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Undergraduate Majors

Ohio University's nine undergraduate colleges offer more than 250 programs of study. Students may select from a wide variety of majors, minors and certificates. While most undergraduate programs at the Athens campus are designed to be completed in four years, a limited number of two-year degree programs are available as well.

Acting Major (B.F.A.)

Major code BF5161

College of Fine Arts  
School of Dance, Film, and Theater  
Theater Division
Kantner Hall 307B
Athens, OH 45701
Phone: 740.593.4818
Fax: 740.593.4817

Program Overview

The B.F.A. with a major in Acting is a rigorous program fostering creative, cognitive, and artistic skills. It is intended to advance the education and training of motivated, curious, self-reliant, adaptable theater artists. Required studio performance courses are the core of the program at all three-year levels. Acting, movement, and voice and speech are taught in a series of courses and special projects throughout the four-year curriculum. Studio classes emphasize the authentic use of self, the reality of doing, the awakening of the emotional life, and the collaborative process. In the movement studio, emphasis is placed on the human body as an instrument of expression, and on developing strength, alignment, flexibility, availability and stamina. Voice and speech work focuses on releasing habitual tension, increasing power and range, and utilizing specific speech skills. Advanced courses in each of these areas introduce a wide range of approaches to the craft of acting and the further development of the actor's instrument.

We seek serious, disciplined students committed to rigorous training, who want the art of theater and performance to be at the core of their education. At the end of the freshman year, potential majors apply, interview and audition for provisional acceptance into the program. Students are evaluated at the end of each semester, and continuing status in the program is based on successful completion of all required coursework as well as positive evaluation from all performance area faculty. A student who is struggling academically or programmatically will receive a letter of concern or be placed on probation.

During the first two years, each B.F.A. candidate in performance should complete much of the theater core as well as the General Education requirements. Careful and consistent faculty supervision and advising are an integral part of the B.F.A. in performance.

Following freshman year (or first semester of residency in the case of a transfer student), students are eligible to audition for all School productions. Once accepted into the performance program, performance opportunities include a minimum of two significant experiences in Theater Division productions, either in main stage offerings or in studio or laboratory productions. Performance students may also work in the development and production of new plays. There is programmatic interaction with the M.F.A. programs in directing, playwriting, and acting. Off-campus and study abroad opportunities abound, and a wide range of internships are available for interested students.

Admissions Information

Freshman/First-Year Admission

Students interested in the B.F.A. in Acting are expected to complete the theater core, first-year foundation during their first year of study. Interviews for all Theater Division specialized B.F.A. programs are held annually in the spring. Admission to this specialized B.F.A. program is by application, interview and audition only. All theater majors are required to attain a minimum grade of C (2.0) in any theater course required for graduation.

Change of Program Policy

Admission to the B.F.A. Acting program is by application, interview and audition only. Upon successful admission, change of major paperwork should be initiated by the student at the Theater Division Office or the College of Fine Arts Dean's Office.

Transfer Students

Admission to the B.F.A. Acting Program is by application, interview and audition only.  After acceptance to the University, program acceptance and placement will depend on the faculty's assessment of the candidates potential to succeed.  The Acting Program rarely accepts a transfer beyond the sophomore year, as there are three required years of studio classes that can only be completed in a linear progression.  Transfer students should be prepared to present a transcript, resume and a formal audition as early in the spring semester as possible.  In most cases, transferring students should be prepared to make up some of the foundation coursework.

Opportunities Upon Graduation

Graduating acting majors have the skill set necessary to craft vivid and specific performances in any medium. They are prepared with the business acumen and audition skills that will ready them to complete for entry-level professional acting work. Many seniors are offered internships upon graduation. Students are also prepared for acceptance into graduate studies, including M.F.A. Professional Actor Training Programs or an M.A. in Theater Studies.