Master of Arts in Dance


The Master of Arts in Dance program provides students the opportunity to develop a broad knowledge of the discipline while discovering new perspectives in theory and practice within artistic, cultural, and educational dance frameworks. Students, in consultation with their advisor, define their specific area of study, such as education and arts leadership, arts management, dance and film, dance and society, dance and women's studies, dance history, or dance pedagogy. Over the course of this highly-flexible two-year program, students are encouraged to design a course plan composed of online, hybrid, or face-to-face courses that fit their learning and work/life needs.

Marketable Skills

Defined by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board's 60x30 Strategic Plan as, "Those skills valued by employers that can be applied in a variety of work settings, including interpersonal, cognitive, and applied skills areas. These skills can be either primary or complementary to a major and are acquired by students through education, including curricular, co-curricular, and extracurricular activities."

  1. Develop communication skills by speaking, writing, and moving effectively in diverse forums relevant to the job title at different levels, conveying complex information to diverse audiences, and presenting in front of large or small groups using performance and dance improvisation process models.
  2. Enlarge critical thinking by engaging in inquiry, planning, problem creation, and problem-solving utilizing sophisticated movement theories, dance science concepts, and pedagogical models for use in community projects, fitness programs, studio, and public school settings.
  3. Develop professional leadership skills by initiating and creating projects that fall within a mission of an organization as a professional including conference panels, dance curriculums, performances, workshops, festivals, and outreach activities for diverse populations.


All students must meet the University requirements as outlined in the Admission to the TWU Graduate School section of the catalog.

This academic program may have additional admission criteria that must also be completed as outlined on the program's website.

Degree Requirements

Total Semester Credit Hours Required

33 semester credit hours (SCH), including hours for thesis or professional project/paper.

Studio Work
Graduate Level Technique (Level III or IV, or approved substitution.)
Select 6 SCH from the following6
Advanced Ballet Technique I
Advanced Ballet Technique II
Techniques in Contemporary Dance I
Techniques in Contemporary Dance II
Workshop in Dance
DNCE 5023Methods of Research in Dance3
DNCE 5223Historical and Cultural Study of Dance3
DNCE 5243Pedagogical Foundations for Dance3
DNCE 5433Contemporary Contexts of Dance3
Professional Project/Paper or Thesis
Select 6 SCH from the following options6
Independent Study (Professional Project)
Professional Paper
Thesis (I)
Thesis (II)
Electives in Consultation with Advisor9
Total SCHs33

Concentration in Education

For those seeking a concentration in education, the elective coursework to support their research must be selected in consultation with and approved by the advisor.



Comprehensive Final Examination

An oral defense of the thesis or professional project/paper is required.

Special Requirements for all Master’s Degrees

Students are required to maintain a grade point average of 3.0 or higher in all courses applied to the degree. A grade of C or below in any course will not count toward the Master of Arts or Master of Fine Arts degree.

Residence Requirement for Students Seeking a Concentration in Education

The M.A. with a concentration in education is a two-year cohort program of students beginning in even number academic years.  The program requires two summer intensives and two weekend residencies in the Fall and Spring semesters during the two-years of coursework. Students must be continually enrolled, follow the prescribed sequence of courses, and attend all on-campus residencies and meetings. Contact the Department of Dance for the dates of summer intensives and residencies.

Final Examination

It is recommended that students complete a Professional Project/Paper.