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Graduate Studies in Dance

Graduate study in the Department of Dance reflects current national and international trends in dance practice and research while spearheading new areas of investigation. Our two graduate degrees afford opportunities for students to study and conduct research through the synthesis of three major spheres: creative process, theoretical inquiry and movement practice. Each degree program emerges from the studio experience, but is shaped through variation in emphasis across the three spheres. Graduate students focus on their individual areas of interest, including perspectives inside and outside the dance discipline. We locate ourselves within the active forefront of contemporary dance through choreographic and performative exploration, creative use of technologies, and re-imagining the understanding and documentation of our tradition.

Degrees Offered

The Department of Dance offers two terminal degrees for graduate study, leading either to the MFA in Dance for highest level of professional studies in dance or the PhD in Dance Studies for the highest level of academic studies in dance.

The MFA program encompasses the experiential, conceptual, and creative aspects of dance and prepares students to function as informed and skillful professionals in the major areas of study chosen.

The PhD program turns a scholarly lens to the study of dance, with theory, history and literature grounded in and emanating from this rich nucleus of human activity. We seek students who establish their work in existing Dance Studies literature. Both graduate dance programs support the intensive exploration of dance as a major art form and field of human endeavor.

As members of the University community, students have the opportunity to combine their academic and aesthetic concerns. While dance is the focal point of the student’s academic experience, the university offers an extraordinary variety of course offerings to enrich, extend and support the student’s major areas of investigation.

Our graduate students share their journies through our program on their E-Portfolio blogs

We encourage students to also consider a Graduate Minor or Graduate Interdisciplinary Specialization from the list available through the Graduate School. There are also many resources on campus for research funding, research presentations, and professional development.