This revised course is focussed on meeting the demands of the higher level marking bands across all three of the specification components in Edexcel GCSE Drama. It will focus on exploring the characteristics of work produced by students working at the highest levels and explore a range of teaching materials designed to secure the best possible outcomes.


  • Understand the specific assessment demands of the Edexcel GCSE Drama and Theatre Studies specification for higher level students
  • Develop practical strategies for meeting the requirements of the higher bands across all components
  • Explore exemplar materials to identify characteristics of outstanding work
  • Increase confidence in preparing candidates to achieve the highest outcomes
  • Consider lessons learnt about top grade work from the first examination series in 2018
COURSE DATES London | Friday 13 December 2019
  • All teachers of Edexcel GCSE Drama
  • Heads of Drama Department
  • Directors of Faculties of Performing Arts
  • Senior leaders with responsibility for the Arts
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of 50+ pages full of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance
  • Two course restaurant lunch
  • Refreshments throughout the day
  • Guaranteed high quality venues


10.00 – 11.00am
Focus on assessment demands for Grades 7 to 9

  • Review the assessment demands of all components, including the use of assessment objectives as a framework for assessment
  • Consider the most effective models for delivery of the course to ensure effective assessment practice across 2 years
  • Review characteristics of students at Grades 7 to 9 in the context of this specification
  • Consider lessons learnt from the 2018 examination series – what students need to do to ensure that they achieve the highest grades

11.00 – 11.15am
Discussion: coffee break

11.00 – 1.00pm
Achieving top grades in the Non Examined Assessment: Components 1 and 2

  • Explore an exemplar scheme of work and build a toolkit for teaching success that enables the most able to get the highest grades
  • Examine exemplar portfolios and develop understanding of the characteristics of the most successful candidates in the devised component
  • Consider the characteristics of highly effective student performance
  • Understand the structure of an effective devising process for students aiming for grades 7 to 9
  • Explore the Principal Moderator’s report to identify features of the most effective submissions

1.00 – 1.45pm
Lunch and informal discussion

1.45 – 3.15pm
Obtaining Grades 7 to 9 on the Component 3 written paper

  • Explore practical strategies for developing a strong understanding of the page to stage process
  • Examine excellent exemplar responses to the focussed extract questions for Section A – prepare students to respond as a performer and designer
  • Develop a toolkit for success in supporting students to evaluate live theatre performance for Section B to the highest standards
  • New teaching strategies for moving students from a Grade 7 to a strong level 8 or 9 response
  • Explore strategies for developing understanding of the social, cultural and historical context of texts to enable students to attain the highest marks

3.15 – 3.30pm
Discussion: afternoon tea

3.30 – 4.00pm
Plenary and depart

  • Consider effective resources for delivering the course so that students can attain the top grades
  • Action planning for next step success

Emma Hollis-Brown

Emma has wide ranging experience of teaching and learning, working in a range of secondary schools and post 16 institutions specialising in delivering curriculum solutions in English and the Performing Arts and leading high performing faculties to success. Since 2004, Emma has developed a career in initial teacher training, leadership and challenge, and inspection and advisory work supporting curriculum modeling and collaborative quality assurance. In Arts Education settings Emma worked as a Creative Agent, Researcher and Evaluator. Emma is a highly experienced trainer designing and delivering programmes on a range of areas of school improvement.

Emma is also a senior examiner for the market leading A Level Theatre Studies specification, a trained assessor both for Arts Mark and Arts Award schemes and an Ofqual Subject Expert. In 2011, Emma established her own training and consultancy company delivering a range of contracts across public and private sectors. Emma is a badged Ofsted Inspector working on both schools and initial teacher training remits as well as a secondary school Governor and Charitable Trustee.

View all courses led by Emma Hollis-Brown >

Edexcel GCSE Drama