1) They’re specialists at what they do
If you went to a car dealership to buy a new car, you wouldn’t expect them to also be selling hedge trimmers. When you decide to study at a private acting or drama school, you are choosing a place which is wholly dedicated to the craft of acting. Often these specialist schools are staffed by professionals who have worked, or still work in the industry. The entire organisation is dedicated to producing quality, employable actors, and that’s all they do. There’s no demand from, or focus on anything else.
2) All of their income is dedicated to your learning
Feedback from many applicants suggests that many colleges are underfunded, which means that sometimes students on an acting course are limited to what they can’t or can’t do. Perhaps a typical FE college doesn’t have much acting for camera work (because the equipment and personnel to operate it is expensive). Another example might be that a typical college may only be able to afford to mount one public production, or even only be able to offer a three day study week.
However a private drama school’s HND in Acting and Performance will typically use it’s course fees on the course that it delivers, meaning more public performances, more acting for camera training, and more contact hours with coaches and directors
3) It’s a more personal experience
You’re likely to have smaller class sizes at a private acting or drama school. Learning to act isn’t a theoretical exercise, it’s a practical one. So if you are working in smaller groups, let's say between 8 and 12 people, you’re going to have more practice, and it will be a more personal experience. This means you will have a deeper learning experience and ultimately it should yield more effective results.
4) You’re surrounded by like-minded people
Usually there is an audition process to study on a HND in Acting and Performance at private drama school. There is also likely to be much greater competition for places than at a typical college. This means you are being carefully selected to be given the opportunity to train. If everyone on the course has been specially chosen, then you are more likely to share the same passion, determination and positive mindset to go on your acting training journey.
Nick J Field
Co-Principal and Acting Coach on the 2-Year HND in Acting and Performance course at Acting Coach Scotland