a professional and artistic venue with creative projects going on around you all the time.  Over the 13 years we have been there, students have been involved in professional productions, projects, workshops and Q & A’s along with free tickets for shows.

So, you’re looking for a course that focuses on just performing arts with an acting and drama bias because you see yourself moving onto places like RADA, LAMDA, Guildhall & Royal Central or Rose Bruford.  Maybe you’re not sure what will be next for you but you just really love acting and performing and want to know what it’s like to train at drama school rather than be at a mainstream secondary school or college?  Maybe university is the route for you but you will be supported in whichever direction you choose.

As we believe that acting is the core of all the performing disciplines, we are so excited to be the only drama school in the South that offers this opportunity.  The course is as practical and hands as possible.  Although you will have to sit 4 external exams over the 2 years and need to keep a self-evaluation journal along with providing written evidence of performance work undertaken, it involves less written work than A-level or BTEC courses.  What makes us different is, not only, all our accumulated professional experience and knowledge but the extra professional training we provide alongside your curriculum studies.  You’ll also be working with some of our industry professionals with years and years of experience which will give you a real insight into the world of stage and screen.


Monday – Wednesday

September – July

38 weeks per annum

(External exams are taken at LeAF Studio over the month of Jan/June/July)



21 Kingland Road
BH15 1UG


  • Units/classes can include:
  • Acting technique
  • NT Connections
  • Improvisation
  • Devising projects
  • Monologues
  • Classical & contemporary text including Shakespeare
  • Singing performance
  • Voice training
  • Script writing
  • Combined arts
  • Arts administration
  • Health & fitness for performance
  • Rehearsal/Performance
  • Theatre visits (please be aware that these are essential and fall outside sixth form hours)
  • Movement
  • Physical theatre
  • UCAS support


Throughout the course you will rehearse for several in class performances along with an invited audience performance.


You will be regularly taught by several teachers and coaches at DSA who have trained at places such as Rose Bruford, Royal Central School of Speech & Drama, East 15, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, Italia Conti and Northern Ballet School. Their professional work ranges from both national and international, West End, off West End, touring, TV, film and some have their own successful theatre companies.


All fees for this course are funded by the UK Local Education Authority for those aged 16-19 years only.  Funding only applies if you are a UK national or have dual nationality within the UK.  In order to secure funding for the 2nd year, students will need to be 16, 17 or 18 years at the beginning of the 1st year of the course even if a student is 19 years at the start of the 2nd year of the course but those who begin the course at age 18 years will be required to pay a one off top up fee per year.  This will be around £700 per year (this is subject to change in line with each year of funding).  Each application is at the discretion of the school and we can accept applications from those aged 19 years and over but fees will need to be paid by the individual. This will be around £5000 per year (this is subject to change in line with each year of funding).

There is a compulsory fee of £75 per year to cover theatre visits which are essential for the development of students both artistically and academically.  This can be paid as a one-off fee each September or can be split into installments however installments will be subject to a 7.5% admin fee and will be collected by direct debit.  Students from low income households can apply for a bursary via LeAF Studio directly on 01202 578886.

The only other costs to be aware of include, uniform (minimum 1 x t-shirt + 1 x sweater), a yoga mat and such things as stationary & scripts.

Entry & Application Information

Age for entry: 16-18 yrs.

There are 2 main entry requirements:

  1. Minimum of 5 GCSE’s grade 4 to include English or Maths or both.  As students are requirement to gain both English and Maths GCSE, you will be required to take any necessary resit classes and exams which will be held at LeAF studio.
  2. You need a strong track record in attendance & punctuality.

Entry onto the 2 year Vocational Sixth Form in Acting requires you to complete our online application followed by a video audition –  the video audition will be arranged with our administrator by email once the application is received. You will be asked to perform:

  • 2 contrasting monologues – 1 contemporary (post 1980) & 1 classical (600 BC – 1800 AD) both performed by memory.  We will not accept any reading from scripts.





OCR (Oxford, Cambridge and RSA) is a leading UK awarding body. They provide GCSEs and A Levels in over 40 subjects and offer over 450 vocational qualifications.

Their heritage is long established and provides them with expertise across the full range of academic and vocational qualifications. Since becoming established in 1998 their experience, knowledge and skills have enabled them to build a reputation for reliably high standards. As part of the Cambridge Assessment Group, they have access to unrivalled expertise and research capability across assessment and examinations.

I have throughly enjoyed my time at the Dorset School Of Acting. The teachers are incredibly dedicated and lovely. The range of lessons that are on offer is amazing, I have done things here I never thought I’d have the chance to try. They cover everything to give you the best experience they can. I don’t know what I’d do without this course. Thank you so much for everything you have done.

Benedict Robertson - DSA student