Master On Campus

Theatre Arts

Northern Illinois University

24 months
849 USD/credit 30564 USD/year
492 USD/credit 17712 USD/year
492 USD/credit 17712 USD/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The M.F.A. program is designed to provide intensive artistic training in Theatre Arts for careers in theatre and theatre-related areas. Northern Illinois University students will graduate with a specialization in acting or design and technology (the latter with areas of study in costume design, lighting design, scene design, and theatre technology).

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The Master of Fine Arts in Theatre Arts is ideal for students with a specialty in acting or theatre design and technology. Each semester, you will refine and enhance your artistic skills while planning and executing a theatrical production. You will also be required to participate in theatre study and work outside your designated area of focus.

Area(s) of Emphasis:

  • Specialization in Acting
  • Specialization in Design and Technology (four areas of study)
  • Costume Design
  • Lighting Design
  • Scene Design
  • Theatre Technology
  • Specialization in Acting

Students in the acting specialization are required each semester to audition for and participate in departmental productions. Students failing to maintain a 3.00 GPA in their acting, voice, and movement courses will not be permitted to perform in any production sponsored by the school. Private individual interviews, followed by written synopses of such reviews, will be held at least once a year to monitor the progress of the student. The performance faculty review committee reserves the right to place on casting probation or discontinue the candidacy of any M.F.A. acting candidate who shows unsatisfactory progress as determined by the committee.

Why NIU?

Each year, Northern Illinois University welcomes more than 5,000 graduate students from around the world to our vibrant community. We invite you to join us. Explore our wide range of graduate degrees and certificates. Our programs will advance your education and your career, and you'll have outstanding opportunities for research, innovation and hands-on learning.

Our university and individual programs of study rank nationally year after year. NIU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching classifies NIU as a High Research Activity University.

Programme Structure

Courses included:

  • Acting Studio: On-Camera
  • The Business of Theatre
  • Topics in Theatrical Performance
  • Research Techniques in Theatre Arts
  • Period Style for Actors: Text Analysis
  • Acting Techniques
  • Pattern Development
  • Millinery and Accessories
  • Dyeing and Fabric Modification for the Theatre
  • Drawing for the Theatre 

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


72 alternative credits


On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA
GMAT admission requirements GMAT

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Completed a four-year undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution or one with equivalent recognition.
  • Achieved a 2.75 grade point average on a 4.00 scale, or the equivalent.
  • If you received a three-year degree awarded through the Bologna process in Europe or a three-year Bachelor of Commerce or Bachelor of Business Administration awarded in India, you are eligible to apply (provided you are seeking admission to the MBA or OMIS program).
  • Transcripts
  • Letters of recommendation.
  • Statement of purpose.
  • Test scores (if required).
  • Resume or curriculum vitae (optional)
  • Additional materials required by your program.

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    30564 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 849 USD per credit during 24 months.
  • National

    17712 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 492 USD per credit during 24 months.
  • In-State

    17712 USD/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 492 USD per credit during 24 months.

Living costs for DeKalb

1100 - 1500 USD /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Due for update

Updated over a year ago

Check the official programme website for potential updates.

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Theatre Arts
Northern Illinois University


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