Frequently asked questions


See these and other FAQs answered by members of our Degree team on our  YouTube playlist

  • Visiting us

    Can I visit?

    Yes! We have two open days, one on Saturday 1 December and Thursday 7 February, where you can come in, have a tour, and speak to the current students and staff. Find out more here.

    If you are unable to make either of these days you can email to organise something more informal for another time.


    What qualifications do I need for the Foundation Degree / BA Hons Degree?

    Applicants must be 18 or over on entry and be required to demonstrate a proficiency in both written and verbal English language. For the Foundation Degree in Circus Arts this would normally be GCSE English or equivalent International English Language Testing System (IELTS) at 6.5 pass level or higher.


    Do I need a background in circus?

    We look for the potential in circus but having a background in it is not necessary. 


    What does the audition involve and what are you looking for?

    Over the course of the day auditionees will take part in workshops similar to classes held on the programme. Stage One of the audition day includes Movement, and three Circus skill rotations. During the audition we look at and consider physicality, musicality, and performance. Successful candidates will then proceed to Stage Two after lunch for Theatre, a short 3 minute presentation for the panel, followed by a brief interview.

    More information about the 2019/20 audition process will be available at a later date. 

    Bringing circus equipment

    Can I bring my own equipment to the audition?

    It is advised where possible to use our equipment here. If we cannot provide your equipment of choice then further discussion can be had and will work on a case by case basis.

    Written work

    Will I have to write essays?

    Yes, as we are a degree course there is a strong element of academic work. This constitutes to 30% of the course, the rest being practical assessment.


    As an EU national, will the triggering of Article 50 affect me?

    Article 50 was triggered on 29 March 2017 which begins the formal process of Britain leaving the EU.

    We will keep you updated on how the process of Britain leaving the EU might affect you but for more information please visit the Home Office site.


    What visa will I need if I am from outside the EU?

    For non-EU students you need to apply for a Tier 4 Visa. More information can be found here.   

    Late applications

    Do you allow late entry?

    No. For parity’s sake our deadline for applications and auditions cannot be moved. 


    Do you accept disabled candidates?

    We welcome applications from disabled people and offer places solely on the basis of potential and suitability for a career in circus. 

    If you need access support for your audition please get in touch with Ailsa on and you can discuss what access you will need. 


    Do you have student accommodation?

    We don’t have our own student accommodation but we do help our new students find their own accommodation in a flat share situation with other National Centre students. We find it is beneficial for our students to live together as the course is more intensive than many other degree programmes.

    Deferring entry

    Do you consider deferred entry?

    We would not usually but in exceptional circumstances we will consider it. 

    Scholarships and funding

    Are there any funding/scholarships?

    The National Centre for Circus Arts, as part of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama, offers scholarships and bursaries for UK and EU students from low income backgrounds. Along with all the affiliate schools of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama we are working to ensure that our courses remain accessible to all students and that we continue to recruit on the basis of talent alone. More information can be found on our Fees and Funding page.

    Video auditioning

    Can I do a video audition?

    We strongly recommend applicants to attend auditions, however we understand in some cases this may not be possible. In such circumstances we do offer a video audition and Skype interview. Please make this known at the point of application and we will contact you to arrange a video audition.

    Find out more about auditions.