Is dance your favorite way to express yourself? As a dance major, prepare not only to develop your physical skills, but also to explore the history, theory, and science of your art. Get ready for a tough schedule of technique and choreography classes, long evenings in rehearsal, and academic classes. Dance majors challenge their bodies and their minds in this demanding art form.
Both the bachelor of fine arts (B.F.A.) and the bachelor of arts (B.A.) prepare students for careers as dancers and choreographers. The B.A. also prepares students for careers in dance education, administration, and therapy.
Students of dance learn to express ideas and emotions through dance forms such as ballet, modern, jazz, ethnic, and folk dance. Classes cover such topics as dance technique, choreography, and the history of dance.
“There is so much more to dancing than just dancing ... I feel as though I knew about one-tenth of what I needed to know about dance before I came to college.”Alecia, sophomore, dance and premed, University of Wisconsin, Stevens Point
Are You Ready To...?
- Spend a lot of time practicing and rehearsing
- Help produce dance concerts, working with lights, costumes, and sound
- Retrain your body to meet the demands of new techniques, from tap to African
- Tune your instrument -- learn about good nutrition, positive body image, and ways to prevent injury
It Helps To Be...
Creative and self-disciplined. You’ll need to be able to manage your time well. It also helps to be a good listener and a good teacher.
- Is the department accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance?
- What is the audition policy?
- Will you get the chance to perform each semester?
- Which type of dance does the department focus on?
- What is the department’s ratio of students to faculty members?
- What are grads doing now?
Did You Know?
Most dancers end up teaching dance at some point in their careers.
Throughout your study of dance, you’ll learn about different systems of dance notation, or ways of describing human movement through written symbols and abbreviations. You are sure to encounter labanotation, a notation system that uses symbols to represent the exact positions of each body part. Labanotation can describe any human movement, from large patterns that move the dancer across the floor to the smallest hand gesture.