The Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) in Theatre Design is intended as a general preparation for the professional designer of scenery, costumes or lighting in theatre and/or film or as preparation for graduate studies. Students learn through small-class studio courses, laboratories, and involvement in productions in the University Theatre. Students in the B.F.A. Theatre Design program take 69 hours in Theatre, Visual Art, and Art History in addition to the KU Core and electives.    

Undergraduate Admission

Admission to KU

All students applying for admission must send high school and college transcripts to the Office of Admissions. Unless they are college transfer students with at least 24 hours of credit, prospective students must send ACT or SAT scores to the Office of Admissions. Prospective first-year students should be aware that KU has qualified admission requirements that all new first-year students must meet to be admitted. Consult the Office of Admissions for application deadlines and specific admission requirements.

Visit the International Support Services for information about international admissions.

Students considering transferring to KU may see how their college-level course work will transfer on the Office of Admissions website.

Admission to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Admission to the College is a different process from admission to a major field. Some CLAS departments have admission requirements. See individual department/program sections for departmental admission requirements.

There are no major admission requirements for the B.F.A. in Theatre Design.

B.F.A. in Theatre Design Degree Requirements

The program leading to the B.F.A. degree in theatre design is offered cooperatively by the School of the Arts and the Department of Theatre. It requires 6 hours of foundational coursework, 63 additional hours in the major, and completion of the KU Core, as well as additional general electives, for a total of 120 hours.

Foundations: Art and Design
ART 101Drawing I3
ART 102Drawing II3
Core Theatre Courses30
Introduction to the Theatre
Acting I
Approaching Design
Scenic Production
Costume Production
Lighting Production
Script Analysis
Fundamentals of Directing
History of Period Style I
History of Period Style II
Theatre History Courses. Choose two of the following:6
History of Theatre
History of Theatre II
History of U.S. Theatre and Drama
Theatre Design Concentration
THR 116Scenographic Techniques3
THR 316Beginning Scene Design3
THR 320Beginning Costume Design3
THR 324Beginning Lighting Design3
Theatre design electives from an approved list9
History of Art:
History of Western Art: Ancient Through Medieval
History of Western Art: Renaissance to Contemporary
History of art of architecture electives
General Education Courses
Completion of the KU Core

General Electives

  • Additional credit hours of general electives are needed to meet the minimum total hours required for graduation.

Major Hours & Major GPA

While completing all required courses, majors must also meet each of the following hour and grade-point average minimum standards:

Major Hours

Satisfied by 69 hours of major courses.

Major Hours in Residence

Satisfied by a minimum of 15 hours of KU resident credit in the major. 

Major Junior/Senior Hours

Satisfied by a minimum of 27 hours from junior/senior courses (300+) in the major.

Major Junior/Senior Graduation GPA

Satisfied by a minimum of a 2.0 KU GPA in junior/senior courses (300+) in the major. GPA calculations include all junior/senior courses in the field of study including F’s and repeated courses. See the Semester/Cumulative GPA Calculator.

Below is a sample 4-year plan for students pursuing the BFA in Theatre Design. To view the list of courses approved to fulfill KU Core Goals, please visit the KU Core website.

ART 101 (Major Foundation Course)3ART 102 (Major Foundation Course)3
THR 100 or 106 (Major Requirement, Goal 3 Humanities)3THR 215 (Major Requirement)3
THR 116 (Major Requirement)3THR 216 (Major Requirement)2
Goal 1.1 Critical Thinking3Goal 1.2 Quantitative Literacy3
Goal 2.1 Written Communication (2 crs required)3Goal 2.1 Written Communication (2 crs required)3
 15 14
THR 220 (Major Requirement)2THR 224 (Major Requirement)2
THR 308 (Major Requirement)3THR 508 (Major Requirement)3
THR 316 (Major Requirement)3THR 320 (Major Requirement)3
HA 150 (Major Requirement, Goal 4.2)3HA 151 (Major Requirement)3
Goal 2.2 Communication3Goal 3 Natural Sciences3
 17 14
THR 520 (Major Requirement)3THR 521 (Major Requirement)3
THR History Elective 1 of 2 (Major Requirement)13THR History Elective 2 of 2 (Major Requirement)13
THR 324 (Major Requirement)3THR Design Elective (Major Requirement)23
Goal 3 Social Sciences3Goal 4.1 Human Diversity3
Elective3Elective 300+ Level3
 15 15
THR Design Elective (Major Requirement)23THR Design Elective (Major Requirement)23
Goal 5 Social Responsibility & Ethics3Goal 6 Integration & Creativity3
Elective 300+ Level3Elective 300+ Level3
Elective 300+ Level3Elective 300+ Level3
 15 15
Total Hours 120

Please note:

All students in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences are required to complete 120 total hours of which 45 hours must be at the Jr/Sr (300+) level.

The same course cannot be used to fulfill more than one KU Core Goal. However, overlap of a KU Core course with a major or degree-specific requirement is allowed. Overlapping is recommended to allow more opportunities to explore other majors and/or minors.