MFA in Directing

The University of Portland M.F.A. in Directing Program will no longer be taking applications.

The graduate program in directing is the only master of fine arts (MFA) in directing in the state of Oregon. Our mission is for students to develop a solid base of knowledge in the primary elements of theater. Such elements include acting and actor training, dramatic literature and history, and production design. The program emphasizes script research, analysis, and conceptualization; a collaborative production process, and the development of rehearsal and performance strategies. The MFA in directing is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Theatre.

The master of fine arts in directing student focuses on developing a solid research-based foundation to support a coherent historical, theoretical, literary, and conceptual approach to directing for the theater. In addition, the program emphasizes further development of the student's practical skills in directing. This terminal degree program prepares the student for both professional and academic careers in the theater. The requirements are divided between the academic and the practical and the student's work is regularly evaluated in end-of-semester discussions with the entire faculty. Each student is given a minimum of two practical production opportunities, including the thesis project, which is done with full departmental support. The degree program also includes a professional internship designed by the student in cooperation with the program advisor and a professional or academic theater organization.

Students work closely with the graduate program advisor to design a curriculum that supports their personal abilities, interests, and professional goals. Graduates are well prepared for a variety of careers. University of Portland graduates have directed productions in professional and community theaters, founded their own companies, and directed theater programs at high schools, colleges, and universities. Explore the links to the left to learn more about the theater masters of fine arts in directing program. 

The master of fine arts in directing is designed to be a three-year (6 semester) program. A broad range of productions are presented each season exposing the students to a variety of theatrical periods and styles. The  program fosters close relationships between students and faculty through coursework and both laboratory and production experiences. The University of Portland is an accredited member of the National Association of Schools of Theatre.