The Certificate in Theatre may be completed by any University of Wisconsin–Madison undergraduate student who is not a declared Theatre major. This certificate program offers students the ability to develop knowledge and skills in an area of theatre discipline.

Theatre is a collaborative art form with many varied disciplines and talents working together to create a unified piece of art. The Certificate in Theatre is designed to be flexible enough for a student to pursue an individualized focus of study in an area of their interest. For example, a student may pursue an acting focus, a technical theatre focus, a costuming focus, a scenic design focus, or a stage management focus. Or, a student may meet with the theatre advisor to create a custom focus that supplements and bolsters their primary degree path.

How to Get in

All current UW-Madison undergraduates are eligible to complete the certificate, with the exception of students completing the Theatre and Drama major.

To declare the certificate, students must meet with the theatre and drama department advisor to discuss focus paths and to complete the theatre certificate declaration form. Contact Jim Stauffer at jbstauffer@wisc.edu, 608-263-2329 (main office), 6004 Vilas Communications Hall, 821 University Ave. Madison, WI 53706.


The Certificate in Theatre requires a minimum of 16 credits, with at least 8 credits taken in residence. Completion of the certificate requires a minimum GPA of 2.5 in certificate coursework.

Choose two Foundational courses: 6
Introduction to Theatre and Dramatic Literature
Fundamentals of Theatrical Design
Voice 1: Effective Communication
Acting I: Introduction to Acting
Technical Theatre Fundamentals
Choose one Intermediate course:3
Undergraduate Topics inTheatre and Drama
Collaborative Problem Solving
Intermediate Voice Training
Fundamentals of Acting
Producing Theatre
Fundamentals of Stage Lighting Technology
Fundamentals of Stagecraft
Choose two Focus-Specific courses: 6
History of Costume for the Stage
Introduction to African-American Performance
Fundamentals of Movement for the Stage
Acting Realism
Fundamentals of Asian Stage Discipline
Auditioning for Stage and Screen
Introduction to Theatre for Cultural and Social Awareness
Drama for Teaching and Learning
Costume Design I
Makeup for the Theatre
Sewing for the Theatre
Stage Lighting I
Script Analysis
Fundamentals of Directing
Drafting for the Theatre
Sound for Theatre
Set Design I
Introduction to Stage Management
History of Theatres and Staging
Musical Performance for the Actor
Acting Styles
Theatre for Young Audiences: Production
Stage Lighting Design II
Scenic Painting
The Business of the Business
The Business of Acting
Theatre in Education
The Theatres of China and Japan
Acting Shakespeare
Backstage Laboratory III
Costume Design II
Set Design II
Advanced Concepts in Stage Management
Internship in Theatre
Special Topics in Theatre and Drama
Theories of Acting
Choose one Hands-On/Practicum course: 11-3
Performance in Practice
Backstage Laboratory II

 Students may request to take similar courses in other departments to fulfill this requirement. 

Certificate Completion Requirement

This undergraduate certificate must be completed concurrently with the student’s undergraduate degree. Students cannot delay degree completion to complete the certificate.

Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate basic proficiency in one or more areas of theatre study.
  2. Demonstrate understanding of basic theatre concepts and methodology.


Information about faculty, staff, and other contributors to the Department of Theatre and Drama can be found on the department's website.