Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Center for the Advancement of Education


Liberty University was formed under the auspices of Thomas Road Baptist Church located in Lynchburg, Virginia and is considered to be one of the fastest growing universities in America. The growth of the drama department has not kept pace with other departments and the growth of the university. The purpose of this study was to identify marketing practices in selected university and college drama departments in the United States and to develop a marketing plan for Liberty University’s drama department to aid in the (1) recruitment of drama majors and minors, (2) retention of drama majors and minors, and (3) the promotion of the drama productions to the community at large as well as the university. In order to accomplish this goal, a questionnaire to determine the types of marketing practices being used by similar departments was designed and distributed to 24 drama department administrators. The theatre marketing questionnaire was constructed with the aid of the literature search and six member panel of theatre and marketing experts. The data from the questionnaire were collected from 20 of the 24 colleges and universities surveyed. The institution were selected for their reputable and active theatre programs and the three types (Christian, small, large) were selected because of Liberty University’s philosophy, size, and expected growth. There were a total of 62 marketing practices identified as being utilized to some extent by the study population. The findings revealed that faculty participation at high school theatre festivals, hosting high school drama festivals, scholarships and work-study aid, and direct mail to prospective students were among the most effective and most often used marketing practices for recruitment. Faculty advising, job placement, guest artists, and specialized curriculum emphasis were found to be the most effective and most often used marketing practices for retention. The findings also revealed that certain types of media advertising, discount ticketing, and subscription solicitation by mail were the most effective and most often used marketing practices for audiences development utilizing by the study population. As a result of this study the Liberty University theatre faculty have recommended to the chairperson of the Division of Fine Arts and The Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences that the theatre model be adopted and implemented in the Fall of 1987. At the close of the Spring semester 1987 the adoption of the model had been approved. Also, the theatre faculty had been assigned responsibilities relative to the marketing strategies selected for the theatre department at Liberty. These strategies include faculty attendance at high school theatre conferences, research into theatre scholarships and theatre department job placement services, and revising current ticket prices for the theatre department’s productions. In addition, it is recommended that future research at Liberty University and/or institutions of higher education be conducted to determine problems and benefits associated with educational theatre marketing. An awareness of the problems associated with educational theatre marketing could aid theatre department administrators in formulating a marketing plan and selecting the appropriate marketing strategies for their departments. The data from the study of benefits associated with educational theatre marketing could aid theatre chairpersons in gaining support from institutional administrators to implement a marketing program. It is further recommended that future research by Liberty University and/or other institutions if higher learning by conducted to determine the relationship between marketing practices and success in educational theatre. Data from this study could encourage more theatre department administrators to develop a marketing plan and at the same time give them necessary information to win institutional support. Finally, it is recommended that future research by Liberty University and/ or other institutions of higher learning be conducted to determine audience profiles if educational theatre. This would help identify the most effective marketing practices to be utilized for a particular market segment.

Files over 10MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "Save as..."

To access this thesis/dissertation you must have a valid OR email address and create an account for NSUWorks.

Free My Thesis

If you are the author of this work and would like to grant permission to make it openly accessible to all, please click the Free My Thesis button.

Included in

Education Commons