Department of Theatre and Dance

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Ideas to Empower You

Our theory courses give students a historical and social context for understanding the ways dance communicates as a cultural, personal, and political expression. These courses empower students to think critically, speak articulately, advocate effectively and contribute substantially. Check out our dance theory courses below:


FYS 107 Moving in the Movies

What do the feel-good song and dance moments in movie musicals tell us about American culture? How do the popular dance forms highlighted in these films reflect and challenge social trends of the 20th century? These are some of the questions this FYS seeks to explore. We will examine a selection of American movie musicals analyzing how the story and the dance within the film excavate “the temper of the age.” Movie musicals reflect back to us shifting American values and cultural trends in relation to race, gender, economics, class, history and religion. While grappling with this seemingly light-hearted genre we will have the opportunity to analytically examine a distinctly American genre at different points in American history.


FYS 207 Illuminating the Code of Dance

This course will explore the parallels between dance and coding and will culminate in creating and an iPuppet dance using basic tools from dance choreography, illuminated puppet pieces, and basic coding skills.  No previous dance or coding experience is needed.


D 240 Wellness for Dancers – 3 cr

Introduces dance majors to the importance of healthy practices for improved health, well-being and dance performance. A series of individual assessments and health screenings will be conducted for dancers to gain knowledge of their current practices and as a basis for designing programs for optimal wellness and performance.


D 251 Dance and World Cultures – 3 cr

Introduces the terminology, movement properties and influences that comprise dance as ritual, ceremonial, performance, and entertainment within western and non-western dance genres, cultures and societies.


D 252 Latin Dances Around the World – 3 cr

This course is designed to introduce and explore the origins of the various forms  and  roles of dance in the Latin diaspora, such as ritual dance, folk, social, classical and contemporary performance.  Also examined will be how and why people in the diaspora dance as well as how and why people watch dance, with concern for becoming more conscious and informed viewers.


D 253 Dances that Changed the World – 3 cr

This course is designed as an introduction to dance styles, forms, customs and performances and examines the role of dance in society.


D 254 Dance, Gender and Society – 3 cr

This course will analyze dance and choreography through the lens of gender and its effects on the development of dance as an art form.


D 255 Introduction to Dance – 3 cr

Introduces the origins of some of the various forms of dance, such as ballet, modern, musical theatre, jazz, tap, folk and/or popular dance forms. Also examined will be how and why people dance, and the function of dance in human society from a cross-cultural perspective.


D 300 Human Movement Analysis – 3 cr

A survey of notation methods used for the recording and analysis of basic movements of the human body. The methods will include: Labanotation, computer generated notation and video notation. These methods are applicable to those fields in which there is a need to record human motion: dance, athletics, anthropology and physiotherapy.


D 320 Dance Studio Management – 3 cr

This course will study and evaluate methods and materials for starting and managing a dance studio. Topics examined will include: market analysis, management, staff, competition, facilities, legal entities and insurance as well as developing personal marketing, budgets and financial plans.


D 351 Dance Composition I – 3 cr

This course will explore choreographic concepts as they relate to the elements of space, time and force. Emphasis will be placed on solo compositions.


D 352 Dance Composition II

This course will explore choreographic concepts as they relate to the elements of spatial design, musical form, character study and textural differences.


D 390 Kinesiology for Dance – 3 cr

Survey of kinesiology principles as related to basic movement. The areas emphasized are anatomy, physiology, biomechanics, movement behavior and various alignment and conditionary techniques. Students become aware of their personal movement behavior and investigate ways of becoming movement efficient.


D 399 Special Topics: Dance Concert &/or Musical – 3 cr

Participation by performing or crewing in a dance concert or musical theatre production. By audition only.


D 405 Senior Project – 2 cr

Each graduating senior with a B.A. in Dance or a B.A. in The Arts with a dance emphasis will complete a final capstone experience on a selected topic in the field of dance. Students are responsible for the creation, rehearsal, research and the project presentation.


D 406 Independent Studies in Dance – 3 cr

For students who wish to study in-depth selected topics in dance history, theory, education or criticism. Only 3 credits of D 406 and D 408, singly or combined, count as electives in the dance minor.


D 407 Seminar – 3 cr

Terms and hours to be arranged. May be repeated for up to 16 credits.


D 408 Workshop – 3 cr

Terms and hours to be arranged. (To allow for various workshops in dance, e.g., Pas de Deux, men’s techniques, African dance, etc.). May be repeated for up to 16 credits.


D 409 Internship – 3 cr

Terms and hours to be arranged. Supervised practical experience in a professional dance field. Such experiences may include performing in a dance company, teaching at a dance studio/school and choreographing for studios or companies or schools. May be repeated for up to 16 credits.


D 410 Capstone and Careers in Dance – 2 cr

This course helps prepare students for the transition from college student to dance professional.  Topics include developing resumés, preparing for auditions, dancing in a company, starting a company, professionalism, teaching in a studio, a school, or a college and what resources are available to assist in the transitioning process.


D 451 Dance Production – 3 cr

Provides the practical and theoretical knowledge of the various areas of dance production. Included will be practical experience in sound production, lighting, costume, makeup, management and publicity.


D 451L Dance Production Lab – 1 cr

Designed to give students a hands-on experience in the study and practical application of the aesthetic and technical aspects of the production of a dance concert.


D 453 Ballet History – 3 cr

Covers development of ballet from its roots in the Renaissance courts through the Romantic and Classical eras to the present.


D 454 Evolution of Modern Dance – 3 cr

Covers the development of modern dance and the philosophies of the leading modern dancers of the 20th century from Duncan to the present.


D 456 Choreography for the Camera – 3 cr

Advanced study of choreography tailored to individual student interests with applications to dance for the camera work.  Includes interdisciplinary, site-specific and/or collaborative formats.


D 460 Dance and Technology – 3 cr

Introduction to the use of desktop multimedia applications and peripherals applied specifically to dance production and the creative process.


D 491 Creative Dance For Children – 3 cr

Course explores dance concepts and expressive movement. Included will be how creative movement develops creativity, supports learning in other subject areas and fosters understanding of other cultures at an elementary education level.


D 494 Dance Teaching Methods – 3 cr

Study and evaluation of methods and materials for teaching dance in a studio setting. The topics examined include: how to build a dance class, what to teach and methodology involved. Practical application of the methods will be emphasized.