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Task Force Recommendations - Columbus State University

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Department of Theatre and Dance

Task Force Recommendations

The Theatre Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Task Force makes the following recommendations to the Theatre Department and Columbus State University leaders as a result of its work. The task force's full report is available to download (PDF) and includes the following:

Academics

  • Programs will include courses on a diverse range of topics.
  • Courses will be inclusive in practice and diverse in content.
  • The department will identify and act on achievement gaps.

Assessment Instruments:

  • DEIB-based questions on student course evaluations
  • Annual holistic scoring guide for programs and courses
  • Student success data disaggregated by race/ethnicity, gender, Pell eligibility, first-gen status, age, and other demographic categories

Production

  • Season selection will be guided by the values of diversity and inclusion, and will be representative of our community.
    • Create seasons of diverse stories that include American Realism, Musicals, Shakespeare, Experimental, Ensemble, Children's Theatre, Period Pieces, and World Drama.
    • Seek out plays that bring a diversity of content, themes and authorship.
    • Invite guest artists who add diversity to the department's programming.
    • Increase audience diversity.
  • Casting will create opportunities for diversity and inclusion.
    • Practice non-traditional and color-conscious casting, while avoiding tokenism
    • Avoid harmful stereotypes and caricatures

Assessment Instruments:

  • Production and season post-mortems that emphasize the values of diversity, inclusion, equity and belonging
  • Ongoing analysis of audience diversity

Climate

  • During orientation, new students will be introduced to the department's DEIB plan - a central statement of values of all departmental operations.
  • The department will recruit a diverse student body.
  • The department will recruit and retain a diverse faculty as faculty positions become available.
  • Faculty, staff and students will participate in ongoing training to increase DEIB awareness and skills.
  • All faculty, staff and students will have the ability to register complaints, comments and feedback, which will be promptly acknowledged and acted on.

Assessment Instruments:

  • Annual climate survey of all students, staff and faculty
  • Annual analysis of recruitment practices and results for faculty, staff and students
  • Annual survey of participation in training opportunities
  • Ongoing analysis of feedback and complaint process

Accountability

The department will routinely assess its progress, using the previously mentioned assessment instruments, to ensure its DEIB goals are being met and to improve policy and practice.

  • A standing DEIB Committee will be appointed by the chair and approved by the dean, constituted in the following way:
    • Two Theatre Faculty
    • Two Theatre Students
    • Two Theatre Alumni
    • At least two members from outside the Theatre Department (CSU faculty, diversity experts from inside or outside CSU, key community members, or others as needed)
  • A diversity officer will be appointed annually from among the faculty by the department chair; the DO will chair the DEIB Committee and lead the annual DEIB assessment process.
  • Annual Program Reviews and Comprehensive Program Reviews will include results and discussion of the department's DEIB goals.
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