Level 3 Certificate in Theatre Operations: Costume and Wardrobe

Level 3 Certificate in Theatre Operations: Costume and Wardrobe

SQA code: GK3W 70
Ofqual code: 601/5125/0
Total Qualification Time: 256
Guided Learning Hours: 157
Credit value: 26

The qualification will develop knowledge and skills in the operational day-to-day demands of working in the costume and wardrobe department of a theatre. Learners can specialise as a costume/wardrobe assistant or dresser, tailor/dressmaker or wig assistant.

This qualification that has been developed in partnership with Creative & Cultural Skills to ensure it meets the needs of the industry.

It may be available through employers in England.

Rationale and purpose of this qualification

This qualification is aimed at those who are in work and are looking for recognition of their prior learning and experience.

Its primary purpose is to confirm the learner's occupational competence to work/volunteer within a theatre costume and wardrobe department. As a work-related, competence-based qualification it provides confirmation to employers that the learner has the skills and knowledge needed to meet the nationally recognised standard to carry out the role.

The learner will apply their knowledge in a range of work activities, performed in a variety of contexts, most of which will be complex and non-routine. Learners will have a high level of responsibility and autonomy in their role.

Learners who achieve this qualification can use it to gain employment, to progress in the industry, or to work towards another qualification (see Progression).


The qualification is designed to meet the following objectives:

  • supporting a role in the workplace
  • confirming knowledge, understanding and skills

What does this qualification cover?

As this is a competence-based qualification, learners will be acquiring the knowledge and skills required through either on-the-job experience or in a learning environment.

To achieve the whole qualification, learners need a minimum of 26 credits. They must complete two mandatory units plus four optional units from the qualification structure.

Who is this qualification for?

This qualification is suitable for:

  • workers wishing to progress to a supervisory position
  • learners who have completed a qualification in a relevant discipline eg Level 2 Certificate Theatre Support: Costume and Wardrobe
  • people in employment or volunteering who wish to enhance their career prospects

It is mainly taken by individuals employed or volunteering as:

  • costume designer and maker
  • costumier/wardrobe deputy cutter


Entry to the qualification is at the discretion of the centre.


This qualification is a mandatory component in the Level 3 Theatre Operations: Costume and Wardrobe Apprenticeship in England (as detailed in SASE).


The Level 3 Certificate in Theatre Operations: Costume and Wardrobe can lead to employment within the theatre industry as a costume designer/maker, wardrobe deputy or cutter of pattern templates.

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Qualification structure

The qualification requires the learner to complete two mandatory units (credit value 8) and a minimum of four optional units (credit value 18).

Please refer to the qualification structure (78 KB) for more information.

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How to assess

Ongoing course assessment will apply. Each unit specification gives detailed information on the assessment criteria, assessment (evidence) requirements and guidance on instruments of assessment for the unit.

The qualification is assessed by completing a portfolio of evidence which details what the learner has completed at work. This can be gathered through observation, professional discussion, witness testimony or supporting documentary evidence. The assessor can work alongside the learner to confirm that they have met the requirements of the qualification and that they are therefore competent in their role.

Competence is displayed through the assessor observing the learner demonstrate that they carry out their normal work activities competently and to the industry standard and comply with current legislation and company procedures.

The assessment process will ensure that the learner can complete the tasks that they have been directed to undertake and that they can interpret the instructions correctly. They will demonstrate that they can select the appropriate resources for the tasks and can complete them within the given timescales and specifications.

Learner portfolio

Assessment strategy/principle