Expand AU Menu

Performing Arts

Performing Arts: Theatre (BA)

Offered by the Department of Performing Arts, College of Arts and Sciences.

Admission to the Program

Formal admission to the major requires demonstrated talent through an audition portfolio review arranged with the department, preferably prior to beginning university studies. However, a student may enter as an intended major and have an audition or portfolio review during the first year. Students will be accepted based on programmatic approval and written declaration of major.

University Requirements

  • 120 credit hours with a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or better
  • Completion of college writing requirement
  • Completion of university mathematics requirement

General Education Requirements

  • A total of ten courses, consisting of two courses from each of the five foundational areas
  • At least one course from Area Five: The Natural and Mathematical Sciences must include a laboratory science component
  • No more than two courses may be taken in the same discipline


Performance, Design/Production, Arts Management, or Theatre Arts

Major Requirements

  • 51 credit hours with grades of C or better
    • Students who wish to study abroad must receive prior approval from their advisor in order to ensure that appropriate courses will transfer and that scholarships and financial aid will apply.
  • Participation in a minimum of four department productions in either a performance or technical capacity. One of these must be done as stage manager or assistant stage manager and one must be in another technical capacity.

Course Requirements

Core (24 credit hours)

One of the following tracks:

Performance (27 credit hours)

Placement audition required

Design/Production (27 credit hours)

Specialty Course
  • Additional area of specialty course approved by advisor (3)

Arts Management (27 credit hours)

Theatre Arts (27 credit hours)

Specialty Courses
  • 9 credit hours in additional area of specialty courses approved by advisor

University Honors Program

To graduate with University Honors in the major through the University Honors Program, students must meet the requirements detailed on the Honors website and have been enrolled as either a first-year student between Fall 1989 and Spring 2014, or as a transfer or self-nominated student through Spring 2015. The University Honors Program should not be confused with the AU Honors Program, which begins in Fall 2014 and has separate requirements, also detailed on the Honors website.

Combined Bachelor's and Master's Degrees

American University offers students the opportunity to earn both undergraduate and graduate degrees through its combined bachelor's/master's programs. See Combined Bachelor's and Master's Degrees for more information.