BA Mathematics / Drama and Theatre Studies

The information on this page relates to September 2016 entry. For 2017 information, including grade requirements, please check our prospectus.

In choosing to study the Mathematics and Drama and Theatre Studies degree at Aberystwyth University you’ll immerse yourself in two rigorous and challenging disciplines.

Mathematics is fundamentally important to modern society, contributing to numerous facets of life, including science, engineering, technology and finance. The Mathematics Degree covers the essential core disciplines, supplemented by a great choice of elective specialities. Drama and Theatre studies looks through and beyond historic and established forms to explore what drama, theatre and performance can be now and in the future. You’ll have the opportunity to encounter a wide range of critical and creative forms and practices and develop your capacity as an independent theatre-maker, thinker and scholar.

Graduates of the Mathematics Degree are in significant demand across many industries for their problem-solving abilities, clear analytical thought processes and capacity for logical argument, whilst the intellectual, practical and transferable skills acquired whilst studying Drama and Theatre Studies will prepare you for a variety of careers in the creative arts and beyond.

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Mathematics is a subject that has fascinated humanity for thousands of years from the ancient world to the present day. The language of Mathematics underpins so much of the modern world – from science, technology and engineering, to finance and commerce – opening up a wide range of career opportunities to you, whilst Drama and Theatre Studies is your opportunity to develop skills as a maker and thinker of contemporary drama, theatre and performance. You will gain an understanding of each of these inter-related forms as a site of study, thought and creative practice. Through a combination of theoretical and practical explorations you will critically examine and engage with a wide range of contemporary practices, from scripted drama to site-specific performance and from documentary theatre to experiments in new media performance.

Why Study Mathematics and Drama and Theatre Studies degree at Aberystwyth?

Aberystwyth University’s Mathematics courses are accredited by the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications (IMA), the UK’s learned and professional society for mathematics. The IMA exists to support the advancement of mathematical knowledge and its applications, and to promote and enhance mathematical culture in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, for the public good.

The Department of Mathematics maintained its position as one of the best departments in Wales in the most recent Research Excellence Framework (REF2014). The department returned almost 90% of our staff, the highest proportion of any Welsh mathematics department. Results show that 1 in 8 of our research outputs are world leading, and more than 60% are either world leading or internationally excellent. All of our research and the impact it has outside universities, was judged to be of international standard.

Mathematics has been taught at Aberystwyth since the foundation of the university in 1872, making it the oldest Mathematics department in Wales. Despite our heritage we have continued to innovate ensuring that the degree schemes we offer will provide you with the best Mathematics degree you can possibly obtain.

100% of our 2014 Maths graduates were in employment or further study 6 months after graduating. 71% were in professional work or graduate level education, above the UK average for the subject (DLHE 2014). This reflects our investment in innovative and strategic, student-focused employability initiatives which encompass all our academic institutes and which we firmly believe are likely to improve our employability ratings still further.

The 2015 National Student Satisfaction survey results show high levels of satisfaction amongst Mathematics and Statistics students, with 84% reporting satisfaction with the quality of the teaching they received, and 92% satisfaction with learning resources (5 points above the UK average for the subject).

The Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies at Aberystwyth is one of the most significant Departments of its kind, with a reputation at local, national and international levels. We offer an extremely broad range of specialisms, ranging from site-specific and located theatre and performance to contemporary European theatre, British and Irish drama, documentary theatre, performance art, new media performance, politics, aesthetics, philosophy and ethics.

Many lecturers are leading professional theatre-makers and active researchers, working at the cutting edge of their disciplines, and departmental staff have active working relationships with a range of companies including the Royal Shakespeare Company, National Theatre Wales, Music Theatre Wales, Quarantine, Imitating the Dog and the Magdalena Project, an international network of women in contemporary theatre.

Within the Drama and Theatre Studies course, excellent facilities for practical work, including rehearsal studios and well-equipped studio theatre spaces are provided, where you can undertake projects and productions at a variety of scales. We also make use of the unique geographic resources of Aberystwyth – its landscape, language, history – to explore the challenges posed by working in different places and situations, developing an understanding of how theatre and performance always emerge from, and relate to, specific contexts. The Aberystwyth Arts Centre, one of the largest campus arts centres in the UK, is situated on the main campus, and is a popular venue where you can enjoy performances of all kinds. The Department has close links with the Arts Centre, collaborating to produce an annual Theatre Passport of subsidized work specifically for students.

90% of our 2014 Theatre, Film and Television graduates were in employment or further study 6 months after graduating, a 7 percentage point increase on the previous year (DLHE 2014). This increase reflects our investment in innovative and strategic student-focused employability initiatives which encompass all our academic Institutes and which we firmly believe are likely to improve our employability ratings still further.

Both departments also offer a number of degree schemes and modules taught entirely or partially through the medium of Welsh. Further details may be obtained from the departments.

Our Staff

Most lecturers in the Department of Mathematics are qualified to PhD level and are research active. Many have a postgraduate teaching qualification.

All academic staff at the Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies are research active and/or involved in Knowledge Transfer projects and have either relevant academic qualifications at doctoral level or equivalent professional experience and expertise.

Course Content

Welsh medium modules available

Please note: The modules listed below are those currently intended for delivery during the next academic year and may be subject to change. They are included here to give an indication of how the course is structured.

Year 1 Core (40 Credits) Mathematics Joint Honours: Students must take a total of 60 credits of core and optional MA modules in year 1. The following modules are core:

Semester 1

Algebra MA10510

Calculus MA10610

Semester 2

Further Algebra And Calculus MA11010

Mathematical Analysis MA11110

Year 1 Core (40 Credits) Joint Honours Drama and Theatre Studies students (other than Senography and Theatre Design/Drama and Theatre Studies W432) must take the following modules:

Semester 1

Studying Theatre 1 TP11020

Semester 2

Studying Theatre 2 TP11320

Year 1 Options Joint Honours Drama and Theatre Studies students (other than Senography and Theatre Design/Drama and Theatre Studies W432) must take one of the following modules:

Semester 1

Making Theatre 1: Studio Project TP11120

Semester 2

Making Theatre 2: Site Project TP11420

Year 1 Options Mathematics Joint Honours: Students must take 20 credits of optional MA modules EITHER MA10110 and MA11210 OR MA10310 and MA11310.

Semester 1

Coordinate And Vector Geometry MA10110

Probability MA10310

Semester 2

Differential Equations MA11210

Statistics MA11310

Year 1 Options Welsh medium alternative modules

Semester 1

Geometreg Gyfesurynnol A Fectoraidd MT10110

Tebygoleg MT10310

Algebra MT10510

Calcwlws MT10610

Semester 2

Algebra A Chalcwlws Pellach MT11010

Dadansoddi Mathemategol MT11110

Hafaliadau Differol MT11210

Ystadegaeth MT11310

Year 2 Core (20 Credits) Mathematics Joint Honours. The following modules are core in year 2.

Semester 2

Linear Algebra MA21410

Complex Analysis MA21510

Year 2 Options Joint Honours Drama and Theatre students must take at least 40 credits and may take up to 80 credits of TP modules in their 2nd year:

Semester 1

Modern European Drama TP20320

Acting TP21220

Directing TP21820

Designing TP22620

Shakespeare In Contemporary Performance TP23220

Performance Writing TP32720

Semester 2

Theatre And Contemporary Society TP20420

Contemporary European Theatre TP21020

New Media Performance TP33820

Production Project TP34940

Year 2 Options Mathematics Joint Honours. Students must take 40 credits of optional MA modules EITHER from Block A OR B

Year 2 Options BLOCK A: Students must take 40 credits from the following.

Semester 1

Real Analysis MA20110

Introduction To Abstract Algebra MA20310

Distributions And Estimation MA26010

Applied Statistics MA26600

Semester 2

Applied Statistics MA26620

Year 2 Options BLOCK B: Students must take 40 credits from the following.

Semester 1

Real Analysis MA20110

Introduction To Abstract Algebra MA20310

Introduction To Numerical Analysis And Its Applications MA25200

Semester 2

Introduction To Numerical Analysis And Its Applications MA25220

Hydrodynamics 1 MA25610

Advanced Dynamics MA25710

Year 2 Options Welsh medium alternative modules

Semester 1

Ffiseg Mathemategol FG26020

Dadansoddiad Real MT20110

Semester 2

Algebra Llinol MT21410

Final Year Options Joint Honours Drama and Theatre students must take at least 20 credits from the following modules:

Semester 1

Contemporary British And Irish Drama TP30820

Place, Space And Landscape TP32820

Documentary Theatre TP33520

Semester 2

Theatre, Gender And Sexuality TP33120

Performance And Architecture TP33420

Performance, Politics And Protest TP35220

Final Year Options Joint Honours Drama and Theatre students may, subject to the demands of their other scheme, take their remaining credits from the following modules:

Semester 1

Playwriting TP34600

Ensemble Project TP35520

Creative Entrepreneurship TP35700

Independent Research Project TP36000

Semester 2

Applied Theatre Project TP34240

Playwriting TP34640

Solo Production Project TP35120

Creative Entrepreneurship TP35740

Independent Research Project TP36040

Final Year Options Mathematics Joint Honours. Students must take 60 credits from Maths level 3 modules.


A degree in Mathematics and Drama and Theatre Studies will prepare you for career options where specialist numerical skills and logical and analytical thought are in high demand, twinned with practical abilities of developing ideas into projects with confidence and independence.

Mathematics graduates have gone on to working for organisations such as the Office of National Statistics and the Meteorological Office, but career paths such as accountancy and banking, risk analysis and actuarial work, finance management, investment analysis, information technology, research and lecturing are also open to you

Many graduates of Drama and Theatre Studies have gone on to work as actors, performers, directors, and designers, either directly, through association with co-operative and professional companies, or after further postgraduate study. Many graduates have also found employment in a variety of different areas including teaching, administration, marketing, management, and public relations.

Transferable Skills

In addition to subject specific skills and knowledge, studying for a degree in Mathematics and Drama and Theatre Studies will equip you with a range of transferable skills which are highly valued by employers. These include:

• research and data analysis skills
• enhanced mathematical and computational skills
• effective problem-solving and creative thinking skills
• a thorough grounding in information technology skills
• the ability to work independently
• time-management and organisational skills, including the ability to meet deadlines
• the ability to express ideas and communicate information in a clear and structured manner, in both written and oral form
• self-motivation and self-reliance
• team-working, with the ability to discuss concepts in groups, accommodating different ideas and reaching agreement
• the ability to apply creative, imaginative and problem-solving skills in a variety of situations
• the ability to research, evaluate and organise information
• the ability to structure and communicate ideas effectively in a variety of situations and using a variety of means
• the ability to listen to and make use of critical advice

Year in Employment scheme (YES)

The University operates a Year in Employment Scheme (YES), which offers you a fantastic opportunity to take a year out between your second and third year to work in an organisation in the UK or overseas. YES provides a very rewarding and worthwhile experience, both personally and professionally, and can help you to stand out from the crowd in a very competitive job market. The University’s Career Service will help you to explore your options and secure a suitable work placement.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

What will I learn?

Within the Mathematics part of your course, the first year will follow a clearly defined pathway through the study of core disciplines, including algebra and calculus, coordinate and vector geometry, probability, mathematical analysis, differential equations, and statistics.

In your first year of Drama and Theatre studies, you will take a number of introductory modules that develop your skills in making, thinking and studying, examining some key historical moments, practices and methods in order to answer the questions: ‘What is theatre?’, ‘What has theatre been?’ and ‘What could theatre be now and in the future?’

In the second and third years of Mathematics you will study real analysis, abstract and linear algebra, distributions and estimation, statistical methods and mathematical physics. Optional modules include complex and numerical analysis, dynamics and hydrodynamics, sampling, and regression and anova. You will be able to specialise further in your final year by choosing from a wide range of elective modules to suit your own interests. You will also undertake a compulsory career planning module as part of your course, which will enhance your employability prospects and enable you to develop valuable transferable skills.

In the second year of Drama and Theatre Studies you will take a closer look at contemporary theatre-making through practical, historical and theoretical approaches, building your capacity as theatre-makers, thinkers and scholars. You can select from a series of modules which explore the development of modern European theatre, Shakespeare in contemporary performance, theatre and contemporary society as well as new media performance and performance writing. Furthermore a series of practical modules which explore acting, directing, devising and designing are also available, which you can also choose to develop through involvement in full-scale production work.

The third year offers you the opportunity to create independent creative work, undertake a major research project and engage in advanced theoretical study. You can select from modules that test and extend your skills in making group and solo production projects, support you in creating an Applied Theatre project, develop entrepreneurial skills in producing and curating cultural events or write your own playscript. Specialist optional modules in the third year enable you to engage with staff research specialisms in place, space and landscape, performance philosophy, performance and politics, theatre, gender and sexuality, documentary theatre and contemporary British drama. In the third year you have the opportunity to demonstrate your achievement as an emergent maker, thinker and researcher, preparing to enter the worlds of employment, entrepreneurship and postgraduate study.

The combination of Mathematics and Drama and Theatre Studies, although unusual, provides you with an opportunity to explore both your personal artistry and your local and reasoning mind.

How will I be taught?

The mathematical side of your degree will be taught through a complementary set of teaching and learning methods and approaches, ranging from formal lectures, seminars and tutorials to practicals and individual and group-based project work, where you will be assessed through a combination of coursework, presentations, reports and examinations.

In your Drama and Theatre Studies side, you will be taught through practical workshops, small-group seminars, and lectures. This diversity of activity is an essential part of our teaching and learning philosophy, and creates a uniquely exciting and productive learning environment. You will be assessed through formal and performed essays, written and practical examinations, critical and creative portfolios, practical productions, seminar presentations and group activities. As you progress through the degree we place increasing emphasis on developing your independence and self-management, allowing you to take responsibility for your own learning.

You will be assigned a personal tutor throughout your degree course, who will help you with any problems or queries, whether these are academic-related or personal issues. You should feel free to contact them at any time for help and advice.

You will also have the opportunity to complete a Personal Development Plan (PDP) at Aberystwyth. This is a structured process of self-appraisal, reflection, and planning, which will enable you to chart your personal, academic and professional development throughout your time at university. By recording your academic performance, and highlighting the skills you already have and those you will need for future employability, the PDP portfolio will equip you with the necessary tools to plan effectively, develop successful approaches to study, and consider your future career options and aspirations.

Key Information Set