Department of Theatre & Speech

Majors & Minors

This is a general overview of the majors and minors. For more information, please consult the current college catalog, or contact the department.

Theatre Department of Theatre and Speech offers two different fields of concentration and three minors:

Theatre Major & Minor

The Art of Theatre is unique in its manner of focusing and reflecting the concerns of the society in which it exists. At the same time, it is composite in its materials and means: bringing together speech and acting skills, literature, dance, music, and visual and plastic Arts, as well as the technologies of lighting, recorded sound, mechanics, electronic communications media, computer technology and acoustics. It is, in fact, a builder of bridges among many Arts and crafts, and likewise between the fine Arts generally and the humanities and behavioral sciences: critical and historical studies, social studies, rhetoric and psychology. For students concentrating in Theatre, the discipline is thus a flexible “home base” for a true liberal Arts education. For undergraduates in general, it is a productive training field in creative and practical rhetoric, image-making and cooperative action—useful preparation not merely for the stage but also for the law court, the legislature, the classroom and the marketing or sales office.

Students pursuing a Theatre major must take a “core” consisting of the following courses.

Lower Division: Core Courses (12 hrs):

  • Theatre 200: Understanding Theater        
  • Theatre 235: Acting I:  Basic Performance Techniques     
  • Theatre 210: Theater in History I  or  Theatre 215: Theater in History II        
  • Theatre  225: Basic Theater Technology  or  Theatre 236: Design for the Theater I

Upper Division: Core Courses (9 hrs):

  • Theatre 210: Theater in History I  (unless counted above)   
  • Theatre 215: Theater in History II (unless counted above)      
  • Theatre 301: Theater in History III        
  • Theatre 302: Theater in History IV        
  • Note: With permission, Dance 215 History of Dance may substitute for a Theatre in History course in the Lower or Upper Division.

Upper Division: Academic Development (1 course):

  • Dance 215: History of Dance (unless counted above)    
  • Speech 301: Movies as Medium         
  • Theatre 340: Basic Directing for the Theater 
  • Theatre 404: History of Musical Theater       
  • Theatre 408: History of American Theater

Upper Division: The Developing Artist (2 courses):

  • Theatre 236: Design for the Theater I (unless counted above)  
  • Theatre 310: Playwriting: Sources and Methods     
  • Theatre 335: Acting II: Characterization for the Stage    
  • Theatre 336: Design for the Theater II         
  • Theatre 339: Makeup Design          
  • Theatre 350: Voice for the Stage         
  • Theatre 355: Acting for the Camera        
  • Dance ___ :(Any combination of Dance activity classes 1-6 cr.)

Upper Division: The Maturing Artist (2 courses):

  • Dance 220: Choreography & Improvisation I   
  • Theatre 312: Projects in Playwriting        
  • Theatre 410: Dramaturgy          
  • Theatre 425: Advanced Projects In Theatre Design    
  • Theatre 435: Acting III: Movement for the stage
  • Theatre 440: Projects in Directing

Upper Division: Capstone (2 courses):

  • Dance 320: Choreography & Improvisation II      
  • Theatre 312: Projects in Playwriting        
  • Theatre 410: Dramaturgy          
  • Theatre 425: Projects In Theatre Design & Technology
  • Theatre 436: Professional Preparation for the Stage     
  • Theatre 440: Projects in Directing         
  • Theatre 335: Acting II: Characterization for the Stage  or  Theatre 435 Acting III: Movement for the Stage

 

In addition, students must work backstage in a significant capacity on at least two Department productions.

In Theatre senior year, each student must successfully complete and defend a senior project.This project will be chosen in consultation with Theatre Department Chairman and overseen by a faculty member within Theatre Department. Theatre project will combine research, analysis, writing and practical Theatre skills. Theatre senior project may be undertaken in any area taught by Theatre Department.

Minor

A student wishing to minor in Theatre studies must take the followingcourses:

  • Theatre 200: Understanding Theatre
  • Theatre 225: Basic Theatre Technology
  • Theatre 235: Acting I: Basic Performance Techniques

In addition, students must take two courses chosen from the following:

  • Theatre 210: Theatre Theatre in History I: Dramatic Literature, History, Theatre & Criticism of Theatre Ancient World
  • Theatre 215: Theatre Theatre in History II: Dramatic Literature, History, Theatre & Criticism; Renaissance to Revolution (1500-1800)
  • Theatre 301: Theatre Theatre in History III: Dramatic Literature, History, Theatre & Criticism; Early Modern Drama (1800-1918)
  • Theatre 302: Theatre Theatre in History IV: Dramatic Literature, History, Theatre & Criticism; Contemporary Drama (1918-Present)

Students must also take plus any other two courses taught in Theatre Department, including up to three credit-hours in Theatre Production, or up to six credit-hours in Dance.

Dance Minor

Dance at Hillsdale College is offered under the general umbrella of the Theatre program. While it is not possible for a student to have a major concentration in Dance, a Dance minor is offered. All dance classes (except those indicated by an asterisk) may be used to fulfill the general education requirement for Sport Studies activity classes, which will be automatically applied as such by the registrar. Dance technique classes may be repeated once for credit at each level.

Requirements for a dance minor include:

  • Dance 160: Ballet I or Dance 260: Ballet II or Dance 360: Ballet III
  • Dance 190: Modern Dance I or Dance 290: Modern Dance II or Dance 390: Modern Dance III
  • Dance 220: Choreography & Improvisation I
  • Dance 320: Choreography & Improvisation II
  • Theatre 435: Acting III: Movement for Theatre Stage
  • Dance 170: Pilates I
  • Dance 215: History of Dance
  • Dance 210: Dance Repertoire

Student must also take five or more credit-hours of electives from the following:

  • Dance 160: Ballet I
  • Dance 260: Ballet II
  • Dance 360: Ballet III
  • Dance 190: Modern Dance I
  • Dance 290: Modern Dance II
  • Dance 390: Modern Dance III
  • Dance 250: Intermediate Social Dance
  • Dance 393: Special Topics in Dance
  • Theatre 235: Acting I: Basic Performance Techniques
  • Theatre 225: Basic Theatre Technology
  • Any course offered by Theatre Department of Music

Speech Major & Minor

Students who wish to emphasize speech studies within the Theatre and Speech Department must take the following courses:

  • Speech 275: Theatre Performing Voice
  • Speech 290: Theatre Western Tradition of Rhetoric I
  • Speech 291: Theatre Western Tradition of Rhetoric II
  • Speech 320: Advanced Public Speaking
  • Speech 325: Speech Composition
  • Speech 453: Theories of Rhetoric or Speech 463: Methods of Rhetorical Analysis
  • Speech 450: Political Rhetoric & Theatre Electronic Media or Speech 455: History of American Public Address

Student must also take two of the following:

  • Speech 240: Introduction to Broadcasting
  • Speech 310: Argumentation: Theatre & Practice
  • Speech 401: Theories of Persuasion

In addition, students must take one the following:

  • Speech 285: Interpersonal Communication
  • Speech 301: Movies as Medium
  • Speech 303: Business Communication
  • Speech 340: Practice in Broadcasting
  • Speech 356: Organizational Communication
  • Speech 370: Leadership in Group Dynamics
  • Speech 393: Seminar in Speech Studies: Variable Topics

Student must also take one of the following:

  • Speech 201: Fundamentals of Speech Communication
  • Speech 440: Internship in Broadcasting
  • Speech 599: Assistantship Honors
  • Theatre 235: Acting I: Basic Performance Techniques 
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 312: Public Relations Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 318: Media Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 320: Advertising Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 322: Publishing Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 324: Video Production Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 326: Writing Research Internship

During senior year, students wishing to major in speech must successfully complete Speech 575, the product of which will serve as a speech thesis. This project will be chosen in conjunction with the director of Speech Studies. The project will combine research, analysis and written skills. The senior project may be undertaken in any area taught within the concentration.

Minor

Students wishing to minor in speech must take a “core” consisting of the following courses:

  • Speech 201: Fundamentals of Speech Communication
  • Speech 290: The Western Tradition of Rhetoric I
  • Speech 401: Theories of Persuasion
  • Speech 455:  History of American Public Address

After taking the core speech minor requirements, students wishing to minor in speech has three options:

Speech Minor – Rhetoric

Students must take two of the following courses:

  • Speech 301: Movies as Medium
  • Speech 450: Political Rhetoric & the Electronic Media
  • Speech 453: Theories of Rhetoric
  • Speech 463: Methods of Rhetorical Analysis
  • Theatre 302: The Theatre in History IV: Dramatic Literature, History, Theory & Criticism; Early Modern Drama (1800-1918)

Students must also take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 275: The Performing Voice
  • Speech 310: Argumentation: Theory & Practice
  • Speech 320: Advanced Public Speaking
  • Theatre 235: Acting I: Basic Performance Techniques

In addition, students must take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 285: Interpersonal Communication
  • Speech 303: Business Communication
  • Speech 325:  Speech Composition

Speech Minor – Mass Communication

Students must take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 240: Introduction to Broadcasting
  • Speech 301: Movies as Medium
  • Speech 450: Political Rhetoric & the Electronic Media
  • Speech 453: Theories of Rhetoric
  • Speech 455: History of American Public Address

Student must also take three credit-hours from the following courses:

  • Speech 241: Mock Trial
  • Speech 251: Debate
  • Speech 261: Forensics
  • Speech 320: Advanced Public Speaking
  • Speech 340: Practicum in Broadcasting
  • Theatre 235: Acting I: Basic Performance Techniques
  • Art 104: Design I
  • Journalism 302: Introduction to Journalism
  • Business 315: Principles of Marketing

In addition, students must take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 303: Business Communication or Speech 325: Speech Composition

Students must also take one of the following courses:

  • Journalism 340: Internship in Journalism
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 312: Public Relations Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 318:  Media Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 320: Advertising Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 322: Publishing Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 324: Video Production Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 326: Writing Research Internship
  • Speech 599: Assistantship Honors

Speech Minor – Organizational Communication

Students must take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 290: The Western Tradition of Rhetoric I
  • Speech 291:  The Western Tradition of Rhetoric II
  • Speech 455: History of American Public Address
  • Classical Studies 311: Rhetoric & Persuasion in the Ancient World

Student must also take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 275: The Performing Voice
  • Speech 310: Argumentation: Theory & Practice
  • Speech 320: Advanced Public Speaking
  • Business 315: Principles of Marketing

In addition, students must take one of the following courses:

  • Speech 285: Interpersonal Communication
  • Speech 325: Speech Composition
  • Speech 401: Theories of Persuasion

Students must also take one of the following courses:

  • Interdisciplinary Studies 312: Public Relations Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 318:  Media Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 320: Advertising Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 322: Publishing Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 324: Video Production Internship
  • Interdisciplinary Studies 326: Writing Research Internship