Dance Performance and Teaching BA (Hons)

Dance Performance and Teaching BA (Hons)

School of Journalism, Media and Performance




Under- graduate



Contact UCLan

University of Central Lancashire
Preston, PR1 2HE, United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400

  • Duration:

    Full-time: Three years

  • Level:


  • Delivery:

    Campus, Full-time

  • UCAS Code:

    WX59; Short form: BA/DEP

  • Campus:

    Preston (Campus code: U)

  • Start Date:


  • Award Type:

    BA (Hons)

Why study this course?

Do you have a passion for dance and want to study in a non-competitive environment? This course offers a unique approach to dance training; embedding three intertwining strands of study that focus on you receiving a fully-rounded education to equip you to work as a Professional Dance Artist. The course specialises in Dance in Education & Community Settings and a large proportion of your studies will be spent on live teaching projects, delivering dance in primary and secondary schools, shadowing community dance practitioners and setting up your own community based dance projects.

You will also train in contemporary dance technique alongside an in-depth exploration into creative practice, making your own work as well as performing for professional choreographers. All our work here is underpinned by a somatic movement approach which gives you a strong foundation in bodily awareness and reflective practice to help you find the kind of dance artist you want to be. 

Entry Requirements 2017/18

104 Points at A2; General Studies accepted
BTEC Extended Diploma: Merit, Merit, Merit
BTEC Diploma: Distinction, Distinction
Pass Access Course: 106 UCAS Points
International Baccalaureate Diploma: 28P
IELTS: 6.0 with no component lower than 5.5
GCSE: 5 at grade C including Maths & English or equivalent

For changes to 2017 UCAS tariff entry requirements please see our important information. UCLan requires all undergraduate applicants to have a minimum attainment of five GCSEs at grade C and above, or equivalent, (including Maths and English). In 2017 and beyond we will view the new Grade 4 as being equivalent to a C grade and will therefore require students to achieve GCSE Grade 4 or above. However, if the subject is relevant to our degree programme and requires a higher GCSE grade (e.g. GCSE B grade), and/or includes a Professional body that governs the entry requirements, Grade 5 or above may be required.

If you left school or college some time ago and are without the normal entry qualifications, you will be considered equally for degree level study. We look for alternative/professional qualifications, life experience, motivation and commitment to support such applications.

UCLan June Open Days

Course at a Glance

Year 1

  • Dance History
  • Moving Bodies
  • Composition & Technique
  • Improvisation & Technique

Year 2

  • Technique & Choreography
  • Dance & Physical Performance
  • Moving & Making
  • Dance In Education

Year 3

  • Choreography
  • Technique & Performance
  • Self & Other
  • Teaching Dance in Different Contexts
  • Interdisciplinary

Further Information

BA (Hons) Dance Performance and Teaching is a three-year intensive programme of study, which aims to prepare students to work with confidence within creative, educational and community settings through dance, combining four intertwining strands of learning: Technique & Choreography, Contextual Studies, Somatic Movement Education, and Dance Education. All staff are practising dance artists, who know the profession’s standards and practices and ensure they are reflected in the course.

In the recent National Student Survey (NSS), 100% of our students agreed that the placement opportunities within the course were valuable in developing key skills and learning.

View the BA (Hons) Dance Performance & Teaching presentation (.pdf 4.4MB) for more information. 

Watch a recent video from the Degree show 2016 which highlights exemplary work from the course.

UCLan is a Centre of Excellence in Somatic Movement Education – this is the only course in the country where Somatic Practice can be studied in this manner.

You will receive regular technique classes as well as sessions in choreography and improvisation, which enhance both teaching practice and performance. A holistic approach to movement training informs the ethos of the course and as such, students learn to be non-judgemental towards their peers and self-appraising of their own skills and development. Somatic Movement Education is an integral part of students’ learning and thus supports the development of self-awareness and self-reflection, encouraging in depth movement experiences, self-care and sensitivity to others.


This course has been perfect for me, I am a different person because of it; I have been so supported to become the dancer, choreographer, teacher and artist I am today

Francesca Greenhalgh

Year 1

The first year of the course combines the first three of the strands, allowing you to find grounding within your own skills as a dancer, choreographer and scholar of dance, before going on to build skills in teaching during the second and third year.

The first year focuses on the development of movement-making skills and basic composition. It provides a historical understanding of the development of contemporary dance while enabling you to develop the academic study skills needed to produce undergraduate work. It develops self-awareness, sensory perception and anatomical knowledge while allowing you to enhance your technical and performance skills.


Year 2

The main focus of the second year of the course is the introduction of the education strand during which you will engage in a five week work placement each semester.

Within this year, you are exposed to various choreographic strategies and techniques, both traditional and non-traditional. You are given the opportunity to explore world dance forms while developing independent research skills. You are introduced to concepts, such as Jung’s Theories of Active Imagination, allowing you to deepen your understanding of yourself and your connection to others. The dance in education element focuses on dance in the national curriculum within the primary and secondary education sectors. Each semester includes five weeks of intensive learning at the university and a five-week teaching placement.

Year 3

The focus of the third year is independent learning with students developing greater degrees of autonomy in preparation for a professional career within the dance industry.

You are offered the opportunity to work intensively with a guest choreographer, performing the work created on a number of occasions. You then experience making your own, fully realised piece of choreography to be presented in the theatre. Academically you follow your own particular interest through engaging in an extended research process known as an Independent Project, and you embark on and in-depth encounter with the practice of Authentic Movement while exploring ideas relating to therapeutic contexts. Within the teaching strand, you explore dance in community contexts; semester 1 explores a diversity of community groups and their specific needs while semester 2 allows you to run your own community project.

I feel I have really found my path in life and I am really thankful for the course, helping me emerge as a dance artist and as an adult

Molly Stroyan

The course allows opportunity for students to engage with the wider dance industry in 3 main ways:

  1. Visiting Artists
  2. Shadowing Placements
  3. Placements

Visiting Artists:

We are fortunate to have built links with many dance artists/practitioners who have shared their skills, knowledge and expertise through workshops, performances and lectures. During 2012/13 alone, students worked with: Diane Amans, Candoco Dance Company, Protein Dance, Jasmine Pasch, 12 North, Levantes Dance Theatre, Le Petit Mort and Francis Angol.

Shadowing Placements:

We recognise the value of our students having the opportunity to go out of university and work alongside and support more experienced dance practitioners in their day-to-day environments. This provides our students with ‘first hand’ experience and the opportunity to learn about all aspects of the work of a dance artist.

Work Experience Placements:

Placement opportunities enable you to gain real life experience of dance teaching in primary and secondary education (second year) and in a community setting of your choice (third year). Students regularly develop longer term relationships through their work experience placements and this can often lead to work outside and beyond university.

Course Specification and Handbook

For a concise summary of the main features of this course, see our course specification.
For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.

For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:

Apply Now

You can apply through UCAS to start in September 2017 until 30th June

Contact Us

+44(0)1772 892400

Fees 2017/18

Full-time: £9,250 per year (UK/EU)
Part-time: £1,540 per 20 credits studied (UK/EU)

Tuition Fees are per year unless otherwise stated and may be subject to increase annually in line with UK Retail Price Index inflation rate

Further information:

For 2016/17 fees please refer to our fees page.

Scholarships and bursaries

Partner Institutions

International study is possible - we have links with a number of international places of study including Humboldt State University in California.

Industry Links

The course has strong links with the country’s leading professional dance practitioners and performance companies and offers opportunities to shadow practice, develop professional networks and perform in local events.

Additional teaching opportunities are always available on top of the degree requirements; we have developed apprentice opportunities with Ludus Dance and Preston Youth Dance Company, students often find themselves continuing their work in schools and community projects once their placement is finished.

English Regions Skills Review 2015

UCLan has received a special mention in the English Regions Skills Review 2015 for its investigative work in bridging the gap between education and the workplace. According to the Report:

The bond between education and the industry is far stronger in the regions. The links between the industry and colleges and universities are well forged and productive. Both sides are keen to work together . . . The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) is investigating a Spark finishing school to concentrate on specific skills gaps identified by this research (and others) around production management (among others).

At the forefront of this is the ‘soap-in-a-week’ collaboration in which ITV Studios and UCLan are partnering up. Cast and crew from Emmerdale and Coronation Street will work with UCLan students from a host of courses to brainstorm ideas, storyline the first episode, script, rehearse, shoot and show it, all in five days. ITV will be there for guidance only and the idea and execution will be done entirely by the students. For further information on this story, to receive a copy of the English Regions Skills Review, or for more details about how UCLan is bridging the gap between education and the creative industries, contact Emma Speed on 01772 895959.

Learning Environment and Assessment

There are two double modules in teaching practice (one in the second and one in the third year) enabling students to work within a wide range of educational and community dance settings. There are a number of contextual modules that offer students grounded knowledge in the development of both traditional and contemporary dance forms, supporting understanding within educational, community and therapeutic practice. A continuous strand of practical choreography modules enables students to hone their creative skills whilst realising dance theory in performance.

As the course is 75% practice, assessment takes place through a number of modes: practical (technical, creative and choreographic); written (essays, evaluations, reports and presentations). You will work in a variety of settings, most often in the dance studios but also within lecture theatres, seminar rooms and theatre spaces when on site. There are no written examinations.

This course gives clear direction into employment, it has opened up my career options, preparing me for future work in any area of dance I hope to pursue and giving me the training I need to be confident in my practice.

Kate Smalley


Our key aim is helping you prepare for a professional career in the dance profession and there are very strong links to employment on this programme. The course gives you a clear pathway to either employment in the field or further study, with live briefs, assessment rooted in practice and a strong connection to the profession, ensuring your employability. Many students also progress to Primary, Secondary and Post 16 PGCE courses, onto our MA Dance and Somatic Wellbeing Masters, or go on to become Independent Dance Artists who perform, create work, teach and manage community based projects.

BA Dance, Performance and Teaching News

UCLan dance students take talent into local community

Dance students from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) are sharing their talents with the community through a six-date tour of local schools and colleges.

The final year dance performance and teaching students have worked with professional dance artist Carl Harrison to create their latest contemporary dance touring work, MichaelMichaelMarthaMartha, which takes a quirky look at the spectrum of gender and associated stereotypes.

So far the students have performed to pupils at Longridge High School on the first date of their tour and are set to visit five other schools around Lancashire over the next few weeks. In addition, the dancers are also running educational workshops at each school to share their skills and knowledge with potential dance students of the future.

Click here for the full story

National Student Survey (NSS) 2015 Results

In the 2015 National Student Survey (NSS) Drama courses at UCLan have been ranked 15th out of 89 providers and received 100% ratings from students who completed the survey in the following categories:

  • Staff have made the subject interesting
  • The course has helped me present myself with confidence
  • My communication skills have improved