Drama Therapy

Drama Therapy FAQ


Q: How long does it take to complete the program?

The length of time varies with the individual needs of the students. The academic requirements take 4 full semesters to complete. However, many students need 2-3 years to fulfill their internship and thesis requirements. Often this includes summer and/or winter sessions.

Q.What degree do I receive after completion?

Master of Arts in Drama Therapy. Also, each graduate meets the academic requirements for licensure as a creative arts therapist (LCAT) in New York State. 

Q: How many credits does the degree require?

48-60 points of completion commencing with the Fall 2011 class.

Q: Do I need to complete an internship to graduate?

Yes. Students must accrue 800 hours of internship with at least two different populations in order to graduate. Learn more about internships

Q: Do I need to write a thesis to graduate?

Yes. Students must complete a research-based thesis (which can be arts-based research) which adds to the wealth of knowledge in the field of drama therapy. For a listing of completed theses, please email us

Q: Are there any scholarships available?

Every year a few students are awarded a partial scholarship based on merit and need. Additional scholarships may be obtained through the Office of Financial Aid at NYU.

Q: What about financial aid?

NYU’s Financial Aid Department will assist you in finding the appropriate way to fund your education. Be sure to fill out the FAFSA as soon as you can, even if you are not certain you will attend.

Q: Does NYU offer a Ph.D. in Drama Therapy?

NYU does not offer a Ph.D. in Drama Therapy at this time. The only university in the world that offers a Ph.D. in Drama Therapy is the University of Surrey in Roehampton, UK.

Q: Do I have to take the GRE or the TOEFL to get into the program?

The GRE is not required. However, students for whom English is not a native language are required to take one of the following English proficiency exams: TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE Academic.

Q: What classes do I need to prepare myself for your program? Are there any prerequisites to be considered?

The strongest applicants will have equally strong backgrounds in both theatre and psychology. However, many candidates who demonstrate greater strength in one area over the other are also accepted. During the application process, we always look at the entire person: academic background, work/performance experience, essay, recommendations, audition, and interview.

Optimally our prospective students have taken various psychology courses in their undergraduate careers. Useful courses to have taken before application are Theories of Personality, Abnormal Psychology, and/or Developmental Psychology. These courses, while recommended, are not required and we always look at the educational as well as experiential qualities of an applicant's history. This program is a rigorous academic program that encourages research and in depth study to advance our individual work and our field.

Q: Is there an audition? What can I expect?

After reviewing the applications, a select number of candidates will be invited to the audition and interview, usually held in March. The audition is conducted in a large group format and involves an improvisational role-playing experience. There are variations every year, so we cannot be too specific. However, you might be asked to embody characters, enact scenarios, or share reflections. It is primarily physical and a great deal of fun. For those who live very far away and cannot make the audition, we will attempt to schedule a Skype interview if possible. However, it is most beneficial to all to be present at the live audition.

Q: How many students do you accept? How many applications do you receive?

Applications and acceptances vary somewhat from year to year, but on average we receive 50 applications and accept 15.

Q: How do I get more information about the program?

If you would like us to email you an information packet, please contact us with your name and email address.

Q: What is the job market like for drama therapists right now?

The New York metropolitan area provides a great many opportunities for employment. Graduates have access to an array of contacts throughout the theatrical, education theatre, and mental health care industries. Currently, drama therapists are being hired in hospitals, clinics, and theatres; many have their own private practices. For those traveling to areas where drama therapy is a relatively unknown discipline, we expect you to have a pioneering spirit and to advocate for the inclusion of drama therapy within many kinds of facilities.

Q: How much do drama therapists make?

As with most jobs, it depends on your past experience and the facility and/or population. One objective way to find out average salaries in a field is to check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Occupational Labor Handbook or America's Career InfoNet. Investigate the statistics for counselors, psychologists, recreational therapists, social workers, rehabilitation therapists, and other related fields.

Q: Do you know anything about New York State Licensure?

After you graduate, you will need to continue accruing hours towards your licensure as a creative arts therapist (LCAT). During that time you will be in possession of a provisional license. You are granted a two year period of time post-graduation during which you must complete the hours, licensing exam, and application necessary for your license. For further details, you may look up the New York State Office of Professions

Q: Could you tell me the difference between American and British drama therapy?

The best way to gain insight into the commonalities and variances is to develop a familiarity with the respective national organizations. Try visiting both NADT for the American association, and BADTH for the British association. In addition, look into the works of prominent British authors who specialize in drama therapy, such as Sue Jennings, Alida Gersie, Phil Jones, and Roger Grainger. 

Q: What are the educational requirements for an RDT through the NADT?

NYU's Drama Therapy program meets all educational requirements for licensure in New York State as a creative arts therapist and all educational requirements for registration as a drama therapist with the North America Drama Therapy Association.