Dance BA (Hons)

About the course

Dance at De Montfort University focuses on contemporary dance with skilled dance practitioners able to apply performance, creative, critical and reflective skills in a variety of situations.

Reasons why you should choose to study a Dance degree at DMU

  • Nationally recognised as a Centre for Excellence in Performance Arts, awarded for teaching and learning

  • The course helps you understand and locate yourself within the dance profession and develops you as an informed, skilled and creative dance practitioner

  • You will be equipped for employment in a range of dance, arts and education related careers

  • Excellent links with local, national and international dance organisations enhance your experience, keep the curriculum current and boost your employability  

De Montfort University Dance videos|

Key facts

UCAS course code:  W500

Duration:  Three years full-time, six years part-time

Institution code: D26

Entry and admission criteria


  • Normally 280 points with a minimum of 180 points from 2 full A levels.
  • National Diploma DMM.
  • International Baccalaureate: 28+ Points

Five GCSEs grades A* - C including English Language or Literature at grade C or above.

We also accept the BTEC First Diploma plus two GCSEs. including English at grade C or above.

Audition/Interview required: Yes

International Students

If English is not your first language an IELTS score of 6.5 or equivalent when you start the course is essential. English Language tuition|, delivered by our British Council accredited Centre for English Language Learning, is available both before and throughout the course if you need it.

Teaching and assessment

You will experience a wide range of approaches to teaching and learning including practical classes, workshops, performances, lectures, screenings, demonstrations, small group discussions and one-to-one tutorials. You will use independent study time to undertake research by viewing, reflecting, analysing, writing and in practical explorations. All assessment is via coursework and includes classwork, presentations,choreography, written assignments and portfolios.

The studio work is of a practical nature but also involves discussion, analysis, critical reflection on practice and contextualisation. Your studies are supported by an excellent collection of resources, including books, journals, videos, DVDs, CDs, electronic and online media.

Course modules

Year one|

  • Dance Practice
  • Understanding Dance
  • Rethinking Choreography
  • Improving Performance
  • Exploring the Dance Profession

Year two|

  • Dance Practice
  • Image, Movement, Performance
  • Understanding Dance
  • Dance Artists in Education and Community
  • Understanding Balance and Co-ordination
  • Promoting Dance

Year three|

  • Dance Research Project
  • Dance Practice
  • Dance as History
  • Teaching and Leading Dance
  • Choreography
  • Performance Practice
  • Attaining Poise
  • University Dance Projects
  • Dance as Popular Practice
  • Improvisation for Performance

Note: All modules are subject to change in order to keep content current.

Academic expertise

DMU has one of the largest team of dance staff in the UK. They are experts and award winning leaders in their various fields and have outstanding professional experience on which to draw. The excellent teaching and research of DMU staff was acknowledged through a multi-million pound award in 2005 when DMU was designated a Centre for Excellence in the Teaching and Learning of Performance Arts (CEPA).

Staff have international reputations for performance, choreography, research and innovative teaching, including individual University Teacher Fellow and National Teacher Fellow awards. World renowned choreographer and former student, Akram Khan, has acknowledged the ‘inspirational teaching’ he experienced at DMU.

Industry links and professional accreditation

Dance staff work closely with local, national and international dance organisations including Dance UK, Dance 4, Foundation for Community Dance and the Congress on Research in Dance. Their direct engagement with the dance profession, academia and the wider creative industries will give you the latest insight into the world of dance. Artists with whom we have close contact offer students work experience and internships. Examples include the Akram Khan Company and Donald Edwards (founder member of Phoenix Dance Company).

Graduate careers

Successful graduates are creative, entrepreneurial practitioners equipped to work in a range of dance-related careers and respond effectively to the needs of the profession. Graduates work as performers, choreographers, managers, heads of school and college dance departments, university lecturers, community dance practitioners, and producers.

Alumni include Angharad Harrop who is working as a performer, teacher and choreographer with funding from the Welsh Arts Council; Luke Ashworth is head of dance at an upper school and arts college in Suffolk; Linzi Gibbs is assistant producer for national dance agency Dance4; Gabrielle Reuter is choreographing and performing internationally; and former Director of Dance at Arts Council England and award winning, choreographer Akram Khan.

Discover more about our Dance BA (Hons) graduates|.

Fees and funding

2014 entry

UK/EU Fees: £9000 per year
International Fees: £11,250 per year

Learn more about fees and funding information 2014|


Learn more about our Undergraduate scholarships and awards| information.


Dance is taught in a suite of superb, purpose built, fully equipped dance studios and rehearsal spaces. Studios are flexible in that they are used for teaching and for performance. The library provision for Dance is one of the most extensive in the country, fully stocked with dance books, journals and videos/dvds.

Discover more about our facilities by visiting our Performance Arts Centre of Excellence (PACE) Building minisite|; includes video, photographs and student interviews.

How to apply

UK and EU students are advised to apply through UCAS at|

International students can apply to study at DMU directly using our online applications portal|.

Contact details

For more information please contact:

Online enquiry form|
Telephone enquiries:  +44 (0)116 2 50 60 70

Course details

Studio-based teaching includes contemporary dance technique, improvisation, performance, choreography and in-depth investigation into your practice. Classroom-based teaching includes lectures, workshops and small group discussions in which you engage with critical perspectives to locate your own practice in relation to current theory, research and professional developments. You then develop your ideas through independent reading, viewing (of live and recorded dance works) and studio practice. You will be helped to develop your ability to think and write analytically, critically and reflectively.

There are five key strands to the programme:

Dance Practice and Performance
You will take regular dance classes with performance opportunities throughout the three years. In year one you will also study ensemble work, improvisation and safe practice; in year two, duet work and contact improvisation and in year three, advanced performance skills as a soloist or in a small ensemble.

You will be helped to develop the skills, judgement and confidence necessary to create and present live, recorded and interactive performance work.  In your first year  you will develop choreographic skills through staff directed work as well as create your own performances. In year two, you will learn camera and editing techniques  to make dance for screen and in your final year you may work in collaboration with a composer and a small performance company. Reading and viewing are used to initiate discussion about the creative process and product.  The University Dance Festival showcases a variety of innovative and exciting work from across the three years.

Improving Performance
In years one and two you will learn how to improve your performance as a dancer at a fundamental level by looking at anatomy and physiology. In year three you take a philosophical approach to thinking about the dancer as a whole person.

Understanding Dance
In years one and two you learn how to engage with contemporary dance and you will see a range of performance, both live and on video. In your final year you may study dance as history and consider early modern dance. You learn how contemporary dance has its own histories and how its diverse current practices open up a world of possibilities.

Professional Practice
From year one you may begin to consider the current British dance profession. In year two you may look at role of the dance promoter or dance artists in education and the community. In year three you can gain valuable, ‘real life,’ practical experience in teaching, leading, organising and promoting dance. Throughout the course you develop the skills to undertake your own independent research. In years two and three you may choose to devise your own project with support from staff through a negotiated study. In year three this could involve work experience through a placement or project with a professional organisation.

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