Sound Design (BFA)


Effective 1 June 2022 through 31 May 2023

Please see the Undergraduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

This program is offered by the Leigh Gerdine College of Fine Arts/Sargent Conservatory of Theatre Arts and is only available at the St. Louis home campus.

Program Description

It is our mission to train our future colleagues to become visionaries, creators and leaders in the next generation of American professional theatre.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of their training in sound design, students will be able to:

  • Analyze the script and locations and develop an advanced, coherent, aural concept that takes into account style, period and creative research for theatrical use.
  • Research the period of any production and develop a design concept that uses period-specific and appropriate sound effects and music.
  • Present design concepts with directors, designers, faculty members and fellow students.
  • Create paperwork for the director, stage manager and sound engineer to communicate the concept and needs for the sound design.
  • Use creative thinking and problem solving skills to address the needs of a production.
  • Utilize sound editing software and sound playback software to manipulate sound effects and music for use in production.
  • Utilize sound equipment and acoustical principles to solve problems to meet the needs of productions.
  • Collaborate with director, fellow designers, actors and technicians to create a finished product that meets the needs of the play and vision of the director.
  • Design sound for straight plays, musicals, opera, dance, theatre for young audiences and other performance styles.

Special Requirements

Only courses completed with a grade of C- or above will count toward fulfilling the specific requirements of the major.

Auditions/interviews are required for all students planning to major in theatre at Webster University. Auditions/interviews are held each year during the spring semester for entrance into the following fall session. 

Degree Requirements

For information on the general requirements for a degree, see Baccalaureate Degree Requirements under the Academic Policies and Information section of this catalog.

  • 102 required credit hours
  • Applicable University Global Citizenship Program hours, with accommodations for theatre BFAs
  • Electives

Global Citizenship Program for Theatre BFAs

  • GLBC 1200 Global Cornerstone Seminar
  • 3 credit hours from courses designated ‘Roots of Cultures’ (THEA 2030, THEA 2040, THEA 2050 or MUTH 1030 can fulfill GCP and major requirements simultaneously)
  • 3 credit hours from courses designated ‘Social Systems & Human Behavior’ or ‘Global Understanding’
  • 3 credit hours from courses designated ‘Physical & Natural World’ or ‘Quantitative Literacy’ (SCIN 1410 can fulfill GCP and major requirements simultaneously)
  • KEYS 4XXX Global Keystone Seminar

NOTE: Except where specified otherwise, the above courses must not also satisfy major requirements. GCP skills requirements are fulfilled through Conservatory instruction. 'Arts Appreciation' is satisfied in meeting the requirements for the major.

Required Courses

  • CONS 1010, CONS 1020, CONS 2010, CONS 2020, CONS 3010, CONS 3020, CONS 4010, CONS 4020 (the Conservatory sequence or its equivalent) (72 hours)
  • DESN 1210 Design Concepts (3 hours)
  • AUDI 1110 Audio Technology Lecture (2 hours)
  • AUDI 1120 Audio Technology Lab (2 hours)
  • AUDI 1130 Audio Technology Practicum (2 hours)
  • AUDI 1121 Signals and Systems (3 hours)
  • AUDI Elective (3 hours)
  • MUSC 1005 Fundamentals of Music for Audio (3 hours)
  • SCIN 1410 Light, Sound and Electricity (3 hours)
  • THEA 2030 History of Theatre: Greeks to Elizabethan (3 hours)
  • THEA 2040 History of Theatre: Restoration to 1915 (3 hours)
  • THEA 2050 History of Theatre: 1915 to Present (3 hours)

Recommended Electives:

  • AUDI 2710 Introduction to Acoustics (3 hours)
  • AUDI 2840 Technical Ear Training I (2 hours)
  • AUDI 3310 Live Audio Production I (3 hours)
  • AUDI 3311 Live Audio Production 2 (3 hours)