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A theater production: Pursue a Master of Fine Arts in Acting degree at Regent University.

MFA in Acting

Sharpen Your Competitive Edge in Acting

The Master of Fine Arts in Acting is a three-year professional training program that prepares actors to excel in a competitive marketplace. You will learn both time-tested techniques and the latest trends in contemporary actor training within the context of a faith-based curriculum. You’ll take two semesters of study each in the Sanford Meisner’s approach to acting, Scene Study (Practical Aesthetics), Screen Acting, Periods & Styles, Acting Shakespeare, and Combat for the Stage, including an SAFD Skills Proficiency Test in three forms. The program also includes a four-semester studio sequence in integrated Voice & Movement (Linklater, Lugering, and dialects). The program culminates with Auditioning & the Business of Acting; a mainstage thesis role performed during the final year, and an industry showcase.

On Campus
August 22, 2022
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Enhance Your Expertise

Receive in-depth training in the Meisner technique, stage fighting and screen acting.

Advance your Career

Explore principles of auditioning and navigating the business of acting, from headshots and resumes to interviewing.

Gain Practical Experience

Perform your major thesis role in a mainstage production during one of your final two semesters in residence.

Establish Your Reputation

Enhance your professional credentials with an MFA degree.

To learn more about this program, please complete the Request Information form on this page.

On completing the MFA in Acting degree, you will be able to:

  • Analyze texts for film, television, or theatrical production.
  • Apply the Meisner technique in your acting.
  • Apply both, aesthetic and safety principles involved in combat for stage.
  • Demonstrate a deeper understanding of acting in periods and styles, voice and movement, and screen acting.

Career Opportunities

  • Theatre actor
  • Film & TV actor
  • Talent for commercials/industrials
  • Acting instructor/coach
  • Voice over artist
  • University professor
Projected growth in employment of actors (2016-26)

Opportunity to gain expertise in designing and applying a variety of makeup techniques including: corrective, fantasy, animal, special effects, old age and will culminate in the introduction of latex prosthetic pieces. Student will be required to purchase a personal makeup kit.

An in depth examination of the philosophical and methodological strategies of graduate study within the field of the theatrical arts. Emphasis is placed on historical/critical research methods, principles of formalist analysis, Christian Aesthetics and the completion of individual research projects designed to prepare the student for the culminating experience of the Thesis/Creative Project.

Meisner’s approach trains actors to get out of their own heads and into reading the behavior generated by their scene partners. It accepts as a basic premise that actors build each others’ characters, moment by moment, together. The course will explore, in some depth, such Meisner exercises as: “The Reality of Doing,”, “Point of View,” “Pinch and Ouch,” “What’s Happening,” “Working Off,” “Coming to the Door,” “Doing Fully,” In the Extreme,” “Taking It Personally,” “In Relationship” and “Raising the Stakes.” This course will take as its focal point exercise work as opposed to intense scene study. Any scene work will be drawn from contemporary dramatic literature.

A continuing study of Sandford Meisner’s Approach to actor training. Focuses on preparing the actor to access and control release of emotion. Exercise work includes: “Setting the Stage,” “Emotional Preparation,” “Coming Home to Be Alone,” “Coming Home to Do,” “Roommates,” and “The Highest Stakes.” Acting 2 has a more demanding scene study component than Acting 1. Scene work will draw upon the dramatic works of Henrik Ibsen and Anton Chekhov.

Designed to familiarize students with the principles, methods, and procedures involved in the analysis of written dramatic texts intended for film, television, or theatrical production. Helps students identify the different elements contained within a script and to understand how each of these relate to one another and work together in creating the overall impression as a work of art. Examines the numerous devices used by artists and technicians in production to communicate their ideas about the written text and how these devices can affect interpretation and realization of the text in production. Focuses primarily on the examination and analysis of dramatic texts for the purpose of script, character and artistic interpretation.

Aesthetic/safety principles and practical techniques utilized in the staging of unarmed combat and medieval broadsword for the stage.

A healthy environment for integrated voice and movement work utilizing a psycho-physical approach, including tension/release, proper alignment, centering and breath work, economy of movement and freedom from habitual limitations.

Expressive cycles in the physical life of the actor, including kinesthetic awareness, expressive continuums, integrated breath cycles, physical properties of expression and character energies. Prerequisite: THE 715.

Major performance dialects utilizing the International Phonetic Alphabet, ear training and healthy principles of vocal mechanics. Prerequisite: THE 715.

Practical application of integrated voice and movement training to a range of play texts, focusing on the synthesis of kinesthetically-based techniques. Prerequisite: THE 716.

Introduces a variety of safety/aesthetic principles as well as practical techniques utilized in staging Renaissance sword fights for the stage. Principles covered include: distance/measure, partnering, cue-reaction-action, masking, reversal of energy, and the pyramid of safety. Techniques covered will be drawn from the following categories: footwork, cuts, thrusts, parries, cross parries, hand parries, reinforced parries, direct and complex attacks, prise de fer (taking of the blade) attacks, avoidances, dagger attacks, combining unarmed techniques with blade work.

Utilizes the concepts of “practical aesthetics” to further solidify the advanced actor’s application of objective-driven acting technique to scene work. Drawing heavily from the work of the Atlantic Theatre Company, this course proposes practical solutions to balancing pre-production analysis (intellect) and spontaneous, moment-to-moment discoveries in performance (intuition). Course concepts are applied to an intensive scene study, primarily in contemporary theatrical literature.

Intensive scene study applied to the texts of major twentieth century playwrights whose works present unique challenges for the contemporary actor. Prerequisite: THE 728.

Designed to teach the techniques and methods of screen acting for single-camera productions (although multiple-camera productions are also addressed). Students are required to prepare and perform scenes for presentation in class, to actively participate in classroom exercises and discussions, and to perform as on-camera talent for student productions outside of class in conjunction with other Film and/or Television classes taking place at Regent University.

An advanced-level acting course for on-camera performance. Students are expected to already have a basic knowledge of and experience with the unique requirements of screen acting. Students should already be able to adapt the level of performance to various types of camera shots. The class builds on this base knowledge and concentrates on intense scene study to isolate and target those specific moments that define and shape believable, artistically appropriate on-screen performances. The course also focuses on commercial and professional scenes.

Provides the advanced actor with the various facets of approaching Shakespearean dramatic texts. An emphasis is placed on scansion, voice quality, builds, playing through lines, and finding a physical and emotional subtext for the language. Work is memorized from Sonnets, soliloquies, and dramatic scenes both serious and comic. An ensemble and individual work in vocal dexterity and sensitivity is also applied.

Focuses on the drama and performance styles of the theatre of Ancient Greece, Neoclassical France and England, the Commedia dell’ Arte of Renaissance Italy, and Theatre of the Absurd. Students are introduced to the cultural milieu of each of the above-mentioned historical periods and the theatrical conventions in force at that time; and participate in a variety of exercises designed to immerse him/her in that particular period or style of theatre. Each student performs scene-work drawn from dramatic literature written during each of the abovementioned periods or styles of theatre or drama. Work with Greek and Commedia dell’ Arte mask is also included.

Variety of approaches to auditioning examined: the prepared audition, cold reading, and improvisation. Students work on a series of audition pieces so as to have a polished repertoire available upon completion of their degree. Course covers the tools necessary for an actor to market themselves, including head shots, resumes, cover letters, interview technique, and finding “survival” jobs while maintaining a career as an actor.

Affords students the opportunity to accrue academic credit for acting in Mainstage and/or studio productions. Acting/Directing students may earn these credits for directing Mainstage and/or studio productions. Students may register for this course to fulfill elective requirements. Pass/No Pass.

Participation on production running crews. MFA Acting students are required to serve on a minimum of four (4) running crews during residency. The student may register for 0 to 1 credit per running crew assignment. If taken for credit, this credit may be applied to fulfilling elective requirements. Crew assignments may be drawn from a variety of opportunities in the area of technical support. If taken for zero credits, there is no charge applied for tuition or fees. Pass/No Pass.

MFA Acting students perform a major role in a Mainstage production during one of their final two semesters in residence. MFA Acting/Directing students direct a full-length production. This creative project includes a written component, or thesis, requiring research, analysis, and clear evidence of application. Pass/No Pass.

2021-22 Semester Check-In Deadlines

All new students are expected to check-in for the semester two weeks before the session start date. Students should apply, be accepted, enroll in their first courses, and confirm a plan to pay for their courses prior to this date.

SessionSemester Check-InSession Start Date
Session AFriday, August 13Monday, August 23
Session MFriday, September 10Monday, September 20
Session BFriday, October 15Monday, October 25
Session CTuesday, December 21Monday, January 10
Session TFriday, January 28Monday, February 7
Session DFriday, March 4Monday, March 14
Session EFriday, April 29Monday, May 9
Session FFriday, June 10Monday, June 20

Admissions Process:

Step 1: Schedule an Audition

An audition is required for those interested in the MFA in Acting prior to beginning the admissions process. View audition dates and requirements. Once all auditions are completed, individuals will be selected by faculty to join the program and letters of invitation will be mailed. If you receive a letter of invitation, you may continue with Step 2 below.

Step 2: Faculty Interview

All MFA in Acting applicants will be required to interview with faculty to discuss their interest in the degree and to review the program requirements.

Step 3: Application

Submit your application using our Regent University Online Application.

Note: If you are unable to complete our application due to a disability, please contact our Admissions Office and an admissions representative will provide reasonable accommodations to assist you in completing the application.

Step 4: Submit your Unofficial College Transcripts*

We are able to examine and view your unofficial transcript from a U.S.-based school, which indicates successful completion of a bachelor’s degree program, in order to review you for an admissions decision. Please submit your unofficial transcript to our Admissions Office by email to using the subject line: SCA Master’s Application Pieces.

Non-U.S. transcripts must be evaluated by an NACES-approved company. For further details, please review the International Admissions Checklist on the International Students Admissions page.

International Applicants: Please visit the International Students Admissions page for a more detailed explanation of the Regent University application information and to determine whether or not you qualify as an international student.

*Upon conditional acceptance to the program by review of unofficial transcripts, Regent University’s Admissions Office will attempt to obtain your official transcripts from your U.S. degree-granting institution, which indicate successful completion of a bachelor’s degree program. We will notify you if your previous institution will not release transcripts directly to us.

Step 5: Complete Your Academic Background Questionnaire

In lieu of the previously required writing sample, please complete a brief admissions questionnaire based on your professional goals and interests. This should only take a few minutes to complete but please answer the questions completely and thoughtfully. This gives us a better opportunity to get to know you and align your objective with our programs. The admissions questionnaire can be found here. Once completed, it will be sent directly to an admissions counselor who will be in touch with you right away to help complete the rest of your application.

Step 6: Current Resume

Provide a theatrical resume of theatre/film/television roles and production history. Email to using the subject line: SCA Master’s Application Pieces or fax to 757.352.4394.

Step 7: Government-Issued ID

To ensure academic integrity, Regent University requires a copy of a government-issued ID. Please email a scanned copy or photograph of it to with the subject line: Government ID.

Step 8: Recommendation Letters (Optional)

Professional or Faculty recommendation forms may be submitted as supplemental items, but are not required.

Note: All items submitted as part of the application process become the property of Regent University and cannot be returned.


DegreeTuition Cost Per Credit HourAverage Credit Hours Per SemesterAverage Tuition Per Semester
Master of Arts (MA)$6506$3,900
Master of Fine Arts in Film-Television (MFA)$6506$3,900
Master of Fine Arts in Acting (MFA)$8956$5,370
Doctor of Philosophy in Communication (PhD)$9253$2,775
Doctor of Strategic Communication (DSC)$9253$2,775

Full-Time Students

DegreeTuition Cost Per Credit HourAverage Credit Hours Per SemesterAverage Tuition Per Semester
Master of Arts (MA)$6509$5,850
Master of Fine Arts in Film-Television (MFA)$6509$5,850
Master of Fine Arts in Acting (MFA)$8959$8,055
Doctor of Philosophy in Communication (PhD)$9256$5,550
Doctor of Strategic Communication (DSC)$9256$5,550

Student Fees Per Semester

University Services Fee (On-Campus Students)$800
University Services Fee (Online Students)$650

Part-Time Students

DegreeTuition Cost Per Credit HourAverage Credit Hours Per SemesterAverage Tuition Per Semester
Master of Arts (MA)$6506$3,900
Master of Fine Arts in Film-Television (MFA)$6506$3,900
Master of Fine Arts in Acting (MFA)$8956$5,370
Doctor of Philosophy in Communication (PhD)$9253$2,775
Doctor of Strategic Communication (DSC)$9253$2,775

Full-Time Students

DegreeTuition Cost Per Credit HourAverage Credit Hours Per SemesterAverage Tuition Per Semester
Master of Arts (MA)$6509$5,850
Master of Fine Arts in Film-Television (MFA)$6509$5,850
Master of Fine Arts in Acting (MFA)$8959$8,055
Doctor of Philosophy in Communication (PhD)$9256$5,550
Doctor of Strategic Communication (DSC)$9256$5,550

Student Fees Per Semester

University Services Fee (On-Campus Students)$750
University Services Fee (Online Students)$600

*Rates are subject to change at any time.

Estimated Cost of Attendance: View the estimated cost of attendance to see an example of the total cost of tuition and fees.

Whether you are a prospective student or a current student, your questions matter. Please take a few moments to skim our Frequently Asked Questions. If you cannot find the answer to your question, please contact us.

“Regent's program resonated with me because it's about servant leadership and mentoring and coaching. That is so important. At the end of the day, it's about the legacy you leave behind.”

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Geralde Gabeau, DSL, 2016 Deputy Director of Youth & Family Enrichment Services

“I’ve been able to continue to employ what I learned at Regent in the doctoral program to every position I’ve had since then.”

Rick Richardson, Ph.D., 2007 Organizational Leadership

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“The program at Regent is incredibly rigorous — but it's just a wonderful environment to learn and grow, and it's been invaluable in my life.”

Katherine Nace, J.D., 2015