BA single honours Dance Education 2018/19

Year of entry

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If you want to share your creativity and passion for dance with others, then this programme is for you.

You will spend most of your time in dance studios where you will grow technically and creatively as a dancer through the range of technique classes and performance projects.

You will work with dance artists, choreographers and academics in workshops and seminars, where you will be supported and challenged to develop both as an artist and as a teacher.

As well as studying dance from historical, social and political perspectives you will have the opportunity to gain practical experience through a variety of teaching placements and projects in community or school-based contexts.

You will explore areas including:

  • safe practice
  • how to sustain longevity in the profession
  • choreography

The Dance Education degree programme is designed to prepare you for entry into the dance profession as a dance practitioner or artist. It develops your knowledge, skills and understanding in initiating, creating, organising, managing, teaching and performing dance projects and activities. It enables you to work with people of varying ages and abilities in a variety of school and community contexts.

100% of our Dance Education students were satisfactied with their learning opportunities and 95% of our most recent Dance Education students were in jobs or further study 6 months after finishing their course.

The programme supports and challenges you to develop technically and creatively as a dancer, teacher and choreographer and to gradually become more confident in taking leadership roles with greater responsibility and independence. You should leave with knowledge, skills and understanding of a range of dance techniques and styles, ways of creating, teaching and presenting or performing dance and first-hand experiences of where, why and how dance happens in the current dance/arts landscape via the range of projects and placement opportunities.

Top reasons to study this course

  • A wide variety of dance techniques are studied – ballet, contemporary Limon, contemporary Release, jazz, African, South Asian and aerial
  • High quality tutor team including practitioners, artists, performers, managers, choreographers, researchers and published authors e.g. Dr Angela Pickard (Editor in Chief of Research in Dance Education journal, specialist in pedagogy and ballet studies), Russell Maliphant (international choreographer, Artistic Researcher)
  • Collaborative teaching with established organisations/companies e.g. Magpie Dance Company (dance and disability), Dance United (marginalised youth), Jasmin Vardimon Dance Company (physical theatre) and Matthew Bourne Re-Bourne (Boys’ dance legacy)
  • Enhanced curriculum of artists in residency (e.g. dancers/choreographers from Jasmin Vardimon Dance Company, Matthias Sperling, Ash Mukhejee), workshops with company artists/performers (e.g. Protein, Boy Blue, Lila Dance), performances (end of year performances, Canterbury Festival, Canterbury Dance Company) and education and health/well-being projects (e.g. Kent Dance Network, Sidney De Hann Research Centre), placements, trips and visits (e.g. The Marlowe Theatre, The Gulbenkian Theatre, Sadler's Wells Theatre and Move It)
  • A focus on developing student as collaborator and as an individual practitioner/artist of the future with individual choices for placements, focus of choreography, areas of investigation for dissertation and ways of presenting work (e.g. theatre, site-specific, installation, using digital image, film/camera) linked to individual future aspirations/employability

You can study French, German, Italian, Mandarin Chinese and Spanish as part of, or alongside, your course.

more info

You will study:

  • Aspects of the historical, social and political development of dance, in Dance In Society
  • A variety of techniques, in Technique and Style and Repertoire
  • Different ways of making work, in Choreography
  • How to plan and teach creative dance using a range of methods with a variety of ages and abilities, in Dance Pedagogy. You will have placements in different contexts
  • How to engage in safe practice for longevity in the profession as a dancer but also to apply when working with different ages and stages, in Dance Science
  • How to find and analyse information about the dance landscape, use a range of methods and develop an independent study, in Dance Research
  • How to market oneself and harness employability skills for a career in dance education, in Professional Practice
  • Option interdisciplinary modules enabling you to work with music, drama and performing arts students

The majority of sessions are practical with theory and research integrated into practice. All students have a Personal Academic Tutor who will work to support and challenge you through enabling greater understanding of assignment information, assessment marking and feedback and target setting.

The Dance Education course started in 2009 and has since recruited students from all over England, Slovakia, Greece and Cyprus. It has consistently achieved high satisfaction scores in the National Student Surveys and is now jointly rated as best in the country.

Work experience

A placement is offered each year across a variety of contexts such as primary and secondary schools, further education colleges, dance companies, community contexts such as Early Years centres, youth groups, dance and disability contexts and in other projects such as arts and health initiatives.

Other information

Students on this course enjoy opportunities for trips, visits and workshops, and a variety of performance opportunities. Past students have joined Canterbury Dance Company and/or Motion Alpha Dance Company, and enjoyed professional dance classes in partnership with Loop Dance Company and Kent Dance Network. There is also a thriving Student Union Dance Society. 

Course structure

The Dance Education course is studied over three years full-time. Study is, generally, undertaken at 3 levels (one for each year of study).

Year 1

In Year 1 (level 4) you will take the following core modules:

  • Dance Research 1 (landscape of dance) (20 credits),
  • Dance in Society 1 (20 credits),
  • Technique and Style 1 (20 credits),
  • Dance Science 1 (20 credits),
  • Dance Pedagogy 1 (20 credits)
Dance Research 1 (landscape of dance)

This module introduces you to the landscape of dance and where, when and how dance happens. You will also learn where and how to access a range of resources to support your research, learning and teaching.

Dance in Society 1

Here you study the roots of dance, European influences, early pioneers of modern dance and key innovators of early modern dance.

Technique and Style 1

In Year 1, you engage in dance classes in contemporary, ballet, jazz and undertake a cultural study e.g. African dance.

Dance Science 1

Here the focus is on the student as dancer through an exploration of aspects of anatomy and physiology. It is underpinned by a consideration of safe working practices and factors that help to maintain a healthy dancer.

Dance Pedagogy 1

An introduction to the nature and practice of dance in schools and community and the practical skills, knowledge and understanding needed for working with different people in different contexts in different ways, practically and creatively.

In Year 1 (level 4) you can take one of the following optional  modules. This is an illustrative sample of some of the options we offer. Please note that not all optional modules will run each year.

Choreography (mainstream making)

In your first year, you study mainstream choreography and ways of creating dance and create a solo piece of choreography.

Or Interdisciplinary module:


This module focuses on interdisciplinary working and the devising processes in groups with students from music, performing arts, dance and drama.

Year 2

In Year 2 (level 5) you will take the following core modules:

  • Dance Pedagogy 2 (20 credits)
  • Technique and Style 2 (20 credits)
  • Choreography 2 (20 credits)
  • Dance Science 2 (20 credits)
  • Dance Research (20 credits)
Dance Pedagogy 2

Building on work from Dance Pedagogy 1, you will focus on analysing and understanding school and community contexts and the application of practical skills, knowledge and understanding when working in different contexts and facilitating creative work.

Technique and Style 2

You study Limon-based and Release-based contemporary styles, modern ballet and South Asian styles.

Choreography (new/independent)

You explore different ways of presenting work such as site-specific, dance for the camera/dance film, use of digital image and theatre style work. You create a group piece of choreography.

Dance Science 2

You will extend and develop the work encountered in Dance Science 1. The focus is on application of dance science in different dance contexts. You will explore physiological and psychological factors in relation to working with children, adolescents and adults.

Dance Research 2

You will study the appropriateness, benefits and limitations of research methods, be introduced to ethical considerations and write a research proposal.

In Year 2 (level 5) you can take

one of the following  optional modules. This is an illustrative sample of some of the options we offer. Please note that not all optional modules will run each year.

Dance in Society 2

You study the development of new/independent dance and post-modernism.


Interdisciplinary module:

Arts and Politics:

You examine the incorporation of political agendas into theatre, music, and dance.

Year 3

In Year 3 (level 6) you will take the following core modules:

  • Dance in Society 3 (20 credits)
  • Repertoire (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice (20 credits)
  • Dance Research (applied) (20 credits)

Dance in Society 3 The focus is on innovation and development within choreography and professional works. The social and political landscape is explored in -depth.

Repertoire You become a company and work on an intensive repertoire and choreography project and performance with a choreographer in residence. As part of this module you study aerial and another a choice of dance technique.

Professional Practice Here you will apply your skills, knowledge and understanding of dance to the workplace and concentrate on the practicalities of managing and presenting yourself as a dance artist/practitioner.

Dance Research (applied) You have an opportunity to investigate a particular area of interest related to dance/dance education.

In Year 3 (level 6) you can take one of the following optional modules. This is an illustrative sample of some of the options we offer. Please note that not all optional modules will run each year.

In teaching block 1

Dance Pedagogy 3 You can apply skills, knowledge and understanding of dance to the workplace through a context -based project and practicalities of project development, management and completion.


Interdisciplinary module: Community Arts Project You will work as interdisciplinary teams and create a community based arts project, sharing and applying skills, knowledge and understanding of arts to the context and the practicalities of project development, management and delivering a project. 

In teaching block 2

Choreography 3 You continue to examine different ways of presenting work such as site-specific, dance for the camera/dance film, use of digital image and theatre style work and are encouraged to take greater risks and work with increasing greater independence. You choose whether you create a solo, group or larger ensemble piece choreography and the way to present your work.


Interdisciplinary module: Multimedia Performance This module is designed to explore the rapidly emerging and diversifying field of multimedia performance and interactive performance installation. Multimedia performance embraces a new technology as means of extending both the self and place.

As a dance practitioner or artist, a student might be employed to work, for example, in a school, community setting or to develop a dance for a festival funded by a local council. They could also work as an education officer for a company. They might be involved in marketing, publicity, fund-raising, venue and festival management, or publicly-funded provision, to name but a few. Students will be equipped to embark on a Schools Direct or PGCE programme (providing they have GCSE or equivalent English, Maths, and in addition for Primary, Science) and work in mainstream school settings or may choose to lead their own career and market themselves as freelance dance artists. You will also gain many transferable skills ranging from confidence and resiliance to teamwork and communication skills.

Transferable skills gained on your course:

  • Confidence
  • Self-presentation
  • Team work and collaboration
  • Time management and organisational skills
  • Self-awareness
  • Self-discipline
  • An open mind and the ability to move beyond boundaries and experiment with different ideas
  • Communication skills
  • Analytical, critical and research skills
  • Ability to cope with criticism and learn from it
  • Resilience

Download a fact sheet with more information about your career options with Dance Education

Composition of the course

Each taught module has a standard 50 hours of student contact. This will typically be composed of practical work such as technique classes, workshops and performances with theory-research integrated. Dance Research and Professional Practice modules are seminar based. You will also be expected to engage in 150 hours of self-directed study per taught module – this can be in the form of dance practice, choreography, practical projects, directed tasks, reading and written work.

You will be taught in classes, workshops, lectures, seminars and tutorials, which include a percentage of weekly directed learning. In addition to this, you will be expected to undertake your own learning, class preparation, reading, practice, and assignment work.

Academic input

Currently there are nine members of staff involved in this course.

The Subject Lead, is a Principal Lecturer and has extensive experience as a dancer (ballet and contemporary), teacher (a variety of ages and stages), choreographer (a number of pieces have been performed in different venues in Kent and London), a manager and curator (a range of projects as a community practitioner, artist, advisor, Artistic Director and Programme Director/Subject Lead and Director of Learning, Teaching and School Experience in the School of Music and Performing Arts) and academic (she teaches undergraduate modules in ballet, Dance Pedagogy, Dance Research and Choreography, Masters modules related to placements and project development as well as providing PhD supervision. She is an active researcher and published author of text books and academic texts as well as being Editor in Chief of Research in Dance Education journal. There are 2 additional Lecturers(1 full time and 1 at 0.5) and 6 sessional staff. All have industry experience as dancers, teachers/community practitioners, choreographers and in academia in Higher Education.

Assessment methods include technique classes, practical presentations, practical demonstrations of teaching, creative and choreographic projects, performances and written assignments.

You will enjoy the use of two sprung-floors; surround sound dance studios, a performance studio theatre with full lighting rigs and tech. room and a ‘concert’ hall. We have artists in residence who work on longer term projects and work with a number of professional dance artists and companies each year for shorter term workshops and projects. We also have partnerships with two local theatres – The Marlowe and Gulbenkian – giving you access to free tickets to a number of performances.

We work with industry stakeholders aligned to the continued development of our teaching programme and research and consultancy work. Our links include local, regional and internationally recognised dance schools and companies such as The Royal Ballet School, Laban, The Avanti Project, Magpie Dance Company, Loop Dance Company, Cascade Dance Company, Jasmin Vardimon Dance Company and The Marlowe Theatre.

The Subject Lead, Dr. Angela Pickard, works closely with the Dance-strategic body, Dance UK, the National Dance Centre for Advanced Training Centres, The Avanti Project. Stina Sommerlade has experience as a choreographer and project manager internationally. Nina Atkinson is Artistic Director of Loop Dance Company. Matthias Sperling is an international choreographer working with Christ Church and Siobhan Davies Dance. Nicola Gaines is a historical/early dance specialist and works with us and The Royal Ballet School. Akosua Boakye is part of the choreography team for The Lion King. Ash Mukhejee has an international career as a dancer and choreographer. There are links with The Royal Ballet School, 


The 2018/19 annual tuition fees for this course are:

  UK / EU Overseas
Full-time £9,250 £11,500

Tuition fees for all courses are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

Please read the 2018/19 Tuition Fee Statement for further information regarding 2018/19 tuition fees and year on year fee increases.

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any Library Fees and Fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

Course specific costs

Field Trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) Additional travel cost only (as tickets paid for) for trips using local theatres if an enrichment activity. Travel to theatres/exhibitions/events that are not in Canterbury are funded by the School of Music and Performing Arts.
Travel for Placements Where possible, students are placed in a context near their home or within the normal travel distance from home to University. There may be additional travel costs for placements if placed in contexts beyond the normal travel distance from home to University but students can claim the money back after their placement.
DBS / Health Checks All Dance Education students need a DBS check and have to pay for this themselves. The charge for this process is £52.
Clothing / Kit A basic dance kit and soft sole ballet shoes are needed at cost to student.
Learning Materials If students want costumes and props for Choreography/teaching then these are paid for by students.

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.


Full-time study

Apply via UCAS


Full-time study

Need some help?


For advice on completing your application please contact the Course Enquiry Team:

Email: courses@canterbury.ac.uk
Tel: +44 (0)1227 928000
Tel:+44 (0)1227 928000 (0)1227 928000


Contact our International Team

Fact file

UCAS course code

  • WX53

UCAS institution code

  • C10


  • 3 years full-time


  • September 2018

Entry requirements

  • A typical offer would be 88-112 UCAS Tariff points

    Experience of in-depth study of any dance style for a minimum period of two years

    There is an audition that includes a group warm-up and learning a phrase of movement. You will also share a pre-prepared solo of 3 minutes duration. This can be in any style, any music and any theme.

    There will also be a 1-1 interview.

    Be prepared to speak at interview about any experience of performing, teaching, facilitating, choreographing or managing dance with peer group or beyond and a desire to develop a career as a dance practitioner/artist.

    Entry is subject to a satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.

    More entry requirement details.



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Last edited: 29/06/2018 10:22:00