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Dance and Professional Practice

  • Module code: DC5004
  • Year: 2018/9
  • Level: Year 5
  • Credits: 30.00
  • Pre-requisites: Successful completion of Level 4 Dance requirements or equivalent
  • Co-requisites: None


This optional Level 5 year long module develops students' knowledge and understanding of the professional dance world.  The module is designed to develop student employability for a range of professional dance contexts and careers (for example dance management and dance company education).  Students will be encouraged to develop key professional skills needed for the workplace, such as CV writing and project management, as well as learning about the structures and policies of large-scale dance organisations in the UK, and professional standards and codes of conduct.  In the second part of the academic year students will gain first hand experience of project organisation and management by working in groups to set up a University focused dance event, dance performance or dance education workshop with specific roles tailored to students' career interests.  This module may also prepare students who wish to undertake the additional qualification of the Trinity College Diploma in Dance Teaching and Learning (Children and Young People) for examination in Unit 2 at the end of the academic year.


  • To develop student knowledge and understanding of dance careers and professional practice
  • To develop student employability and skills for career development planning

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate knowledge of relevant dance strategy, policies, practices and structures
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of legal compliance and policy issues affecting professional practice in dance
  • Effectively plan, manage and deliver a dance event, performance or workshop
  • Demonstrate the ability to develop an effective career development plan

Curriculum content

  • Structure and role of arts and dance organisations in the UK
  • Government and sectoral policy and strategy
  • Dance career routes and training
  • Statutory requirements for dance teaching in schools
  • Dance teaching in other contexts (arts and culture sectors, youth sector, health sector, sports sector, youth justice sectors)
  • Legal compliance for dance contexts (Disability Discrimination Act, equal opportunities, health and safety, safeguarding, disclosure, duty of care, data protection, insurance, tax, national insurance)
  • Effective project planning and dance event management
  • Professional standards and conduct for dance professional careers (NOS)
  • Self management (CPD, care of self, pitching for work, codes of practice, contracts, managing business)
  • Partnership working (project management, roles and responsibilities, setting objectives, negotiation)

Teaching and learning strategy

Lectures and discussion groups are used to introduce and examine areas of policy and professional practice and practical workshops in project planning and management assist students to develop key professional skills.  In teaching block one students will participate in a number of lectures and seminars delivered in a weekly two hour session that will introduce them to areas outlined in the key curriculum content.  At the end of teaching block one students will be set a project that they have to plan, manage and deliver in groups.  This project will be closely supervised by the module tutor across teaching block two, although students are encouraged to develop self-management and group working skills.

A number of key skills are developed as part of this module.  In particular students will develop self-awareness, research and information literacy, communication, numeracy, inter-personal, management and leadership, and creativity and problem-solving skills.  These will be developed through activities such as small group and class discussion, group planning and project development and presentations.  

Breakdown of Teaching and Learning Hours

Definitive KIS Category Indicative Description Hours
Scheduled learning and teaching Lecture / seminar 18
Scheduled learning and teaching Practical workshop 16
Guided independent study Independent study 256
Scheduled learning and teaching Group project 10
Total (number of credits x 10) 300

Assessment strategy

The assessments for this optional Level 5 module takes test the key academic and practical skills students require to progress effectively on this degree programme.

  • Project File (to include project planning and delivery materials, as well as an evaluation)  (2,500 words) 
  • Career Development Plan (1,000-1,500 words) 

Students will complete first drafts of set tasks during the course of study, and receive feedback on these before final submission. There will also be elements of formative assessment including a project proposal.  The Project Plan and Career Development Plan provides part of the assessment for Unit 2 of the Diploma in Dance Teaching and Leading.

Mapping of Learning Outcomes to Assessment Strategy (Indicative)

Learning Outcome Assessment Strategy
Demonstrate knowledge of relevant dance strategy, policies, practices and structures Project File and Career Development Plan
Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of legal compliance and policy issues affecting professional practice in dance Project File and Career Development Plan
Effectively plan, manage and deliver a dance event, performance or workshop Project File
Demonstrate the ability to develop an effective career development plan Career Development Plan

Breakdown of Major Categories of Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment Name Assessment Weighting
CWK Project file 60
CWK Career development plan 40
Total (to equal 100%) 100%

Achieving a pass

It IS NOT a requirement that any major assessment category is passed separately in order to achieve an overall pass for the module

Bibliography core texts

Jasper, L. & Siddal, J. (1999) Managing Dance: current issues and future practices. Horndon: Northcote House.

Bibliography recommended reading

Amans, D. (2008) An Introduction to Community Dance Practice Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.

Amans, D. (2010) Passport to Practice: an induction to professional practice in community dance Leicester: Foundation for Community Dance.

Brinson, P. (1991) Dance as Education London: Falmer.

Brinson, P. (ed.) (1982) The Arts in Schools: principles, practice and provision London Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation.

Carty, H. (2005) Serious about Dance? Let's Talk: Asian, African, Caribbean, Disability and Community Dance Leicester: Peepul Centre.

Fisher, J. and Shelton, B. (2002) Face to Face: making dance and theatre in community Melbourne: Spinifex Press.

Gough, M. (1999) Knowing Dance London: Dance Books.

Jones, I. (2010) Dance and Disabled People Handbook Leicester: Foundation for Community Dance.

Kuppers, P. (2007) Community Performance: an introduction London:Routledge.

Kuppers, P. and Robertson, G. (eds.) (2007). The Community Performance Reader London: Routlegde.

Matarasso, F. (1997) Use or Ornament? The social impact of participation in the arts Stroud: Comedia.

Nind, M. et al, (2003) Diverse Perspectives London: David Fulton.

Pethybridge, R. (2010) Dance and Age Inclusive Practice Leicester: Foundation for Community Dance.

Topping, K. & Maloney, S. (2005) The RoutledgeFalmer Reader in Inclusive Education London: RoutledgeFalmer.

Tufnell, M. (2010) Dance, Health and Wellbeing handbook Leicester: Foundation for Community Dance.

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