Edexcel GCSE Drama (2016)

Here, you'll find everything you need to prepare for GCSE Drama from 2016, including our Edexcel GCSE (9–1) Drama specification, sample assessment materials and support materials.

We have developed a GCSE Drama qualification for 2016 that encourages creativity, focus on practical work and develops skills that will support progression to further study of drama and a wide range of other subjects.

Our Set Texts will require students to articulate how they would perform in certain roles, and design for certain scenes, putting practical work at the heart of each specification.

Our carefully selected set texts will inspire teachers and students and avoid the most popular performance texts. You get to choose performance texts that best suit your students, their ability to access the work, their interests and their skills.

Question papers will be accessible for students and the mark schemes will make the required standard clear.

With similar approaches to assessment at GCSE and A level, students will have a coherent experience of drama, developing valuable skills that support a smooth transition to the next level of study.

Students will have the opportunity to explore practitioners and performance texts from this century. 

We've listened

2016 guide
Download PDF | 5.6 MB

First teaching: September 2016

  • Keeping the best parts
  • Changing the parts that you didn't like
  • Supporting you every step of the way.


Specification - issue 3
Download PDF | 838.6 KB
What's changing

GCSE Drama 2016: What's changed

These changes will apply to all awarding organisations’ specifications:

  • GCSE specifications in drama will be assessed through a combination of a 40% written exam and 60% non-examined assessment.
  • GCSE specifications will require students to study one complete and substantial performance text and two key extracts from a second contrasting performance text. The texts must be studied to gain a practical understanding of drama.
  • GCSE specifications must require students to participate in a minimum of two performances, one devised and one from a performance text which has been studied as part of the course.
Sarah Parry, Product Manager for GCSE Drama at Pearson, discusses the changes we've made to the qualification after listening to teacher feedback.

Our approach

We’re working with the teaching community, higher education and subject associations to design our new qualifications for 2016. Our ambition is to develop drama qualifications that you will know and recognise, but to update them in line with the subject content changes and in response to feedback.

We have also commissioned and conducted our own research projects, including international benchmarking and trialling. This research will help us understand how to build on the strengths of the current qualifications and to identify the skills that students need to progress to further study in drama and theatre.

Download our brochure

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Free launch events

Book your place on our free Getting Ready to Teach events

We're holding free Getting Ready to Teach events this summer to give teachers and heads of department the chance to find out more about our new GCSE for first teaching in September 2016.

Book your free place



If you don’t have an Edexcel Online account, you can book by emailing us at trainingbookings@pearson.com.

Download the presentation

Can't get to one of our launch events? View the presentation here. 

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Teaching support

See what training courses are available

Visit the drama teacher community

Your subject advisor
Paul Webster, Drama, Theatre Studies and Performing Arts subject advisor
Paul WebsterDrama, Theatre Studies and Performing Arts
UK: 0333 016 4141
Intl: +44 (0)333 016 4141
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