School of Dance

Undergraduate BulletinSchool of Dance


Overview of School

Overview of School

The purpose of the School of Dance is to identify and prepare young, talented dancers for professional performing careers. Our rigorous and nurturing conservatory approach develops technically sound, artistically sensitive and stylistically versatile dancer-artists. Distinguished full-time faculty work closely with students and share their professional expertise through a unique and comprehensive curriculum. Visiting guest artists, choreographers and company residencies bring fresh perspectives on current trends in the field. Recognizing that performing is an integral component of dance training, the School of Dance offers regular performance opportunities and is committed to presenting world-class repertory in our concerts.

The School of Dance awards the Bachelor of Fine Arts and the Undergraduate Arts Certificate with concentrations in Ballet or Contemporary Dance. Both concentrations emphasize the strong fundamentals particular to each, while looking to the other discipline for cross training, collaboration and inspiration.

A. Bachelor of Fine Arts

The Bachelor of Fine Arts program offers students a thorough dance foundation with the added perspective and benefit of a liberal arts education. This mixture of arts and academic classes creates a well-rounded artist and citizen. Concentrations are offered in Ballet or Contemporary Dance.

B. Undergraduate Arts Certificate in Dance (Four-year program)

The Undergraduate Arts Certificate is designed for those students who wish to concentrate entirely on dance studies. It includes all components of the dance curriculum for the Bachelor of Fine Arts, but requires no courses outside the School of Dance. Concentrations are offered in Ballet or Contemporary Dance.

Bachelor of Fine Arts


Undergraduate Arts Certificate


Admissions Requirements

Specific Admissions and Transfer Requirements

A. Admissions Requirements

Admission to the School is based on talent and potential (as assessed in an audition before the arts faculty), academic transcripts, and test scores. New college students enter as first-year students. Under special circumstances, the School of Dance may consider transfer credit. The Division of Liberal Arts (DLA) may also consider transfer credit for academic courses. Please see the DLA section of the bulletin.

B. Required Physical and Mental Abilities

A student must demonstrate adherence to professional ethics and integrity necessary to work in a collaborative environment. Emotional stability, responsibility, and ethical performance of all assigned duties are necessary to succeed in the program. A successful dance student must be able to recognize when the support of professionals is necessary to maintain psychological and physical health.

Equally important, the student must be able to sustain a high level of physically challenging movement sequences for extended periods of time and execute a full range of body movements and elements of dance (including but not limited to, turning, jumping, balancing, falling, stretching, lifting, flexing and running) while responding to musical and visual cues. In addition, a student must be able to:

  • View and reproduce sequences of classroom exercises and complicated choreography which requires specific movements for the head, arms, hands, torso, legs and feet.
  • Demonstrate the ability to work precisely with live and recorded music.
  • Respond appropriately to verbal instructions and warnings to ensure the safety of the student and fellow dancers.
  • Physically participate in solo, duet and group work that may include lifting and manipulating one's own body, or that of another dancer, many times above the top of one’s head.
  • Maintain a healthy, toned and energized physique, one conducive to achieving the aesthetics necessary to express the art form through the body.

C. Class Placement

Ballet students are placed by the faculty at the beginning of each academic year into one of nine levels: B1-B9. Levels are determined by age and technical proficiency.

All new Contemporary Dance students upon entering the program are placed into the M1 level for technique, composition, partnering and repertory (M stands for “Modern”) and normally advance each year through four levels (M1 through M4). Contemporary majors’ level placement for their ballet technique class is determined through audition or class level. Special consideration for entry-level placement may be given to students transferring from the Ballet Concentration. 

To receive the Bachelor of Fine Arts or Undergraduate Arts Certificate, students must be enrolled and actively participate in the program for a minimum of three years, and complete all required dance and DLA courses. Upon petition, consideration may be given on an individual basis for advanced standing in select dance courses for UNCSA high school graduates who enroll in the UNCSA college program, or students who have transferred from another college or university.


D. Adherence to Policies

At the beginning of the academic year, each student must sign a form indicating that they have read the Student Handbook and agree to abide by the School of Dance Policies.


Standards of Achievement and Evaluation

A. Attendance and Participation 

The School of Dance has a detailed attendance policy which promotes professional commitment to sustained practice while offering flexibility to accommodate injury, illness and professional, school and religious activities. It is the students’ responsibility familiarize themselves with the Attendance Policies found in the Student Handbooks.

B. Evaluation

Students are evaluated each term by their faculty and informed of their progress. In addition to assigning grades as an evaluation of a student’s work, the major technique teacher provides written commentary at mid-term. Students are also assessed by the full faculty during jury classes in the Spring semester. Students are encouraged to discuss with the faculty, at any time, problems and progress in their work.

C. Probation and Non-Continuation

Students in the School of Dance are expected to achieve and maintain certain minimum Grade Point Averages (GPAs). Failure to maintain minimum GPAs and/or adhere to all UNCSA and School of Dance policies and procedures will result in being place on probation. Students who fail to make sufficient progress to warrant removal from probationary status will be dismissed from the program.

See the Institutional Policies Section of the Bulletin for detailed information about Probation and Non-Continuation.