COMT101 Introduction to Theatre

Department of The Arts: Performance Arts

I. Course Number and Title
COMT101 Introduction to Theatre
II. Number of Credits
3 credits
III. Minimum Number of Instructional Minutes Per Semester
2250 minutes
IV. Prerequisites
V. Other Pertinent Information

This course fulfills a Cultural Perspectives requirement of Category I: Essential Skills and Perspectives, and Category III requirements, Critical Thinking and Problem Solving; International, Gender, and/or Minority Perspectives of the Core Curriculum at Bucks County Community College.

There is a required text and play scripts as assigned. Students will be required to watch or read or attend at least three play/theater performances during the course term.

VI. Catalog Course Description
Students in this course read, watch, discuss, and analyze plays. Plays represent historic high points of theater. Students examine aesthetic concerns of audience, playwright, performers, director, and designers.
VII. Required Course Content and Direction
  1. Learning Goals:

    1. Course Learning Goals

    2. Students will be able to:

      1. demonstrate an understanding of the art of theater from a cultural, historical, social, and aesthetic perspective;
      2. dramatize out the roles and responsibilities of those involved in the theater experience;
      3. research theater topics; and
      4. critique a production: the play, the intent, the performances, the direction, and the design.

    3. Core Learning Goals (if applicable)
    4. Category I: Cultural Perspectives
      Learning Goals
      Students will be able to:

      1. appreciate diverse cultural views by establishing familiarity with, empathy for, and awareness of cultures.

      Category III: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
      Learning Goals
      Students will be able to:

      1. learn and practice the skills of interpretation, application, analysis, synthesis, evaluation, reasoning, and/or problem solving.

      Category III: International, Gender, and/or Minority Perspectives
      Learning Goals
      Students will be able to

      1. explore world cultures and/or the complexities of gender and/or minority groups. They will reflect upon the interrelation of diverse cultures and/or groups and the ways in which those perspectives broaden the scope of the students' understanding of identity.

      Category I: Cultural Perspectives
      Learning Objectives
      Students will be able to:

      1. demonstrate knowledge and awareness of some components of our society's cultural heritage, such as artistic, historical, linguistic, literary, and philosophical foundations; and (1,2)
      2. compare, contrast, analyze, and/or defend differing world views and practices. (1,2)

      Category III: Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
      Learning Objectives
      Students will be able to:

      1. understand and express the meaning and significance of a variety of communications (Interpretation);
      2. use methods, concepts, and theories in new situations (Application Skills);
      3. assess the credibility of a communication and the strength of claims and arguments (Evaluation Skills);
      4. communicate and justify clearly the results of their reasoning (Presenting Arguments Skills).

      Category III: International, Gender, and/or Minority Perspectives
      Learning Objectives
      Students will be able to:

      1. articulate similarities and differences in the various cultures of the world and demonstrate familiarity with the skills necessary to make informed judgments.
  2. Planned Sequence of Topics and/or Learning Activities:

    1. Introduction to the art of theatre
    2. Role of the audience
    3. Role of the performers and director
    4. The playwright
    5. Dramatic structure
    6. Designers: lighting, sound, costume, set
    7. Major theatrical forms and movements
    8. Historical/classical drama

    Course should also include the following:

    1. Lectures, discussions, exercises, constructive criticism of plays and productions
    2. Textbook reading assignments, library research workshops, instructional videos
    3. Attendance of at least three live performances, followed by written critique of production
    4. Tests: quizzes, mid-term, final examination
    5. In class analysis of at least three plays. Plays can be text or video.

    Instructor will include a play from three of the following categories: (1) Classical Greek/Roman, (2) Medieval, (3) Renaissance/Shakespeare, (4) Neoclassic, (5) Melodrama, (6) Global Culture, (7) Twentieth Century, (8) Musical, (9) International, Ethnic, Minority. At least one play must provide an opportunity to explore a facet of American culture.
  3. Assessment Methods for Core Learning Goals:

    1. Assessment Methods for Course Learning Goals
    2. Student assessment is based on reading of play scripts and class discussions, essay exams, and at least one paper based on a theater initiative.

    3. Assessment Methods for Core Learning Goals (if applicable)
    4. Category I: Cultural Perspectives
      Category III: International, Gender and Minority Perspectives

      Students will interpret and analyze various artistic and cultural perspectives based on plays representing various cultural groups, such as African American, Latino/Latina, Feminist, Gay/Lesbian, Native American, and Asian.

      Category III: Critical Thinking

      Students will identify and describe major themes, roles and staging techniques in contemporary, historical, and international theater in a formal paper.

      Students will apply their knowledge to a previously unfamiliar aspect of theater and write a clear paper on how that aspect of theater might best be interpreted.

  4. Reference, Resource, or Learning Materials to be used by Students:

    Assigned Text: See course format.

    At least one play script identifying international, gender, and/or minority perspectives is required.

    Further supplements may include, but are not limited to:

      Other play scripts as assigned
      Library resources
      Live stage productions
VIII. Teaching Methods Employed
Section VIII is not being used in new and revised syllabi as of 12/10/08.

Review/Approval Date - 5/05; Core Goals/Objectives added 3/05; Revised 11/09