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Master of Arts in Theatre

M.A. in Theatre

The M.A. Program in Theatre at Bowling Green State University is designed to provide students with those fundamentals essential for the development of independent thought and expression, ingredients necessary for truly creative scholarship and artistry in the theater.  In the program, students are afforded a basic understanding of theatre history, theory, criticism, and research methods and their application to teaching and practical work in theatre. Two semesters and a summer of course work are normally required for the completion of the Portfolio Track.  Students completing the Thesis Track typically complete required course work in one year, and in the summer and second year that follow, write the M.A. thesis and take additional courses.

Creativity - Inventive practice within and beyond the traditions and processes of theatre and film performance, including expressive application of the various technologies of performance. To do so requires

Collaboration - as a necessary process of inquiry in creative activity. To do so requires

Communication - fluency in the various languages of artistic expression (both high and low cultural forms) and critical practice (textual as well as applied).To do so requires

Commitment - to the processes of artistic practice as collaboration and commitment to the larger critical values associated with the role of theatre and film in society as an agent of personal expression as well as public discourse. To do so requires an awareness of

Community - an understanding of social responsibility and individualism and the ability and desire to contribute to each within and outside the academy as scholar-artist-citizens.

The Graduate Faculty in the Department of Theatre and Film determines termination of a master’s degree program on recommendation of the advisor and after conference with the student.  Termination will result from the student’s failure to maintain “satisfactory progress toward the degree.”  For a more thorough description of academic standards, see the Graduate Catalog.

In order to help the student develop independence of thought and expression, s/he develops the degree program and pursues the degree in a close relationship with an appropriate advisor.  Upon matriculation, the Graduate Coordinator, Dr. Jonathan Chambers, serves as the academic advisor for all students in the M.A. program.  Thus, course registration for the first semester is accomplished in conference with Dr. Chambers.  As the student prepares for the second term of study, s/he will begin to work with one of the following program advisors: Dr. Chambers if in the M.A. Thesis Track, or Professor Margaret McCubbin if in the M.A. Portfolio Track.  The program advisor will assist the student with his/her course of study and, in the case of the M.A. Portfolio Track, will serve initially as his/her committee chair in connection with his/her portfolio. An advisor that will work with the student to complete his/her portfolio will be appointed. Coursework is not solely determined by the student’s interests, but depends upon program requirements and course schedules and availability.

If a student is enrolled in the M.A. Thesis Track and is planning to complete the degree in two semesters and a summer of course work (i.e., one calendar year), s/he must choose a permanent advisor no later than by the end of the first term of study.  All members of the graduate faculty (both provisional and regular) are eligible to supervise theses. To find out who among the faculty have graduate faculty status, consult with the Graduate Coordinator.

Although M.A. Thesis Track students are not encouraged to change advisors, they may do so when change is warranted.  Such a change would be considered appropriate if a student decides to change his/her area of primary scholarly interest or direction.  Usually such changes are mutually agreed upon by the student and the advisor.  Students wishing to change advisors should submit a written request to the Graduate Coordinator and are subject to the Coordinator and Chair’s approval.  Before taking this step, the student must communicate directly with the current and prospective advisors, and the chosen advisor must indicate willingness to serve.

Whether the student is on the Portfolio or Thesis Track, the student must file an Advisor and Committee Approval form by the end of the first term of study.

A. Duties:  
M.A. students who are funded through the department are generally awarded half-time contracts, which carry a 20-hour per week service obligation.  Assistantship assignments are made by Mr. Steve Boone, the Chair of the Department of Theatre and Film.  When possible, students’ preferences are taken into consideration in making assignments, though departmental needs must take priority in assistantship assignments.

B. Renewals of Assistantships:
1. Master’s level assistantships are awarded for one academic year.  In rare circumstances where funding levels permit, funding for two additional semesters may occur for those students electing to pursue the Thesis Track program (i.e., second year funding).   See the “Thesis Track and Second Year Funding” section on pages 4 and 5 of this handbook for more information.  Under normal circumstances, second year funding will not be provided for students in either track, but it is never permitted for those enrolled in Plan II (i.e., Portfolio Track).

2. In the rare event that second year funding is available, applications for second year funding will be evaluated by a departmental faculty committee on the basis of the following criteria:

a. Has the student made satisfactory progress toward the degree?
b. Has the student’s assistantship service been satisfactory?
c. Are sufficient funds available?
d. Do departmental needs warrant the assignment of the assistantship?
e. Has the student demonstrated the potential for success in thesis writing?

C. Removal of Assistantship:
An assistantship may be taken from a student for any one of the following reasons:
1. Failure to make satisfactory progress toward degree.
2. Inadequate performance of the duties associated with the assistantship.

a. If teaching a course this includes (but is not limited to), failure to follow and execute in good faith course syllabus, guidelines and objectives as determined by the departmental course coordinator; failure to attend regularly scheduled course planning sessions (usually weekly) as determined by the departmental course coordinator; and failure to complete departmental and university course evaluations.
b. If in a non-teaching assignment this includes (but is not limited to), failure to complete duties and satisfy hour requirements as determined by supervising personnel.

3. Failure to maintain minimum registration (at least 9 semester hours of graduate credit per semester).  
4. Academic suspension for ethical or legal misconduct as specified in student code.

A. Supplemental Employment:
Because academic success is the primary goal of graduate study, graduate students are discouraged from working more than 20 hours per week, including the assistantship assignment, when classes are in session.  Graduate assistants must confer with the Graduate Coordinator and the Chair of the Department before accepting additional employment, whether on or off campus. Federal regulations strictly prohibit international students from working more than 20 hours per week.

Before a graduate assistant contracts with an on-campus unit for additional employment, a Graduate Assistant Supplemental Payment form must be submitted to the Graduate College.  The signature on the form indicates that the Graduate Coordinator and Chair have been informed of the student’s intent to take on supplemental work.

B.  Financial Aid:
Any questions you may have concerning your eligibility and maximum allowances for financial aid should be directed to the Financial Aid office.  It is the student’s responsibility to monitor how federal regulations concerning financial aid will have an impact on his or her continuance in graduate education.

A.  M.A. Requirements (Completed in 3 semesters (fall, spring, summer):
CORE:
Minimum 2 courses (6 credits) from History & Literature/Theory/Criticism
Minimum 2 courses (6 credits) from Performance Studies/Practice
Minimum 2 courses (6 credits) from Design & Technical Theatre
Minimum Total 18 credits

ELECTIVES:  Minimum of 3 courses (3 credits each) in approved Department of Theatre and Film electives from graduate level (i.e., 5000+ level) courses offered in the Department of Theatre and Film. (NB: Upon prior approval by the Graduate Coordinator of the Department of Theatre and Film, students may take courses from other departments in fulfillment of the electives requirement.) Minimum Total 9 credits.

PORTFOLIO/THESIS: Minimum of 3 credits of THFM 6910 (Directed Research in Portfolio Development) are required  for those students electing to do Plan II, the Portfolio Track. For those students electing to do Plan I, Thesis Track, a minimum of three credits of THFM 6990 (Thesis Research) is required.

TOTAL FOR DEGREE: 30 CREDITS

B. Course Selections:
History & Literature/Theory/Criticism (Minimum Two Courses):
THFM 6590 Research Methods in Theatre and Performance Studies
THFM 6600 Theatre/Performance in Cultural Context I
THFM 6610 Theatre/Performance in Cultural Context II
THFM 6650 Period, Style, and Form
THFM 6700 History of Theatre/Performance in the Americas

Performance Studies/Practice (Minimum of Two Courses):
THFM 5630 Performance Composition
THFM 6640 Directing Practice
THFM 6630 Introduction to Performance Studies
THFM 6670 Staging Image and Text
THFM 6680 Performance Studies (May be repeated when topic changes)
THFM 6680 Theatre for Young Audiences
THFM 6710 Theatre Organization and Management
THFM 6820 Theatrical Visions (May be repeated when topic changes)
THFM 6880 Internship in Repertory Theatre/Performance

Design & Technical Theatre (Minimum of Two Courses):
THFM 5720 Scene Design
THFM 5730 Costume Design
THFM 5740 Lighting Design
THFM 5750 Scene Painting
THFM 5760 Styles of Rendering for Theatre and Film

C.   M.A. Specific Degree Requirements:

1.  Thesis (Plan I) or Portfolio (Plan II): The two plans under which one may pursue the M.A. are designed to meet individual needs of students who aspire to varying types of professional careers.  Plan I (Thesis) and Plan II (Portfolio) represent qualitatively different educational experiences.  All students accepted into the M.A. program are initially placed in the Portfolio Track.  If a student is interested in pursuing the M.A. Thesis Track, s/he must formally declare the intent to do so before the end of the fall semester of the first year of study.  Without exception, determination of Thesis or Portfolio track must be decided before the first day of instruction of the spring semester in order to avoid fees that can be assessed for changes in registration.  If fees are assessed for changes in registration, the student will bear the financial burden of those fees.

2.  Thesis Track and Second Year Funding:
 If the student receives departmental funding and plans on finishing the MA during the year s/he is funded, the student must plan to complete the thesis in time for defense in accordance with Graduate College deadlines for summer graduation (see the “Dates to Remember” link found through the Graduate College Web Page and the Graduate Catalog for specific dates and procedures). The student is advised that the timetable for completion of the Masters degree in one year under the Thesis track will require an accelerated pace.  The student is strongly urged to consult with those deadlines published by the Graduate College in order to determine if s/he can finish in that time. Certainly, the student may choose to pursue completion of the thesis into a second year and beyond; however, there is little likelihood of departmental funding for any time beyond the first year of funding.  

Once the student has decided to pursue the Thesis Track, the student must complete the Advisor and Committee Approval Form, have it signed by all relevant parties, and file it with the department by the end of the fall semester of the first year of study. It is strongly urged that by the end of the fall semester, the student should have had in-depth conversations with her/his advisor to focus the scope of the thesis and to determine if the thesis topic and timetable for completion are doable.

Declaring one’s intent to pursue the Thesis Track does not guarantee continuance into the Ph.D. program at BGSU.  Any student wishing to continue into the Ph.D. program at BGSU must formally apply and his/her application will be given equal consideration along side others who are seeking admittance into the program.  Moreover, successful completion of the M.A. (i.e., completion of all course work as well as the thesis) is required before a student will be accepted fully into the Ph.D. program.  To that end, any M.A. student accepted provisionally into the Ph.D. program must complete the M.A. program of study (including the thesis) by the summer graduation prior to the proposed fall intake for the Ph.D. program (see the “Dates to Remember” link found through the Graduate College Web Page and the Graduate Catalog for specific dates and procedures).  

3.  Changing from One Plan to Another:

a. The graduate faculty in the Department of Theatre and Film, as well as the Graduate Dean, strongly discourages switching from one plan to another.
b. Once the student is registered in THFM 6990 (Thesis Research) or THFM 6910 (Directed Research in Portfolio Development) a student may switch from one plan to another prior to the first day of instruction of the spring semester without penalty. However, after the first day of instruction of the spring semester, if the student wishes to change from one plan to another, fees will be applied for dropping one course and changing to the other. As noted in C.1. above, the student will be financially responsible for those fees.  Moreover, a student’s request to switch from one plan to another must be recommended by his/her graduate committee and advisor, and approved by the Graduate Coordinator and the Graduate Dean.

i. This is done only in rare circumstances in which the thesis research project becomes physically or technically impossible to implement.
ii. If a switch from Plan I to Plan II is recommended and ultimately approved, it should be understood that the grade of “I” (incomplete) for THFM 6990 registrations will remain on the transcript for the thesis work and does not count toward degree requirements.
iii. In the rare event that a student is awarded second year funding to pursue the Thesis Track program of study, he/she will not be allowed to switch plans.  

D.  Specifics for Plan I: Thesis Track:
1.  Program Requirements:

a. Minimum of 30 semester credit hours including three hours for thesis.
b. Students may register for a total of 12 hours of THFM 6880 (Internship in Repertory Theatre) but only six hours may count on the TDP toward graduation.  These will count as approved electives.
c. Only three hours of THFM 6840, 6850 and 6860 may be listed on the TDP to satisfy graduation requirements.
d. If a student remains for a second year of residency during the completion of the MA, it is recommended that s/he take a minimum of 9 hours each semester (18 hours total) in the Department of Theatre and Film (one course may be an Independent Readings/Study course). Included in this number of credits is a minimum of three hours of thesis research (THFM 6990). If more than three hours of THFM 6990 are taken, only three will appear on the TDP.
e. In the rare event of students pursuing this program of study for a second year on departmental funding, they are expected and required to enroll in at least two graduate courses, totaling at least six credit hours that have been approved by the Graduate Coordinator during the summer term between the first and second year of study.

2.  Thesis Topic Approval:

a. Near the end of the first semester of study, the student should submit the names of his or her proposed advisor and committee to the Graduate Coordinator and Departmental Chair for approval.  The committee shall consist of a minimum of two persons (including the advisor). All committee members must have graduate faculty status in the Department of Theatre and Film.  Non-tenured or non-tenure-track faculty members are not eligible to serve on thesis committees. The student is responsible for ascertaining each faculty member’s willingness to serve on the committee and having each person sign the required form.
b. At the beginning of the second semester of residency, the student, after consulting with his/her advisor, should submit for committee review a proposal for a thesis topic.  Thesis projects will be approved only when the research proposal is within the capability of the department and University to support, and executable within the three hours of credit that may be earned.
c. The proposal for the thesis should not only clearly outline the proposed topic of study, but should also demonstrate the student’s ability to complete the proposed research.  In order to satisfy this requirement, the student must demonstrate that s/he is thoroughly familiar with existing scholarship in the chosen area.  Students should anticipate that the advisor may ask for substantial revision of proposal before allowing the student to distribute the document to the committee as a whole, and should budget their time accordingly.
d. The thesis proposal should include the following components:

-- Title
-- Relevant background information to introduce and contextualize the proposed area of research
-- Concise statement of the central research questions that the study will address (sometimes described as statement or description of research problem)
-- Discussion of objectives of the study and justification of its significance
-- Review of extant scholarship in the field (NOTE: A list of titles of other scholarship is not sufficient to satisfy this requirement. Rather, the student must demonstrate that s/he is familiar with other work in the research area and that s/he is prepared to enter into scholarly conversation with others who have made contributions in this field.)
-- A discussion of the research methods the student will employ in completing the study
-- Principle sources of data
-- Limitations of the study (NB: Limitations in this context does not mean an “apologia” for the shortcomings of either the researcher or the proposed study. Rather, it is an opportunity to delineate and justify the boundaries of the study—chronological, geographical, types of data to be considered, etc.)
-- Tentative organization of the study into chapters (NB: Proposed chapter titles are not sufficient, and should be supplemented by abstracts or tentative summaries of what will be covered in each section)

e. After securing the advisor’s approval, the student should distribute the thesis proposal to all members of the committee and schedule a defense.  The committee must have the proposal a minimum of two weeks before the defense of the proposal.  The student should ascertain in which format (paper or electronic) each committee member would prefer all documentation to be delivered.
f. Following the defense, the proposal may be revised according to suggestions made by the committee. Certification of the committee’s approval is made to the Graduate Coordinator by signing the Thesis/Dissertation Topic Approval.  Once the form has been signed by all committee members and the Graduate Coordinator, it is forwarded to the Graduate College for final approval.
g.  The Graduate College requires the student to have at least a 3.0 G.P.A. when submitting the proposal.
h.  The deadline for submitting a thesis topic proposal to the Graduate College is the last day of class the semester before intended graduation.  The Department of Theatre and Film deadlines for departmental approval are: October 1 for spring graduation, February 1 for summer graduation, and May 1 for fall graduation.

3.  Thesis Examination and Approval:

a.  The thesis committee is normally the same committee that approved the topic.  Any changes in the composition of the committee or change in the thesis advisor must be approved by the Graduate Coordinator and Department Chair and furthermore, must be approved through the filing of the Change of Advisor/Committee form.
b. The draft of the thesis, which is submitted to the committee, should be complete, readable and contain necessary documentation for bibliographic entries. Again, the student must ascertain in which format (paper or electronic) each committee member would prefer the thesis to be delivered.
c. Copyrights and Permissions: Your use of photographs, images, and extended quoted material (i.e., entire published poems, or lengthy quoted material) in your thesis require the consent of the authors/creators.  It is the student’s responsibility to secure those permissions in writing prior to defense of the thesis. Consult with the Graduate College for the exact limitations on the use of others’ material.
d.  The thesis committee should have the draft at least two weeks in advance of the proposed oral defense date.
e.  The Chair of the student’s committee will poll the committee to determine whether the thesis is defensible in content and form.  If necessary, due to need or disagreement, the Chair of the committee will convene the committee.  If major revisions are in order prior to oral defense, the Chair of the committee and the student will develop a plan of action to meet/committee expectations, including postponement of the oral defense, if necessary.
f.  Approval of the thesis and passing of the oral defense is indicated by the committee’s signatures on the ETD Submission/Approval Form. It should be noted that the approval form is divided into two sections, “Final Examination Report” and “Manuscript Approval.”  Thus, it is possible, even though the final oral examination has been passed, for the committee to request substantive changes or additions before approving the manuscript.  In planning to meet Graduate College deadlines, the student should consider this possibility. Only one negative vote is permissible.
g.  The Graduate College requires electronic submission of theses and dissertations.  For more detailed information, visit: http://www.bgsu.edu/colleges/gradcol/etd/index.html
h.  Upon approval of the final the student is to bring two single-sided, error-free final copies of the thesis to the Department Secretary along with a check for $50.00 made out to the Department of Theatre and Film. This money is to cover the cost of binding of the student’s thesis; one copy goes to Department and one goes to the dissertation advisor.
i.  Those students planning to graduate in August should be aware that the thesis must be completed and distributed to the committee by early June in order to be eligible for summer graduation. Please note that it is imperative that students consult the “Dates to Remember” link found through the Graduate College Web Page and set a timetable for completion accordingly. They should also be aware that many faculty members are not available for consultation during summer term. Therefore students planning on a summer defense should choose the members of their committee accordingly or students must make every effort to complete the thesis prior to faculty departing for the summer.  Failure to do so may mean the student will have to postpone oral defense of the thesis and his/her graduation until the fall term.

E.  Specifics for Plan II: Portfolio Track:
1.  General Requirements:

a.  Minimum of 30 semester hours, three of which are THFM 6910: Research in Portfolio Development.
b.  Students may register for a total of 12 hours of THFM 6888 (Internship in Repertory Theatre) but only six hours may count on the TDP toward graduation.  These will count as approved electives.
c.  Only three hours of THFM 6840, 6850 and 6860 can be listed on the TDP to satisfy graduation requirements.

2.  Portfolio Process:

a. Students enrolled in Plan II will complete coursework and a portfolio, which is comprised of a mixture of scholarly work and creative work.  All creative work in the portfolio must include documentation and analysis relating the production of those materials.
b.  Early in the second semester of coursework, students begin the process of articulating the contents of their portfolio with the Portfolio Track advisor, Professor McCubbin.
c. In conference with Professor McCubbin, the student will determine whether the balance of the portfolio will conform to Portfolio Option A or Portfolio Option B (both are described below).  On the basis of this discussion, the composition of the committee best suited to the composition of the student’s portfolio will be proposed.  In addition to a committee chair, one other faculty member with graduate faculty status will serve on the student’s portfolio review committee (submit Chair/Committee Approval Form by February 1st).  However, whether serving as chair or as member, the portfolio committee must have at least one MFA faculty member.   Thus, the portfolio review committee will consist of two graduate faculty members one of whom is an MFA faculty member. Since the materials that comprise the portfolio are necessarily drawn from diverse areas of theatre practice and scholarship, students are encouraged to assemble a committee that includes members with expertise to guide and assess the development of materials in each of these respective areas. 
d. Students who wish to graduate in spring will submit the portfolio materials to their portfolio committee chair by April 1 in preparation for a full committee review later that month, while those working toward an August graduation will submit materials by June 1 in preparation for a full committee review in June or early July. Please note that the aforementioned dates are approximations.  To that end, it is imperative that students consult the “Dates to Remember” link found through the Graduate College Web Page and adjust their schedules accordingly.
e.  Portfolios will be assessed on a pass/fail basis. Students whose portfolio materials are deemed unsatisfactory during this assessment will have the opportunity to revise and resubmit for a second assessment. Students who twice fail the portfolio review will be subject to termination from the program. Students should also be aware that not all faculty members are available for consultation and/or oral defense during the summer term. Therefore students planning on a summer defense should choose the members of their committee accordingly. Approval of the portfolio and passing of the oral defense is indicated by the committee’s signatures on the Master’s Plan II Report.

3.  Contents of the M.A. Portfolio:

a. A resume or CV appropriate to the student’s stated professional goals and objectives and suitable for inclusion as part of a job application
b.  A four to six page professional profile or statement of purpose, appropriate for submission as part of a job application or application to an academic program
c. In addition to the resume and statement of purpose, the contents of the portfolio may take one of two forms.  

i. Portfolio Option A is to include two examples of the student’s critical writing and one example of the student’s creative practical work that have been completed during the master’s degree at BGSU.
ii. Portfolio Option B is to include two examples of the student’s creative practical work and one example of the student’s critical writing that have been completed during the master’s degree at BGSU.

d. The examples of the student’s critical writing must be SUBSTANTIVELY REVISED and expanded versions of papers originally drafted in graduate level courses taken at BGSU while enrolled in the M.A. program.  The papers should be NO LESS THAN 20 PAGES each in length and should cite a range of critical sources, including journal articles, books, or contributions to edited volumes. Be aware that simply cleaning up the grammar and typos on a class term paper will be highly unlikely to produce work suitable to satisfy this requirement.
e. Examples of appropriate creative projects to include in the portfolio may include (but are not limited to):

--An original script or adaptation
--An original translation of a short play or critical article
--A director’s or dramaturg’s notebook with detailed analysis and documentation of research leading to the development of a production concept
--A design concept for a specific production, supplemented with appropriate models, renderings, or other suitable forms of notation, along with a detailed analysis of the research process and the reasons behind the creative choices that were made
--An actor’s journal describing preparation for performance of a substantive role in a professional or university theatre production, along with analysis of the actor’s process of research and preparation (which should include some sort of detailed textual analysis or use of appropriate secondary sources)
--An original video production or performance installation
--A community-based project in theatre or oral history
Under no circumstances should students complete two projects in the same area of theatre practice (for example, two costume design projects or two original scripts).  Moreover, all practical or creative work must be generated while enrolled in the M.A. program at BGSU.

f. Finally, for Option B, at least one of the creative projects must originate as an assignment in one of the design courses.  Thus, this example of the student’s creative work would not be creatively confined to practical restrictions that would have been imposed during an actual production. For Option A, the creative project must be one that originated in one of the design courses.

F.  Timeline for Degree:
It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of all deadlines pertaining to completion of the degree. Be sure to check the “Dates to Remember” link found through the Graduate College Web Page and the Graduate Catalog for specific dates and procedures. Also consult with the Graduate Coordinator and/or your thesis committee advisor for any departmental deadlines you are required to meet. While the plans for the degree outlined in this Handbook suggest the norm for the Track II (Portfolio) would take two semesters and a summer to complete and that it is possible to complete Track I (Thesis) in two semesters and a summer, students may find the program takes longer or shorter depending on when they complete the requirements.  Furthermore, students need to be aware that every time they turn in documents (i.e., all drafts of the thesis proposal, thesis, or portfolio) to their advisor and/or committee, a two-week “read” time is given to the advisor and/or committee.  Moreover, certain weeks during the year are not counted in the two-week “read” time: Winter break between fall and spring semester, Thanksgiving break, spring break, and the week after spring semester and prior to the first summer session. Also, the chair and committee members may not be available during the summer at all if they are not on summer contract.  Consequently, each of these times may elongate the turn around time for the return of these documents to the student for revision or in preparation to take the work to committee. Also be aware that you must be registered for at least one credit hour during the semester in which you want to graduate.

G.  Process for Completing Forms:
As is noted here and elsewhere in this document, students are advised that they are responsible for collecting all appropriate signatures.  Once all signatures have been collected, the student must then take the form to the Administrative Secretary in the Main Office of the Department of Theatre and Film and the appropriate copies will be made and given to the appropriate parties.  Copies must be made before the forms are turned into the Graduate College.

H. Graduate Community Participation
As a student admitted to the graduate program in the Department of Theatre and Film at Bowling Green State University, you are a member of a professional community. As such you are expected to participate in the graduate and professional community life of the department. While there are many ways you can do so, what follows are the minimum expectations for your participation. First, you are expected to support your colleagues and peers by attending the productions on the BGSU Department of Theatre and Film stages. You are also encouraged to take on production responsibilities insofar as your course work and, if you are funded, your duties for your assistantship will permit. Additionally, you are expected to keep the hour of eleven o’clock to noon on Thursdays free for our Graduate Professional Seminar and to attend the seminar when it is convened.  During the seminar time, in addition to information that will be made available to you to help you pursue your degree, we will also provide information that may help you in your career beyond BGSU. The post-performance production discussions will also be conducted during the Graduate Seminar time.  You or your peers are invited to use the time to present your research to the community in preparation for presentation at national conferences. Additionally, professional guests will be invited to present their research from time to time.

A.  Registration Procedures:

1.  Registration for the first term of study will be completed by the Departmental Administrative Secretary, following consultation with the Graduate Coordinator. Registration for subsequent semesters must be approved by the Graduate Coordinator and/or the student’s advisor and will also be completed by the Departmental Administrative Secretary.
2.  Registration for THFM 6840, 6850, 6860, and 6880 sections must be added to the student’s academic schedule by the Departmental Administrative Secretary.  The Independent Study Request form must be completed and must be approved by the course/project supervisor, the Graduate Coordinator/student advisor, and the Chair of the Department of Theatre and Film.
3. Changes in registration after the semester begins will result in fees being assessed according to the Registration and Records Refund Schedule. If fees are assessed for changes in registration, the student will bear the financial burden of those fees.

B.   Limits on Hours of Registration:

1.  No student may register for more than 18 hours of credit without permission from the Graduate Dean.
2.  Students holding assistantships are required to register for 12 hours of credit during the fall and the spring semester and 6 hours of credit during the summer.
3. In the rare event of a second year of funding during the completion of a thesis, the student will be required to take 9 units of credit in the fall and the spring semesters of the second year.

C.   Registration for 7000 Level Courses:

1.  7000 level courses are designed primarily for doctoral students.  Students pursuing the Thesis Track program may be allowed to register for 7000 level courses after completing their first year of study and with Graduate Coordinator approval.
2.  Under exceptional circumstances, an instructor may grant permission for an M.A. student, who is not in the Thesis Track program, to register for a specific course if s/he demonstrates appropriate background and knowledge.  These decisions will be made on a case-by-case basis.

D.   Registration when Not In Residence:
The Graduate College mandates continuous registration for one hour each semester if a student leaves the campus with all requirements for the degree done except the thesis or portfolio.  This is not done automatically.  This criterion does not include summer session unless graduating in August.

E.  Repair Courses:

1.  Students who have not had at least one undergraduate course in the following areas are expected to enroll for undergraduate credit in these areas: Acting, Stagecraft and Lighting, Directing.
2.  Students registering for these undergraduate repair courses must register for a P/NP grade, the courses must be passed with a grade of “C” or better.
3.  Graduate students who wish to enroll in 9 or more undergraduate credit hours per semester may be granted a leave of absence from their graduate status for a period not to exceed one calendar year, which is granted through the Graduate Dean.
4.  In some cases, practical experience (i.e., work in summer stock, professional or community theatre) will be considered a reasonable equivalence for repair courses.
5.  Students wishing to waive repair courses should submit a written statement documenting the nature of the equivalency to the Graduate Coordinator.  The decision to waive a repair course is subject to the approval of the Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Theatre and Film.

A.  Incompletes:
An INC (incomplete) is given only when, for some approved reason, a student fails to take the final examination or to fulfill a definite requirement in a course.  An INC can be removed and a grade substituted if the student completes course requirements to the satisfaction of the instructor prior to the deadline established by the Graduate College.  The outside deadlines for removal of incomplete grades for the respective academic semesters are:  

Fall semester:  June 1
Spring semester:  September 1
Summer semester:  January 1

However, an individual instructor may come to an agreement with his or her student for an earlier deadline for removal of an incomplete grade.  For courses taken S/U, any mark of INC not removed by these deadlines will change to U.  For courses taken for a letter grade, any mark of INC not removed by these deadlines will change to F.  A student cannot graduate with a grade of INC.  The Graduate Dean has the authority to extend the deadline for an incomplete.  The student must petition for such consideration in writing and prior to the expiration of the deadline.  The instructor’s support is required for approval of the request.

B.   Probation:

1.  Grounds for Probation:
Students failing to meet the following minimal standards may be dropped from the program or placed on probation at the discretion of the Graduate Faculty or the Graduate Dean:

a.  Students must maintain a graduate grade point average of 3.0 or better.
b.  Students must make satisfactory progress toward a degree.  To maintain satisfactory progress a student must complete, at least, all courses attempted each semester

2.  Effects of Probation:
Students on probation will be subject to the following regulations:

a.  Students on probation will not be granted permission to enroll for more than 12 hours of credit.
b.  Students on probation may not seek approval for a thesis topic (M.A. Plan I), nor apply for portfolio review (M.A. Plan II).
c.  Assistantships may be removed from students on probation.

Students remaining on probationary status for more than one semester will generally be dropped from the program.

C.   Policy on Dropping Graduate Students:

1.  If the Department of Theatre and Film recommends that a student be dropped from a degree program, the student is dropped immediately as a degree student, although the student can continue course work.
2.  If on an assistantship, the student is immediately and automatically removed from that assignment as well.  If dropped, the student must petition the department for reinstatement as a degree student.

D.   Revalidation of Course Work:

1.  Credit for work older than six years will not apply toward degree requirements unless revalidated by a formal examination or by re-taking the courses.
2.  Applications on a form available in the Graduate College must be submitted through the following channels:

a.  Chair, Department of Theatre and Film
b.  Graduate Faculty in the Department of Theatre and Film
c.  Departmental Graduate Coordinator
d.  Graduate Dean

E.  Time Limits on Completion of Degree:

1.  Work must be completed within the compass of six years.
2.  Course work that becomes outdated may be revalidated by a formal examination.

F.   Transfer Credit:

1.  The Graduate College limits the number of graduate hours, which may be transferred from another institution to nine.
2.  These must be approved by the Graduate Faculty in the Department of Theatre and Film and the Graduate Dean.
3.  Approval for transfer credit can only be granted once the student has satisfactorily completed eight hours of graduate work at BGSU.  The petition takes the form of inclusion in the Tentative Degree Program (TDP).  An official transcript must be received by the Graduate College before credit can be approved for transfer.  Credit may be transferred only for courses in which the student received the grades of A or B. Credit for an S grade may be transferred only if the grade is regarded by the grading school as B or better.

A. Process of Completing the Tentative Degree Program:

1. Tentative Degree Program must be submitted by the first month of the second semester of the first year of residency. (See TDP Form).  The following should NOT be listed on the TDP.
2. More than three hours of combined registration in independent study or directed research (THFM 6840, 6850, or 6860)
3. Undergraduate repair courses (these should be noted for information of the advisory committee).
4. THFM 6970 credits
5. GC 6000 credit.
6. THFM 6950 credits
7. More than six hours of combined registration in internship or creative practicum (THFM 6880 and 6970)
8. More than 3 hours of thesis credit (THFM 6990) or 3 hours of portfolio credit (THFM 6910)
9. Students must meet with the Graduate Coordinator and their faculty advisors before completing the TDP.  After a TDP has been submitted, any changes in the TDP must be accomplished in writing, approved by the student’s advisor, the Graduate Coordinator, and the Graduate College on the Addendum to the Tentative Degree Program.

B. Process for Completing Forms:
As is the case with all documentation for the degree, students are responsible for collecting all appropriate signatures. Once all signatures have been collected, the student must then take the form to the Administrative Secretary in the Main Office of the Department of Theatre and Film and the appropriate copies will be made and given to the appropriate parties.  Copies must be made before the forms are turned into the Graduate College.

C.  Process for Final TDP Check Prior to Graduation:
In the semester prior to their graduation, students are responsible for applying for graduation by the deadline set by the Graduate College (Check the “Dates to Remember” link found through the Graduate College Web Page).  Before applying for graduation, each student must meet with his/her advisor to check to see if the courses s/he actually took accord with the plan of study set forth on the originally filed TDP. If there were changes, then an Addendum to the Tentative Degree Program needs to be filed with the department and the Graduate College. After this procedure of checking with the advisor is completed, the student must also have the Graduate Coordinator’s approval that the student’s course of study matches the requirements of the program.  Once the Graduate Coordinator approved the student for graduation, then the student should apply for graduation.

The graduate faculty in the Department of Theatre and Film are accomplished researchers and artists. Many serve or have served as leaders in numerous regional, national and international scholarly organizations, including the editorial boards of a number of refereed scholarly journals. Individual members of the faculty serve  or have served as senior editor for Theatre Annual and editor for Theatre Topics and Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism.

Members of our faculty have published or are contracted to publish book length studies with:

  • University of Michigan Press
  • University of Mississippi Press
  • Southern Illinois University Press
  • Alta Mira Press
  • Wayne State University Press
  • Scarecrow Press
  • University of Alabama Press

Essay length studies authored by our faculty have appeared in numerous prestigious journals including:

  • The Drama Review
  • International Review of Qualitative Research
  • Journal of American Drama and Theatre
  • Popular Culture Review
  • Qualitative Inquiry
  • Spectator
  • Text and Performance Quarterly
  • Theatre Annual
  • Theatre History Studies
  • Theatre Topics
  • Women's Studies Quarterly

In terms of artistry, the doctoral faculty has and continues to be involved practically in theatre in both university and professional contexts, participating as performers, directors, and dramaturges.

Successful M.A. graduates have secured employment at George Washington University, Illinois State University, Michigan State University, Limestone College, Charleston Southern University, and Fresno Pacific University.

Some recent theses include:

  • “Big Cheap Mysticism: Postmodernism and Theology in Erik Ehn's The Saint Plays”
  • “Voicing an Other: Utilizing Puppetry and Pageantry for Community-Based Spectacle in America”
  • “‘Wet, Dirty Women’ and ‘Men Without Pants’: The Performance of Gender at The American Renaissance Festival.”
  • “Muscular Otherness: Performing the Muscular Freak and Monster”
  • "Religion as a Role: Decoding Performances of Mormonism in the Contemporary United States"
  • “Loie Fuller and Modern Movement”
  • “Fear and the Dynamics of Identity Constitution in Battlestar Galactica”
  • “Constructing a ‘Sense of Life’: Ayn Rand’s Night of January 16th from Conception to ‘Disaster’”
  • “The Fragmented Artist: Representations of Tennessee Williams in Biographical Solo Performance”