Postgraduate taught 

Theatre & Performance Practices MLitt

Contemporary Dramaturgical Practices THEATRE5028

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Culture and Creative Arts
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

Contemporary Dramaturgical Practices is a critical and, where appropriate, practical exploration of production dramaturgy and dramaturgical practices in the contemporary period. It will discuss the influence of current critical approaches as well as aesthetic and artistic concepts on dramaturgy and dramaturgical practices, and will include applied and practical work with professional dramaturges with whom students will explore the various dimensions of contemporary dramaturgical work.


Weekly three-hour sessions over 10 weeks as scheduled on mycampus 

■ 7 x 3hr seminars. These will include discussions but also tutor-led presentational elements and practical work as appropriate.

■ 3 x 3hr workshops, led by staff and/or invited professional practitioners.

■ 1 x 3hr of supervised studio time / workshop.

Excluded Courses





Research Trail around the practice undertaken throughout the course - 2500 words (50%)


Planning, delivery and reflection upon a 30 minute group workshop for the rest of the class cohort. (50%)

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ develop and expand students' understanding of dramaturgical ideas and practices in the contemporary period;

■ explore the role of the dramaturge - and where appropriate the role of the playwright and/or the theatre critic - in a range of contemporary theatre making contexts - including Scotland - with reference to a critical literature and, as appropriate, works by and on professional practitioners; and,

■ investigate the critical writing in both academic and journalistic contexts regarding contemporary dramaturgy.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ apply a critical knowledge and understanding of the changing role and the work of a dramaturge, and as appropriate the playwright and the theatre critic today;

■ utilise an understanding of the role of the contemporary dramaturge in the rehearsal room and in script and composition development;

■ move effectively between practical and theoretical analysis of all forms of the play text and of contemporary textual practices; and,

■ write critically and analytically about the processes and the impacts of current dramaturgical practices and debates.

■ compose and conduct a short workshop (with fellow students) which engages critically with dramaturgical strategies.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.