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Undergraduate Catalog 2013-2014

Dance (DANC)

College of Arts and Humanities - School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies
2806 Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, 301.405.6676
Professors: A. Warren
Associate Professors: K. Bradley, S. Pearson, P. Widrig
Assistant Professors: A. Fang, S. Mansur, M. Phillips
Instructors: A. Mayes
Lecturers: P. Jackson
Professors Emeriti: D. Madden, M. Rosen, L. Warren, A. Wiltz

The Major

The undergraduate curriculum, which leads toward a B.A. degree in Dance, offers students a solid foundation in the core areas of the discipline as well as insights into cross-disciplinary fields of study.  Course work is designed to help students become skillful, articulate, expressive movers; find their own voice as creative artists; develop the ability to work effectively in a collaborative environment; and grow in their conceptual understanding of dance as an art form in relation to the other arts.  

The cornerstones of the curriculum are foundational course work in the first two years, and immersion in project-based learning and in a chosen area of emphasis in the junior and senior years.  Foundational sequences in technique and in the creative process, which integrate conceptual understanding of dance as an art form in relation to the other arts, are at the core of the discipline.  Through these fundamental practices of the discipline, students gain, not only necessary skills, but also embodied knowledge of the field.  

The project based learning experiences in the junior and senior years engage students in interdisciplinary and/or cross-cultural work and offer in-depth exploration of a theme from a performance, choreographic, and theory perspective.  In addition, students select an area of emphasis in performance and choreography, production, or education. .

The dance faculty is composed of a number of distinguished teachers, choreographers, performers, and scholars, each one a specialist in his or her own field. Visiting artists and guest artists make additional contributions to the program. There are performance and choreographic opportunities for all dance students, ranging from informal workshops to fully mounted concerts both on and off campus.

Academic Programs and Departmental Facilities

Dance is housed in the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, a state-of-the-art performing arts "village" comprised of ten interconnected structures occupying 318,000 square feet and situated on a 17-acre site at the northwest end of the campus. The Center is designed to serve the theatre, music and dance programs of the University and also houses the Michelle Smith Performing Arts Library. With 30 classrooms, 50 practice and rehearsal rooms, and fully outfitted costume, electric, scenic production, paint and properties shops, the Center serves more than 5,000 students, 200 faculty and staff and numerous regional, national and international audiences and professionals. For further information visit the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center website at http://claricesmithcenter.umd.edu.

Requirements for the Major

Requirements for the Major

Students must complete 58 credits.  The following courses or areas are required:

  • Danc 218 (3) Foundations of Technique I 
  • Danc 219 (3) Foundations of Technique II
  • Danc 318 (3) Foundations of Technique III
  • Danc 319 (3) Foundations of Technique IV
  • Danc 179 (2) Movement Integration

6 credits of Dance Styles selected from

  • Danc 138 (2) World Dance Forms
  • Danc 228 (2) Ballet I
  • Danc 229 (2) Ballet II
  • Danc 328 (2) Ballet III
  • Danc 329 (2) Ballet IV
  • Danc 109 (2) Improvisation
  • Danc 207 (3) The Creative Process
  • Danc 209 (3) Dance Composition 
  • TDPS 201 (3) Production
  • Danc 283 (3) Foundations of Dance History
  • Danc 304 (3) Teaching Dance
  • TDPS 479 (1) Production Practicum
  • Danc 488 (4) Project Based Learning (two semesters required)

12 credits of upper level course work in an area of emphasis in performance and choreography or in production, or education.

Performance and Choreography Area of Emphasis
Students in the Performance and Choreography area are expected to enroll in a technique class each semester and to be actively engaged in experiences that transition them from the classroom to the stage.  Opportunities for engagement include auditioning for student, faculty, and guest artist works, showing works in progress at monthly open showings, and auditioning works for performances.  

Approved Courses:

TDPS 479 Production Practicum (Required--1 credit--This is in addition to the 1 credit required of all majors.)  

An additional 11 credits selected from:

  • Dance 448 (Modern Dance V)*
  • Dance 449 (Modern Dance VI)*
  • Dance 468  Modern Repertory (3 credits)
  • Dance 420 Contemporary Partnering (2 credits)
  • Dance 466 Laban Movement Analysis (3 credits)
  • Dance 371  Somatics,  (3 credits)
  • Dance 310  Dance lighting (3 credits)
  • Dance 399  Practicum in Choreography, Production and Performance III (1-3)
  • Dance 499  Practicum in  Choreography, Production and Performance IV (1-3)
  • Dance 489  Special Topics in Dance
  • Additional courses approved by the program.

*A maximum of a total of 6 credits of Dance 448 and 449 will count toward the 12 credit area requirement.

Production Area of Emphasis

Approved courses:

  • TDPS 479 (Required--3 credits) This is in addition to the 1 credit required of all majors.)  

An additional 9 credits selected from:

  • Dance 310 Dance Lighting
  • Dance 410 Topics in Dance Production
  • Theatre 116  Fundamentals of Theatrical Design
  • Theatre 284 Stage Costume Construction I
  • Theatre 371  Scenic Design I
  • Theatre  383  Costume Design I
  • Theatre  377  Lighting Design I
  • Theatre 373  Rendering for the Theatre I
  • Theatre 472  Scene Painting
  • Theatre 474  Stage Management

Note:  Theatre 284, 371, 383, 377, 373, 472, and 474 are permission required courses


Education Area of Emphasis

Approved courses:

  • DANC 405  (3)  Dance Education and Policy
  • DANC 371  (3)  Somatics
  • DANC 389  (1)  Independent Study in Global Movement Practice Research
  • DANC 466  (3)  Laban Movement Analysis
  • DANC 489F  (2)  Upper Level Global Movement Practice


A grade of C- or higher must be attained in all dance courses.

An overall GPA of 2.0 in the major is required for graduation.

Other Requirements for the Major

4th semester assessment 

The 4th semester assessment gives the program a mid-course opportunity for learning outcomes assessment.   In preparation for the assessment, students prepare a portfolio that includes a resume, samples of their writing, and a DVD with examples of their work in technique and choreography classes.  The 4th semester assessment is a benchmark requirement in the program.  All transfer students, as well as students who declare Dance after their first semester on campus, will be assigned an assessment date when they meet with their Dance advisor to develop an academic plan.  Students who do not complete the assessment process in their assigned semester will not be permitted to continue in the major.  Completion is defined as submission of a portfolio and participation in a scheduled assessment meeting.

The Dance program has mandatory advising each semester.  New, re-entering, and transfer students are expected to contact the program following admission to the university for instructions regarding advising and registration procedures.  Although entrance auditions are not required, some previous dance experience is highly desirable.

For additional information about the program contact

Alvin Mayes

Director of Undergraduate Dance Studies

School of Theatre, Dance, and Performance Studies

2810 Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center

University of Maryland

College Park, Maryland 20742

301 405-3194



The College of Arts and Humanities has a dual advising system where students meet with college advisors to discuss their general education requirements and departmental advisors to discuss the major requirements. The Dance Major requires mandatory advising each semester to keep in touch with our student base and assist majors and double majors with curricular and co-curricular choices. Advising procedures and instructions to sign up for an advising appointment can be obtained at the school's main office.

Scholarships and Financial Assistance

Scholarships and financial assistance may be awarded to prospective and enrolled students through a number of Creative and Performing Arts (CAPA) scholarships and other Dance Scholarship Award Funds. For further information visit the TDPS website at http://tdps.umd.edu and select "Scholarships and Awards" on the BA Dance page.

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