How to Become a Dance Teacher Online

Nov 27, 2019

Dance teachers need to have a significant amount of dance experience in order to teach in this field. Four main steps are discussed in this article to achieve this goal involving education and certification, some of which can be completed online.

Information About Dance Teachers

Dance teachers manage a classroom, organize a curriculum, and convey difficult concepts to students. Most dance teachers are experienced dancers or choreographers who specialize in one to three particular styles. The chart below illustrates the skill requirements needed for dance teachers as well as salary and growth outlook.

Required Skills Communication, organization, leadership, physical fitness
Job Growth (2018-2028)* 11% growth (self-enrichment education teachers)
Median salary (2019)** $40,653

Sources: * U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **

Steps to Become a Dance Teacher Online

In order to become a dance teacher, it is necessary to develop one's communication, organization, physical fitness, leadership, and dance skills. Blended degree programs are available as well as fully online professional development classes, but formal dance training must be completed in person.

Step 1. Get Formal Dance Training

It is important to take dance classes in school, at local community centers, or private dance studios. Practice at least two different types of dance, such as ballet and modern. Train and perform with community dance groups as well as enroll in summer dance camps or workshops. Although this training must be in person, your search for training options may be accomplished online.

Step 2. Pursue a Dance Education Bachelor's Degree

You might want to learn the skills and earn the credentials necessary for K-12 teaching certification. Dance coursework such as technique and composition is offered alongside education courses with at least a semester of student teaching. Pick a program that allows most academic requirements to be completed through online courses with dance classes being the only in-person component.

Step 3. Seek Additional Professional Development

Organizations such as The National Dance Education Organization (NDEO) offer entirely online dance education courses for dance educators with at least a minimum of three years of teaching experience working in K-12, higher education, dance studios, community and culture centers, or as independent teaching artists. Classes feature pedagogy, teaching methods, history, assessments, research, and much more. All courses are taught online in a 24/7 asynchronous style allowing students to work at their own pace.

Step 4. Enroll in a Blended MFA Dance Program

A critical stepping stone in a dancer's career is enrolling in an MFA program, which is a necessity for some teaching positions. It is no longer necessary to uproot and relocate for these programs. There are now a number of low-residency MFA programs that balance on-campus intensives with distance learning. Intense, in-person seminars might be held over summer months while other courses can be completed remotely during the regular school year. Programs typically require you to submit a transcript, personal statement, resume, letters of recommendation, and work samples.

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