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Master of Dance Studies

This course is available


Level of Study

Master's Degree


120 credit hours

Next start date

Expected Jul 2024


University of Auckland


Critically examine your personal interests in dance and the arts as part of our leading postgraduate dance research programme.

Programme overview

Dance research fosters independent examination of creative practice, pedagogy, history, people and society. In the Master of Dance Studies programme, you will critically examine practices, theories and issues that you find personally and professionally challenging and stimulating. Along with advanced specialist knowledge of dance you will gain intellectual and life skills that will equip you for employment, global citizenship and community involvement.

Programme structure

Your self-directed study will be supported by our award-winning staff who are successful practitioners, educators and scholars, with international and local expertise and networks that will support your individual research ambitions.

Your supervisor will provoke your thinking, challenging you to consider multiple perspectives of your research topic. Your study culminates in a written thesis and may incorporate a creative practice performance.

A student enrolled for this degree must complete the requirements as listed in the Master of Dance Studies schedule.

For the 120-point pathway you will need to complete:

Thesis: 120 points


Thesis: 90 points

Elective courses: 30 points

For the 180-point pathway you will need to complete:

Thesis: 120 points

Elective courses: 60 points including Dance Research Methodologies (30 points) and 30 points from either Choreography and Performance Research, Dance in Community and Education Research, Dance Intensive or other approved 700 level courses. (see University calendar)

A student enrolled in the 180-point pathway must achieve a Grade Point Average of 5.0 or higher in the first 60 points of the programme in order to continue.

You'll also need to meet other requirements, including time limits and total points limits. See Postgraduate enrolment.

Where could this programme take you?

Postgraduate study boosts your potential to build a sustainable career in dance, academia and research, contributing to influential projects in dance and the wider arts community.

Jobs related to this programme


Arts administrator/manager/director

Cultural adviser/educator

Professional choreographer

Professional dancer


Secondary school specialist dance teacher

Further study options

Doctor of Philosophy

Creative practice

Entry criteria

Research 120 points: You need to have completed a one-year postgraduate degree, after an undergraduate degree, in Dance Studies or an equivalent field indicative of an ability to undertake advanced research in Dance. Your study must have been at a recognised university (or similar institution) and you will need a GPE of 5.0.

Research 180 points: You need to have completed a Bachelors degree at a recognised university (or similar institution), with a grade point average equivalent of 5.0 or higher across your highest level of study in the degree. Your degree should have been in Dance Studies or an equivalent field indicative of an ability to undertake advanced studies in Dance.

IELTS (Academic): Overall score of 6.5 and no bands less than 6.0; Internet-based TOEFL (iBT): Overall score of 90 and written score of 21; Paper-based TOEFL: Overall score of 68 and a writing score of 21; Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) or Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE): Overall score of 176 and no bands below 169; Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic: Overall score of 58 and no PTE Communicative score below 50; Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP): Grade of B-; Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB): 85.

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