Department Courses


THE 101 - Visual Gestural Communication (3)

A study of gestures as a form of communication and as a basis for visual language. Concentration on the ability to think in pictures and to develop expressive and receptive communication skills in gestures. This course develops artistic sign language translation skills and leads to better understanding of the basic structures of American Sign Language.

THE 110 - Introduction to Theatre (3)

A survey of and introduction to the contemporary theatre; drama, dance, music, and film. This course is a basis for all drama courses and is required prior to declaring a major in theatre arts: production/performance. Lab hours required.

THE 201 - Fundamentals of Body Movement (3)

This introductory course familiarizes students with theories of body movement and trains students in the use of physical space, rhythm, and balance for the purpose of creating mood and character through body movement within a theatrical context.

THE 250 - Dance and Fundamental Movement Activities (1)

Activities offered include dance and fundamental movement. Not more than six hours of credit in dance activities may be counted toward the requirements for a bachelor's degree.

THE 281 - Theatre Practicum (1-3)

A laboratory course designed to permit students to earn credit while participating in Theatre Arts Department activities. Students may select a practicum from the areas of acting, directing, technical theatre, costuming, design, or management.

Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

THE 315 - History of Dance (3)

The study of the history of dance from antiquity to the 21st century. Emphasis will be placed on the relationships and influences of dance on civilizations and cultures. Students are expected to participate in both dance activities as well as in lectures and discussions.

THE 320 - Field Experience (3-6)

This internship course provides students a way to integrate theory with practice by working for an off-campus employer. Students will apply knowledge and skills learned in the classroom, or during stage productions, by interning at a professional theatre, a theatre organization, or in an educational setting. Students will fulfill the duties outlined in a learning contract developed with the on-site supervisor and a faculty sponsor. Student performance will be assessed via products agreed upon in the learning contract, including, but not limited to, weekly journals, reflective papers, direct involvement with stage/television/film performances, and classroom/workshop teachings.

THE 325 - Choreography (3)

Choreography is an introduction to techniques of choreography. This course will introduce students to both the exploration of the choreographic process and the basic tools used in choreography. Through creative improvisational exercises, students explore the fundamentals of movement including time, space, and energy and basic choreographic structure and forms. Students will be required to choreograph a major dance piece to be auditioned in the spring dance production.

THE 336 - Mime (3)

A lecture/performance course focusing on varieties of mime ranging from traditional pantomime to modern mime and the relationship of mime to sign language.

Prerequisite: THE201 or permission of the instructor.

THE 341 - Sign Language Translation for the Theatre (3)

This course covers creative work in different styles of signing, composed and selected from prose, poetry, and drama.

Prerequisite: THE101 or permission of the instructor.

THE 342 - Introduction to Playwriting (3)

An introduction to the basic principles of creating plays for the stage. Various ways of making a play will be explored through writing, improvisations, collaboration with other writers and/or actors, videotapes, and adaptations of other literary forms (poetry, fiction, nonfiction) into dramatic forms.

Prerequisite: THE101 or permission of the instructor.

THE 348 - Theatre History (3)

This course covers the development of theatre from its beginnings to the latest contemporary movements. Through lectures, demonstrations, discussions, and required attendance at theatre performances on and off campus, students will explore the contributions, characteristics, purposes, and influences of theatre as developed by a range of cultures in nonverbal, written, and signed forms.

Prerequisite: THE110.

THE 350 - Script Reading and Analysis (3)

Whether written or videotaped, a script is the basis for the work of theatre directors, actors, designers, production managers, and publicists. During this course, students will read scripts representative of different historical periods, styles, and cultures. Students will also analyze these scripts as they relate to the functions of directors, actors, designers, production managers, and publicists.

Prerequisite: THE110.

THE 351 - Contemporary Drama (3)

A study of the aesthetics inherent in a representative sampling of contemporary (20th century) drama: plays and current trends.

Prerequisite: THE110 or permission of the instructor.

THE 353 - Fundamentals of Acting (3)

Study of pantomime and acting exercises; introduction to basic principles and techniques of acting; performance of laboratory scenes, readings, and exercises. Participation in an experimental production.

Prerequisites: THE101, and THE201, or permission of the instructor.

THE 361 - Fundamentals of Stagecraft (3)

A comprehensive practical course in scenery construction and painting, its properties, scenery storage, and use of backstage equipment. Production duties are assigned. Class and laboratory work required.

THE 373 - Theatre Production and Management (3)

A comprehensive course designed to provide the student with a working knowledge of theatrical production practices and management skills required for successful theatre production. This course includes an in-depth study of the various theatre personnel, their related responsibilities, both in nonprofit and profit theatre organizations. Additionally, specific consideration is given to conventions pertinent to deaf theatre.

Prerequisite: THE110 or permission of the instructor.

THE 401 - Introduction to Dance Therapy (3)

A course designed to provide the student with a theoretical and practical knowledge of dance therapy. Through this course, students will increase their awareness and understanding of the practical applications of using dance as a means of psychological, emotional, and cultural expression. Readings, discussions, and creative-based activities will be incorporated in the course to foster critical thinking skills.

THE 405 - Fundamentals of Stage Lighting (3)

A comprehensive, practical course designed to acquaint the student with the basic theory, equipment, and use of stage lighting. Class and laboratory work required.

THE 431 - Sacred Dance (3)

This course investigates the religious context in which variety of sacred dances occur throughout the world and explores the significant political, cultural, and historical events that shaped the dance rituals and their related religious traditions. Upon completion of the course, the student will be able to demonstrate the basic knowledge of liturgical dances; gain a cross-cultural understanding of common elements of liturgical dances; and have the opportunity to perform some liturgical dances. Through discussions, hands on experiences, and observations, students will finish the course having a better understanding of the role of dance within various major global religions and as sacred celebrations within different cultures.

THE 435 - Dance Production (3)

A course designed for students to develop and apply a working knowledge of the organizational skills necessary to plan and produce a dance concert including: lighting, costuming, programming, audio, stage management, choreographing, marketing, fundraising, audition and performance skills. Additionally, students will develop the ability to define and describe, through visual and written modalities, the various areas of production and how they relate to the performer, the choreographer, and the overall visual aesthetics of a performance.

THE 450 - Field Experience in Dance (2)

A practical field experience for senior dance minors. Students will have the opportunity to observe and participate in real-life work experiences in the dance company. These observations and experiences will have to be recorded in an on-going journal for a minimum of 40 hours of practical field work.

Prerequisite: Senior standing or permission of the instructor.

THE 461 - History of Costume (3)

This course is designed to acquaint the student with major styles and periods of dress from Egyptian to pre-World War I European as a basis of later work in costume design. Viewed through slides, photographs, and actual historical documentation, a flow of design and change is seen.

THE 464 - Costume Design for the Theatre (3)

A course aimed primarily at the beginning skills of the costumer through practical design experience, development of sound research habits, and basic patterning to create the desired period style. Work on production assigned.

Prerequisites: THE461; or permission of the instructor.

THE 466 - Scenographic Techniques (3)

Practical work on basic principles and techniques of graphic communication for the stage. Included are methods of drafting, painting, and rendering the design concept. Materials supplied by the student; production crew work assigned.

Prerequisites: Junior or senior standing in the department, THE361, or permission of the instructor.

THE 470 - Creative Movement and Drama, Preschool - Kindergarten (3)

This course will focus on methodology and practice of creative movement and drama for children ages 3 to 6 (preschool and kindergarten). Students will become familiar with the use of creative movement, mime, improvisation, story dramatization, storytelling, puppetry and use of multisensory stimuli and learn how to adapt activities for children with special needs. Emphasis will be on the application of these techniques to language development, social learning, concept formation, emotional development, and creativity. Resources will include multiethnic themes, stories, and folklore.

Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing

THE 472 - Educational Drama Grades 1-6 (3)

This course focuses on methodology and practice of educational drama applied to multidisciplinary learning within the first through sixth grade curricula. Students will be introduced to theme and story based improvisation, story dramatization, role play, and teacher-in-role strategies, and learn how to adapt activities for children with special needs. Curricular areas include language arts, social studies, science, and math, with additional focus on examining emotional development, and creativity. Current trends in assessment of drama will also be explored. Resources will include multiethnic themes, stories, and folklore.

Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing

THE 474 - Educational Drama - Grades 6-12 (3)

This course focuses on methodology and practice of educational drama applied to multidisciplinary learning within the sixth through twelfth grade curricula. Students explore the use of theme and literature based improvisation, role play, and teacher-in-role strategies applied primarily to language arts and social studies, including sociology, history, government, and current events. Additional emphasis will be placed on examining emotional development and creativity. Resources will include multiethnic themes, stories, and folklore.

Prerequisite: Junior or senior standing

THE 476 - Theatre for Youth (3)

This course will begin with a review of the history, influences, and development of theatre for young audiences in the twentieth century. Particular emphasis will be placed on examining current trends in theatre for youth including; standards for professional theatre, standards for in-school theatre programs, dramatic literature, and theatre-in-education. In addition to readings from text: Children's Theatre, Children and Youth by Jed H. Davis and Mary Jane Evans, students will read selected plays from Dramatic Literature for Children: A century in Review by Roger L. Bedard, and Spit in One Hand, Wish in the Other: Six Plays by Suzan Zeder for Youth Audiences, by Susan Pearson-Davis. Student will attend theatre performances in the Washington, D.C. area.

Prerequisite: THE110.

THE 478 - Fundamentals of Directing (3)

Theory and practice for the beginning director.

Prerequisites: Senior standing and permission of the department

THE 480 - Practicum in Educational Drama (3)

This follow-up course to THE 470, 472 and 474 is designed to give students professional on-site experience and training with deaf and hard of hearing children and children who have special educational needs. Students will meet with classroom teachers and prepare age appropriate drama lessons that support classroom long and short term objectives. Students will work in at least two different classrooms during the semester.

Prerequisites: THE470, 472, 474; permission of the instructor

THE 495 - Special Topics (1-5)

Special topics in the discipline, designed primarily for juniors. Students may enroll in 495 Special Topics multiple times, as long as the topics differ.

Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.

THE 499 - Independent Study (1-3)

A project in the field of the student's special interest, involving reading, research, discussion, and/or lab work. Title indicating content must be available at registration.

Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor.