Graduate Programs, Minors & Specializations


Our Doctorate of Philosophy in Theatre combines scholarly research in performance history, analysis, theory, and dramatic literature with theatrical practice. Students write a dissertation as they also develop a supporting program in one area of production: acting, directing, design, or dramaturgy. As the study, students may also make theatre. The degree requires a minimum of 45 graduate credits hours beyond the MA or MFA degree. 

The Master of Arts in Theatre program provides a solid foundation in theatre studies. Beyond the required research methods course, students take a wide range of classes  in order to develop skills in historical research, theoretical analysis, critical writing, and theatrical practice. As they study, students may also make theatre. Students write a thesis and may use their studies either to help prepare to enter a doctoral program or to help prepare for professions such as high school teaching, entertainment media, government arts programs, or private arts institutions. 

The Master of Fine Arts in Theatre (acting) with a focus on the creation of New Works at The Ohio State University prepares actors in the fundamentals of acting, with experience in classical and contemporary styles within the context of developing methods for creating original contemporary work. The program emphasizes the development of actors who can work in a repertory company setting as well as function as an independent artist producing original work. The program prepares actors to work in creative ways with local communities in realizing original works.

Our Master of Fine Arts in Theatre (design) is a rigorous three-year program in which equal importance is placed on classroom studies and production program activity. A student may select a single area of emphasis from scenic, costume, and lighting design or elect to combine areas of design for emphasis. Additionally, there are opportunities for students to study production work in sound and media. A student's program of study contains classes in all the areas of theatre that inform and enrich the area or areas of design selected. A student's progress in both the classroom and production program is carefully monitored by the design faculty through regular reviews. While an undergraduate degree in theatre is desirable, candidates possessing other undergraduate degrees will be considered.

The Graduate Minor in Cinema/Video production allows graduates to explore creative and expressive possibilities of single-camera electronic cinematography and provide them with an understanding of the aesthetic issues involved with cinema/video production.  The minor emphasizes the practice of moving image art-making through creative projects.  The function of the Video Production courses in the minor is to familiarize students with the processes of single camera video production within a creative and expressive context.  The use of cameras, lighting, and editing take place within the context of problem solving.  The Field Work in Cinema, or Video, aspect of the minor allows students to have in-the-field experiences with professionals.  Screenwriting is a course emphasizing creative writing and the organization of ideas for the screen.  The primary function of Cinematic Representation and the Studies in Documentary is to acquaint students with what might be referred to as the practice of the "poetics" of the moving image.  The uses of performance as well as the visual components of moving image art are studied from the standpoint of production.  The Theatre/Cinema Styles class identifies dramatic styles of narrative.  This approach provides a comprehensive study of the varieties of Cinema/Video expression and the dramatic structures underlining the practice of this art.

The Minor in Theatre and Performance allows students in various fields in the arts and humanities to develop a supporting program in the Department of Theatre that will complement their doctoral study. The study of theatre and performance is vital to many disciplines in the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Therefore, an academic concentration in the discipline of theatre and performance serves a broad range of students, including select students in the artistic fields of dance studies, film studies, and the history and performance of opera. In addition, this concentration serves students who are investigating the heritage of drama and theatre in any of the literature and language fields—from Greek, English, and Spanish to Chinese, Japanese, and Korean.  Likewise, some students who work in the interdisciplinary areas of Medieval and Renaissance Studies, Comparative Studies, Folklore Studies, and African and African American Studies will benefit from a concentration in theatre and performance.