Motto: Performance, Research and Excellence. Mission: to make the theatre and film studies a Centre of excellence in the study of the art of theatre and film, and to be in the forefront and compete as a place of research and innovation nationally and globally. Philosophy: the philosophy of the department is hinged on a solid base of pedagogy, methodology and criticism. While film is the end product of the cinematic art and history, theatre is a complex art that combines different elements in order to transmit a certain idea and felling to a target audience. Theatre and Film studies are concerned with the depiction of man in his environment- cultural, social, religious, political, economic, educational, as well as psychological. The inter-relatedness and impact of these aspects of life in shaping human condition globally and locally is, therefore, the focus of theatre studies. The department, consequently, packages, research based training skill acquisition programmes intended to equip students with the physical and mental capacity to deal with and surmount existential problems.
As far back as 1965, drama was offered as a stress area for the B.A. English degree in the department of English. The dramatic Arts Programme, referred to by the founding fathers of the university as the Robeson College of Dramatics, was provided for, building-wise, as one of the pioneer disciplines of the University of Nigeria at the inception in 1960. It could not take off as an independent department because of staffing problem.
It was not until 1982/83 session, under Professor F.N. Ndili’s administration that Dramatic Arts was upgraded to a sub-Department thereby making it quasi- independent and giving it positive encouragement to run its programmes and administration. The department took off with staff strength 3 in 1981/82, which rose to 10 in 1983/84 and 14 in 1984/85; and student population of 10 in 1983/84 to 95 in 1989/90 academic year.
At its 296th meeting held on April 28,2004, the university of Nigeria senate, satisfied that the sub-department has what it takes to be a full-fledged department in terms of staffing, structure, level and standard of the programme, approved its upgrading to full departmental status, which was then called the department of theatre arts.
In the 2008 review of curriculum the nomenclature of the department changed from the department of the Theatre Arts to the Department of Theatre and Film Studies.