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Dance Education

Course Code: SPSC 5398
Faculty: Science & Technology
Department: Sport Science
Credits: 3.0
Semester: 15 weeks
Learning Format: Lecture, Seminar, Tutorial
Typically Offered: TBD. Contact Department Chair for more info.
course overview

In this course, students explore the teaching and learning of movement through dance from early childhood to adolescence. A variety of dance forms, theories and practical observations are used to examine dance as a vehicle for individual and creative expression.

Course Content

1.  Theoretical: Contemporary issues and ideas confronting dance in secondary education

  • Gender in dance
  • Inclusion of people with differing abilities
  • Indigenous First Peoples' principles of learning including acknowledgement and understanding of the residential schools experience
  • Heteronormativity
  • Multicultural dance (India:  Dandiya, Israel:  Mayim, New Zealand: Haka, Canada: Red Sky Contemporary Indigenous)
  • Observing Dance: subjective response, predetermined criteria, artist's intentions

2.  Theoretical: Pedagogy

  • Peer teaching, direct teaching, co teaching, facilitating structured improvisation
  • Implementing curriculum development: movement concepts unit design
  • Assessment strategies (rubrics and criteria)
  • Forms of feedback
  • Developmentally appropriate activity design

3.  Practical:  A conceptual approach to the movement elements (space, time, force, body, movement).  

  • Reframing limitations in creative work: structured improvisations adapted to their students' needs and abilities
  • Dynamics in movement applications:
    • flow: free and bound
    • energy:sudden and sustained
    • weight: strong and light
  • Composition and choreography 
  • Selected genres of dance: E.g. Swing/Jive, Contemporary, Ballroom, Hip-hop, etc. 
  • Introduction to fundamental movement patterns

4.  Practical: Integration of British Columbia K-9 arts curriculum

  • Holism - mind and body can work together when creating works of art
  • Creative experiences involving the interplay between exploration, inquiry and  purposeful choice
  • Social connection through artistic exploration in creative movement experiences
  • Creative expression as a means to explore and share one's identity within a community

Methods of Instruction



Reading presentations

Structured Improvisation/Learn by doing

Guided exploration


Means of Assessment

Evaluation will be carried out in accordance with Douglas College policy. The instructor will present a written course outline with specific evaluation criteria at the beginning of the semester. Evaluation may include the following:

Participation 0-20%
Demonstration of conceptual understanding 0-20%
Reading Presentation 0-15%
Unit Plan Assignment 0-20%
Small Group Final Dance Presentation 0-20%
Critical Reflection 0-15%
Total 100 %

Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Discuss critically and advocate for dance in physical education settings based upon their developed understanding of contemporary issues that confront teachers,
  2. Plan, design, and facilitate successful creative movement experiences for their students,
  3. Demonstrate an understanding that human movement is a tool for expressive, artistic, creative movement,
  4. Demonstrate basic competence in teaching fundamental movement patterns,
  5. Create rubrics and assessment tools for evaluating dance in physical education settings,
  6. Articulate understanding of the movement elements in their developing work,
  7. Observe dance with a developed understanding of varied approaches (subjective, artist's intentions, predetermined criteria),
  8. Recognize the movement concepts learned in the course beyond educational settings, and
  9. Demonstrate basic understanding of the creative process as modelled in the B.C. Ministry of Education (K-9) Arts Education Curriculum.

course prerequisites

Enrolment in the Graduate Diploma in Physical and Health Education.

curriculum guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester/year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

course schedule and availability
course transferability

Below shows how this course and its credits transfer within the BC transfer system. 

A course is considered university-transferable (UT) if it transfers to at least one of the five research universities in British Columbia: University of British Columbia; University of British Columbia-Okanagan; Simon Fraser University; University of Victoria; and the University of Northern British Columbia.

For more information on transfer visit the BC Transfer Guide and BCCAT websites.


If your course prerequisites indicate that you need an assessment, please see our Assessment page for more information.