Dance Major Curriculum
What concentrations exist within the Drexel Dance Major?
Students focused on dance/movement therapy prepare for jobs as dance/movement therapists—these students earn a BS degree in Dance during their first four years of study. They then have the option to do two additional years of study to earn an MA in Creative Arts in Therapy through the College of Nursing and Health Professions at Drexel, in order to become a registered dance/movement therapist.
Students focused on dance in education prepare for jobs as elementary school teachers (grades kindergarten through 4) who may also serve as school dance specialists. Students choosing this option will earn a BS degree in Dance and may elect to continue for a fifth year of study to earn an MS in Teaching, Learning and Curriculum through the Drexel School of Education. Students who successfully complete the five-year BS/MS option in education will then be recommended to the State for a Pennsylvania Teaching Certificate in the area of Elementary Education for K-4 certification in general education.
Students focused on physical therapy prepare to work as physical therapists in a variety of settings, including hospitals, treatment centers, schools, and private practice. Students interested in the physical therapy option will complete the four-year BS degree in Dance along with a series of recommended electives in the physical sciences. After completion of the BS degree, students may opt to continue their education for an additional three years in the College of Nursing and Health Professions to earn a DPT and become a licensed physical therapist.
Students focused on the custom design track work closely with faculty mentorship and advice to create a unique career in dance. Many students in this focus select performance, which prepares them to work as performers and/or choreographers in a variety of settings. Students interested in the performance option will complete the four-year BS degree in dance, with an emphasis on collaborative and interdisciplinary work.
Coursework in Dance at Drexel
The courses included in the Dance major include a mixture of artistic and academic experiences. Students will not only study the theoretical foundations of the fields they are entering, but also have extensive opportunity to dance, choreograph, and perform. Dancers need to develop their technical and expressive skills as artists in order to bring a depth of experience to both therapy and teaching. To bridge the experiences that dancers will have in the studio and on the stage to their professional field, the technique classes will require students to write at least one self-reflective paper each term. Students will explore in writing their personal goals and accomplishments during the course of the technique class. This act of continual self-reflection will reinforce the importance of the students' discovering their personal voices and identities through dance and its relevance to therapy and education. These reflection papers will become part of the student's threshold review portfolio.
Below is a sample of offered courses:
- Modern Dance
- Jazz Dance
- Hip Hop Dance
- African Dance
- Dance Pedagogy
- Dance Kinesiology
- Dance Composition
- Foundation of Somatics
- Twentieth Century Dance
- Dance Aesthetics and Criticism
Check out our Course Catalog for a complete list of courses, degree requirements, and course descriptions.
Sophomore Year Portfolio Review:
At the beginning of the spring quarter of the sophomore year of study, students in all career options of the major will participate in a Threshold Review assessment procedure. This process consists of assembling a self-reflective portfolio and engaging in an interview process with undergraduate dance faculty and faculty of the graduate program to which the student aspires. Faculty and student together evaluate each student’s strengths, weaknesses and progress in the degree with an eye to graduate school and career preparedness. Results of the Threshold Review vary depending on the intended program of study, but may include admission to the BS/MS accelerated program in education, a place reserved in the D/MT masters program and/or recommendations for co-op placements and further study.
Part Time Options: Dance Courses
The Part Time Professional Option is designed for professional dancers interested in pursuing a BS degree in Dance while continuing their performance careers, or at the conclusion of their performing careers. This program grants “professional life experience” credits and an extended period of time to fulfill the remaining required courses.
The Certificate of Study in Dance program is a 1-year option for any qualified professional dancer to assess whether they have the interest and aptitude for entering an undergraduate dance program. The certificate program has no entrance requirement beyond possession of a high school diploma or GED equivalency. Curriculum for the certificate program will be 100% transferable into the Part Time Professional Option.
Apply for the Part Time Professional Option
Dance Program Sample Plans of Study
The following plans of study are linked to the Course Catalog and are for review purposes only. Several factors influence the sequencing of those courses including: transfer credits, AP credits, academic year entering the program and programmatic changes. Students should refer to their individualized DegreeWorks account and consult with their Academic Advisor to ensure they meet all degree requirements in a timely manner.
Westphal College Office of Student Services