Apr 12, 2024  
2016-2017 Catalog 
2016-2017 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Theatre Arts, Associate of Arts Degree in Liberal Arts

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The Associate of Arts degree in Theatre is ideal for students interested in all aspects of Theatre including acting, directing, playwriting and technical theatre. This degree offers a broad-based liberal arts curriculum with ample studio courses. Majors will graduate with a strong foundation in Theatre Arts that can be further developed at a four-year institution. Since the A.A. Theatre degree complies with the Statewide Transfer Agreement, graduates of the program can seamlessly transfer with junior status to a four-year public university in New Jersey. Recent graduates of the program have transferred to Montclair State, Ramapo, Rutgers, Drew, UCLA, NYU, University of the Arts, and Marymount Manhattan College.

Raritan Valley Community College stages four student productions a year, similar to what students will find at four-year institutions. The majority of the productions are presented in the Welpe Theatre. The Welpe is a Black Box Theatre that can seat up to 300 patrons and the intimacy it provides is ideal for students learning the craft of acting on stage. The Theatre Department works at finding a balance to the production season that will give the students the opportunity to work on modern plays as well as the classics. Scene nights are also presented at the end of the year, with students performing work that has been prepared throughout the spring and fall semesters in their studio classes. It’s also common for student-run groups to stage shows at least once a year.

Regardless of whether a Theatre major plans on pursuing a B.F.A. or B.A. degree after RVCC, most of the well-known Theatre practitioners have emphasized the importance of a liberal arts education. It is considered critical for the actor, director, or playwright to have such a foundation. Furthermore, the A.A. Theatre degree provides room for other educational opportunities. Aside from working on stage or film, graduates of Theatre programs have gone on to careers as casting directors, agents, artistic directors at Regional Theatres, and K-12 teachers. Many four-year Theatre graduates also consider post-graduate studies.

Graduates are able to:

  • understand the role of the actor/director/playwright
  • demonstrate technical proficiency and artistic synthesis in vocal, physical and emotional development in performance
  • identify in an historical, cultural and societal perspective the genres of theatre with exemplary authors and works
  • analyze stylistic elements of theatre pieces and significant authors, including structural parameters, language, aesthetic factors and interdisciplinary requirements
  • investigate careers in the theatre arts


Raritan Valley Community College Associate of Arts (AA) and Associate of Science (AS) degree programs are designed to comply with the New Jersey Community Colleges General Education Foundation which supports transfer of courses to NJ Public four-year colleges and universities.  Students who intend to transfer to a NJ college or university can further improve the transfer of courses by using the Recommended Transfer Program (RTP) feature in NJTransfer.org.

NOTE: Students considering transfer to Rutgers University should choose a Global & Cultural Awareness (GCA) General Education course not replicated elsewhere in their curriculum.  Students who have already fulfilled the GCA requirement for their Associates of Arts (AA) degree should select an additional Social Sciences or Humanities General Education course.   


Curriculum – A.A. Degree

First Semester

Second Semester

Third Semester

  • Technological Competency 3-4 Credits 2

Fourth Semester

Total Credits 60 - 66

1 Mathematics by official placement test. Students may not take courses below placement level. Exceptions by permission of Department Chair.

2 Select a course from the appropriate category of the General Education  list. For the Math, Science and Technological Competency General Education, students must take a minimum of 12 credits. This must include one lab science course, one math course and satisfaction of the technological competency requirement by either passing the technological competency test (no credit) or taking a technological competency general education course. If a student passes the technological competency test, another course must be selected from Math, Science or Technological Competency General Education, so that the student has earned at least 12 credits in those categories.

3 Select a course from the appropriate category of the General Education  list.

4 Choose any 3-credit Theatre course.

5 Any General Education course that is listed as a Global and Cultural Awareness (GCA) course. If a course satisfies both the Global and Cultural Awareness requirement and another area requirement such as Social Science or Humanities, the student may select any course from the General Education  list.  However, students planning to transfer to Rutgers University should choose a Global & Cultural Awareness General Education course, or an additional Social Sciences or Humanities General Education course with the GCA designation.

6 Any college-level course. A Visual and Performing Arts Studio course is recommended.

7 If the student has already completed 12 credits in the Math, Science, and Technological Competency categories, the student does not need to take a course here. 

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