Independent Learning

Transforming students into independent, creative and critically conscious thinkers and performers. 

All students at Ursinus College complete the Experiential Learning Project (XLP), designed to empower them to take initiative in the acquisition of education and to build confidence in themselves. 

Completing the XLP Requirement

  1. Completing independent research or a creative project under the mentorship of one of the full-time faculty members (3-4 credit project);
  2. Participating in the college’s Summer Fellows program or a comparable summer research program at another institution;
  3. Immersing themselves in another culture by studying abroad for a full year, a semester or a summer;
  4. Completing an internship at a professional theater, a dance company or another arts-related professional organization; 
  5. Completing a project in pedagogy that includes a student-teaching component; or
  6. Completing THEA 275 with one section of THEA or TD 001-008. 

Theater and Dance students that meet the college-wide eligibility requirements may propose an honors project in their senior year to the department’s faculty, and, upon approval, produce a culminating, two-semester independent research project under the guidance of one of the full-time faculty members.

Do more than One.

Theater and Dance majors may work on more than one independent project during their four years in college. Indeed, an independent study might spark an idea for a Summer Fellows project, which, in turn, might then serve as the beginning of the capstone honors project. 

Students themselves determine the specific content of independent research projects, and double majors are encouraged to pursue interdisciplinary honors projects. 

Research Project Examples

  • Tools for Change: Theatre for Social Justice in Communities of Marginalized Youth

  • Mystery & Magic: Playwriting in Theory and Practice

  • Colorism in the Works of African-American Dramatists

  • The Art of the Story: An Introduction to Playwriting and Dramatic Adaptation

  • Bitter Bitches: Feminism, Theater, and Dark Comedy

  • In Pursuit of Theater for Social Change: Theater as a Vehicle for Sexual Violence Prevention Education

  • Female Stage Comedy: History and Practice

  • Violence in Modern & Postmodern Drama
  • Human Suffering in the Work of Samuel Beckett
  • A Feminist Reading of Women’s Agency in Euripides’ Tragedies
  • Creation of Interdisciplinary Performance Art Piece, Ricochet
  • Creation of Museum Installation, Disclose
  • Medusa Myth/Creation of Original Play
  • Pigeonholed: Representations of Autism in Drama
  • Pride and Prejudice: A Modern, Queer Retelling for the Stage
  • Writing Resistance: Examining the Evolution of Feminist Ideology and Theory in Theatre Since the Second Wave
  • Sexing the Stage: Designing Sets for Queer Plays
  • Designing for Yiddish Drama

Nicolette Adams

Theater & Dance Coordinator