Module code: DAN2028

Module Overview

This module provides students with the opportunity to apply an intermediate embodied understanding of contemporary dance practices within a performance context. Through the continued study of somatically based movement approaches students will develop their embodied and cognitive understandings of holistic approaches to learning, performing and analysing synthesised contemporary dance forms. The module takes understandings of Contemporary dance practices stemming from 20th and 21st Modern and Postmodern dance traditions and enables students to apply this to their own developing practice. Students are required to incorporate their understanding of interrelated movement and Somatic principles to a performance context. The module provides students with the opportunity to develop intermediate understandings of a range of Contemporary dance forms and Somatic practices within a performance context.

Module provider

Guildford School of Acting

Module Leader


Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

JACs code: W500

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

DAN1011 & DAN1012

Module content

Indicative content includes:

  • Coherent understanding of alignment and placement within dance movement and the application of this within a performance context.

  • Coherent understanding of stylistic qualities embedded within specific dance genres.

  • Consistent application of somatic principles in relation to alignment, breath, weight and posture and embodiment.

  • Consistent exploration of approaches to synthesised dance forms and the development and application of strategies for moving between these forms.

  • Ability to apply a range of dynamic qualities within a performance context.

  • Developing sensitivity in relationship to music, rhythmic, phrasing, relationship to space and structural elements.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
Coursework PERFORMANCE 50

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to:

  • Demonstrate a coherent embodied and cognitive understanding of principles taught within the practice and to demonstrate an understanding of working reflectively.

  • Evidence knowledge through feedback strategies, Continuous participation in workshops and classes and through engagement with reflective discussion forums accessed via the University’s VLE.

  • Evidence knowledge of reflective learning demonstrated through a performance outcome.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

  • Continuous assessment (50%): based on participation in class sessions, and demonstration of progress in the development of physical and performance skills. This is evidenced through peer assessment, mid-way audio recorded tutorials in which the student demonstrates a reflective understanding of own engagement and progress as well as contribution to VLE discussion forums (contribution to discussion forums can be evidence through provision of statistics in SurreyLearn) (Weeks 1-11)

  • Performance (50%): Individual presentation of student-led performance demonstrating an understanding of the relationship of embodied somatic principles to Contemporary dance practice. Students will receive an individual mark and feedback on their work (5 min movement material) (Weeks 13-14).

Assessment Deadlines:

Weeks 1-11; 13-14

Formative assessment and feedback

  • Students engage in a feedback exercise which results in the completion of a self-reflexive comment sheet by the student.

  • Students are given feedback in class throughout the module which can be applied by the student as part of their preparation for the final summative assessment task.

Module aims

  • To acquire an intermediate conceptual and embodied understanding of Contemporary dance approaches and movement styles such as; release based technique, Cunningham, progressive dance fusion forms approached from a Contemporary dance perspective, somatic practices such Alexander technique, The Feldenkrais Method, Body Mind Centering.
  • To develop students' physical understanding of dance and movement principles such as: Alignment, placement, posture, expression, breath and weight, spatial awareness and musicality.
  • To develop an intermediate understanding of strategies for synthesizing and fusing dance styles from a range of contemporary dance genres and apply this within a performance context. .
  • Develop strategies to engage with feedback through reflective abilities in relation to Somatic principles and demonstrate this through performance.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Demonstrate a coherent embodied and intellectual and performance oriented understanding of Contemporary dance approaches and a range of different movement styles and practices as well as a coherent understanding of alignment, placement, posture, breath and weight, expression, spatial awareness and musicality through the application of key Somatic approaches. KCP
2 Demonstrate an intermediate ability to contribute work in a group as part of a team and respond to and engage with feedback in a variety of formats such as peer, tutor led, as well as through VLE forums. CT
3 An effective ability to plan and manage own time and work schedules effectively in realtion to ongoing progess and meeting assessment deadlines. PT
4 Effective ability to prepare, revise and rehearse presentation and assessment  material. PT

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 73

Lecture Hours: 66

Tutorial Hours: 11

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to:

  • Enable students to develop cognitive skills and to develop coherent understandings of Contemporary dance practices and somatic principles through a study of synthesised dance forms and somatic movement approaches.

  • Enable students to actively engage with feedback and apply this effectively to their own learning and within a performance context.

  • Broaden student understanding of the field of Contemporary dance practice and somatic approaches in the 21st century and develop strategies for applying this knowledge to their own movement practice.

The learning and teaching methods include:

  • Contemporary dance classes (e.g. 1.5 hours x 4/week for 11 weeks)

  • Somatic workshops (1 hour per week for 11 weeks)

  • Independent study and practice

  • Use of the University’s VLE to support content delivery (i.e. reading, video resources and discussion forums).

  • Feedback and reflection

  • Required readings

  • Viewing professional work

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list


Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Dance BA (Hons)(CORE) 1 Core Each unit of assessment must be passed at 40% to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2018/9 academic year.