Foundation Course in Acting
  • foundation course

    foundation course

“The Foundation Course in Acting was a great introduction to drama school. After just six months I not only felt more confident and open as a person but more prepared to begin my training.”

Freddy Carter, Foundation Course graduate

osd foundation

Our Foundation Course in Acting is a lively and rewarding course that will introduce you to a range of performance methods and techniques. It’s both challenging and fun – and helps you to develop your creativity and establish the beginning of a technique that will be invaluable for the future, whether you are going to audition for drama school or are planning to act at university.

The course is mainly taught by tutors who also teach on our Three Year and One Year courses and with over 32 hours of tuition per week it will really give you a taste of life a drama school.

Graduates of the Foundation Course have gone on to train on our own Three Year Course and at other leading drama schools including RADA, LAMDA, Drama Centre, Guildhall but also to study unrelated subjects at all the major universities. As the course has been running for 25 years, graduates are now pursuing successful careers in the industry, including at the National Theatre, Hampstead Theatre, Royal Exchange, Tricycle Theatre, BBC and Channel 4.

The course lasts two terms. You need to be aged 18 or over when you start the course. Entry is by audition only and there are no academic requirements, which means that if you have enjoyed performing in school or youth theatre productions but haven’t studied Drama or English you are still welcome to apply.

Foundation Course students generally live in Oxford or Woodstock. The School has a list of local families who are happy to host students. 

Students who completed the Foundation Course and went on to further training here or at another drama school:

  • Lydia Rose Bewley, E4’s Drifters, E!’s The Royals, ITV2’s Plebs, The Inbetweeners Movie
  • Nicola Coughlan, Channel 4’s Derry Girls, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie in the West End
  • Luke Dale, Watford Palace Theatre, Sheffield Crucible
  • Alex Felton, National Theatre, Bristol Old Vic, Theatre Royal Bath
  • Lisa Jackson, National Theatre, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Royal Exchange Theatre
  • Rosie Jones, BBC1’s The Bodyguard, Nottingham Playhouse, New Vic/Oldham Coliseum, Bolton Octagon
  • Maimuna Memon, Lazarus in the West End, Jesus Christ Superstar at Regents Park Open Air Theatre, The Assassination of Katie Hopkins at Theatr Clwyd
  • Mark Strepan, BBC3’s Clique, BBC1’s New Blood, Channel 4’s The Mill
  • Camilla Whitehill, writer

Short films about the Foundation Course

Course Outline

First Year

Acting Methods and Techniques

The practical exploration of the actor’s craft through the work of teachers such as Constantin Stanislavski, Michael Chekhov and Uta Hagen


Classes to encourage your understanding and awareness of your body and its potential in movement and stillness


Classes designed to improve the quality and flexibility of your voice

Second Year

Verse and Poetry

Study of form and expression in poetry with particular emphasis on the language of Shakespeare

Animal Studies

The study of the physical world of an animal in preparation for the development of character


Practical work preparing songs and developing singing technique

Third Year

Film and Television

Introductory classes in acting technique for film and television

Stage Combat

Leading to an Academy of Performance Combat examination

Professional Development

Guidance in making informed decisions about your future