The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Dance

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The Department of Dance at SUNY Brockport comprises artists, scholars, and educators who train dancers on the graduate and undergraduate level for a wide variety of careers in the arts as choreographers, performers, teachers, scholars, and leaders in the dance field. The students in the department’s highly selective degree programs excel not only in the studio and on stage, but also as critical thinkers, writers and teachers.

The department has some of the best dance facilities in the country, including its own fully equipped proscenium dance theater, a large-space studio theater, five studios, a body-conditioning lab, health pool, costume and scene shops, and computerized music and design studios. Faculty and professional staff are nationally and internationally recognized in their areas of expertise and are leaders in professional organizations such as CORD, NASD and NDEO.

Undergraduates with a strong foundation of dance training are invited to participate in the program by auditioning to enroll as dance majors or minors in the BA or BS programs, and are eligible to apply to the BFA program in the second semester. Additionally, the department offers three graduate degrees and serves a large number of students through courses that fulfill General Education requirements.

Admission to the Program

All students wishing to major in dance must pass a department audition. Three auditions are scheduled each year.

Entering freshmen must complete at least one semester of BA/BS study before applying for the BFA. Transfer students can be reviewed for acceptance into the BFA program during the departmental entrance audition.

Note to transfer students: Transfer credits in dance are evaluated and usually accepted as fulfilling major requirements or dance electives as appropriate. A maximum of 42 credits may be transferred into the BFA. Transfer students may need years an additional year at Brockport to complete the BFA.

Program Requirements

General Education Requirements (35-38 credits)*

Major Departmental Requirements (85 credits)

Requirements for Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) Degree in Dance

The BFA in dance major requires 85 credits in dance and emphasizes professional preparation for careers as performers and choreographers. It is a rigorous program that requires a high level of proficiency and commitment.

Students in the BFA in dance program must meet the requirements of the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Note: To ensure breadth of experience, required dance courses can only be used to satisfy one Fine Arts Knowledge Area course requirement in General Education.

Each BFA candidate is assigned an advisor who will guide them through course selection each semester. Careful planning of course sequences and consultation with this advisor is essential.

Dance Technique (29 credits)

Students must complete at least two semesters of Modern Dance IV: DNS 445
  • DNS204 Experiential Anatomy and Conditioning
  • DNS205 Modern Dance I
  • DNS245 Modern Dance II
  • DNS253 Beginning Ballet

Choreography and Performance (23 credits)

  • DNS364 Dance Improvisation
  • DNS306 Beginning Choreography
  • DNS406 Contact Improvisation
  • DNS430 Intermediate Choreography
  • DNS424 Dance Repertory I
  • DNS425 Dance Repertory II
  • DNS431 Advanced Choreography

Music for Dance (3 credits)

History and Movement Theory (15 credits)

  • DNS206 20th and 21st Century Dance History*
  • DNS316 History and Development of Dance*
  • DNS375 Movement Analysis
  • DNS305 Kinesiology 1

Dance Production (3 credits)

  • DNS207 Dance Production
  • DNS208 Dance Production Practicum

Seminar (6 credits)

  • DNS479 Senior Capstone Project in Dance
  • DNS495 Career Seminar in Dance

Electives (6 credits)

  • Any dance courses numbered 300 or higher, excluding leveled courses in modern dance and ballet (e.g. DNS 205, 245, 345, 445; DNS 253, 353, 453), by advisement.

* Denotes courses that meet both major and general education requirements.

Total Credits  (120 credits)

Additional Degree Requirement

  • Grades of "C" or higher are required in all 85 required dance credits.

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  1. Apply artistry through qualitative and rhythmic phrasing, dynamic range & individual expressivity.
  2. Embody consistently clear physical knowledge, movement accuracy and technical expertise of contemporary dance idioms.
  3. Create choreography that integrates imaginative and structural concepts.
  4. Articulate an understanding of aesthetics through dance-making and/or oral and written forms.
  5. Summarize and synthesize concepts regarding history, aesthetics, and culture of dance.
  6. Analyze human movement from varied theoretical and experiential perspectives.
  7. Identify individual interests and abilities in order to situate within larger dance field.
  8. Exhibit appropriate professional conduct throughout choreographic process, performance, collaboration, and production.