Ph.D. in Theatre

Ph.D. in Theatre

The doctoral program in the Department of Theatre and Film at Bowling Green State University is especially designed for those students planning careers as faculty members in higher education with a degree emphasis in the theories (both historical and contemporary), histories, and cultural applications of theatre and performance (both aesthetic and cultural) in various contexts. It is this aspect of the program that prepares students to contribute meaningfully to theatre and performance scholarship and to be effective teachers within those disciplines.

Practically, the course of study aims to prepare graduates to conduct original research, to teach, and to participate in theatre production in educational settings in a range of capacities. Accordingly, students are evaluated in three areas: scholarship, teaching ability, and artistry.  While the mission of the department is to prepare graduates who approach the theory and practice of theatre and performance in an integrated manner, it should be understood that the primary emphasis of any doctoral program in the arts focuses on historical, theoretical, and pedagogical approaches to the subject matter rather than solely or even predominantly on artistic practice.

After completion of the Master's Degree or equivalent, a student may be admitted as a doctoral applicant upon approval by the Department of Theatre and Film’s Graduate Studies Committee and the Dean of the Graduate College.  Admission as a doctoral applicant does not imply admission to candidacy.  Admission to candidacy for the doctoral degree is achieved by passing the Graduate College mandated preliminary examination (i.e., Exams Stage II: Specialized Portfolio), and by securing approval of the dissertation topic by a Department of Theatre and Film graduate committee, the student's advisor, and the Graduate Dean.  Candidacy must be achieved at least six months before the degree is conferred.

The Department of Theatre and Film Graduate Faculty determine termination of a doctoral degree program on recommendation of the advisor and after the conference with the student.  Termination will result from the student's failure to pass either the Qualifying Examination or the Specialized Portfolio (Exams Stages I and II), or to maintain "satisfactory progress toward the degree".  A more thorough consideration of all academic standards is provided in the Graduate Catalog. 

The student develops the degree program and pursues the degree in a close relationship with a faculty advisor.  Initially, and continuing for the first two years, advising is accomplished in conference with the Graduate Coordinator.  Coursework is not solely determined by the student's interests, but depends upon program requirements and course schedules and availability.

Near the beginning of the second year of study, each student, in consultation with the Graduate Coordinator, should choose a permanent advisor suitable to direct the student’s course of study and assemble a departmental committee of three or four. The student’s permanent advisor and committee are verified in writing by submitting the Coordinator/Chair Committee Approval Form. In addition to the advisor and committee members, the Graduate Coordinator and Department Chair must sign this form.  

Only Department of Theatre and Film doctoral faculty members who have been granted Regular Graduate Faculty status are eligible to chair dissertations.  

The permanent advisor will assist the student with preparation for the Qualifying Examination (i.e., Exams Stage I), and as chairperson for the Specialized Portfolio (i.e., Exams Stage II), dissertation prospectus, research and writing of the dissertation, oral defense, and preparation of the final manuscript for submission to the Graduate College.  

Although students are not encouraged to change advisors, they may do so whenever a change is warranted.  Such a change would be considered appropriate if a student decides to change the primary area of research, or if faculty newly eligible to advise doctoral committees (new hires or people who attain Regular Graduate Faculty status during the student’s course of study) have expertise in the student’s research area.  Usually such changes are mutually agreed upon by the student and the advisor.  A student wishing to change advisors should submit a written request to the Graduate Coordinator, which requires the Graduate Coordinator's 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.

Ph.D. students on assistantship are normally awarded a half-time contract for a nine-month period, which carries a 20 hours per week service obligation.  Whenever possible, students’ preferences are taken into consideration in making these assignments.  Nonetheless, departmental needs must take priority.  All questions regarding assistantship assignments in the Department of Theatre and Film should be addressed to the Chair.

Renewal of an assistantship is not automatic.  Students must formally reapply through the Chair of the Department of Theatre and Film.  Application guidelines for reappointment will be provided during the spring term (usually in February).  Such applications will be evaluated by the Chair based the following criteria:

-Satisfactory progress toward the degree in accord with expectations and timeliness articulated by the department
-Satisfactory performance of assistantship duties
-Availability of funds
-Departmental staffing needs

Ph.D. assistantships are eligible for renewal for up to potentially four years of on-campus study.

An assistantship may be taken from a student for any one of the following reasons:

1. Failure to make satisfactory progress toward a 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 the student code.

On occasion, the Department of Theatre and Film offers a limited number of assistantship positions in the summer.  The exact number of positions varies from year to year and is dependent on instructional and production program needs. Graduate students should not assume they will automatically receive summer assistantships if requested.  They should also be aware that availability of summer teaching assistantships is directly linked to course enrollment.

A.  Financial Aid:
Any questions concerning financial aid eligibility and maximum allowances 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 the individual program of study.

B.  Supplemental Employment:
Graduate assistants must confer with, and receive permission from the Graduate Coordinator and the Chair of the Department before accepting additional employment, whether on or off campus.

A. General Degree Requirements:

1. A minimum of 90 semester credit hours including M.A. degree and dissertation hours.

2. No less than 18 or more than 30 credit hours of THFM 7990, Dissertation Research. Students may count 18 credit hours toward the degree.

3. Foreign language preparation courses may not be included in the minimum of 90 credit hours even though they may be expected or required by the department.  

4. Undergraduate and M.A. repair courses, and courses that are audited, may not be included in the minimum of 90 credit hours even though they may be expected or required.

5. Thirty hours of credit from a student’s master’s program may be counted toward the minimum 90 credit hours required. Up to 9 additional hours of post M.A. work from another school may be accepted (if these credit hours were earned as doctoral work elsewhere). See the Graduate Catalog for specifics regarding transfer of credit.

6. All students must complete the following Research Tool Sequence for a total of 12 credit hours:

THFM 6590 Research Methods in Theatre and Performance Studies

THFM 6630 Introduction to Performance Studies

THFM 7680 Interdisciplinary Performance Theory (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 7810 Research and Publication in Theatre and Performance Studies (May be repeated with advisor's approval)

7. All Students must complete 15 credit hours offered from the History & Literature/Theory/Criticism (HLTC) sequence, and 15 credit hours offered from the Performance Studies/Practice (PSP) sequence. The total number of courses taken in the HLTC and PSP sequences combined is 30. Courses approved for HLTC credit include:

THFM 5650 Period, Style, and Form

THFM 6600 Theatre/Performance in Cultural Contexts I

THFM 6610 Theatre/Performance in Cultural Contexts II

THFM 6620 Theories of Theatre and Performance (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 6700 Performance and Theatre in the Americas (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 7660 Theatre and Performance History: Ancients–16th Century (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 7670 Theatre and Performance History: 17th–21st Century (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 7720 Critical Traditions in Theatre/Performance I

THFM 7730 Critical Traditions in Theatre/Performance II

THFM 7740 Contemporary Theatre and Performance

THFM 7750 Modernism in Theatre and Performance

Courses approved for PSP credit include:

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

THFM 6640 Directing Practice

THFM 6670 Staging Image and Text (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 6680 Performance Studies (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 6690 Theatre for Young Audiences

THFM 6710 Theatre Organization and Management

THFM 6730 Performance Composition

THFM 6820 Performance Theory and Practice (May be repeated when topic changes)

THFM 7600 Theatre/Performance Pedagogy

THFM 7620 Directing and Staging Theory

8.  No more than 6 credit hours of THFM 6880, 7960, or 7970 (Internship in Repertory Theatre or Supervised Practicum in Theatre/Theatre Performance) may be included in the minimum program. These credit hours may potentially be used to satisfy specific program requirements upon approval by the Graduate Coordinator. Approval must be secured in advance of registering for the course.

9.  Independent Studies (THFM 7840 or 7850 Directed Readings in Theatre/Performance & THFM 7860 Research Problems in Theatre/Performance) may potentially be taken to fulfill any of the three categories (Research Tool, HLTC, and PSP) subject to approval by Graduate Coordinator. Approval must be secured in advance of registering for the course. More than two registrations/six credit hours of THFM 7840, 7850, and 7860 will require special justification.

10. Courses in other departments may in rare cases be taken as a substitute for a required course, upon approval of the Graduate Coordinator.

11. The number of 5000-level courses that may be counted toward the minimum required courses for the doctoral degree shall not exceed 10 hours or three courses in the post-master's studies.

B. Research Tool Requirement and Foreign Language Proficiency:

All doctoral students are required to take the four courses in the Research Tool sequence. However, should a student wish to pursue dissertation research that requires proficiency in a foreign language, that proficiency must be established through the student’s satisfactory performance on an examination administered by one of the language departments. Students may take the exam on an individual basis after consultation with the appropriate examiner, or may opt to take it at the conclusion of the courses FREN/GERM/SPAN 5000/6000. Taking this course would be in addition to the 90 credit hours required for the degree. The Educational Testing Service’s Graduate School Foreign Language Testing program may also be used to satisfy this requirement.

C. Additional Coursework Option:

Students may substitute some of the THFM 7980 Readings for Preliminary Exam hours taken during the third year of study with additional graduate coursework in the Department of Theatre and Film or in other departments/units.  Reasons for taking additional course work are varied, but might include the offering of a class in the department that was not available during the first two years of course work, or the offering of a class in another unit pertinent to the student’s area of dissertation research. Students should consult with their permanent advisor and the Graduate Coordinator to determine if this is a viable option. The total number of credit hours taken during either term during the third year of study for students receiving a tuition scholarship may not exceed 8. Students following this option must understand that taking additional coursework during the third year does not relieve them of the responsibility of completely the Preliminary Exam and Prospectus processes in a timely manner as outlined below.


30 hours – MA

12 hours – Research Tool Sequence

15 hours – History & Literature/Theory/Criticism (HLTC)

15 hours – Performance Studies/Practice (PSP)

18 hours – Dissertation


A. Assembling a Committee: No later than the middle of the first term of the second year of study, the student should submit the names of the proposed advisor and committee to the Graduate Coordinator and Departmental Chair for approval. The majority of the committee must consist of members of the Theatre and Film faculty who hold the Ph.D. The committee shall consist of a minimum of two persons in addition to the advisor. All committee members must have graduate faculty status in the Department of Theatre and Film. The student is responsible for ascertaining each faculty member’s willingness and eligibility to serve on the committee. This advisor and committee will, at minimum, take the student through the Qualifying Examination and Specialized Portfolio processes and potentially through to the defense of the dissertation.

B. Preparing the Qualifying Examination: The examination is comprised of a Research Portfolio of two essays, collectively no shorter than 40 pages and no longer than 45 pages, a two-to-three page rationale of proposed dissertation research, and a reading list comprised of sources in the student’s proposed area of dissertation research and proposed methodology. The essays are revisions of previously written papers prepared during doctoral course work at BGSU. The papers are to be reflective of Research Tool, HLTC, and/or PSP coursework and demonstrate proficiency and scholarly depth in research and writing. Each student is required to consult with the permanent advisor in the process of articulating the contents of the Research Portfolio. The selection of the essays for inclusion in the Research Portfolio is subject to the student’s advisor’s approval. Advisors read and respond to the essays, rationale, and reading list just one time. As such, the responsibility for shaping the examination materials rests primarily with the student. The examination is structured to test the student's qualifications, skills, and knowledge. Thus, outside of helping the student determine what essays should be included, discussing the direction of dissertation research, and providing comments one time on one draft of the materials, the advisor will take an essentially hands-off approach. It is imperative that all the work within the Research Portfolio is the student’s work alone. The student is strictly forbidden from enlisting the help of others for the purposes of editing the contents of the Research Portfolio. Failure to heed this restriction constitutes a breach of academic honesty and may result in termination from the program and/or expulsion from the university.

C. Evaluation of the Examination:  By February 1st  during the second year of study, the student will submit the Research Portfolio to the two reading members of his or her committee (i.e., committee members, not the advisor). Each essay will receive an evaluation of “Pass” or “No Pass” from these two members of the committee. In the event of a tie, the advisor will join the process. If the student’s work is evaluated as unsatisfactory (i.e., “No Pass”) by one of the two readers on one of the research papers, the advisor will read and evaluate that essay.  If after the advisor reads the paper, at least two of the three readers deem the paper to be a “No Pass,” the student will need to revise the paper and resubmit it for evaluation no later than April 1st. If the student’s work is evaluated as unsatisfactory by two of the three readers on both research papers, the student will be required to retake the examination during the subsequent semester of study (i.e., fall of the third year) and will not be eligible for third year funding (i.e., assistantship and/or tuition scholarship).  The student may also be required to complete additional course work. After the student’s work has been evaluated, the student’s committee may provide written feedback. The Graduate Coordinator will compile the results and written feedback, and notify the student. There will not be an oral defense for the Qualifying Examination. Successful completion of Exams Stage I results in the making of the Application for Preliminary Examination and the request to the Graduate College to appoint a faculty member from another department to serve as the Graduate College Representative.

D. Failure to Pass the Qualifying Examination: The student may rewrite the failed exam only one time. Failing satisfactory completion of the Qualifying Examination will result in dismissal from the graduate program.

After passing the in-house Qualifying Examination, the student must next complete and pass the Specialized Portfolio. The Graduate College requires that all doctoral students take a “preliminary examination” that is both written and oral. The Department of Theatre and Film meets the requirement through the Specialized Portfolio. The purpose of the Specialized Portfolio is not only to meet the Graduate College preliminary examination requirement but also to allow the student an opportunity to explore the area of specialization and to demonstrate a mastery of those issues to be explored in more depth in the dissertation. It is the responsibility of the student and the advisor to schedule and plan the Specialized Portfolio.

A. The Preliminary Examination Process: After passing the Qualifying Examination, the student prepares and defends the Specialized Portfolio (Exams Stage II). This takes place in the fall term of the third year of study. The contents of the Specialized Portfolio are initially nurtured through peer and instructor review in THFM 7810: Research and Publication during spring term of the second year of study, and then through fall of year three through consultation with the student’s advisor. The contents of the Specialized Portfolio are then submitted to the student’s entire committee including the appointed Graduate College Representative for review and evaluation. The student will then schedule a meeting with the full committee to conduct an oral defense of the Specialized Portfolio. When the full committee determines that the student has satisfied the preliminary examination requirement, all members certify approval by signing the bottom portion of the Preliminary Examination Application/Report form.  The student must pass both the written and oral preliminary examinations by December 1st of year three.  While students who receive funding through other sources may elect to follow a different timetable, at most, it is expected that all students will successfully defend the Specialized Portfolio within one academic year following the completion of required coursework. Any student who fails to comply with these guidelines will automatically be judged as having failed to make adequate progress towards degree and will be dropped from the program.

B. The Nature and Scope of the Specialized Portfolio: It is expected that the contents of the Specialized Portfolio will demonstrate the student’s level of preparation to conduct original research that will contribute to scholarship. Each element of critical and scholarly work in the Specialized Portfolio should be suitable for publication. This means that the Portfolio documents must reflect original research, and that they must be written in a professional, error-free manner.

    As a general practice, students generate initial drafts of materials for inclusion in the Specialized Portfolio while completing requirements for 6000 and 7000 level seminar courses and focus primarily on revising and expanding these materials during the spring and summer semesters of the second year of study and the fall of the third year.  Because preliminary revision often takes place during the student’s enrollment in THFM 7810, Research and Publication in Theatre and Performance Studies (spring semester, second year), students should plan to have written at least initial drafts of all materials intended for inclusion in the Specialized Portfolio prior to the beginning of the spring semester of their second year of coursework. In so doing, students will be able to take advantage of the opportunities for feedback presented in that course. It is expected that students will seek the opinion of their respective advisors as to the suitability of the materials they propose to revise for inclusion in the Specialized Portfolio (at the very least, major components such as the research essay) prior to commencing the spring semester of the second year of study, and that they will remain in dialogue with their advisor throughout the process of revising and developing these materials.  Once again, it is imperative that all the work within the Specialized Portfolio is the student’s work alone.  Apart from the feedback that the student’s work receives from the advisor, and the instructor and students of THFM 7810, the student is strictly forbidden from enlisting the help of others for the purposes of editing the contents of the Specialized Portfolio. Failure to heed this restriction constitutes a breach of academic honesty and may result in termination from the program and/or expulsion from the university.

C. Contents of the Specialized Portfolio:

1. Detailed professional curriculum vitae, suitable for inclusion in a job application packet.

2. Three book reviews (suitable for publication in an academic journal) focusing on recent academic texts in theatre and performance (broadly defined). Length: 1000-1500 words each.

3. One critical performance review, approximately 1000-1500 words in length, (suitable for publication in an academic journal or other trade publication) of a professional performance event.

4. A pedagogical position paper.  This essay, which should be 3-4 pages in length, is a personal statement of teaching philosophy.

5. An article-length work of original research suitable for publication. This should be approximately 25-35 pages in length, should address a well-defined topic in depth, and should make an original contribution to scholarship in the designated research area rather than merely reiterating or synthesizing the work of others. This essay may be an essay refined and developed from the submissions in Exam Stage I. However, any revised paper must be developed beyond the parameters of the earlier draft. Thus, the student must incorporate feedback provided on the earlier draft, and/or offer new readings or observations other than those made in the earlier draft, and/or include in the study new findings.

5. A more developed iteration of the rationale for the proposed dissertation (i.e., an early draft of the dissertation prospectus).

6. A detailed annotated bibliography in the declared area of dissertation research.

The dissertation must be an appropriate culmination of the candidate’s program of study and must represent scholarly research appropriate in method and subject to the degree program.

1. Advisor:  Typically, the major professor who supervises a student’s course of study is also the dissertation advisor. The advisor must be a member of the theatre graduate faculty who holds a Ph.D., and must qualify as a member of the Regular Graduate Faculty. Before selecting a dissertation advisor, the student must consult the Graduate Coordinator to determine the potential advisor’s eligibility to direct dissertations.

2. Eligibility and Time Line:  A student must have passed the Preliminary Examination (i.e., Exams Stage II: Specialized Portfolio) before a dissertation topic can be approved. However, the prospectus for the dissertation is initially developed concurrently with the Specialized Portfolio materials in the spring semester of the second year of study and nurtured through peer and instructor review during THFM 7810 Research and Publication. The prospectus is also given additional development in consultation with the student’s advisor during the spring term of the second year of study, and continuing through the third year.  To ensure adequate progress toward degree, the prospectus should be defended by April 1 of the third year of study.  Generally, students who do not meet this requirement will be ineligible for a renewal of assistantship (i.e., fourth year funding). Regardless of the time line, the prospectus must be defended no less than six months prior to oral defense of the dissertation.

3. Selection of Topic:  The student and the advisor should discuss potential dissertation topics. This process should begin early in the student’s residency. The topic area and method of research must be well defined by the fall term of the second year of study, when the initial dissertation rationale is drafted.  The dissertation is expected to be a scholarly document, making an original contribution to knowledge and demonstrating the student’s potential as a scholar. Potential topics should be carefully researched in advance, to be certain that someone else has not investigated them.

4.  Dissertation Committee:  Typically, the dissertation committee should include those faculty members who served as readers of the Specialized Portfolio, along with the Graduate College Representative assigned by the Graduate College. Once the committee is officially constituted and approved by the Graduate College, any changes require special approval, which should be sought by means of petition to the Graduate College and must also be endorsed by the Graduate Coordinator and Chair in the Department of Theatre and Film.

5. Prospectus Defense:  A defense of the prospectus may be scheduled once the student has the the advisor's approval . At least two weeks before the scheduled meeting the student will provide the committee with the dissertation prospectus. The prospectus should not only clearly outline the proposed topic of study, but should also demonstrate the student’s ability to complete the proposed research.  To satisfy this requirement, the student must demonstrate knowledge of existing scholarship in the chosen area of specialization, and make evident that the proposed work will contribute substantially to the scholarly conversation in this area. Students should anticipate that the advisor may ask for substantial revision of the prospectus before allowing the student to distribute the document to the committee as a whole, and should budget their time accordingly. The dissertation prospectus should include the following components:


*Relevant background information to introduce and contextualize the proposed area of research

*Concise statement of the central research questions that the study will address

*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 knowledge of other work in the research area and note how the proposed study wil make a contribution to the field.)

*A discussion of the research methods the student will employ in completing the study

*Principle sources of data

*Limitations of the study (Note: 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 (Note: Proposed chapter titles are not sufficient, and should be supplemented by abstracts or tentative summaries of what will be covered in each section)

At the defense, the student will orally defend and elaborate on the prospectus and receive feedback from the advisor and the committee on the proposed research project. When the committee members are satisfied that the student is ready to proceed with work on the dissertation, they indicate their formal approval by signing the Thesis/Dissertation Topic Approval form. This form must be filed with the Graduate College at least six months before the student expects to receive the degree. If human subjects are involved in the research (surveys, interviews, questionnaires, etc.) prior approval of the dissertation topic by the BGSU Human Subjects Review Board must be secured.

    Defense of the Dissertation:  The student works principally with the advisor in researching the topic and writing preliminary drafts. At least two weeks prior to the oral defense of the completed dissertation, the student must furnish each member of the committee with a readable draft in good form, including documentation and bibliography.  The student must also ask the Graduate Coordinator to contact the Graduate College with details of the defense date and time.  That office will publicize the upcoming defense to the larger BGSU community.  Committee members may require revision prior to the oral defense. The student meets with the committee and a public audience for oral defense of the dissertation. If the dissertation is successfully defended and the manuscript is acceptable in both content and form, the committee indicates its approval by signing the ETD Submission/Approval Form.  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 take this possibility under consideration. Only one negative vote is permissible.

7. Abstracts:  An abstract of the dissertation must be provided along with the final draft.  (See “Thesis and Dissertation Handbook” for details)

8. Copyrights and Permissions:  The use of photographs, images, and extended quoted material (i.e., entire published poems, or lengthy quoted material) in a dissertation require the consent of the authors/creators.  It is the student’s responsibility to secure those permissions in writing prior to defense of the dissertation.

9. Final Copy:  The final copy must meet strict Graduate College requirements and style must be thoroughly consistent with one of the major style manuals (e.g., most recent edition of the MLA Handbook or Chicago Style Sheet). The manuscript is expected to adhere to these guidelines as well as those of the Graduate College. The Graduate College requires electronic submission of theses and dissertations. Deadlines for deposit of approved, error-free, electronic copy of the dissertation are found on the “Important Dates and Deadlines” link on the Graduate College Web Page.

    Upon approval of the final manuscript, the signed ETD Submission/Approval Form is to be taken to the Department of Theatre and Film Administrative Secretary, who will make a copy of the form and send it on to the Graduate College. At that time, the student is to bring two single-sided, error-free final copies of the dissertation to the Department Secretary for binding: one copy goes to the Department and one goes to the dissertation advisor.  If students wishe to have persnal copies bound, they must pay those costs.

It is the student’s responsibility to be aware of all deadlines pertaining to completion of the degree. While the plan for the degree outlined here suggest that the program takes four years to complete, 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 to their advisor and/or committee, a two-week “read” time is given to the reader(s). Moreover, certain weeks during the year are not counted in the two-week “read” time: Fall Break, Winter Break, Thanksgiving Break, Spring Break, the weeks following the spring semester and prior to the first summer session, and the weeks following the end of the second summer session and the beginning of the fall semester. It is also important to remember that 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. Lastly, students must be aware that they must register for at least one credit hour during the semester in which s/he will graduate. Other policies requiring time to degree include the following:

A. Graduate College requirements mandate that the degree be completed within eight years from the time the student first registered for doctoral work at BGSU. Course work older than eight years becomes invalidated, and the student must revalidate work, take additional work, or be dropped from the program.

B. Graduate College regulations provide that no student may receive more than four academic years of assistantship support at the doctoral rate.

C. A student in continuous residence who has not passed the Qualifying Examination (Exams Stage I) by the end of the second semester of the second year of study (April 1), is not making satisfactory progress toward the degree and may be deemed ineligible for further departmental funding (i.e., third year funding).

D. A student in continuous residence who has not passed the Specialized Portfolio (Exams Stage II) and successfully defended the Prospectus by the end of the second semester of the third year of study (April 1), is not making satisfactory progress toward the degree and may be deemed ineligible for further departmental funding (i.e., fourth year funding).

E. While students who receive funding through other sources may occasionally elect to follow a different timetable, it is expected that all students will successfully defend the Specialized Portfolio within one academic year following the completion of required coursework. Any student who fails to comply with these guidelines will automatically be judged as having failed to make adequate progress towards degree and will be dropped from the program.

Process for Completing Forms

Students are advised that they are responsible for collecting all signatures on various required documents while moving through the program. 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 copies will be made and given to appropriate parties.  Copies must be made before the forms are submitted to the Graduate College.

Graduate Community Participation

Students admitted to the graduate program in the Department of Theatre and Film at BGSU are asked to remember that they are members of a community. As such they are expected to participate in the life of the department. What follows are the minimum expectations for participation. First, students are expected to support their colleagues and peers by attending BGSU Department of Theatre and Film productions. Second, they are encouraged to take on production responsibilities insofar as course work and, if funded, assistantship duties will permit. Third, all graduate students are expected to keep the hour of eleven o’clock to noon on Thursdays free for Graduate Seminar and to attend the seminar when it is convened. Over the course of the academic year, Graduate Seminar programming will include workshops, post-performance production discussions, and research presentations by graduate students, faculty, and guest scholars.

A. Procedures:

1. Registration is completed by the Departmental Administrative Secretary, following consultation with the Graduate Coordinator and/or the student’s advisor.

2. Registration for internships, practicums, independent studies, directed readings, and directed research requires an additional registration approval form, which is obtained from the Administrative Secretary in the main office of the Department of Theatre and Film. Students must complete this form, which must include a brief statement of the independent work or internship, and signatures of approval by the advisor, the person directing the research or internship, and the Chair of the Department.  The Administrative Secretary will register students for these courses after proper registration papers are completed.

3. Changes in registration after the semester begins may result in fees being assessed according to the Registration and Records Refund Schedule. The student will bear the financial burden of those fees.

4. Students wishing to register for courses in other departments are often required to obtain approval in advance from the Graduate Coordinator in that department. Additionally, students must secure approval from the Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Theatre and Film, as well as the advisor. When taking courses outside the Department of Theatre and Film, students are advised to meet with the instructor of record before the first class meeting.

B. Limits on Hours of Registration:

1. Students not on assistantship have no minimum registration hours except as noted below.

2. No student may register for more than 18 hours of credit per term without permission from the Dean of the Graduate College. Permission will not be granted to students on probation. An excess credit fee is charged beyond 18 hours. The student is responsible for this fee.

3. Students holding assistantships are required to register for no more than 9 hours of graduate credit each spring and fall semester.

4. Students may not enroll for dissertation hours until they have successfully defended the Specialized Portfolio and dissertation prospectus.

C. 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 dissertation. This registration is not done automatically. This criterion does not include summer session unless graduating in August.

A. Incompletes:  An INC (incomplete) is given only when, for an 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. An individual instructor may come to an agreement for an earlier deadline for removal of an incomplete grade. For courses taken S/U, any mark of INC not removed by the deadline will change to U. For courses taken for a letter grade, any mark of INC not removed by the deadline 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. Grades for THFM 7990:  Grades for THFM 7990 are reported as “Incompletes” until the completed dissertation is approved.

C. Probation:  Students failing to meet the following minimal standards may be dropped from the program or placed on probation at the discretion of the Department of Theatre and Film Graduate Faculty, or the Graduate Dean.

1.  Students must maintain a graduate grade point average of 3.0 or better.
2.  Students must make satisfactory progress toward a degree by successfully completing all courses attempted each semester, and passing all exams within periods set forth.

Students on probation will be subject to the following regulations:

1. Permission will not be granted to enroll for more than 9 hours of credit.
2. Assistantships may be removed.

Generally, students remaining on probationary status for more than one semester will be dropped from the program.

D. Policy for Dropping Students:

If the Department of Theatre and Film recommends that a student be dropped from a degree program, the student is no longer considered as a degree student, although the student may continue course work. If a student is dropped from a degree program, all assistantship support is terminated. If dropped, the student must petition the department for reinstatement as a degree student. In certain cases, the department may elect to discontinue funding for a student making marginal progress without dropping that person from the program, in which instance the student will be eligible to seek support elsewhere or to cover their educational expenses. In some instances, given just cause, a student may be dropped from the program even when not receiving assistantship support through the Department of Theatre and Film.

E. Revalidation of Course Work

Credit for course work older than eight years will not apply toward degree requirements unless revalidated by retaking the course(s) or by a formal examination. Time spent in the armed forces is exempted in applying this time limitation. The application must be submitted through the following channels:

            1.  Chair of Department of Theatre and Film
            2.  Department of Theatre and Film's Graduate Studies Committee
            3.  Graduate Coordinator in Theatre and Film
            4.  Graduate Dean

A. Directed Readings, Independent Studies and Directed Research:

THFM 7840, 7850, and 7860 may be taken by doctoral students and included in the degree program under the following conditions:

1. Subject matter not covered by an existing formal course or seminar, which is highly appropriate to a student’s program of study, or
2. A required course cannot be offered within a reasonable time span for degree completion, or
3. A student is engaged in supervised research not leading directly to the dissertation.  

More than two registrations/six credit hours of THFM 7840, 7850, and 7860 will require special justification before they can be included as part of the degree program.

B. Evidence of Artistic Ability (Acting, Directing, Design, Playwriting, etc.):

All students are expected to demonstrate proficiency in theatre practice by participating in the production program on campus or in the community where their work may be observed by the faculty. This activity may be done on a voluntary basis, for credit under individual registration, or occasionally in discharge of work responsibilities for those on assistantship. Production activity normally is planned in the spring for the following academic year, and those students with production obligations are urged to plan ahead so that the appropriate applications and petitions may be supplied to the faculty in advance. Students with unusual programs may be asked to include participation experiences other than those specified above, as part of their graduate experience. All students, in consultation with the advisor, must select an appropriate creative assignment for evaluation and assessment. Once the assignment has been completed, the student will publicly discuss the project in an approved venue, such as the weekly scheduled graduate seminar.

C. Transfer Credits:

The Graduate College limits the number of graduate hours that may be transferred from another accredited institution to 9 hours of Ph.D. work.  Students may petition for credit once they have completed eight hours of graduate work at Bowling Green State University.

Indian Summers: Querying Representations of Native American Cultures in Outdoor Historical Dramas

Representing Childhood: The Social, Historical, and Theatrical Significance of the Child on Stage

Stage Hypnosis in the Shadow of Svengali: Historical Influences, Public Perceptions, and Contemporary Practices

From Irreverent to Revered : How Alfred Jarry's Ubu Roi and the "U-Effect" Changed Theatre History

Playing Hippies and Indians: Acts of Cultural Colonization in the Theatre of the American Counterculture

Choreographing Dirt: Performances of/against the Nature/Culture Divide

The Grotesque Cross: The Performative Grotesquerie of the Crucifixion of Jesus

Exhibiting Scenographic Identities at the 2007 and 2011 Prague Quadrennials

Women in Stage Combat: A Study of Babes With Blades Theatre Company

“The Idea of Beauty in Their Person”: Dandyism and the Haunting of Contemporary Masculinity

From the Avant-Garde to the Popular: A History of Blue Man Group, 1987-2001