Performing Arts Practice (Dance) National Extended Diploma level 3 – C3041

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Course Overview

This dynamic two-year dance course gives you the opportunity to improve your technical ability in a variety of dance styles as well as developing your choreographic and performance skills. You will develop vocational skills and professional knowhow to perform at a high level. Our highly qualified dance staff, many with a strong professional background working in theatre and dance, are dedicated to helping you gain those skills. The course will give you an insight into performing arts dance industry and support you in making decisions about future dance career.

Whether your interest is in performing in the west end, on cruise ships, in contemporary or urban dance or teaching dance this course will enable you to develop a range of skills.

If you are aged 16 to 18, you will be enrolled on a study programme. This will include retaking GCSEs or undertaking Functional Skills in English and maths if you haven’t already achieved a grade 4 or above.
You will take part in activities that help you to develop your personal skills, such as building your character and confidence. This will help you to live well and move into your chosen career.

If you are 16-19 years old these activities will be timetabled as will work experience and placement. You can also choose to take part in other activities.
For other age groups, activities will be tailored to your needs.

What You'll Learn

Year 1

Year one will focus on establishing technical and performance skills across all styles of dance and developing your contextual and stylistic understanding through practical projects. You will be in the dance studio daily to refine your dance skills. Dance styles on the course include contemporary dance, ballet, urban, jazz, commercial, afrobeats, tap, lyrical and improvisation, as well as choreography, musical theatre, health and fitness. You will study technique classes and perform within several short projects guided by your experienced tutors. You will also perform in two major performances at the Sue Townsend Theatre, our professional theatre in Leicester City centre. You will have opportunities to develop your own work and choreograph dance pieces for performance.

You will become a member of our College dance company, Artus, and represent the College at events and competitions both locally and regionally. You will develop your vocal and performance skills, working closely with Musical Theatre students to develop a broad range of skills for your future career.

Each year we host a range of exciting master classes where visiting dance artists and companies work with you to share their industry knowledge. Additionally, trips to view live performance enrich your experience and develop your understanding of the professional world of dance.

Year 2

Year two focuses on further developing your technical skills in all dance styles within technique classes. You will learn routines and repertoire created by tutors and study the work of professional companies in the industry. In addition, you will explore your own work choreographically and create a portfolio around your own personal interests and specialisms which can be used for audition and performance within our final major production showcased at our Sue Townsend Theatre.

Entry Requirements

Entry to this course requires five GCSEs at grade 4 (C) including English (essential) and maths (desirable). You will be required to provide one reference and it is desirable that you can demonstrate 90% attendance at your last place of work or study.

Additionally, you will required to prepare and present audition pieces (two solo dances lasting 2-minutes in styles of your choice) and attend an interview to show you have a suitable level of experience in dance. This is to support your careers choice and ensure that we place you on the right programme for you. We are currently asking all applicants to provide digital audition pieces and attend a video/telephone interview.

Consideration will be given to all applicants over the age of 19 who do not hold formal English and maths qualifications.

How you will be assessed

You will be assessed through both coursework and performance. You will need to show within your work that your skills and understanding are sufficient to pass each unit or achieve higher grades.

Your assignments are assessed internally by the college, and standards are verified by Edexcel. You will be assessed in a variety of ways which will include rehearsal, performance, workshops, journals, projects, digital portfolios, blogs and presentations.

Course Fees

Tuition fees

Tuition Fees (16-18): £0.00

Tuition Fees (19+): £7395.00

Additional Costs

There are theatre trips and workshops throughout the year which form part of the course and come at an additional expense. There is a dance kit list which will be supplied on acceptance on the course which includes practical clothing and dance footwear.

Material Fees



If the course is longer than one year the total fees are for the first year only and further fees may apply in future years. All fees are based on a ‘home’ learner status. Please contact us for information on overseas fees.

For more information, please see our course fee disclaimers page.

Learn more about fees

Course and Career progression

At the end of this programme you will achieve a Level 3 National Extended Dance Diploma in Performing Arts Practice (Dance). You will be able to pursue a degree at university or dance college.

Our graduates have progressed to Trinity Laban, Shockout Academy, Creative Academy, London Contemporary Dance School, Bird College, UCLAN, DMU as examples. Many past students are now dancing professionally, running their own companies, working in dance fitness or teaching.

What Happens Next

Apply online via the College website, or if your school uses the Positive Steps @16 (PS16) application system please apply through this and speak to your careers advisor if you are unsure. You will need details of your qualifications, a reference, and a personal statement to complete your application. Once your application has been successfully processed, you will be sent a conditional offer and be invited to a Welcome Event at the College to meet your tutors, learn more about your chosen course of study and tour the facilities. You will then need to confirm your acceptance of the course offered to you.

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