The Level 5  Higher Nationals Diploma (HND) is a two year course. During your first year you will study a Level 4 Higher Nationals Certificate (HNC). Upon successful completion of the first year, you will progress onto the second year to study the Level 5 HND which will then enable you to progress onto Level 6 Degree Top-Up programme at many Universities.

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Full-time. 5 pm to 8 pm + autonomous study.


Level 4 and level 5 (240 credits)


18 to 24 month



€420,00 per month.  

Tuition fees exclude registration fees  €490.00 


Classroom and project classes. It also includes online classes.


1 Month in the USA 

1 Month in the UK 

Performing Arts 

Is this course right for me? 

Careers within backstage production for theatres and venues, TV and film as well as open-air events are at an unprecedented period of growth in the Portugal and UK with a talented and well-trained crew, lighting technicians, sound engineers, stage managers, set designers, props makers and theatre technicians in high demand.

The theatre, film, events, festivals, and music industries are at an all-time high and this provides an ever-increasing variety of career options. This practical, hands-on course offers the opportunity to study technical theatre in all production areas and to train and work in stage management, lighting, and sound, scenic art, and prop and construction on a range of public performances. Giving you the skills required to progress into a career backstage in the creative and entertainment industry. 

HNDs are designed to give you the practical, vocational skills of a particular field of work which can then lead straight to a career. You can also use the qualifications to progress within your current career, for example as a stepping stone to gaining professional status. Once you complete your course HNDs can allow entry into the second or third year.

A challenging programme

A qualification designed to meet the needs and expectations of students aspiring to work in an international Performing Arts environment.

Students will study a variety of units including:

Professional Development; Commercial Dance; Directing; Acting for Camera; Musical Theatre History.

Should you study for a Higher National Diploma if you want a career in theatre?

In Performing Arts students are encouraged to develop a range of important skills which are transferable to any walk of life. 

Acting Pathway: This course is designed to develop a wide range of drama and theatre skills such as acting, voice, and movement as well as production skills.

Modules include: Naturalistic Acting; Acting for Camera; Development of Acting Skills; Production Skills for Performance; Creative Arts Profession Practice; Creative Arts Research Skills; Workshop Leadership; Vocal Method in Context; Theatre Directing; Physical Theatre; Theatre in Education; Alternative Approaches to Acting; Classical Acting and Work-Based Experience, amongst others.

Dance Pathway: This course is designed to develop a wide range of dance and theatre skills such as dance techniques, choreography, and performance.


Higher National Diploma in Performing Arts

The Level 5 HND in Performing Arts requires two years’ study with the College. Throughout the course, you will be required to complete 15 core, optional and specialized modules (eight in year 1 and seven in year 2).

To achieve the qualification, a student must have completed units equivalent to 120 credits at level 4 and 120 credits at level 5 and scored at least a pass in 105 credits at level 4 and 105 credits at level 5, amounting to 210 + credits.

You will study the following units:

Course Structure - 1st Year

YEAR 1 - Level 4 HNC

During this course you will study:

Unit 1 - Stage lighting: rigging, focusing and operation

Unit 2 - Lighting design for performance

Unit 3 - Stage management

Unit 4 - Set construction and painting

Unit 5 - Live sound for large and small venues

Unit 6 - Live sound systems

Unit 7 - Acoustics

Course Structure - 2nd Year

YEAR 2 - Level 5 HND

Unit 8 -   Music electronics and maintenance

Unit 9 -   Music health and law

Unit 10 - Planning for public performance

Unit 11 - Scenic art and construction

Unit 12 - Stage design

Unit 13 - Props for theatre production

Unit 14 - Research techniques

Unit 15 - Special effects for theatre

Unit 16 - Events management

This qualification prepares you for employment in the theatre, venues and events sector and gives you a pathway to a top up to a 3rd year at university or direct to employment. The HND in Backstage and Venue Production has been designed with industry professionals to ensure that you are equipped with the knowledge, confidence, understanding and skills required for success in your future employment.

Total Credits: 210+

Entry requirements

Undergraduate Courses (Level 4)

To access this course you are required to have:

Three A-Levels OR


In addition, you must possess good written and oral English and have evidence of interest/involvement in the music industry. 

Acceptance onto the course is based on academic qualifications and references and you will also be required to attend an interview with an admissions tutor when you will also get the chance to view our facilities

How will I be assessed?

Undergraduate Courses (Level 4/5)

Level 4 courses come in the form of 1st year of a bachelor's programme or HNC (Higher National Certificate). Depending on the type of associate degree a student may be able to start their 2nd year of bachelors (The course must be the same as the one they are applying for)

Level 5 courses come in the form of the 2nd year of a bachelor's programmes or an HND (Higher National Diploma). Depending on the type of associate degree a student may be able to start their 3rd year of bachelors (The course must be the same as the one they are applying for)

This is an assignment-based course so there are no exams. You will be continually assessed throughout the programme by a variety of methods including coursework, reports, case studies, essay, presentations, and observations.

Graduate Course

Graduate Course (Level 6)

Level 6 courses are the final component of a bachelor’s degree. Bachelors are classed as follows: 1st, 2:1, 2:2, 3rd, and Ordinary degree. Bachelors can be with honors (Hons) or without. A Bachelor with honors means that the student has completed all 320 credits of their degree. A Bachelor’s without honors means that the student has 300 credits. If the student scored 69.6% – 100 % in their degree they would graduate with a 1st, 2:1 means the student got a score of 59.6% – 69.5%. A 2:2 means the student scored 49.6%-59.5%. A 3rd means the student scored 40% – 49.5%

Students who successfully completed Higher National Diploma in Performing Arts qualification can progress onto Degree Top-Up programme at many universities such as the University of Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire New University, Teesside University, University of Sunderland, Buckinghamshire New University, University of Huddersfield, London Metropolitan University, Oxford Brookes University, University of Gloucestershire, University of Worcester, University of South Wales, etc.


Teaching and Administrative Services

The college gives high priority to both teaching and administrative services. It employs suitably qualified academic personnel who are dedicated to carrying out teaching responsibilities with care & professionalism. The college also has an experienced administrative team to oversee the overall administration of the college.

College policies are closely aligned to the UK's Quality Code for Higher Education, for quality education. We are committed to providing our students with a quality education experience that benefits their learning and development as individuals.

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