Dance Studies at UNSW produces thinking dancers, critical movers, and creative researchers. At the UNSW School of the Arts & Media, you’ll learn to combine theory and physical practice and challenge and reimagine traditions in thinking, writing and making dance with both conceptual and applied learning.

We offer honours and postgraduate study options, where you’ll sharpen your practice and focus on the next stage of your career. With strong ties to local industry through teaching staff and associated professional residencies, you’ll be poised to continue into higher degree research in creative practice and dance theory.  

Understand Dance Through Varying Perspectives  

Studying Dance at UNSW will develop your understanding of dance as an art form and social practice, and teach you to approach dance from multiple perspectives, whether you’re a dancer, an audience member or a theorist. We encourage students to consider their studies within a broader context and gain an understanding of national and international practices.

Supporting & Nurturing Future Researchers 

With our postgraduate study options, you’ll identify and explore significant issues within the discipline and build a career as an academic or a curator. Our Senior Lecturer in Dance, Dr Erin Brannigan, is a leading dance theorist working in intermedial studies across dance, film, writing and the visual arts. Her current research explores the condition of dance within the broader field of the contemporary arts through its relationship with other art forms in intermedial compositional practices.

Leading Academics

Dr Erin Brannigan is a leading national dance theorist working at the disciplinary intersection of Dance and Film. Holder of a current ARC-funded research project into the Experimental Humanities, Dr Brannigan’s current research comparatively examines the disciplinary practice of composition across Dance, Music and Visual Arts.

Dr Brannigan’s publications focus on the role of dance as an interdisciplinary practice:

Brannigan, ED, 2011, Dancefilm: Choreography and the Moving Image, 1st, Oxford University Press, New York, Currency Platform Paper Moving Across Disciplines: Dance in the Twenty-first Century and a forthcoming edited volume of essays on contemporary dance practitioners 12 Australian Choreographers (Eds Baxter and Brannigan).

For more information on Dance Studies at UNSW, contact Dr Erin Brannigan.

Study with Us

You can complete an honours degree in Dance Studies through a thesis or practice-based research methods. Honours students have included Nalina Wait, Lisa Synnott, Gavin Clarke, Victoria Hunt and Tess De Quincey.

Research students in Dance investigate a significant issue within the discipline. You’ll either write a full-length thesis or undertake practice-based research which includes a portfolio with a dissertation. Current PhD candidates are Nalina Wait, Lizzie Thomson and Lisa Synnott.

Our staff have strong relationships in the dance industry and our Honours and Postgraduate degrees are designed to help you understand the theoretical and practical, preparing you for a career in the arts.   

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