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Theatre & Music Theatre Department

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Department Handbook

General Guidelines for All Senior Thesis Projects

All theatre and music theatre majors must complete a Senior "capstone" project in their primary area of focus in order to graduate with a theatre degree (Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theatre, or Bachelor of Fine Arts in Music Theatre).  Students majoring in Theatre Education count their student teaching experience as their capstone project. 

Each student is required to submit a PROJECT PROPOSAL to the advisor for discussion and approval the spring semester prior to their final year of classes by the due date announced. Joint proposals between more than one student are not allowed. Students will submit proposals in the areas of performance, directing, academic thesis, design, stage management, and technical direction. All proposals must be presented to the faculty in an organized, complete, and professional format. The faculty reserves the right to approve or deny proposals, and may ask the student to make alterations or clarifications to the proposal within two weeks of the meeting with the faculty to discuss the tentative project. It is the student's responsibility to find out if changes need to be made, to make the necessary changes and present the revised proposal within the two week deadline. 

The successful completion of the approved senior theatre project is the primary responsibility of the student. The theatre faculty serves only in an advisory capacity but does reserve the right to regulate projects which violate these specifications. 

Each student, in consultation with their faculty advisor, is expected to establish and follow a specific production schedule and calendar. The focus of the project should be on PROCESS of creating an effective and meaningful theatrical product; effective product is the result of effective process. Students who fail to meet the established production proposal description, schedule, or calendar due dates will not be allowed to present their project, based on advisor and faculty evaluation. Students who fail to complete their project as scheduled will not be able to repeat the project for credit until the next regularly-scheduled semester, and will be allowed to do so only as time and space allows. 

All senior projects (with the exception of the academic thesis projects) will be given a minimal budget to be used for production purposes only. Students must complete all projects within established budget limitations. All senior projects will work in their assigned space as it is configured. 

Every student completing a senior thesis project must complete and present to the advisor and theater faculty a thorough PROJECT SELF-ASSESSMENT which includes both written and oral presentation of goals, procedures, and outcomes, to be completed within one week of closing. In the written document, students must clearly state the following:  goals of the project, description of process, calendar of activities, artist's journal of discoveries and challenges, and a final assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the overall project and the attainment of project goals. After presenting this written document to the faculty advisor, the student will meet with the advisor to discuss various aspects of the assessment document and the resulting project. Grading of all senior thesis projects will evaluate and access both process (50%) and final product (50%). The faculty advisor will consult with the entire theatre faculty prior to assigning the final cumulative thesis grade.