Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2023
Units: 4
Hours: 4 lecture per week (48 total per quarter)
Advisory: THTR 1.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU/UC
Grade Type: Letter Grade Only
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will analyze realistic texts for structure, origins of choices and motivations in human behaviors.
  • A successful student will understand how to prepare and vibrantly execute and communicate a scripts message as either actor, designer, director or management.
  • A successful student will apply the integrated skills of realistic textual analysis into tangible production choices by employing imagination, observation and concentration, as they apply to determining character action and/or production elements.


Presentation of the fundamental building blocks of understanding play scripts through an in-depth methodology of reading and analysis. Exploration of the foundational elements of theatrical texts from study to analysis of text as intended for production through the lens of actor, director, designer, or management. Groundwork provides the basis by which subsequent exploration of production possibilities, challenges, and genres can be developed.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Identify the fundamental premises of analyzing the structure and common patterns of a play script
  2. Analyze model texts for origins of narrative, motivations, and symbolic associations in dramatic storytelling
  3. Apply the integrated skills of textual analysis in relationship to tangible possible production choices as they apply to plot, character, and imagery
  4. Recognize a variety of dramatic literature, drawn from a range of multi-ethnic/multicultural sources, from both an analytical and a creative basis
  5. View and analyze targeted works with an eye towards applying integrated skills through the lens of multiple players—actors, directors, designers, management

Course Content

Through structured lecture, teacher demonstrations, and student projects, students will explore and apply the techniques of reading and comprehending the structure of a play, and how that translates to production possibilities. Students will develop an enhancement of the script reading process through exposure to outlined topics, below:

  1. Identify structural components of a text using specified analysis methodologies
    1. Investigate all literary elements, including exposition, theme, motivation, obstacle, conflict, climax, resolution
  2. Transference of theoretical ideas into script analysis to determine character behavior and story composition of the written text
    1. Motivation
    2. Obstacle
    3. Relationship
    4. Internal forces of decision making
  3. Applying an analytical framework to determine the "how" of communicating the text for a theoretical production
    1. Analyze and define effective communication of story and plot elements
    2. Investigate possible textual communication through the written character elements of sentence structure, grammar, and word choices
    3. Explore imagery and symbols created by the text as they might translate to staging and design
  4. Employ a broad range of culturally diverse dramatic literature from the perspective of preparing for production

Lab Content

Not applicable.

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. A flexible, open-space classroom with white board and markers.
2. Occasional need for media access and resources.
3. Access to library, printed, and audio/visual research materials.
4. When taught via Foothill Global Access, on-going access to computer with email software and hardware; email address.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

Evaluation of student script analysis work, including specified notations
Demonstration of acquisition of theory and techniques acquired and absorbed through execution of prepared oral presentations
Demonstration of consistent growth and development through class discussion and participation
Required written assignments, specifically demonstration by the student of involvement in the course material through written critiques by the student of projects and assignments, followed by the instructor's evaluation of both the project and the critique
Group project presentation of role research and modes of communication

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Cooperative learning exercises
Oral presentations

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Thomas, James. Script Analysis for Actors, Directors and Designers. 2019.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Read assigned individual and/or class scripts
  2. Read assigned text for quiz and discussion
  3. Write analysis assignments and supporting theoretical notations
  4. Write live performance critique
  5. Culminating script assessment project


Theater Arts