Comedy Studies at The Second City

Anyone can tell a joke – but making great comedy is not so easy. What sets the comedic genius apart from the jokester? Technique: compelling content, strong point of view, comic timing, and the ability to harness creativity.

The Second City and Columbia College Chicago know this. They know comedy, theater, and creative process better than just about anyone. That’s why these two great Chicago institutions have joined forces and created the Comedy Studies program. Unlike any other course of study in content, scope, or resources, it provides a unique opportunity to study full-time at The Second City, the nation’s center of comedy and satire, for an entire semester.

Comedy Studies is developed and taught by the experts in comedy at The Second City Training Center in Chicago, with college credit provided by Columbia College Chicago. It’s a semester abroad right in the heart of Chicago’s world- famous theater scene.

And you won’t just take classes. You’ll also attend shows at a variety of improvisation and comedy venues, network with theater artists, explore Chicago’s unparalleled theater and arts world, and present your work in a showcase.

Who Can Apply?

Comedy Studies is open to anyone with a minimum of an undergraduate junior-level status of 60 credit hours or more. The program also accepts applications from recent college graduates.

Curriculum Includes:

  • developing physical, vocal and improvisational performance skills needed for comedy,
  • writing comedy in various forms and genres,
  • discovering the historical bases for contemporary comedy,
  • examining social and political contexts for satire, and
  • supporting the individual comedic voice within an ensemble.

When and Where are the Classes?

Classes are offered during fall, spring, and summer semesters at The Second City Training Center (the same location as the company’s historic theaters) Monday through Friday.

Comedy Studies video: Learn about our program!

Term Start Dates 2023 -2024 

Fall: Tuesday, September 5  

Spring: Monday, January 22 

Summer: Monday, June 10 

Admission Deadlines  

Spring: Early Bird: October 11 

Spring Regular: October 31 

Summer/Fall Early Bird: February 14  

Summer/Fall Regular Deadline: March 27 **

** It’s not too late to apply for Summer 2024 Comedy Studies! We have a few seats left!