Jun 12, 2024  
2017-2018 CSU East Bay Catalog 
2017-2018 CSU East Bay Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Theatre Arts, Dance Option, B.A.

Theatre Arts (B.A.) 180 units

Program Description

The Department of Theatre and Dance provides comprehensive pre-professional training in the areas of acting, directing, dance, design, theatre technology, and musical theatre. The primary goal of the program is to develop artists whose performance skills and creativity are supported by a firm background in history, literature, and aesthetics. In an environment designed to encourage creativity and self-expression, each student has opportunities to participate in various specializations within the major-acting, costuming, dance, directing, scenery, lighting, sound, creative vision, or management. Students perform regularly in a variety of theatre and dance productions.

Theatre Arts graduates acquire a range of skills. This enables them to pursue different professional options. Many have entered advanced studies in nationally recognized universities and conservatories. Some have chosen careers in teaching, while others have gone directly into theatre or dance performance. Alumni perform on professional stages around the world, including Broadway and Hollywood. Some have been nominated for Tonys, Emmys, and Oscars; and, one designer won an Emmy and Art Directors Guild award. Employers in other professions desire Theatre Arts graduates for their team skills, their imaginative approach to problems, and their ability to communicate creatively.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with a B.A. in Theatre Arts from Cal State East Bay will be able to:

  1. communicate in writing, orally, non-verbally, and visually in their area of emphasis.
  2. conduct background research, evaluate scripts, and analyze performance for use in scholarly and performance applications.
  3. employ historical, contemporary, and cultural performance techniques, as well as production technology appropriate to their area of emphasis.
  4. reflect on performance techniques and concepts of other performers and apply high standards of reflection to their own production work.
  5. solve problems of production by creating roles, dancing, designing, managing, building, directing, or choreographing performances that address issues of life in striking and remarkable ways.

Career Opportunities

  • Actor/Actress
  • Broadcast Technician
  • Business Agent
  • Choreographer
  • College Student Services
  • Comedian
  • Corporate Officer
  • Costume Designer
  • Costume Technician
  • Dancer
  • Director
  • Drama or Dance Teacher/Professor
  • Dramaturg
  • Lighting Technician
  • Make-Up Artist/Specialist
  • Non-profit Manager
  • Performing Arts Fundraiser
  • Playwright
  • Producer
  • Recreation Supervisor
  • Sales Manager
  • Set Decorator
  • Set Designer
  • Sound Technician
  • Stage Manager
  • Theatre Critic
  • Theatre Technician
  • Theatre Manager


The Department of Theatre and Dance produces approximately 5-8 plays and dance concerts during the year. The selection of plays exposes students to design, acting, dance, singing, directing, stage management, and technical theatre suitable to a wide variety of styles, periods, and genres from Shakespeare to American Realism and from Greek Tragedy to Modern Drama.

The department has several ensemble groups, including Musical Theatre, Dance, Acting, Inclusive Interdisciplinary, and Design/Technology, that add to a varied and challenging performance schedule. Since 1990, sixteen department productions have toured to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland and three other countries as part of the summer program.

The Theatre and Dance Department is fortunate to have excellent facilities including the 460 seat University Theatre, scene shop, costume shop, a sixteen-station design/drafting studio with a separate digital lab, two studio classrooms, green room, make-up room, dressing rooms with lockers and showers, and a spacious Dance Studio.

Subject Area Course Lists (SACL)

Four-year CSUEB students should take any THEA or DANC course in a First Year General Education Cluster. For a list of all SACL designated courses use the Course Description link below or see your department advisor.

Transfer students may petition the Chair to substitute a course with the following types of content:

  • a theatre literature and history course with required reading of at least six plays,
  • a performance appreciation course that required attendance and a review of at least four shows,
  • a script analysis course, or a creative methods course (specifically any course that articulates with DANC 1200).

Transfer students may also meet the requirement with one of the courses approved for four-year students. Substitutes require advanced approval of the Chair.

Major Requirements (B.A.) 75-109 units

The B.A. degree requires a total of 180 units.

  • The core major consists of 56 units;
    • the electives for non- Option consists of 19 units;
    • the Acting Option consists of 39-40 units.
    • the Dance Option consists of 34-49 units;
    • the Directing and Creative Vision Option consists of 41 units.
    • the Musical Theatre Option consists of 53 units;
    • the Technology and Design Option consists of 39-41 units.
  • GE/USHG/UWS consists of 84 units (some courses may double-count units - see your advisor).
  • Free Electives (if any) will make up the remainder units to reach 180 minimum total units (see your advisor). 


Note: Please consult with your advisor for clarification and interpretation of major requirements.


Common Core Courses (56 units)

Lower Division Beginning Elective Units

Choose an Area of Emphasis

Complete 10 units from ONE of the following areas of emphasis: Dance, Acting, or Technology and Design.

Unless specified, courses should be numbered below 2999, and listed in the Course Descriptions  of this catalog under the filter TYPE: Subject Area Course List

Note: Students pursuing the following options 
  • Acting Option, Musical Theatre Option, and Directing & Creative Vision Option students are required to complete the 10 units of Acting Emphasis;
  • Dance Option students are required to complete the 10 units of Dancing Emphasis;
  • Techonology & Design Option students are required to complete the 10 units of Technology & Design Emphasis.
Dance Emphasis

Choose 5 units of beginning or intermediate dance technique courses in either: Ballet, Hip Hop, Modern, Musical Theatre, or Jazz.

Upper Division Required Core Courses

Complete the following 30 units or required courses:

Core Culmination and Assessment Courses

Each student must complete the following 10 units.  A Senior Culmination Project is to include either a performance project in the Senior Festival, a written thesis, or a substantial internship. Students may substitute internship credit or thesis-related Independent Study credit for their Senior Festival courses.

Option Requirements

To complete the Theatre B.A. degree additional units are required from one of the following:

Dance Option (34-49 units)

Total major units with this option: 90-105.  Majors must participate in three productions for credit in the last two years to complete the Advanced Electives.


Students may fulfill assignments, projects, performances, internships and service learning experiences to enhance preparation for specific careers in dance such as choreography, teaching, or performance. Students who have completed a prearranged plan will qualify for an endorsement upon graduation. Endorsement plans should be arranged in Year Three with the major advisor, dance faculty, and Chair. An endorsement plan might involve alternative assignments or additional requirements. Taking the courses in their plan qualifies a student for consideration. The dance faculty will make endorsements for superior achievement. Achievement goals should be spelled out in the plan. Endorsements will not appear on the transcript or diploma, but will be kept on file by the department. Students may plan for one or more of the following endorsements: 1) Choreography Endorsement; 2) Technique & Performance Endorsement; 3) Teaching Endorsement.

Advanced Technique Courses (6-12 units)

Complete a minimum of six (6) courses in at least three styles. Students in these courses must pass a placement audition in the first class meeting. 

Note: students should take additional technique courses from the SACL at the beginning and intermediate levels to qualify for the following third/fourth year advanced technique courses.

Advanced Electives (22-31 units)

Theatre History and Literature Elective (4 units)
Production and Performance (9 units)
  • At least three Production and Performance courses, numbered 3000 and above, covering at least three show assignments during the final two years.
Advanced Technique Elective (9-18 units)

Course Descriptions

Use this link to see all Course Descriptions  available throughout this catalog.

Other Undergraduate Degree Requirements

In addition to major requirements, every student must also complete the University requirements for graduation which are described throughout this catalog. These include the General Education-Breadth requirements; the second composition (ENGL 1002 ) requirement; the cultural groups/women requirement; the performing arts/activities requirement; the U.S. history, U.S. Constitution, and California state and local government requirement; the University Writing Skills Requirement; and the residence, unit, and grade point average requirements.