Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Noreen C. Barnes


This thesis was written to provide an alternative teaching model for an undergraduate theatre history class. The course design, utilizing the Problem-Based Learning educational model, aims to create a student-centered, experiential theatre history class. The first section explores the history and evolution of the theatre discipline in academia. These chapters examine the expansion and transformation of the theatre curriculum within the discipline and higher education. The second part examines the history and the methodologies of Problem-Based Learning. Based on the philosophy of educator John Dewey, PBL is considered to be a non-traditional method of teaching and learning that encourages the development of self-directed learning and the acquisition of knowledge through experiential education. The final section describes the actual course design. Included in this section are the educational objectives of the class, examples of problems, assessment methods, and an examination of potential challenges in the design.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008