Theatre Teacher Education
The Theatre Teacher Education sequence at Illinois State University is dedicated to preparing highly qualified artists/teachers to meet the challenges of teaching in the secondary school system. Illinois State University is recognized nationally as the second largest producer of teachers among institutions certified by the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education. Nearly one of every seven teachers in Illinois public school classrooms holds a degree from Illinois State.
As an undergraduate theatre teacher education major you will receive a solid foundation of basic skills in traditional theatre courses, such as acting, directing, design, theatre history, and dramatic literature. At the same time, you will follow a course of instruction specifically focused on teaching theatre at the secondary level. Your teaching skills will be enhanced by Professional Studies classes taught through the College of Education.
The strength of the ISU Theatre Teacher Education program lies partly in the variety of clinical experiences you will experience while working in a high school setting. These include the opportunity to assist master teachers in extracurricular speech and theatre activities; presenting workshops; and demonstrating teaching lessons in the classroom. The culminating experience for Theatre Teacher Education students comes when you take complete responsibility for a fully mounted theatrical production at a local high school. During your last year at Illinois State University, you will teach in a high school classroom for ten weeks under the supervision of a master teacher.
Illinois State University hosts the Illinois High School Theatre Festival every other year. This event offers students in the Theatre Teacher Education sequence the opportunity to take on leadership roles and to interact with secondary education professionals from across the state. Students participate by working on planning committees, leading workshops, serving as monitors, and assisting professionals during the three-day festival.
The Theatre Teacher Education sequence leads to Illinois Certification in Theatre, enabling you to teach in grades 6-12 in Illinois and surrounding states. Visit the College of Education Web site for more information about teacher education at Illinois State University. Click here to see the Four-Year Plan of Study in Theatre Education (pdf).
The School of Theatre and Dance Advantage:
- A high placement rate upon graduation. Illinois State University students work throughout the state and across the nation.
- A training program that focuses on the development of professional strategies, resources and skills needed for successful teaching.
- More than 100 hours of practical clinical experiences before you begin student-teaching.
- Opportunities to direct and coordinate co-curricular activities in local high schools and at state-wide festivals, as well as to participate in state conventions.
- Individualized attention from master teachers with strong secondary education experience.
- Participation in a teacher-preparation program accredited on the state and national levels.
For more information about program requirements and course descriptions, please review the Undergraduate Catalog.
Where can I get more information?
For more information about the Theatre Teacher Education sequence, including a complete list of required courses and electives, please see the Undergraduate Catalog.
How do I apply to the Theatre Teacher Education sequence?
You do not need to audition or interview to be admitted to the Theatre Teacher Education sequence—you just need to apply to Illinois State University. On your application declare a Theatre major with Theatre Teacher Education as your sequence.
If you are interested in applying for a School of Theatre and Dance scholarship, however, you will need to participate in the School’s interview process. (This is a separate process from applying for University scholarships.) You may set up your Theatre Teacher Education scholarship interview date when you fill out your ISU admission application.
Upcoming interview dates are:
- Saturday, September 26, 2015, 10:00 a.m. (ISU)
- Monday, November 9, 2015, 2:00 p.m. (also an ISU Open House day)
- Saturday, January 23, 2016, 9:00 a.m. (LookingglassTheatre, 821 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago)
- Saturday, February 13, 2016, 10:00 a.m. (ISU)
For more information about scheduling an interview and about what materials you need to submit prior to your interview please visit Admission & Auditions.