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Speech & Drama Subjects

These syllabuses encompass a wide variety of skills across speech, vocal technique, communication, performance, and drama. Whether you want to gain confidence in public speaking or if you have dreams of Hollywood, you'll find a syllabus and exam to suit.

There are three syllabuses under our Speech & Drama umbrella:

  • Speech & Performance, including practical exams, teaching Diplomas, and theory.
  • Drama & Communication
  • Voice & Communication

All Syllabuses offer structured and sequenced learning so there's a grade for all levels of experience. Candidates present their program of works and engage with the Examiner in a discussion of their exam preparation. Read on to find out more about which is the best fit for you.

Candidates may also be interested in the PAA Musical Theatre syllabus, which assesses a full production, augmenting acting with singing and dancing.


Explore and interpret texts across a broad spectrum of styles, genres, and eras. Develop interpretative and performance skills by interpreting and gaining insight into the works you're presenting. Your exam presentation will include your physical response to the text, demonstrations of secure vocal  technique.

The Speech & Performance Syllabus was previously known as Drama & Performance.


Exams are now available online! This Theory Syllabus supports learning across all three practical syllabuses and is designed to align with corresponding grades across Level 1. Please consult the Manual for the alignment of higher grades.Through Speech Theory, you can develop your understanding of the functional framework of speech and performance that relates directly to dramatic performance. The Syllabus covers phonetic symbols, poetic interpretation, history, and communication practices.


Please visit our Teacher Support page for more information on Teaching accreditation and exams to support your professional development.

Drama & Communication

Specially designed for the performing arts, this syllabus offers a fantastic structure for both classroom and studio teaching,

Exams can be undertake by individual candidates, in pairs, or as a large group.

Candidates develop performance, language, and interpretation skills through their response to the text. Additionally, group members work in collaboration to enhance their ensemble performance, negotiating, and group decision-making skills.

Each grade works on a different dramatic focus and students' research into the topic is a great source for self-guided learning and engagement through an area of personal interest.

In each grade, the exam contains a performance and discussion with the Examiner. As the levels increase, so do the optional exam format additions, including a presentation of the documentation that went into creating the performance, an improvisation section, and a group devised demonstration.

Solo Drama & Communication Recorded Exams are available and offer an easy transition for candidates already working on other syllabuses.

Voice & Communication

Gain the life skills that will set you up for success! This syllabus aims to nurture one's confidence to communicate, focussing on the skills to read effectively, speak with clarity, and present to a variety of audiences.

All our syllabuses are suitable for all ages but this one is especially so. Level 2 exams are designed for secondary or tertiary students and adults working in the corporate sector, or the broader community.

Exams can be undertaken as an individual, with a support group, or as an ensemble.

In addition to presenting prose and poetry, candidates are encouraged to choose an object or topic of interest for presentation. The exam itself includes a lot of conversational elements with the Examiner, and group if applicable.

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