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Drama Therapist

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icould and Inspiring the Future
Heather, Drama Therapist
British Association of Dramatherapists

Time Code Audio
00:00:07 Hi, my name’s Heather and I’m a drama therapist and that means that I get to provide therapy for people, using drama, which I love and I have a couple of things that I really like about my role. One of them is that I get to be creative every day and the other one is that I get to help people. My least favourite aspect of my job is probably that I have to do notes after every session.
00:00:35 I work in Northern Ireland, in a residential and nursing facility for men living with mental ill health. A session can last anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour, depending on how we go and I usually get through about 4 sessions in a day. So it’s a very busy day, it’s very, very scheduled and each service user is completely different. So my day is always very varied.
00:01:07 We can use things such as puppets and masks and music. We can also use role and art and clay, depending on what the service user feels like they want and need to use that day.
00:01:23 I was very interested in drama, so I did it for GCSE. I continued on to A Level, doing drama for A Level and then I continued on to university and did drama there too. It wasn’t until a few years later that I found out that drama therapy existed and that I had to have a Masters for it. So what I did was apply for the Masters, got in, 2 years later I graduated.
00:01:51 In being a drama therapist I think your personality has to be quite caring and I feel like you really need to want to help people and be good at communicating with people as well. One of the other things that you should be is a good listener.
00:02:10 I would also recommend studying psychology as well. I didn’t do that. I would also advise you getting some experience in the form of work experience. So there are a number of roles that are available for drama therapists within the NHS and it would be really beneficial for you to approach the NHS or your local trust and see if there are opportunities available there for work experience within the realms of drama therapy.


Heather was always interested in drama which she studied from GCSE to degree-level. Later, she found out about careers in drama therapy and then went on to qualify as a drama therapist.

More information about Therapy professionals n.e.c.

average salary

The UK average salary is £29,813

average weekly hours

There are 37.5 hours in the average working week

10%  male 
90%  female 

The UK workforce is 47% female and 53% male

Future employment

Future employment?

? Job holders in this unit group plan and apply physical and therapeutic treatments and activities to assist recovery from physical and mental illness and to minimise the effects of disabilities not elsewhere classified in MINOR GROUP 222: Therapy professionals.
Entrants usually possess an accredited degree or postgraduate qualification. Training can take between two to five years depending upon the chosen method of study. Courses provide a mixture of theoretical study and practical experience. Membership of professional bodies may be mandatory in some areas.
  • Prescribes diet therapy and gives advice to patients, health care professionals and the public on dietetic and nutritional matters for those with special dietary requirements or to prevent illness amongst the general population;
  • Diagnoses and treats disorders of vision and eye movements, monitors subsequent progress and recommends further optical, pharmacological or surgical treatment as required;
  • Manipulates and massages patient to discover the cause of pain, relieve discomfort, restore function and mobility and to correct irregularities in body structure;
  • Adopts a holistic approach in assessing the overall health of the patient, and treats by inserting needles under the skin at particular locations according to the disorder being treated;
  • Administers aromatic herbs and oils and massage to relieve pain and restore health;
  • Assesses and provides treatment for people with mental disabilities, or those suffering with mental illness, stress, and emotional and relationship problems;
  • Diagnoses and treats behavioural problems in animals.
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