The School of Theatre and Film was established in 2005 after ABOR approved the reorganization of the Department of Theatre following the addition of the BA Film degree - a degree program offered jointly by the School of Theatre and Film in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. ASU Herberger's exciting new Film and Media Production Program is the only media production program that incorporates ideas of ethics into the creation of filmed entertainment and artistic products.
Theatre has been present on the ASU Tempe campus since 1920 when it was a component of the liberal arts program. In 1957, the Department of Speech and Drama was formed in what was then called the College of Arts and Science. When the College of Fine Arts, now the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, was founded in 1964, the Department of Speech and Drama moved to the new college as one of three units.
In 1977, the department became the Department of Theatre to reflect its focus on performance, production and theatre education. Classes in film production and film studies have been offered since 1980. In 1990, the PhD in Theatre with a concentration in Theatre for Youth was approved to complement an existing MFA emphasis in that area. The PhD concentration in Theatre and Performance of the Americas was added in 2005.
With 28 full-time faculty, 400 undergraduate students and 55 graduate students, the School of Theatre and Film is a leader in performing and media arts education in the U.S.