Postgraduate MA

Dance: Creative Dance Education

Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology




One year

Next enrolment

September 2020


In a nutshell

This course explores the creative and professional skills needed for dance teachers, educators and youth dance leaders. The programme has a similar structure to a PGCE Dance: theoretical modules in dance pedagogy and two long teaching placements. It explores the wider educational needs and remits for dance teachers beyond secondary schools: further education colleges, youth dance groups, dance schools and a range of community dance settings.

This programme develops emerging dance educators in a unique way: identifying and supporting the artistry inherent in dance teaching. It will highlight the role of choreography in teaching young people and explore the creative aspects of a dance educator through choreographic skills specific to making dance work with and for young people.

PGCE Dance holders have the opportunity to undertake a ‘top-up’ route to pursue the MA on one-year, part-time course. For dance educators at any stage in their career, this course will support you in developing your creative skills and deepening your abilities to support your students in and through dance.

You will:
  • practice in a creative university with leading industry partnerships, including relationships with Arts Council England in talent development, OneDanceUK, and many regional youth dance companies.
  • have the opportunity to apply through a possible part-time ‘top-up route’, should you hold a PGCE Dance and want to pursue an MA Dance.

Find out more by signing up to our upcoming Open Day, or if you have any general questions please contact course enquiries.

You can also find helpful FAQs, learn more about student life at Salford or explore all our Dance courses. Continue reading to understand more about this MA Dance: Creative Dance Education course.


options available


students accepted

This is for you if...


you are an emerging or established dance educator needing the time and support to deepen your creative work and advance your career towards a new aspiration.


you want to develop as both a dance teacher and creative artist, enabling you to pursue a sustainable career in your field.


you wish to engage with key theories, concepts and practices central to dance teaching and education.

Course details

All about the course

We will support you to expand and refine your approaches as a dance educator working in a wide range of educational situations.

Throughout the programme, you will:

  • Engage with key theories, concepts and practices central to dance teaching and education
  • Engage with creative trends and current issues within dance teaching, such as talent development, core UK dance curriculums and strategies for inclusive dance teaching
  • Undertake two  teaching placements, supporting dance education delivery in both curricular and extra-curricular/non-curricular settings
  • Develop your own creative research project, drawing on your experiences in teaching and choreography and testing your future creative practices your wider work as a dance educator
Semester one

Choreographic Practices

This module interrogates key concepts, theories and practices inherent in contemporary choreographic practice. It integrates a mixture of practical workshops and seminars and is delivered in an intensive 6-week blocks.  The practical workshops will introduce a range of approaches to dance-making with specific sessions focused on making work with and for young people. The seminar series will include both screening and discussions of professional practitioners and their work.

Approaches To Dance Pedagogy

In this module, you will be introduced to the creative and physical techniques implicit in dance workshop development and delivery. This course explores the methods and practices of teaching dance, but specific to a workshop setting, including areas such as:

  • Talent development for young dancers
  • Engagement with current issues through dance experience
  • Workshop design
  • Educational aspects of dance performance and touring.
Semester two

Approaches To Dance Pedagogy

In this module, you will be introduced to the creative and physical techniques implicit in dance workshop development and delivery. This course explores the methods and practices of teaching dance, but specific to a workshop setting, including areas such as:

  • Talent development for young dancers
  • Engagement with current issues through dance experience
  • Workshop design
  • Educational aspects of dance performance and touring.

Dance Teaching Placement

This module embeds the student in a 12-14 week placement within a dance teaching setting.  Working alongside established dance teachers and/or workshop leaders, you will develop knowledge, skills and experience in teaching dance.  The Dance Teaching Placement works in conjunction with the Industry Placement module, ensuring that students have a balance of placements in both curriculum based (i.e. schools, colleges) and non-curriculum based settings. You will be supported by a staff supervisor who will support you in connecting the placement experience with your own development as a creative dance educator.

Teaching Strategy and Design In Dance

This practical and theoretical module delves into the concepts and approaches central to dance teaching within a curriculum setting. Module content will consider the function of curriculum as the ‘spine’ of the learning experience and explore creative and physical approaches to engage students with new skills and knowledge within and through dance. This module is taught in an intensive, two-week block and will equip you with a foundation of pedagogic theory and practical knowledge central to work in the dance studio as a classroom.

Semester three

Practice-As-Research Project/Dissertation

In this final project, you will be asked to propose an area of exploration, arising from your experiences in the previous modules and focused on future work within profession. Upon submitting a proposal, you will be assigned a supervisor to support you on this journey of enquiry. Either individually or in collaboration with others, the results of these investigations will be presented in dialogue with opportunities emergent in the Collaborative Practices in Dance module, aiming to make the closest links between your final project and professional activity happening in the local, regional and national dance ecology.

Industry Placement

This module embeds the student in a second 12-14 week placement within a dance teaching setting.  Having completed the Dance Teaching Placement, this module will complement that experience, ensuring that you have held placements in both curriculum based (i.e. schools, colleges) and non-curriculum based settings.  Knowledge, skills and experiences developed in the first placement will be re-interrogated in this differentiated setting.  Your staff supervisor will continue to support you in connecting the placement experiences to the areas for creative research proposed for the Practice-as-Research Project/ Dissertation module.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What will I be doing?


As the course is highly practical in nature, you will be taught in a mixture of physical and practical methods. This includes practical demonstration in technique classes and workshops, with a mixture of verbal and embodied feedback given throughout.

Modules are also supported by practical workshops, lectures, seminars and facilitated student discussion. In many areas, theoretical or screened content is related directly to the students’ practical experiences to underpin their holistic development as dance educators.

You will be supported by staff supervision in your dance teaching/industry placements and independent research projects. In these final projects, student-centred approaches consider the individual’s chosen area of enquiry and combine instruction with guidance and feedback to support your personal development and exploration.


Assessment on this course is done through a combination of formative and summative assessment, supporting and promoting the slow and ongoing nature of your personal development. There will also be formal means to present the outcome of your learning through writing, practical presentations and performances.

You will be assessed through: performances, portfolios of creative, reflective and analytical written work, practical/creative and oral presentations, as well as essays.

Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology

All our Dance courses are delivered by the Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology.

Our School and University have strong and long-lasting relationships with local and national industry.

Once you graduate with us, you’ll join a thriving alumni community in Greater Manchester and beyond.


You will benefit from our industry-standard facilities including New Adelphi Theatre, Studio Theatre and specialist dance spaces.

Digital Performance Lab at the MediaCityUK campus.

Teacher Profile

Sarah Jane Lockwood, Programme Leader of MA Dance: Creative Dance Education

Sarah is an experienced Independent Dance Artist from Lancashire. She graduated from Middlesex University with BA (Hons) Dance Performance and Laban Conservatoire for Contemporary Dance.In 2013 Sarah was awarded the Dean’s Scholarship for Professional Excellence at Middlesex University, which enabled her to study for her MA in Professional Practice and the Dance Technique Pedagogy.

Her research area focuses on CPD provision in the North of England, looking specifically at the technical training for professional dancers. Sarah was recently selected for Dance UK Future Leaders Teacher Mentoring Programme and is excited to work with a mentor to further develop her practice in line with her MA research.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

Graduates will be able to work in a range of environments within the cultural sector.

A taste of what you could become

A dance teacher

A creative educator/lecturer

A freelance dance artist

A dance animateur or youth dance leader

An arts administrator

And more...

Career Links

This programme has links with a number of industry bodies, including:

  • OneDanceUK
  • The Lowry’s Youth Development Team and Commotions Youth Dance Company
  • Dance Manchester
  • Ludus Dance and LYDC

In addition, we have an annual dance artist-in-residence scheme which has engaged with companies such as Company Chameleon, Hawk Dance Theatre, Kapow Dance Theatre, along with many independent dance artists. These schemes bring workshops, apprenticeships, performance and project opportunities and mentoring opportunities to our dance students. In addition, we hold two intensive masterclass weeks each academic year, hosting a range of national and international dance artists to work with our under and postgraduate dance students, recently including work with choreographers Gary Clarke and Gemma Nixon, among many others.


What you need to know

This course is for emerging and established dance educators needing the time and support to deepen their creative work and advance their careers towards a new aspiration. As such, we are seeking graduates from dance-related undergraduate programmes at any stage in their career as dance teachers or youth dance leaders.

This programme will require students to challenge, explore, expand and potentially re-think their practices in creative dance education. As such, students will need to be prepared for intensive studio-based creative work, as well as rigorous, independent and creative research.

Standard entry requirements

Standard entry requirements

Applicants to this programme must have a good degree in a dance-related subject

The application process will also involve a practical audition and record of a piece of choreography (live or pre-recorded). In a personal statement (approximately 400 words), students will be asked to write about the ways that this specific MA programme will help them advance from their current work within dance towards specific career aspirations. Both skype and digitally transferred materials can be considered in support of the application’s practical elements.

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.5, with no element below 5.5, is proof of this.

Alternative entry requirements

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2020/21 £7,776per year
Full-time international 2020/21 £14,310per year
Part-time 2020/21 £1,320 per 30 credits for home
Full-time home 2021/22 £8,100per year
Full-time international 2021/22 £15030per year
Part-time 2021/22 £1,350 per 30 credits for home
Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Scholarships for international students 2020/21

If you are a high-achieving international student, you may be eligible for one of our international scholarships worth up to £5,000. Our international scholarships include the Salford International Excellence Scholarship.

For more information go to International Scholarships. 

Apply now

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Enrolment dates

September 2020