Start date


3 year(s) full-time


Program Code


Assumed Knowledge

2022: AUD$ 28,000 per annum (per 1.0 EFTSL)
2023: AUD$ 29,400 per annum (per 1.0 EFTSL)

English Language Requirements
  • IELTS total [6.0]
  • IELTS reading [6.0]
  • IELTS writing [6.0]
Equivalent English qualifications (PDF)

International Admission by Country
See full entry requirements


Degree overview

  • Enhance your employment prospects by studying a double major. Taking two majors will develop your capabilities to explore and understand diverse ways of thinking, which is highly regarded by prospective employers.
  • The Performing Arts major enables you to explore both drama and music with industry practitioners.
  • Study within an industry environment with performances and involvement with peak arts bodies and festivals, including the State Theatre Company of SA, Adelaide Cabaret and Cabaret Fringe festivals, and local venues.
  • Create live and recorded theatre and music using digital technologies and production facilities.
  • Benefit from on-campus learning facilities, including the fully equipped 200 seat Hartley Playhouse, music recording studio and music rehearsal rooms.
  • Apply for the Bachelor of Arts/Master of Teaching (Secondary) pathway to become a high school teacher with Drama as one of your teaching areas.
  • Gain international experience as part of the Hawke Ambassador Volunteer Experience Program, or stay local and take part in the Hawke Professional Experience Program.
  • Engage with industry partners and organisations as part of your studies through the optional Professional Directions Program.
  • Study at a university ranked No. 1 in SA for Creative Arts campus facilities1, and learning resources2.
  • UniSA is an unstoppable university for unstoppable people. As one of the World’s Top Young Universities3, we’ll ensure you get the experience your future profession demands so it’ll feel like you’re studying one minute and in a career the next.

1ComparED (QILT) Student Experience Survey 2019-20 – Learning Resources Indicator (Undergraduate). Public SA-founded universities only.
22021 Good Universities Guide – Undergraduate.
3UNSTOPPABLE® is a Kellogg Company trade mark used under licence. Ranked #46, 2022 THE Young University Rankings, Ranked #29, 2021 QS Top 50 Universities Aged Under 50.



As a student studying the Performing Arts major, you will study drama and music through performance practice and applied theory. This degree is flexible and opens up a diverse range of career possibilities.

Your studies will focus on:

  • Body and voice for the stage
  • Naturalism and physical theatre
  • Solo, ensemble theatre and music performance skills
  • Musicianship and conducting
  • Cabaret, satire and comedy
  • Music arrangement, recording and production
  • Text from page to stage
  • New media design and production
  • Theatre, musical theatre and cabaret production
  • Direction and performance for screen.

You will:

  • Discover an experiential and theoretical understanding of stage and music performance.
  • Develop your industry pathway as performer, musician, director, writer, designer or stage manager.
  • Contribute to the creative industries, through the creation of original material for a variety of art forms including contemporary drama and film, cabaret, musical theatre and digital performance.

You will also graduate with writing, presentation, digital, communication, research and problem-solving skills that can be transferable across a range of roles and are highly regarded by prospective employers.

If you finish your degree with a credit or higher-Grade Point Average (GPA), you could also be eligible for the one-year Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree.

You could also continue your studies with a Master of Teaching with Drama as your learning area. If this interests you, please read How Do I Become a Teacher before selecting your courses.

If you would like to apply directly into the Bachelor of Arts/Master of Teaching (Secondary) package option, please apply via SATAC using 444521.

If you apply to the Master of Teaching packaged degree option (444521), you will apply into the Bachelor of Arts and in your first year select your specialisation as Performing Arts.

What you'll learn

What you Learn

Under the guidance of highly experienced academics, industry practitioners and guest artists, you will study drama and music through performance practice and applied theory.

This degree allows you to select two majors ensuring you graduate with a broad knowledge of two areas of interest. You can choose your second major from the following:

* Please note that this major is only available to students whose second language is English.

You will also be required to take part in live performances and produce media using the latest digital technologies and production facilities. Your performances will be reviewed by highly regarded artists and professionals.

You will also be required to complete two core courses, four courses from a selected list of minors (also from the above list), and two electives.

Degree structure

Course name Area and cat no. Units Reference  
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Truth, Lies and Being Human HUMS 1060 4.5 Note(s): 1
Stage Performance PERF 1011 4.5
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Minor 4.5 Note(s): 4,5,7
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Intercultural Communication LANG 1054 4.5 Note(s): 1
Music Performance PERF 1010 4.5
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Minor 4.5 Note(s): 4,5,7
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Cabaret: Context and Practice PERF 2013 4.5
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Minor 4.5 Note(s): 4,5,7
Elective 4.5 Note(s): 3
Professional Directions Program 1 COMM 2098 4.5 Note(s): 3
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Music Production PERF 2022 4.5 Note(s): 6
State Theatre Master Class PERF 2021 4.5 Note(s): 6
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Minor 4.5 Note(s): 4,5,7
Elective 4.5 Note(s): 3
Professional Directions Program 2 COMM 2099 4.5 Note(s): 3
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Live Performance Production PERF 3008 9
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
World Music Theatre PERF 3007 4.5
Digital Performance PERF 2014 4.5 Note(s): 8
Television Performance PERF 3013 4.5 Note(s): 8
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1
Major 2 4.5 Note(s): 2 Rule(s): 1

Study hours

For each course you study, you will need to allocate time for various classes such as lectures, tutorials, workshops, seminars and practicals. Plus you will need additional hours to study in your own time to complete assignments, readings and projects, as well as to contribute to online discussion forums (independent study). So as a general rule, if you are studying full-time you would need to allocate 12–26 hours of study when at university and 14–28 hours of independent study per week.



Your studies will incorporate practical, professionally focused and research-based learning, so assessment types will vary. You can expect them to include:

  • individual and group presentations
  • critical analysis
  • essays
  • reflective journals
  • research assignments
  • portfolios
  • case studies
  • online quizzes
  • reports
  • assignments

Global opportunities

Enrich your studies and your life – make overseas study part of your qualification. You may have the option to undertake an exchange, short-term program or study tour overseas while you study. We have links with universities worldwide, as well as a range of travel grants available to make going overseas much more accessible.

You can choose short-term or semester-long study from a range of universities and countries depending on your area of study and cultural interests.

Take a look at the global opportunities available.

Global opportunities

Why Bachelor of Arts (Performing Arts)

Why this Degree

This degree increases your employment prospects by enabling you to gain expertise in two different areas of interest. The performing arts major facilitates creative performance making with industry practitioners that leads to professional pathways within the performing arts.

You will learn from world-class educators and researchers1 and benefit from our on-campus learning facilities, which include a sound studio and The Hartley Playhouse.

There is also an opportunity to study a portion of your degree overseas, as part of the University’s Hawke Ambassador International Volunteer Experience Program (full semester) or Hawke Professional Experience Program (part semester).

You could continue your studies with a Master of Teaching with Drama as a Learning Area. If this interests you, please read How Do I Become a Teacher before selecting your courses.

12018 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA)

Real-world connections

As part of this degree you may have the opportunity to complete local or overseas placement. This is a great opportunity for you to build professional relationships and networks.

The Performing Arts major provides industry-led experience in stage and screen performance, live and recorded music performance, cabaret, musical theatre, and contemporary theatre practice.

Students develop a practical and theoretical understanding of current page to stage processes including production and stage management, stage design and the application of performance technologies. The major has strong connection into a range of sectors, including the State Theatre Company, Heesom Casting, Adelaide Cabaret and Adelaide Cabaret Fringe Festivals.

You can make industry connections and gain valuable work experience by taking part in one or more of the following:

  • micro placements in over 100 organisations though the Professional Directions Program in second year.
  • tailored industry internships through the Hawke Professional Experience Program
  • a wide range of international NGOs through the Hawke Ambassador Program.

Career outcomes

Your career

Graduates of this degree are well-placed to secure highly sought-after positions in performance, management or production and the creative industries. Careers to consider:

  • Performance Maker: write, perform, produce, direct, design creative theatrical and musical work

  • Production and/or Stage Manager: Manage all components of a theatre production to enable the professional delivery of a performance

  • Designer -  design and operate lighting, sound, video or design set and props for production

You could also pursue a teaching career in drama when you continue your studies with a Master of Teaching (Secondary).

Further career pathways are available depending on your combination of majors.

Industry facts


Employment as an actor, dancer or other entertainer in Australia is projected to increase by 15.2 per cent by November 20201.

1Australian Government Department of Employment, Occupational Employment Projections 2015


18.38 million tickets were issued to live performance events in Australia in 2015, generating total ticket sales revenue of $1.41 billion1.

1LPA, Ticket Attendance and Revenue Survey 2015


The cultural sector contributes $50 billion towards Australia’s GDP, including over $4.2 billion from the Arts1.

1Arts Nation; An Overview of Australian Arts, Australia Council for the Arts 2015

How to apply

Applying to study with us:

  • go to the top of this page and make note of the relevant SATAC code*, then click Apply
  • you will be redirected through to the SATAC website to continue your application

*There are two SATAC codes – one for this degree, and one for this degree packaged with the Master of Teaching. You can apply to study this degree on its own. However if you already know you would like to combine it with a Master of Teaching, you can apply for both together.

If you apply to the Master of Teaching packaged degree option (444521), you will apply into the Bachelor of Arts and in your first year select your specialisation.

Alternative Pathways

There are other pathways you can follow to study this degree, including: 

There are other pathways you can follow to study this degree, including: 


Every year, over 2,500 UniSA students are supported in their studies through scholarships and grants worth millions of dollars. Check out the scholarships below. One of them may be perfect for you. Visit our scholarships page for more.

More scholarships

Your study experience and support

As a UniSA student, you will have unique access to work placement opportunities, overseas study tours and exchanges, networking events, internships, guest speakers and more.

Our campuses are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including modern lecture theatres, libraries, workshops and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments. These are all supported by the latest technologies and a 24/7 online learning platform. We have health services on campus, gymnasiums, technology zones and great student lounges. You will also gain access to a range of community clinics, which provide professional and cost effective services in areas of health, business, law and psychology. There are campus sport activities to keep you active, and if you are keen to explore the social side of university life, there are movies, cooking demonstrations, parties and lots more.

Adelaide also has a variety of accommodation options to suit different requirements and budgets. Options include dedicated student accommodation and private rentals. See our long-term accommodation pages, or explore our student accommodation by Scape on Bank Street in Adelaide’s lively cultural precinct, an ideal location for students. It is within easy reach of UniSA’s city and metropolitan campuses, Rundle Mall shopping, the Central Market, Chinatown, and the West End’s vibrant nightlife. It is also across the road from the Adelaide train station, and on bus and tram routes.

Student services

Student services

Our international student services provide you with all the support you need at university. We want you to succeed, and if you need help, we're here to assist. You can access a full range of support services, including:

  • career advice and mentoring
  • help with student visas and health cover
  • personal counselling
  • academic counselling
  • fees and finance help
  • common rooms
  • prayer rooms
  • security officers
  • accommodation services 
  • as well as services offered through our student association, USASA.

We also offer study support from our Learning Advisers face-to-face or online. They are here to help you develop academically and professionally during your studies, and can offer help with the English language too. When you become a UniSA student, you can also contact Campus Central for help with anything related to your degree. They will help you with your enrolment, ID cards, fees, timetables and more.

24/7 digital environment

Our learnonline facilities include a personal learning environment with virtual classrooms, lecture recordings, emails, learning support, administration, library access and results. The environment is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you can tailor your learning to your life. We are continually investing in innovative digital technologies for a high-quality student learning experience.

Student services

Your campus

We have six campuses in metropolitan and regional areas, each with modern facilities including lecture theatres, libraries and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments.

Location This degree is delivered at the following campus.

Your study spaces

As an arts student, you will have access to:

  • on-campus Multimedia Languages Lab, where you can connect in real-time with native speakers from around the world
  • The Hartley Playhouse Theatre – a 200-seat auditorium ideal for live performances
  • on-campus TV Studio featuring one of the largest green screens in SA and home to national television shows aired on Channel 44
  • a broadcast-standard digital radio studio which produces UniCast, a 24 hour online radio station
  • a purpose-built, high-end sound and vision Media Suite, featuring an 85 inch LCD panel, Denon Hifi and Dolby Atmos 5.1.2 surround sound, which can be used to host meetings and showcase student work to industry clients.
Your study spaces

Your program director

I am an Associate Professor in Applied Linguistics, and my research is in professional and organisational communication, mainly in health settings. I hold a BA (Hons) in Philosophy from University of York, and an MA and PhD in Linguistics from Macquarie University. My interests cover the humanities and social sciences. Before academia, I worked in Germany in software ergonomics, the wine industry, and later in education. Our Bachelor of Arts program develops each student’s interests, strengths and aspirations, enabling students to explore and prepare for a wide range of career and life goals. The unique double major structure combines theory and practice with real-world experience to develop strong interdisciplinary skills that are highly valued by industry, government and community.

AsPr Jonathan Crichton

Program Director

Portrait image for AsPr Jonathan Crichton
Portrait image for AsPr Jonathan Crichton

AsPr Jonathan Crichton

Program Director


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