What classes would I need to take to get an acting degree?
Every school is different and not all acting schools offer an acting degree.
If you want to get a Bachelor’s degree in Acting, you will have to attend a university with a performing arts program for 4 years.
The basic acting classes required usually include theater studies, acting technique, scene study, movement, speech, dance, singing, auditioning and film acting. Most acting colleges offer a wide range of other acting classes that students can take as electives. Electives could include classes like script analysis, Shakespeare, dialects, accent reduction, voice-over, Alexander technique, stage combat, improvisation, mask, mime, commedia dell’arte, make-up, directing, playwriting and performance workshops. In order to get an acting degree from a university, you usually also have to take some required courses in other subjects not related to acting.
If you don’t want to go to an acting university but still want an acting degree of some sort, pick an acting school that offers a conservatory program. These full-time programs last anywhere from 1 to 3 years and can sometimes offer professional degrees like a certificate in Performance Training. Some conservatory programs work in partnership with universities so you can eventually earn your BFA.
Many acting schools offer classes that can be used as credits towards a bachelor’s degree later on. This is a good option if you’re not sure if acting is for you, because you can try it out first for a fraction of the cost and time you would spend on an acting college. Make sure you ask the acting school you’re considering if you can earn credits through their program.
Finally, if you already have a Bachelor’s degree, you could go for a MFA in Acting like the program offered by the Actors’ Studio in New York or the renowned Yale School of Drama in New Haven. Masters program are very useful if you’ve already acted and want to take your career to the next level because MFA students get real professional experiences and networking opportunities.
Hope this answers your question about acting degrees. Check out our directory of acting schools. You’ll find a listing of acting universities, acting conservatory and short-term acting classes, along with a description of what kind of acting degree each acting school offers, if any.