Colleges with Dance Majors: How to Choose

Becoming a dancer requires determination and hard work, and schools help each student realize his or her potential through a rigorous curriculum. Read on to learn what you should keep in mind as you consider different dance programs, and see a list of some U.S. schools with dance programs.

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Dance programs at most colleges combine a core of general education courses with daily technique classes, usually in ballet or modern dance. Bachelor's degree programs in dance are typically offered at 4-year colleges and universities, and graduates may pursue performance careers or open a dance studio upon completion of the program.

Schools with Dance Degree Programs

The following private and public institutions offer bachelor's degrees in dance:

College/University Location Institution Type Undergraduate Tuition (2015-2016)*
Anderson University Anderson, IN 4-year, Private not-for-profit $27,680
Ball State University Muncie, IN 4-year, Public $9,498 (In-state) $25,016 (Out-of-state)
Duke University Durham, NC 4-year, Private not-for-profit $49,241
Emory University Atlanta, GA 4-year, Private not-for-profit $46,314
Florida State University Tallahassee, FL 4-year, Public $6,507 (In-state) $21,673 (Out-of-state)
Marlboro College Marlboro, VT 4-year, Private not-for-profit $39,250
New York University New York, NY 4-year, Private not-for-profit $47,750
Temple University Philadelphia, PA 4-year, Public $15,188 (In-state) $25,494 (Out-of-state)

*Source: National Center for Education Statistics

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Ballet

College Selection Criteria

Consider the following as you choose a dance program:

  • Students will want to look for schools that allow students to choose from an array of dance styles and topics, such as choreography, Labanotation (a notation method for analyzing movement), world dance, tap, jazz, hip hop and Gyrokinesis (a yoga form for dancers).
  • Consider schools that supplement a student's training by inviting invite guest artists to hold master classes or work in-residence, which allows students to experience different techniques and make connections with professionals in the dance industry.
  • Many schools boast state-of-the-art rehearsal spaces that transform into performance venues where dance students have the chance to showcase their talents and progress. Students may wish to attend a school that offers ample opportunities to perform publicly.
  • Postgraduate students face heavy competition for jobs and roles in professional productions so it may help to research the achievements and performances of a school's graduates.

Bachelor's Degree in Dance

Students pursuing a performance career in dance may attain a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Students who are interested in entering graduate school or working in other dance careers can choose to earn a Bachelor of Arts in Dance. Whichever degree students select, they usually must pass an audition for entrance into the program. In addition to a general liberal arts education, students may concentrate their studies in a specific form of dance through professional core and elective courses.

Aspiring dancers can earn a bachelor's degree in their art from several 4-year, public and private institutions. As they are choosing a school to attend, students should keep in mind things like the achievements of a program's graduates, performance opportunities and the variety of dance styles that are available to study.

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