MA in Dance Research for Professional Practitioners

An Innovative MA to inspire Professional Dance Practitioners.

Designed to embrace a wide range of interests, this postgraduate course offers bespoke learning and professional opportunities based on students’ individual practice.

Quick Navigation: MA Dance Research policies & procedures

The programme is designed to apply practice-led enquiry to advance students’ current embodied practices and previous experience as professional practitioners. The course invites students to apply rigorous research processes that address the practical, artistic, cultural, social and political implications of dance in the sector. This course is validated by the University of Kent.

The course is offered on a part-time basis over 2 years, in order to accommodate professional working schedules and allow for the gradual deepening of dance-related practices. The programme is designed to be flexible and meet the needs of students who may be learning whilst working. Scroll to see the FAQs or to find out more, please get in touch to start a conversation. If you require the application form in a different format, (not pdf) get in touch with us.

‘I would encourage everyone to engage with this course, especially practicing professional dancers, like myself. What the MA gifted to me, was an opportunity to just stop. It allowed me to take those moments to reflect, to understand myself, my practice and thus move forwards in my career with more clarity.’

– Rambert School MA graduate

‘This course should be mandatory for all artists! That’s the only way we can have more thoughtful dancers who don’t just do what they’re told without question, but maybe challenge and think about the potential impact of their work’.

– Rambert School MA practitioner


  • Text graphic the cohort has a range of diverse research interests
  • Test graphic engage with what you enjoy
  • Text graphic the fees are the same for everyone
  • It is designed to open up possibilities to a wide variety of practitioners, dancers, choreographers and creatives.
  • This programme allows you to engage with what you do and what you’re good at – a chance to realise that the learning and experience you have has gravitas.
  • The programme aims to offer bespoke scholarly opportunity within the professional context but is tailored to the learner’s individual needs, interests and practice in dance.
  • If you are a recent graduate please consider that this course is primarily designed for professionals who have experience to draw and reflect upon.
  • The programme is about knowledge and confidence building, dance education, learning new skills, gaining experience. Never stop learning.
  • You can view details on the other short courses and full-time programmes we offer.
  • Check all the entry criteria and stage 1 and 2 of the application process in the below ‘HOW TO APPLY’ FAQ to learn more.
  • Rambert School will consider each particular applicant’s suitability for the programme of study and does not discriminate on the basis of gender, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, disability, economic background or otherwise.
  • Rambert School welcomes applications from students with disabilities and we are committed to admitting and supporting students with a disability.
  • Support is available for students with learning difficulties such as dyslexia.
  • You are encouraged to disclose any impairment or condition (for example, dyslexia, a physical, sensory or mental health condition) at the earliest opportunity so that we can endeavour to support your needs at application stage and during the programme.
  • We welcome overseas students, but we do not sponsor applicants with a visa for entry to this course.
  • If you are interested and have further questions regarding your suitability for the programme please email



The programme is studied part-time over two years and divided into two stages. Stage 1 comprises modules to a total of 120 credits and Stage 2 comprises a 60 credit dissertation module. Students must successfully complete each module in order to be awarded the specified number of credits for that module, and successfully complete the dissertation module to be awarded an MA Dance Research for Professional Practitioners.

Module overview and specification:

RSPG4: Thinking Dance Through its Practice: Research Methodologies

By introducing a range of research methodologies and theoretical perspectives relevant to research in dance, this module will encourage students to examine the ways in which dance is contextualised through historical / artistic / philosophical / socio-political frameworks.

RSPG6: Activating and Documenting Research Experiments in Dance

This module facilitates the development of the ‘thinking practitioner’ by deepening their awareness and understanding of embodied thought. Through a series of guided, studio-based, research experiments students will have the opportunity to review any current dance practice, as well as prior learning, that contributed to their professional experience, whilst developing their understanding of practice-led research methodologies.

RSPG7: Reflective Practice in Action

This Reflective Practice based module will offer a platform for students to identify and develop a range of research strategies in relation to the integration of embodied and theoretical knowledge. By developing a series of devised research experiments students will research, observe, critique, reflect upon and document their practice-led explorations in either an independent or collaborative setting.

RSPG8: Advanced Research Enquiry 

This module provides the opportunity for the conception, planning, and completion of a research project around the students’ personal research interests. This can include practice-based exploration and/or theoretical enquiry. Whilst creating a single focus for the project, students will collect, analyse and evaluate data, articulate research within both a professional and an academic framework through dissemination to the chosen field of practice.

RSPG9: Dissertation (Year 2)

In the Dissertation Module students will activate their research proposal for an Independent Research Project submitted in Module 4 (Advanced Research Enquiry). With their dissertation mentors students will fine-tune a research plan for the 6 month period of research and subsequently implement and complete a research programme appropriate to the research topic. The research element of the dissertation will be performative in part.


The course fees are the same fee for all students – UK, EU or International.

  • Fees & Finance: UK/EU fee: £4,000 per year (£8,000 in total)
    International fee: £4,000 per year (£8,000 in total)

Useful links for financial support for postgraduate students:

  • Gov website with postgraduate funding options.
  • The Student Loans Company provides postgraduate student loans. (Eligible postgraduate UK or EU students can apply for a postgraduate loan from the Student Loans Company to help with tuition fees and living costs.)
  • It may also be possible to apply for charity grants available for individuals in the Arts industry.

ESOL candidates must have an average 6.5 in IELTs test, minimum 6.0 in reading and writing to enrol on this programme.

Students can access the Rambert School Language Tutors on a one-to-one basis for additional language support.

  • Accessible to dancers/practitioners who may not have had the opportunity to develop research skills before
  • Inclusivity and access are at the heart of the teaching/learning and assessment strategies with remote learning and online provision available at all stages of the programme
  • Inclusive and adaptable teaching styles and assessments
  • Rambert School bespoke Student Support Service including in-person and online support and counselling services, Screening Treatment and Rehabilitation
  • Rambert School StudyLab – Academic Skills Development
  • Financial support listed above
  • Pastoral care and learning support for individuals with specific learning difficulties. Opportunities for students who require extra support or would like an assessment for a specific learning difficulty.
  • Experienced mentors 
  • If English language isn’t your first language you will have access to Rambert School’s language support

Benefit from the well-established relationships Rambert School have to offer with leading companies and industry practitioners across dance and academic circles.  The programme offers:

  • A stepping stone in career development which could lead to further academic study eg PhD
  • Opportunity to work with experienced mentors and highly respected academics
  • High quality theoretically informed teaching in supportive environments from qualified and trained staff
  • The chance to extend your reach into the mainsteam dance community and wider dance industry circles
  • Successful candidates completing the course (180 credits) will be awarded a Master of Art by Rambert School, accredited by the University of Kent. Other possible exit awards include: PG certificate in Dance Research for Profesional Practitioners (60 credits) or PG diploma in Dance (120 credits)

The programme will be taught in the form of a Masters in Research using practice-led enquiry as a central research methodology. The programme aims to offer a bespoke experience for each learner, offering flexibility to fit with the students’ personal and professional interests/practice.

The programme will be delivered through a flexible mixed teaching and learning model including:

  • Self-directed learning through reflective practice and independent research;
  • Peer learning, through discussions and active participation with peers:
  • Lectures and seminars which invite speakers to ask challenging questions as they deliver their presentation to facilitate deeper deliberation on the content of the seminar/lecture:
  • Seminars and guided workshops
  • Research Intensives (3-10 day workshops)
  • Open discussion groups
  • One-to-one mentoring: Mentoring will be provided to each individual on the basis of their current professional engagement (Dancer, Teacher, Rehearsal Director etc) and this will include working with the student in-situ and developing practice.
  • Online delivery – all sessions on this programme will be recorded and available online and some will be streamed to allow for remote engagement with this MA programme.
  • A Personal Programme Learning Agreement (PPLA) will be negotiated with each student on the basis of their research and practice-led enquiry interests and include mutually agreed project outcomes and links to the specific module learning outcomes. This will facilitate student agency and identify the focus of the individual learner’s aims in undertaking this programme.

Work-Based Learning

Work-based learning is not provided by Rambert School for this programme, but study on the programme does embrace the current or recent working practice of the student. The students on this programme will ideally have accrued professional experience in their field of dance (or cognate) practice of 3 years. This programme has a directed focus on professional practice, where the student’s working experiences within the sector are the basis for their individual Practice Led Enquiry and research.

Entry Criteria

Professional experience requirement

  • Normally at least 3 years’ professional experience in a practitioner capacity in any field of dance and/or within a professional dance context (e.g. Company, Theatre, Conservatoire, School).

Education Requirement

  • Hold an undergraduate bachelor’s (BA) degree with a 2.1 minimum classification.

Age: Requirement

  • The minimum age to study this programme is normally 21. There is no upper age limit for entry to this programme.

Language:  Requirement

  • ESOL candidates must have an average 6.5 in IELTs test, minimum 6.0 in reading and writing to enrol on this programme.

Students may be admitted to the programme with advanced standing in line with the University’s standard APECL requirements. Such cases are subject to prior approval by the University of Kent according to its Accreditation of Prior Learning process, full details HERE.

Admission to the programme is via a two-stage admissions process and candidates must meet all Entry Criteria and then complete Stage 1 of the application in order to progress to Stage 2 of the process.

To make an application for this programme, applicants will be required to submit the following:

  • Completed Application form
  • Personal statement

And either:

Part A – Undergraduate Essay at Level 6
Please attach an essay or final dissertation from prior undergraduate study that demonstrates academic writing with evidence of research. This does not need to have a specifc dance focus and can be from another area of undergraduate study.
Part B – Reflective Report
Please attach a supporting report that demonstrates your personal interest in a current area of research, study, performance. This could include,
• Case Study of a choreographic project
• Review of personal performance project
• Report in relation to a teaching position, and specific area of dance education
This element of the application process is used to demonstrate your proficiency and suitability to study at MA level in relation to written and research skills

Curriculum Vitae (optional)

Stage 2

The Stage 2 process will involve an interview with the candidate either in person or online to accommodate the candidate.

For further information about the programme contact the Postgrad team on

View all Policies & Procedures and Terms & Conditions for MA Dance Research at Rambert School here.

Provisional term dates:

October 2024 – October 2026

For more information on our Admissions Policies, see our Admissions Policy and our Admissions Appeals & Complaints Policy


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