Transfer Pathway

Transfer Pathways offer students a powerful option:  the opportunity to transfer to Metropolitan State, or one of the other six Minnesota State universities. with junior-year status after completing the Theater Transfer Pathway AA/AFA at one of our partner institutions. The  curriculum has been specifically designed so that all courses in the Transfer Pathway associate degree will directly transfer and apply to the designated bachelor’s degree programs in a related field.  Visit Metropolitan State University’s Transfer Resources for more information.

Program Overview

The theater program is designed to provide students with a basic understanding of and critical appreciation for the basic elements of theater, including acting, directing, and playwriting. Among the hallmarks of the theater degree is an emphasis on students creating original works, allowing valuable insight into the creative process and its practical applications. Additionally, a study of the great traditions of theater and the development of skills can empower students toward their own clear and original voice, a valuable asset in any profession. For this reason, the program also encourages the integration of theater skills and theory within other disciplines and individual studies. Students are welcome to contact a theater program advisor to better focus these integrations.

Metropolitan State University encourages experiential internships with Twin Cities area theaters and offers credit for prior learning experience. A BA in theater is offered through university collaboration with the Minneapolis Community and Technical College (MCTC), where Metro's program is located, and classes are integrated from the existing curricula of the two institutions. Students may also enter Metropolitan State's upper division program with similar credits from other accredited programs.

More information about this program

Declare Your Program

To be eligible for acceptance to the Theater major, students must submit a College of Arts and Sciences Undergraduate Program Declaration Form. Consult with an advisor before enrolling in courses toward the major.

Note: It is highly recommended that theater majors and minors take one of the following two courses before proceeding to the major or minor.

Declare Your Program button


Courses required for your specific program are listed in the right column on this page. They include prerequisite, foundation, core, and elective courses. Contact your advisor with questions concerning your degree plan.

Minneapolis Community and Technical College or equivalent lower-division transfers. (Maximum of 14 lower-division credits)

  • THTR 1104 Introduction to Acting or
    THTR 1160 Acting in Multicultural Theater or
    THTR 2105 Introduction to Acting II
  • THTR 1145 Stagecraft: Scene Design and Lighting
  • THTR 1161-69 Theater Topics or
    any THEA course available at Metropolitan State University
  • THTR 2145 Introduction to Directing
  • THTR 2150 Theater History I 


Theater majors are encouraged to enhance their degree programs by completing elective courses in some of the following areas: Shakespeare, creative writing, screenwriting, studio arts, music, intermedia arts, media studies, literature, and storytelling.

Recognizing that there may be transfer students from other two-year institutions, students should work with theater faculty advisors to make sure that equivalent classes can count toward the major.

How Admissions Works

We are looking forward to you joining us. Take the first step by filling out this application.
Course List


Requirements ( 120 total credits)

Metropolitan State Courses (min or 22 upper-division credits)

Metropolitan State University courses are listed in suggested order. Note: The major and minor degree program require a minimum of two THEA 351 Production and Performance credits off-stage (scenery, props, running crew, marketing, house management, costumes, etc.). Additional THEA 351 credits (a maximum of six) may be taken as electives in the area of performance.

  • THEA 321 Directed Readings in Theater
    4 credits

    This course uses full length play scripts, videos of plays and film adaptations to tour the rich traditions of the theater. Students are required to demonstrate reading knowledge of all plays on their individual reading/viewing list, through on line discussions, and the focused analysis of six short questions for each play read or seen. This class can be done at home or on site at the teaching center, and may be taken for a maximum of eight credits.

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  • One of the following classes is required:
    • THEA 345 Acting III
      4 credits

      Actor training can be life enhancing. In this class, advanced students are guided to discover, explore and develop their emotional, physical and psychological resources using varied acting exercises and techniques. Prerequisite: Acting II (MCTC) or equivalent (Screenwriting students exempt from prerequisites).

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    • THEA 445 Advanced Acting
      4 credits

      Art is in the becoming." In this class students move beyond a basic understanding of acting and toward a more complete connection between the role and the actor. A continuation of THEA 345 Acting III, students work further to develop the ability to sustain focus of attention, to concentrate energy and to deepen their understanding of character motivation and subtext. Students may have the opportunity to audition for directing class projects which rehearse outside of class time. This class may be taken twice for credit.

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  • THEA 351 Production and Performance Laboratory
    0 credits

    Two credits of off stage production support are required for the major and minor. Students enrolled in advanced acting/directing classes or working on season productions or special performance projects under faculty guidance may receive credit for rehearsal time spent out of the regular class period. Students cast in directing class scenes may also receive credit. Note: Students may take up to eight credits over time. Prerequisite: Instructor's permission if not enrolled in directing or advanced acting class. ** Note: this is a variable credit course with credit range of 2 - 4.

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  • THEA 387 Theater History II: Contemporary
    4 credits

    This course is for students interested in the implications of modern drama on our contemporary world. In this class, students explore some of the most exciting plays in modern and contemporary drama and experience the incredibly rich variety of theater offerings within their own community.

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  • THEA 400 Playwriting I
    4 credits

    Writing for the spoken word and for acting demands different skills than writing for the page. Develop your ear, your signature of voice, your sense of subtext. Through a variety of approaches, from improvisation to creative autobiography, students explore character, conflict and drama as metaphor. Writers with material they would like to explore or adapt for the stage are welcome. Expect to complete at least one short play.

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  • THEA 540 Directing and Creating Theater
    4 credits

    Learn to analyze script, work with actors, construct a prompt book, and use the director's tools to elevate the written script to dramatic action. Students initially explore the possibilities of realistic drama with the option in the second half, to move on to original creations, collaborations or other styles of theater. All work is under the guidance of a director, toward the evolution of the specific theater piece. This class may be taken twice for credit.

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