Dance students

BA (Hons) Dance

Develop your creativity through choreography, research, performance and contextual studies

3 years Full Time
Bishop Otter Campus


This BA (Hons) Dance course offers a a broad range of modules to prepare you for various dance careers. You have the opportunity to study all aspects of this diverse and growing dance industry and pursue your love of dance in daily technique classes.

You will develop your unique choreographic ‘voice’ and perform throughout your studies. You will discover topics including dance technique, choreography, dance research, and explore where dance sits within a wider arts, cultural and dance science context. With regular practical dance classes, applied dance practice and work placements to give you real-world experience, this degree has a theory to practice ratio of 60:40.

Your theoretical study will inform your performance. For example you may study practice in the studio alongside anatomy theory in the classroom. Daily practical classes allow you to engage in healthy, safe dance practice including floor, ballet barre, centre work, traveling exercises and improvisational exercises designed to develop the technique skills you need to study dance at a university level.  

You will perform throughout your studies including at end of semester shows and have the opportunity to take part in an international exchange programme during your second year.

On this course you will:

  • Complete daily dance technique classes – five classes per week in a range of styles, including contemporary technique and ballet.
  • Performer regularly, including at end of semester shows.
  • Build your practical experience and academic subject knowledge.
  • Join a close dance community and work dance students from other courses.
  • Use University facilities including performance and rehearsal spaces.

Teaching and Assessment

How you will learn

You will complete theoretical and practical study in most of your modules. Your typical study week will include dance technique classes, supplemental training practices, lectures, seminars, tutorials, laboratory skills sessions, studio-based workshops and application of practice.

Outside of scheduled classes you will complete independent study including researching texts, completing individual or group tasks and working on your assignments.


BA (Hons) Dance
"I chose to study at the University of Chichester because of the practical focus. I wanted to feel challenged physically, as well as creatively and theoretically. I am now in my second year and am feeling yet more challenged and engaged. The theory based modules feel relevant and interesting; allowing you to explore politics, philosophy and other subjects that I have discovered link to dance. I would say that creativity and choreography is the departments strength. The teaching is very thought out and encourages students to think and create in a way they never have before."

The Course

What you will study

This degree is made up of modules. You will study a selection of core and optional modules each year. Each module is delivered differently depending on its content and focus of study.

During your first year you will gain a solid foundation in dance practice and theory with daily technique classes to explore composition and find your individual choreographic voice. In your second year you will start to specialise; you could focus on practical areas such as repertory, improvisation and performance, or broaden your subject understanding by selecting modules like The Dancer’s Body, Scenography or Popular Dance.

In your third year you can specialise further by choosing modules on dance practice and performance that relate directly to careers in performance, choreography, teaching, dance movement psychotherapy, community dance, production or administration. You will also complete your final year project which can be presented practically, submitted as a written assignment, or submitted as a combination of these options.

If you study the Top-Up version of this course you will complete the Year 2 and Year 3 modules below.  

This list is indicative and subject to change.

Select a year

Examining Dance History

Students are introduced to ‘key figures’ who are understood to have shaped Theatre Dance (Ballet and/or Modern and Contemporary Dance practice) in the USA, UK, and the rest of Europe. Selection is made from a variety of dance practitioners and includes reference to wider artistic, cultural, and political contexts. Students are also introduced to the notion of academic writing, which encourages a more balanced and objective interpretation of the evidence under investigation.

Re-examining Dance

This module is an opportunity to consider ideas that have shaped the dance landscape and resulted in a range of dance performances. You will explore dance examples from the UK or the widening global dance field. You will complete a detailed exploration of one dance example (chosen by your tutor) which will involve both practical and theoretical underpinning which you will explore the technique and style of the work and the historical, cultural, political and/or artistic contexts in which it resides.

Thinking Through Dance

Using a combination of practical workshops and lectures, the module will explore a range of questions and ideas that underpin contemporary dance. This module is about doing and thinking. You will question different ways of thinking about dance performance, dance philosophy, and its’ embodiment in practice and explore examples from different performance genres, considering their characteristics in relation to broader ideas and events.

Choreography and Devising

The module will introduce a range of choreographic techniques, structures and working methods to initiate developments of choreographic skill. You will complete a tutor-led group performance which will enable you to engage creatively with current choreographic processes, strategies and direction in the development of a performance work through a collective process.

Choreography and Performance

You will explore the creative, compositional, devising and production approaches characteristics of contemporary performance practice through the development of student-led group performance work. You are encouraged to consider theme, expression and communication through devices and strategies that extend and develop movement possibilities, theatrical modes of presentation and points of view. You will engage in processes-led investigations that reflect performative contexts within the professional dance sector, leading to an explicit outcome.

Dance Techniques

You will complete daily technique classes to develop your performance and dance understanding. You will refine your technical skills through reflective practice. You will explore explore key elements of dance fitness.

Research Methodologies in Dance

You will develop a model for your future dissertation project by building on the study skills and knowledge of dance you have already gained on your course. You will learn how to write a research project and explore what methodologies and source materials are most appropriate for your project. You will consider and experiment with different methodologies including various theoretical frameworks (historical, cultural, aesthetic, ethnographic), Practice as Research, and quantitative/qualitative research to cultivate a creative approach to their research and writing. You will use formal written presentation skills ranging from referencing to the use of appendices, a bibliography and general issues relating to how to structure and develop an argument.

Improvisation and Performance

In this module you will further develop your performance skills and vocabulary in solo performance and group improvisation. You will use spontaneous compositional practice in group situations to explore relationship possibilities and the develop your kinaesthetic, spatial and aural awareness. You will build towards setting structures for performance through an understanding of scores and prepare for performed and assessed structured improvisations at the end of the semester.

Safe Dance Practice (connected with Safe in Dance International certificate)

This module addresses the five knowledge areas identified by Safe in Dance International (SiDI) and their 10 associated core principles of healthy dance practice. You will cover topics including health and safety in the dance environment, injury reduction and management, anatomical and biomechanical principles of alignment, and psychological aspects of dance practice. You will also explore the principles of integrated and supplemental fitness and conditioning for dancers, effective warm-up and cool-downs, dance science informed considerations for progression, sequencing and structure of dance activities, an overview of nutrition and hydration needs for the dancer and considerations for varying group-specific needs and risk factors (such as age and ability/disability of dance participants). You will have the option to complete the industry standard Safe in Dance International (SiDI) certification which credits safe dance practice knowledge and application and supports future employability 

Popular Dance: Street, Stage, Screen

The module explores popular dance practices across a range of contexts such as popular screendance (an intertextual network connecting social media, television, music video and film), local communities of globally interconnected practice (taught and social settings), participatory events (carnivals, competitions, protests) and popular performance (staged events, for example stage musicals or neo-burlesque). You will discuss critical concepts in the study of popular dance such as identity, value, globalisation, commercialisation, cultural capital, power and resistance, appropriation (e.g. copyright), labour and affect. 

Scenography for Dance

Scenography, defined as ‘the dynamic role design plays upon the stage, orchestrating the visual and sensory environment’ (Howard, 2002) has had a close relationship with contemporary performance in its development through the twentieth and into the twenty-first century. Key figures in dance as diverse as Loie Fuller, Wayne McGregor and Russell Maliphant have all made contributions to the recognition and progression of scenographic art. This module introduces the role of lighting and projection as scenographic elements in dance. It addresses themes such as visual composition, the experience of light and the semiotics of performance.

Dance Technique (Level 5)

You will continue to train your technique and develop your understanding in daily classes. 

Dance Movement Psychotherapy (1 & 2)

This this module you will examine the theory and practice of dance movement psychotherapy (DMP) and explore a range of theoretical bases which can underpin your practice. The module covers psychodynamic, humanistic and transpersonal approaches, and explores integrative creative practice. You will draw upon the related models of Authentic Movement and movement-based expressive arts therapy (deriving from the Halprin/Tamalpa model).

Teaching Dance Technique

You will build on your experience from Teaching Dance Technique and further develop your teaching skills to effectively deliver dance lesson content to different groups of participants. Where possible your group will observe, work with or teach groups outside of the University to experience real situations in preparation for their final practical teaching assessment. You will use micro teaching and group experiential sessions to focus on exploring appropriate lesson content and teaching methods. 

Choreographic Projects

Clear dialogue between process and product allows students to research, direct and develop a work of choreography. Communication of meaning and imagery, development of personal style, dance and music partnerships and use of scenography to support thematic intent (costume, lighting, visual effects, objects and/or set) are explored in relation to imaginative, project-specific problem-solving. Methodologies and techniques are revisited and used to define and refine thematic content in works- in-progress. Choreographic process is considered and analysed through a critically reflective lens, supported by pre-assessments furthering self and peer-appraisal of works in progress. Theatre production enables students meet the demands of public dance performance Assessment: practical - create work for a performance

Applied Dance: Community Production & Administration (Placement)

In this module you will undertake a work placement in a dance related role. You could work in dance administration, technical production or work in the community dance sector. You will be required to apply your own decision- making skills and exercise your own initiative during your placement, and to reflect on and evaluate personal strengths and weaknesses. Potential placement venues include regional dance agencies, small scale dance companies, community dance venues, educational institutions or dance magazines. If you choose to study the 45-credit option of this module you will have selected to work with 3Fall Dance Company or mapdance in an intensive technical theatre practice or administration role. You will work alongside the company in preparing for the tour in semester 1 and be fully involved in the touring schedule in the first half of semester 2. 

Body Politics

You will analyse a wide range of dance practices in relation to twentieth- and twenty-first-century debates about the politics of the body. You could examine historical and contemporary, popular and ‘high art’, Western and non-Western dance. Body politics includes the role of the body in mass culture, the extent to which the body is controlled by or resistant to the state, the role of the body in colonisation and decolonisation, the role of the body in negotiating local, national and global identities, the role of the body in constructing sexual and gender identities and the relationship between the body and technology. You will be assessed through an essay or a lecture demonstration.

Dance Technique (Level 6)

You will continue to train your technique and develop your understanding in daily classes. 

Dance Dissertation Project

This investigative project encourages you to demonstrate a systematic understanding of a key area of dance practice or research. You will use a combination of written and/or practical methodologies to explore a research area that is of personal interest to you and also informed by aspects of the discipline. You will also engage with more generic skills designed to extend your knowledge in relation to the demands of independent research. For instance, you will learn to select appropriate topics for research; use valid research methods including retrieval skills; engage with critical analysis and the evaluation of source material and structure a coherent argument or line of enquiry in relation to both written and practical elements of the dissertation.


Rehearse and perform in practical spaces

You will perform in an Arts Council funded Dance Theatre Space and rehearse in four superb dance studios, the large gymnasium and two sprung-floor spaces. You will also be able to take advantage of a programme of dance company performances, workshops and events supported by Arts Council funding. 

Work Placements

Take on industry roles

You will have the opportunity to undertake a work placement with a high-profile dance company, arts organisation, or educational setting during your degree. This will help you gain workplace experience and prepare for a range of careers. 

The Dance Department’s strong links with dance companies and organisations across the country can help you secure successful work experience and placement opportunities.

Previous students have worked at companies including: 

  • Motionhouse
  • Loop Dance
  • Stop Gap
  • Jasmin Vardimon
  • South East Dance
  • Sussex Dance Network
  • The Point
  • Yorke Dance Project
  • One Dance UK
  • Scottish Ballet
  • National Dance Company of Wales
  • Pavilion Dance South West
  • Far Flung Dance Theatre

Study Abroad Opportunities

You will be able to complete an international or European exchange as part of your studies. You could undertake an exchange for 1 semester or a whole year at one of our partnership institutions in Canada, USA, Sweden, Portugal, Israel, Norway or elsewhere.


Where you could go after your studies

This BA (Hons) Dance degree prepares you for a range of careers across the dance industry.

You will prepare for the world of work throughout your degree. Several course modules support work-based learning opportunities alongside the 3Fall Dance Company or mapdance, as well as teaching placements.

Past students have gone on to work at leading dance institutions such as:

  • Sadler’s Wells
  • RAD
  • Trinity Laban
  • ISTD
  • The Point

You could become a:

  • Choreographer
  • Community dance practitioner
  • Dance company education officer
  • Dance movement psychotherapist (with postgraduate study)
  • Dance or arts administrator
  • Dance journalist or critic
  • Independent dance artist (performer, choreographer)
  • Stage manager
  • Teacher in primary, secondary, further and higher education (with postgraduate study)
  • Postgraduate student and researcher

Further Study

You could choose to continue your studies at postgraduate level.

Study options at the University of Chichester include:

  • MA Performance: Dance
  • MA Dance Research
  • MA Choreography and Professional Practice
  • MA Dance, Somatics and Dance Science
  • MA Choreography (Independent Research)
  • MA Dance: Advanced Practice

University of Chichester alumni receive a discount on postgraduate fees.

Course Costs

Course Fees 2022/23

UK fee
International fee

For further details about fees, please see our Tuition Fee page.

For further details about international scholarships, please see our Scholarships page.

Entry Requirements

Typical offers (individual offers may vary):

tariff points from A levels or combination with AS / EPQ / BTEC/ Cambridge Technical.
A Levels
28 points
with no element lower than 5.5.


You will participate in a dance audition (two and half hour practical) which is designed to assess your potential to respond both technically and expressively. You will also complete an interview where you can showcase your interest and training or experience in dance. Find out more about this process below. 

BA (Hons) Dance Studies (Top-Up) typical offer (individual offers may vary):

Relevant foundation degree or HND
with no element lower than 5.5.

International students for BA (Hons) Dance Studies (Top-Up) should have:

Dance Foundation Degree or Performance (Dance) Foundation degree
or equivalent to level 5 with 240 credits achieved.
An overseas undergraduate degree
Good grade
with no component below 5.5.

Auditions and Interviews

The application process

Auditions and interviews usually run from December until March. As well as your interview and practical audition, you will submit a short written task before your interview. 

We aim to offer you a genuine dialogue during your application process. This gives you a sense of worth and achievement from the audition process itself; a sense of ownership for you during the process and, ultimately, is an opportunity for us to get a clear understanding of who you are, what you need, and how we can best prepare you for your degree.

We judge you on your skills, your potential, and your personality, not your background.

There is a £25 fee for the audition which can be paid via our online store.


You will be interviewed in pairs or threes. You will be asked about your experience and interest in dance and why you wish to study dance. This interview format is similar to the tutorials and seminar-based activities you will experience at the University so you are encouraged to discuss ideas with each other. We offer a range of courses so we are likely to ask about why you have selected this specific course.

We want to see a student who is genuinely interested in studying contemporary dance and is prepared to move beyond dance practice as a hobby. We like to hear about the professionals (choreographers, dancers, researchers) who interest and inspire you and your aspirations for the future.

Practical Auditions

The practical audition is designed to mirror a first-year experience so you will also take part in a tutor-led contemporary technique class and a creative task driven workshop.

We are looking for your potential for contemporary dance study (technique and creative practice) and how you work with others on practical tasks. We understand that you may feel nervous about dancing in front of an audition panel and will do our best to put you at ease so that you can perform to the best of your ability. 

Please wear dance clothes that you can move easily in. For example, tights, leggings or dance trousers with a leotard or fitted top. You will dance in bare feet for your contemporary dance and creative session.

We like our students to be enthusiastic, excited about studying contemporary dance, and prepared to have a go even if something is challenging. Please don’t worry about any aspect of the practical audition and remember that our students come from a range of dance backgrounds for all of our course. We do not expect perfection and are looking for your potential.

Written Tasks

The written course is designed to show us your potential and for you to share your ideas about dance with us. There are different written tasks depending on which course you apply for.

BA (Hons) Dance

You will need to prepare an essay reviewing a live or recorded performance you have seen recently. Your submission should be approximately one side of A4 and typed in 12-point font.

You are strongly advised not to write about any set works you are studying for your A level or BTEC course.

Auditioning for More Than One Course

Different courses have different requirements. If you are auditioning for:

  • BA (Hons) Dance and BA (Hons) Dance Performance: you should complete the written essay and prepare a solo
  • BSc (Hons) Dance Science and BA (Hons) Dance: you should complete the dance science essay
  • BSc (Hons) Dance Science and BA (Hons) Dance Performance: you should complete the dance science essay and prepare a solo

In your interview we will discuss which course you are most suited to.

How to Book Your Audition

If you are invited to audition you will receive an email asking you to book your audition date on ChiView. If you are unsuccessful we will email you to let you know.

You can usually book two or three different days on ChiView at one time. Once these dates are close ChiView will refresh to show new options. If none of the current dates suit you then you should wait until the dates renew and check again. Dates are released two to three weeks in advance.

Once you have booked your audition or interview you will have access to the relevant documents on ChiView.

Log in to the ChiView portal, click on ‘Events schedule’ and then ‘View details’ to view, download, or print documents telling you how to prepare for your audition and what to expect on the day.

If your situation changes and you can no longer attend your interview date you should cancel your booking in ChiView by visiting your ‘Event Schedule’ and clicking ‘Cancel Attendance’. You also need to inform the admissions team by emailing so we can send you a new audition invitation.

Using ChiView

Sometimes if you are viewing your ChiView portal on a phone you will not be able to see the page correctly. If this happens you should try again on another device.

You may need to clear your browser history.

If you are still unable to see the ‘View details’ button, please check that you have successfully booked your audition/interview by clicking ‘respond to interview invitation’.

If all else fails please email with query and applicant number.

Auditioning for More Than One Course

Different courses have different requirements. If you are auditioning for:

  • BA (Hons) Dance and BA (Hons) Dance Performance: you should complete the written essay and prepare a solo
  • BSc (Hons) Dance Science and BA (Hons) Dance: you should complete the dance science essay
  • BSc (Hons) Dance Science and BA (Hons) Dance Performance: you should complete the dance science essay and prepare a solo

In your interview we will discuss which course you are most suited to.

What is the difference between the BA (Hons) Dance and BA (Hons) Dance Performance?

BA (Hons) Dance is a broad-based dance education offering a range of modules that lead to employment options in various dance careers. The course concludes with an extended project and there are opportunities for a professional placement.

BA (Hons) Dance Performance offers an increased focus on technical training and performance practice in contemporary dance, resulting in a more directed modular menu across the three years. The course concludes with the students dancing as performers in 3Fall Dance Company.

Can I change my application to a different course?

Yes. Email the Admissions Tutor for the course you want to change to; complete the preparation for that course. At your audition please highlight your change of course with a member of staff.

I am interested in Dance Science, but not sure whether I want to do the BSc or the MSci, do I need to decide now?

There are different entrance and progression criteria for the BSc and the MSci programmes. If you meet these criteria you can opt for either course. If you enrol on the MSci from the outset you will be more likely to have your funding guaranteed for the full four years. It is possible to transfer from one programme to the other after you begin your studies, up until commencing your third year.

What if I forget my written task or Health and Injury Questionnaire?

You can send it to us after the audition, although we won’t be able to process your application until we have received everything.

Your Audition Day

On The Day

You audition day will include your interview, practical audition, and any additional tasks you need for your course. You will attend the campus and have the opportunity to learn about our different courses, department, and the University of Chichester in an initial group meeting.

You will complete your practical audition and your guests can wait and have a coffee. We will accompany during your practical piece so please bring copies of any piano accompaniment parts. Please do not bring photocopies unless you have the written permission of the copyright holder.

If you need particular equipment like a drum kit, orchestral percussion or a concert harp, please let the admissions team know so we can have this available for you. If you need to borrow an instrument because you won’t be able to bring your own, like a double bass or cello, please let us know so we can make sure there is one for you to use.

After the practical audition we will run a Q&A session for you and your guests to ask any questions you have.

What Do I Need to Bring?

On your audition day you will need:

  • a passport-sized photograph of you to help us identify you
  • your completed Health and Injury Questionnaire (available on ChiView after you book your audition)
  • your written task(s)
  • a pre-prepared 1-minute solo in a contemporary dance style if you are applying for BA (Hons) Dance Performance or BA (Hons) Dance, Aerial and Physical Theatre


You can park on-site if you buy a pay-and-display ticket but please note that the demand for car park spaces exceeds the spaces available, particularly during term time. For this reason, there are specific parking controls and restrictions to ensure the efficient and effective operation of the University, equity of access and fairness.

There are clearly marked disabled parking bays available at both campuses.

After Your Audition

After your audition we will discuss your application and our decision onto the admissions team who will update our decision on UCAS. We aim to let you know within a few days of your audition.

  • We make bespoke offers: Your offer is specifically for you. If we offer less than your predicted grades, this is because we want you to join us and we want to take a bit of pressure off of you heading into your exams.
  • We don’t do unconditional offers: Unless you already have your grades (you are a mature student), we will always insist on certain grade achievements because we want you to succeed in all aspects of your academic life including your A levels, BTEC, etc.
  • If you do not get the grades you wanted: Don’t panic. You received an offer because you were good enough for the department at audition. Ring us on the clearing hotline so we can discuss things with you.
  • We may offer you a different course: We may offer you a place on a course within the department that is different to the one they applied for. If this is the case we will speak to you about this at your audition or shortly afterwards. We will explain our reasoning, which will revolve around placing you on the most appropriate course where we think you will thrive.


Frequently asked questions

How do I apply?

Click the ‘Apply now’ button to go to relevant UCAS page.

What are UCAS tariff points?

Many qualifications have a UCAS Tariff value. The score depends on the qualification, and the grade you achieved.

How do I know what my UCAS tariff points are?

Head to the UCAS Tariff Points web page where you can find a tariff points calculator that can tell you how much your qualification and grades are worth.

When does this course start?

This course starts in September 2022.

Our address

I’m looking for