Cool Major of the Month

Screen Acting

Have you always wanted to become a television or movie star but lacked the training, and connections to get you the roles you desire? The New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts (NYCDA) in New York City offers several programs to teach you basic screen acting techniques, on-camera experience, and preparation for future auditions.

The cool benefits of the NYCDA:

  • NYCDA offers a wide range of on-camera acting programs for the novice and the experienced theatrical actor.
  • Both the National Association of Schools of Theater and the Board of Regents of the University of the State of New York have accredited NYCDA.
  • NYCDA offers a summer, part-time, and full-time studies that teach film fundamentals and preparation for onscreen acting.
  • Sixty-six credits of the full-time program can be transferred to many universities to help you work towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA).
  • Several famous Television, Movie and Broadway Stars are graduates of NYCDA. These include: Matthew Fox (Party of Five), Emma Bell (The Walking Dead), Ashleigh Murray (Riverdale), and Reid Ewing (Modern Family).
  • During schooling, students intern on television shows to assist directors, agents, and crew members
  • Students participate in a number of taped and live performances, giving them the hands-on experience needed.
  • NYCDA offers up to 25,000 annually for scholarships.
  • Full-time students are given the opportunity to have their taped performance viewed by several film industry leaders (e.g. casting directors and agents). These tapes are also used for future auditions.
  • Students are taught the Stanford Meisner Approach to Acting, which has helped famous actors such as Robert Duvall (The Apostle) and Joanne Woodward (The Three Faces of Eve).

Programs Offered at NYCDA

  1. Two-year Professional Training Program
    This 78-credit program offers students professional training and experience. Full-time schooling is convenient and flexible, both evening/Saturday and weekday classes are offered. In their first year of NYCDA, students learn the fundamentals, techniques, and history of screen acting. Second-year students apply their knowledge from first year to on-camera acting and internships.
  2. Part-time Certification Program
    Depending on your lifestyle, a part-time certification program may be more convenient. NYCDA offers Performance Fundamentals and Film Fundamentals Certificates. Performance Fundamentals teaches the inexperienced actor/actress the basic techniques of onscreen acting. Courses concentrate on improvisation, voice, and movement. On the other hand, Film Fundamentals is a more advanced program that focuses on audition skills and techniques for film, sitcom, soap opera, and commercial acting.
  3. Summer in the City
    This intensive summer program offers two levels of training: Technique and Performance. Technique teaches the novice the basics of acting. Performance trains individuals with theatrical experience onscreen acting skills.

Program Requirements:

Students over the age of 16 may participate in the 'Summer in the City' workshop to gain training and earn college credits. Students, however, must be over the age of 18, and must obtain a high school diploma or GED equivalent to apply for either the full-time or the part-time studies.

How to Apply?

Applications are available on the Internet at or by calling toll free at 1-888-645-0030. References, interviews and/or auditions may be necessary for acceptance.

Other Schools Offering Acting Training:


  1. New York Conservatory for Dramatic Arts, New York, NY,
  2. New York Film Academy, New York, NY,
  3. Chas Productions and Performing Arts Conservatory, San Carlos, CA,
  4. Pace University, New York City, NY,


  1. National Theater School of Canada, Montreal, QC,
  2. Vancouver Film School, Vancouver, BC,
  3. Pacific Design Academy, Victoria, BC,


  1. East 15 Acting School, Loughton, UK,
  2. The Gaiety School of Acting, Dublin, Ireland,