• Appreciate Theatre: A New, Open-source Textbook for SUNY Oneonta’s Introductory Theatre Course

      Pipino, Kiara; Canavan, Gillian (2022)
      Theatre Appreciation at SUNY Oneonta is a required course for theatre majors/minors but is also a popular course outside of the major, as it fills general education and liberal arts requirements. The curriculum of this course surveys the art of theatre, beginning with its ancient origins to modern day drama. The challenge with covering such a broad range of topics and time periods is finding a textbook that efficiently guides students through the course content. Kiara Pipino, a theatre professor at SUNY Oneonta has organized the creation of a new, open-source textbook entitled Appreciate Theatre to be used in our college as well as being made available for use in other educational institutions. Authors of this textbook include not only Professor Pipino, but additional members of the Theatre Department faculty as well as various theatre professionals and academics. When the textbook is used in the classroom, ideally, the fifteen chapters will each correlate to one week of course content. One of SUNY Oneonta’s theatre students, Gillian Canavan, has begun work as an editor, as well as searching for open-source photographs to include in the textbook. Photographs from SUNY Oneonta’s own theatrical productions will also be included with permission from student performers. The consideration of a student’s perspective in this process is intended to provide input on how to keep students engaged with the course content, especially those who are not specifically interested in the area of theatre. This will be done through the editing process as well as in a concluding chapter on the potential reasons fellow students should “Appreciate Theatre.” The goal of this textbook is to be made a widely accessible resource, and in order to do this, it is to be published on Pressbooks, an online platform that specializes in professional educational open-source content. The writing, editing, and publication of Appreciate Theatre is currently underway, and is planned to be available for use in the Fall 2022 semester.