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Theatr 111 - Understanding Theatre - David Stears

Course:Understanding Theatre
Professor:David Stears
  • OnlineLive
Course Length:
  • 16 Week


Picture of David Stears

Hello ~. I'm David Stears, theatre faculty and the department's producer. Understanding Theatre is one of my favorite course to teach because we are surrounded with dramatic storytelling: in movies, television, advertising, video games. Whether you are interested in acting, design, scriptwriting, working in film or television, or creating your own content on the web, Understanding Theatre is the course for you. The concepts in this class permeates all aspects of story telling that we interact with every day. The class is also just filled with fun and interesting concepts and information.

Course Description

Analyzes theatre and the theatrical event from the audience perspective, including the functions of the producer, architect, playwright, director, actors, designers, and critics. Students will be required to view live theatre production.  You can expect a great deal of discussion in this class, both through zoom, and in Canvas. We will explore the elements of theatre, story structure, and design by exploring modern dramatic story telling. You will be exploring movies, television, literature, videogames, and of course plays.

What to Expect in this Course

As this is a ONLINE LIVE course, you will need access to the internet, a webcam and microphone.  All the course information will be in CANVAS, so you will need to get familiar with CANVAS. Lastly, basic computer skills as composing a paper in a document, tying and spell correction, and uploading a file.

Types of Assessments


Assessments for the class will be quizzes based on readings and lectures, discussions, group projects, and up to two writing assignments.

Textbook Information

Theatre: The Lively Art 10th Edition by  Wilson and Goldfarb

ISBN10: 1259916863 or ISBN13: 9781259916861

I have been using this text for a number of years, so you may be able to find a used copy.  I also believe you can "rent" an electronic version of the text.

Other Relevant Course Information

This is an ONLINE LIVE class, so you should consistent and dependable internet access.  Usually you are required to see a play. I will be providing a number of recorded theatrical productions for you to watch.

Additional Resources


This course can be accessed on the first day of class via Canvas at Log into Canvas using your CanyonsID single sign-on:

  • CanyonsID Username is your COC student email address (Ex:
  • CanyonsID Password is your COC student email password

Please visit the Get to Know Your Online Classroom page for help logging into Canvas and for tips on using Canvas and Zoom. Canvas Chat Support is also available 24/7 for any Canvas related issues.

Online Education

Check out the Online Education website for more information on a variety of topics that can help you be a successful online student such as: exam proctoring, learning styles, computer skills, and tips for student success. If this is your first online course, feel free to take our online learning readiness assessment to assess your skills.

The Learning Center (TLC)

The TLC provides FREE online tutoring resources to COC students!

Academic Accommodation Center (AAC)

College of the Canyons AAC provides educational services and access for eligible students with documented disabilities who intend to pursue coursework at COC. A variety of programs and services are available which afford eligible students with disabilities the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of the college programs and activities through appropriate and reasonable accommodations. For more information on their services visit the Academic Accomodation Center website.

Online Counseling

The Counseling Department offers appointments online. You can schedule an appointment by visiting the Online Counseling website. Counselors can help you map out a plan to reach your educational goals as well as advise you on course selection and registration.

Management of Stress and Mental Health

Often the pressure on our students is very strong, involving academic commitments, relationships, outside jobs and family pressure to name a few. The staff and faculty of College of the Canyons are here to see you succeed academically and care about your emotional and physical health. You can learn more about the broad range of confidential student services, including counseling and mental health services available on campus by visiting the Student Health & Wellness Center in the Student Services Building (across from the bookstore). The phone number is 661-362-3259 that you can call 24/7. You can also e mail for an appointment at At the Canyon Country Campus the Health Center will be in the new Student Services Building.

Also, the National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline number is now 988. All students at COC are encouraged to enter that phone number in their cells. You can call it when you, or someone you know, is having thoughts of suicide or is in severe distress.

You can also now use the Crisis Text Line: Just text "Courage" to 741741. Someone will get back to you immediately. Its free, 24/7, and confidential.

Veterans Resource Center

The College of the Canyons Veterans Resource Center is a department within the Student Services Division at the college, created to help veterans and veteran dependents with applying to College of the Canyons, enrolling in classes, and requesting VA Education or Vocational Benefits. For more information please visit the Veterans Resource Center website, email or phone (661) 362-3469.


The Library provides live online and in-person research help, access to a full range of e-resources and physical materials that support the curriculum, individual and group study areas, and much more!

Last updated: 07/26/2021 Sub#: 419