Skip to main content

Theatre Education

Strengthen and combine your passions for teaching and theatre in OBU’s Christ-centered secondary theatre education program. Surround yourself with all the facets of theatre production and classroom management in an environment that encourages the integration of faith into your career as a teacher. You will be thoroughly equipped to produce and direct middle and high school productions and to effectively manage your classroom to make it a creative learning environment.

Benefits of an OBU Theatre Education Degree

High Certification Pass Rates

Upon completion of this degree and the passing of Oklahoma’s certification exams, theatre education majors will meet all the qualifications necessary to procure an Oklahoma teaching license (and usually allows candidates to teach in other states as well).

Exceptional Opportunities

Starting your first week as a freshman theatre education major, you will be involved in all OBU main stage productions. You will be introduced to training and experiences in performance and directing, technical areas, management and marketing. Our faculty will strongly encourage you to seek out all opportunities in your field to build a strong professional resume before you graduate. As a sophomore, your academic journey includes education classes that will equip you for classroom management, learning and leading styles, and curriculum development. During your time on Bison Hill, caring faculty from both theatre and education disciplines will partner with you to help you become an effective and successful high school theatre teacher.

Incredible Education, Affordable Cost.

OBU provides a minimum $10,000 per year scholarship to every incoming first-time freshman and $8,000 to every incoming transfer student. And you could qualify for even more financial aid! Many of our students also receive money through federal Pell grants and OBU Bison Grants.

To get an estimate of what your cost to attend OBU might be, please check out our Net Price Calculator. We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how affordable an OBU education really is. Especially considering the incredible academic quality, personal mentor relationships with faculty and staff, and strong Christian commitment you will experience at OBU. You won’t find an experience like this anywhere else!

Program Information

National Accreditation

OBU’s McCabe Family School of Education is nationally accredited through CAEP, the Council for Accreditation of Education Preparation. In addition, each licensure area is accredited through the State of Oklahoma. As a graduate, you will be equipped and eligible to teach locally, nationally and internationally.

OBU Theatre Productions 

OBU is pleased to present quality theatre productions each year.  As a student, you will partner with other theatre majors, taking the lead in all areas of production. Theatre education majors perform and direct in OBU’s mainstage shows. Behind the curtain, you will engage in every technical aspect of theatre including scenic design, lighting, sound, costumes, props and paints. Upon graduation, you will be prepared to lead students in the classroom, in performance and in technical theatre. For further information regarding productions, visit our OBU Theatre page.

Field Experiences

One of the many noted strengths of the OBU education program is the amount of field experience and practicum time that is provided across the four years of the degree program. You will be asked to complete 85–120 hours of observation and practicum experiences in local schools before student teaching. Field experiences allow you to tutor children, teach small groups and entire classes, and practice differentiation and classroom management.

Research

Through your coursework, you will be exposed to the latest research-based practices in theatre and education. Additionally, all theatre education majors direct a show for the mainstage season at OBU. You will have the opportunity to present a detailed outline to your peers which includes research, a synopsis, character analysis and other relevant information regarding your production. You may also have the opportunity to present your research to practicing teachers at educational and theatrical conferences.

Production Labs and Spaces

The primary performance venue at OBU is the Sarkeys Black Box Theatre. With seating up to 120, the black box is a variable performance space that adjusts the performer-to-audience relationship based on the aspects of each production.

Scenery, paint and properties are produced in the Sarkeys Scene Shop. In this space, you will learn and perfect your carpentry, craft and painting skills.

Located in Raley Chapel, the Costume Shop is where you discover the creative and important work of costumes, hair and makeup. These components are closely studied, created and applied to each character and role in our productions.

Theatre students excel in their craft through practical hands-on experience and contribute to the vital work of producing shows during our mainstage season.

Internship Opportunities

Theatre internships offer current, real-world experience that allows you to experience relevant and meaningful work in the industry.  OBU theatre students are encouraged and supported to pursue internships nationwide at theatres including:

  • Arkansas Passion Play, Eureka Springs, AR
  • Sight & Sound Theatre, Branson, MO
  • AD Players, Houston, TX
  • Lyric Theatre, OKC, OK
  • Playhouse on the Square, Memphis, TN
  • Walt Disney World Parks, Orlando, FL
  • Shakespeare in the Park, OKC, OK
  • Pollard Theatre Company, Guthrie, OK
  • Texas Shakespeare Festival, Kilgore, TX
  • Brevard Music Center, Brevard, NC

As an educator, field experiences culminate in a 14-week internship of student teaching during your senior year. Efforts are made to pair you with your school of preference within 50 miles of OBU.

Student Organizations

Started in 1919, OBU’s College Players is the oldest social club on campus. It serves as a social and professional network for students.

As your academic journey continues, you will have an opportunity to participate annually in the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, the United States Institute of Theatre Technology, and the Oklahoma Speech Theatre Communication Association.

In the field of education, you will be invited to participate in professional teacher education organizations, such as the Student Council for Exceptional Children (SCEC) and Student Professional Oklahoma Educators (SPOE), which enable you to network with other preservice and in-service educators across the state and nation. You may also travel to state and national conferences which offer professional development related to innovative, researched-based practices within the field of education.

Faith Integration

The teacher education program focuses on celebrating the uniqueness and diversity within schools and classrooms. You will learn to focus on each child’s strengths to offer an engaging, rigorous curriculum while striving to meet the academic, social, cultural and behavior needs of those you are instructing. In both education and theatre courses, professors and students explore the integration of faith and learning. Faculty members in both programs instill a solid foundation of faith and biblical perspective through their instruction and personal lives.

Job Opportunities and Outcomes

With a 95% pass rate on the PPAT (Praxis Performance Assessment for Teachers) and a higher percentage pass rate than the state average on the OSAT, graduates from our theatre education program are prepared to teach all over the state of Oklahoma, and the surrounding region. Graduates receive jobs in both public and private educational settings, and many continue their education through graduate school.

If you choose to pursue a professional theatre career before going into the classroom, OBU theatre graduates have found rewarding professional work at:

  • Sight and Sound Theater, Branson (dresser; deck crew; hair/makeup stylist)
  • Know Theatre, Cincinnati (resident stage manager)
  • The Academy of Classical Christian Studies (drama & oral presentation faculty)
  • River and Rail Theatre Company (founding artistic director)
  • UCO, Edmond (costume shop manager, director of facilities and productions)
  • The King's College, NYC (associate professor of English and theater, playwright)
  • UCO, Edmond (resident scenic designer)
  • Dallas Theatre Center (stage manager; lighting intern)
  • The Shakespeare Theater, Washington DC (acting)
  • Playhouse on the Square, Memphis (stage manager; costume shop supervisor)
  • Wayside Theatre, VA (production stage manager; acting)
  • Seaside Repertory Theatre, Seaside, FL (production stage manager)
  • Shakespeare in the Park, OKC (acting; box office asst.)

Program Options

Bachelor of Science in Education (BSE)

World-Class Faculty

OBU faculty are experts in their fields and will be with you every step of the way.

Dr. Elizabeth Justice

Dr. Elizabeth Justice

Chair, School of Education
Lawrence C. and Marion Harris Chair of Education
Associate Professor of Education
Co-Director, ACCESS Program

Annie Keehn

Annie Keehn

Assistant Professor of Education
Co-Director, ACCESS Program

Benjamin Baxter

Benjamin Baxter

Chair, Division of Art and Design
Chair, Division of Communication Arts
Associate Professor of Animation and Media Production

John R. Dement

John R. Dement

Associate Professor of Theatre
Director of Theatre

C. Alex Webster

C. Alex Webster

Assistant Professor of Theatre Technology and Design