Your browser is unsupported and may have security vulnerabilities! Upgrade to a newer browser to experience this site in all it's glory.
Skip to main content


Course leader: Mr B Lancaster

Aims of the course:

  • The aims of the Foundation Diploma in Dance is to ensure students have
    the skills in performance and technique to progress onto a wider range of Dance, Movement and performance based courses at Higher Education.

What are lessons like?

  • Lessons are heavily influenced by practical workshops and rehearsals. Theory work is embedded through the practical elements and there is opportunity to consolidate new information through specialised theory- based classes as required.
  • A lot of the work is done individually or as part of smaller performance groups so there must be a strong focus on your own personal management skills.

What are exams like?

  • On this course, there are two externally assessed units. The first is an unseen written essay style which has 4 weeks preparation and 3 hours to complete. The second is a practical performance that has a guided learning hour of 60. Both of these assessments are sent to the exam board for marking.
  • The other units are completed in-house. They are marked by the department and sent off to the examination board for standards verification.
  • All units are supported by a research task, in the form of an essay, as well as a comprehensive reflective journal.

Recommended prior learning /entry requirements:

  • A strong English GCSE grade is desired for this course due to the nature of the
    written elements. As well as this, some form of prior experience in the Art form is essential. If you have not taken a Performing Arts/Dance course at GCSE level, we advise that you take some technique classes (ballet or Contemporary) in your own time prior to commencement at SM6. All students who wish to study with us are asked to attend our open workshop day later in the year.

Recommended additional reading:

  • Matthew Bourne and His Adventures in Dance : Conversations with Alastair MacAuley

Where can this course lead to?

  • This course can lead on too many Universities, and not just ones with a
    sole focus on the performing arts. If a Performing Arts/Dance based career is a certainty for you then it is worth pointing out that our previous students have gone on to study Dance movement, Choreography, Acting, Theatre Directing, European Theatre and Community Theatre at higher education level. Other students on this course have gained places at Universities to study subjects such as study Law and Psychology,

Why study the Foundation Diploma in Dance at St Mary’s College Sixth Form?

  • Our highly qualified faculty of staff have both academia and professional performance experience who bring a wealth of knowledge to your education. We are a hugely passionate team of staff who work hard to bring you an education than spans more than the pages of the specification.
  • We are one of the only 6th form courses in the country to be recognised by the CDMT (The Council for Dance, Drama and Musical Theatre)
  • Our links with the RSC and top UK Vocational colleges are celebrated throughout the year. We invite certain Higher Educational colleges to us for audition purposes. We are also passionate about bringing in current professional performers.