Mar 03, 2024  
2023-2024 University Catalog 
2023-2024 University Catalog

Film and Theatre, M.F.A., Film Arts - Production concentration

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Program Overview

Students may elect to concentrate in Film Arts—Production, Theatre Arts—Performance, or Design. The Department is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre. Master of Fine Arts programs in Theatre Arts reflect NAST’s highest standards. The Master of Fine Arts is a terminal degree for students interested in pursuing careers in film production and theatre arts. Areas of specialization within the concentrations include filmmaking, acting, directing, and design.

Student Learning Outcomes

Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs) for MFA Film & Theatre/Film Arts

Students can identify cinematic works, and analyze and critique film theory. 

Students will master the skills to develop, produce and exhibit short narrative films. 

Students will have a comprehensive knowledge of all aspects of film production.  


In addition to meeting the minimum standards for admission to the Graduate School, an applicant is accepted for graduate work in film and theatre arts upon recommendation of the graduate committee based upon a bachelor’s degree in film or theatre arts or clearly demonstrated skills and creative ability in their field. Applicants should submit least three letters of recommendation and evidence of their ability in the proposed area of specialization. Auditions, prompt books, portfolios, manuscripts, video tapes, films, and other appropriate presentations are to be submitted to the department when application for admission is completed.

In addition to the requirements of the Graduate School, the following must be met:

  • Satisfactory completion of at least 60 hours of Film and Theatre Arts courses. With written permission of the department, the candidate may take up to six hours in a field outside the department.
  • At the completion of 18 or more hours of course work the student will be evaluated by the graduate committee. If the first year review demonstrates sufficient progress, the student will be invited to continue in the program.
  • A grade-point average of 3.0 or better is required in all course work.
  • Normally students must be in residence at least two semesters taking a full load of at least nine hours each semester. Summer sessions may not apply. Under special circumstances this residency requirement may be waived by the department. Upon completion of one-half of the student’s required work, his or her major professor will be designated by the department. Ordinarily this professor will serve as chairman of both the examining committee and the publicly presented creative thesis project.

Comprehensive Examination

Normally students may take the Comprehensive Examination no sooner than the term in which they have completed 36 hours of graduate credit. This examination will be both written and oral. At least three members of the graduate faculty, one of whom may be from a department other than Film and Theatre, appointed by the Graduate School, will administer the examination. Part of the examination will be devoted to questions based on the reading list and course work, and the remainder will be devoted to questions relating to the student’s individual area of specialization.

Publicly Presented Creative Thesis Project

The thesis project will be prepared under the supervision of a committee appointed by the Graduate School. This committee will ordinarily consist of three members of the graduate faculty of the department. After successful completion of the comprehensive examination, the candidate will submit a written prospectus for a publicly presented thesis project. The research and execution of this project will normally take nine studio hours. The Master of Fine Arts thesis project is designed to test the student’s skill and knowledge in his or her area of specialization. The project is subject to the graduate committee’s approval.

Students who have earned graduate credits in film, theatre, video, or its equivalent from other institutions may apply for admission into the Master of Fine Arts program. However, the maximum allowable transfer credit must conform to the Graduate School’s policy on extension and transfer credit. Transfer credit is subject to the graduate coordinator’s recommendation and approval by the Graduate School.

Financial Aid

Graduate assistantships are available to a limited number of qualified applicants each year.

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