The EdD in Dance Education doctoral program at Teachers College affirms dance as an essential form of embodied experience that shapes learning across diverse global contexts. Through dance education, people of all ages imagine, create, think critically, collaborate, understand culture, shape identity, and communicate meaning about human experiences. Our doctoral community welcomes dance educators who celebrate many dance traditions, and who are deeply committed to transforming dance education through innovating educational opportunities for a wide variety of adult stakeholders, such as teachers, artists, administrators, and policymakers. In preparing teacher educators, researchers, and leaders, the doctoral program’s core mission is to cultivate educational experts that forge new pathways in dance education that are accessible, inclusive, equitable, and excellent for all learners.
The doctoral students in our community are interested in researching a wide range of educational issues impacting critically underrepresented sectors of the field. These include PK-12 dance education, high-school to post-secondary transition, university dance teacher preparation, teacher advancement, dance teacher certification, and educational policy. Our work with doctoral students aims to forge new paths in dance education through critically examining historical assumptions, reflecting on contemporary contexts, engaging in collaborative dialogue, enacting socially just practices, and forging new pathways.
Nested in the arts mecca of the world, the doctoral program brings together renowned faculty from across the college with the vibrant dance community of New York City. Teachers College is recognized by scholars as a primary incubator for the development of dance education as a field in PK-12 schools and universities. It has played a principal role in cultivating and empowering dance education leaders for over 100 years. As the nation’s premier institution in the teaching of teachers in all fields, Teachers College is the ideal place to earn a doctorate in dance education and to join the legacy of dance education leadership.
The EdD in Dance Education program offers coursework to prepare doctoral students as teacher educators and researchers with leadership roles. Our courses in Embodied Learning, Dance and Human Development, and Historical Foundations develop content knowledge while facilitating opportunities to examine critical gaps in the field,where innovations have the potential to rapidly advance how we prepare future dance educators, classroom teachers, educational administrators, and policymakers. Charged with a responsibility to inform and educate adults who make critical decisions about dance education, a series of courses prepare students to develop effective leadership strategies in a chosen sector, such as PK-12 schools, private studio settings, university contexts, consultancies, and cultural organizations. These courses, including Adult Learning, Advanced Curriculum Design, Teaching and Leadership, Seminar, and Studio Seminar, enhance content knowledge while providing students with the opportunity to design their own related inquiries and engage with the vibrant dance and arts communities in NYC and beyond as they refine their research ideas.
Students also select a specialization area and select up to 15 credits of out-of-program courses to deepen a chosen area of inquiry further:
Teacher Education – Delves into shaping pedagogical content knowledge, supervising student teachers, and coaching educators.
Leadership and Policy – Delves into leadership skills, program management, cultural policy, or educational administration.
Movement Sciences – Delves into the pedagogical application of motor learning, anatomy, physiology and biomechanics.
Interdisciplinary – A self-designed track combining aspects of the the various specialization areas or delving deeper into a one or more specific areas of inquiry, such as neuroscience, Afro-centric education, instructional technology, spirituality, creativity, peace education, visual art, music, literature, philosophy, human development, or cognition for example.
As a primary aim of the Dance Education program is to develop experienced dance educators as tomorrow’s dance education researchers, the degree program culminates with a written dissertation and oral defense of an original, student-designed, empirical research study. We believe that the multiple ways of knowing that are embedded in dance practices can serve as the bedrock for developing a research identity and for conducting multi-modal research that is convincing and transformative. Given that individualized research is at the core of the Ed.D. degree experience, students are provided with persistent support in designing and implementing a research study. Through a series of collaborative doctoral and dissertation seminars, students are guided through the research process while developing critical inquiry, reflection, dialogic and argumentative practices that underpin research. As the result of the seminars, students develop the critical components of their doctoral exam and dissertation research study, including a review of literature, a pilot study, a research proposal, and an IRB ethics review. Students also select from a wide variety of research methods courses offered at the college to tailor their research visions. A culminating course, Writing for Journal Publication, prepares students to disseminate their discoveries in refereed publications. Certified doctoral students work closely with program faculty members who serve as the dissertation advisors. The culminating dissertation committee includes dance education faculty as well as college-wide faculty selected for related field expertise.
The Arnhold Institute for Dance Education Research, Policy and Leadership dovetails with the Ed.D. program and provides students with a dynamic research community where they engage with outstanding educational researchers and guest scholars as well as participate in dance education consortia, symposiums, and professional learning events.
Entry Terms: Fall Only
Minimum point requirement: 90
Required Dance Education Courses: (16 points)
A&HD 5040 Dance and Human Development (3 points)
A&HD 5044 Embodied and Motor Learning for Dance (3 points)
A&HD 5046 Historical Foundations and Contemporary Issues in Dance Education (3 points)
A&HD 6000 Advanced Curriculum Design in Dance Education (3 points)
A&HD 6001 Teaching and Leadership of Dance Education in Colleges, Cultural Institutions, and Communities (3 points)
A&HD 6482 Teaching and Leadership of Dance Education in Colleges, Cultural Institutions and Communities: Internship and Seminar (1 point)Required Dissertation Seminar Sequence in Dance Education: (17 points)
A&HD 6049 Introduction to Doctoral Inquiry in Dance Education (3 points)
A&HD 6501 Dance Education Doctoral Seminar 1 (3 points)
A&HD 6502 Dance Education Doctoral Seminar 2 (3 points)
A&HD 6999 Studio Seminar: Performance Presentation (2 points)
A&HD 7501 Dance Education Dissertation Seminar 1 (3 points)
A&HD 7502 Dance Education Dissertation Seminar 2 (3 points)
A&HD 8900 Dissertation Advisement in Dance Education (0 points)*
*Note: A&HD8900: Registration for doctoral dissertation advisement is required for all doctoral students who have either been recommended for doctoral certification (advanced to candidacy) or have an approved dissertation proposal on file. Registration is required each Autumn and Spring term unless a student is registered for a 3-point TC course. There is no course syllabus as students are completing individualized dissertation research.
Out of Program Courses (6 points)
A&H 6010 Writing for Journal Publication in The Arts (3 points)
One Adult Learning Course from ORLD (4050,4051,4053,4060,4844) (3 points)
Research Methods Courses (9 points)
A&H 5001 Research Methods in Arts Education (3 points)
Two (2) additional courses in research methods chosen in consultation with the major advisor (6 points)
Interdisciplinary Specialization (12 points)
Every student must complete one of the four specializations chosen in consultation with the major advisor. The four options are:
(A) Teacher Education (Educating Teacher Educators)
(B) Leadership and Policy
(C) Movement Sciences
(D) Interdisciplinary (out-of-program breadth courses)
(A) Teacher Education Specialization (Educating Teacher Educators)
C&T5512 Guided Practice (Supervision) of Elementary and Secondary Teachers (3 points)
C&T6025 Teacher Educator as Researcher: Inquiry in Teacher Learning (3 points)
C&T6525 Learning to Teach and Teacher Education (3 points)
CCPJ5020 Racism and Racial Identity in Psychology and Education (3 points)
CCPJ5164 Multicultural Counseling and Psychology (3 points)
(B) Leadership and Policy Specialization
A&HG4013 Cultural Policy (3 points)
EDPP5045 Race, Ethnicity, and U.S. Educational Policy (3 points)
ORLD4085 Management and Leadership Skills in Practice (3 points)
ORLD4091 Somatics: A Mind/Body Approach to Leadership Development (3 points)(C) Movement Sciences SpecializationBBSR4060 Motor Learning (3 points)
BBSR4095 Applied Physiology I (3 points)
BBSR4005 Applied Anatomy and Biomechanics (3 points)
BBSR5028 Motor Development (3 points)(D) Interdisciplinary Specialization (out-of-program breadth)
Sample of Possible Advised/Selective Course Topics (by advisement):
History of Education
Instructional Technology and Media
Leadership and Policy
Neuroscience and Education
Philosophy of Education
Foundation Electives (30 points)
A&H 5002 Assessment Strategies for the Arts (3 points)
Transfer Credits (up to 30)**
**Graduate level courses in dance pedagogy, dance studio, choreography, improvisation, production, music, dance history, Laban studies, Anatomy/Kinesiology, education, research, etc.
Coursework or professional experience in all of the foundations areas below is required at either the undergraduate or graduate level to ensure that all students have the necessary background in dance. Graduate level courses in any of the areas below may be accepted for transfer credit to the Ed.D. program and will be determined upon admission transcript review. Accepted students may continue study in the following areas listed below and/or other areas of interest while enrolled at Teachers College. Selection of elective courses is in consultation with the major advisor and at the approval of the College.
Studio: Technique, Repertory and/or Somatic Practices
Studio: Choreography, Dance Composition and/or Dance Improvisation
Music for Dance
Dance History (performance)
Dance in Cultural Contexts
Laban Movement Analysis
Anatomy and Physiology
Dance Pedagogy/Teaching Methods
Assessment in the Arts
Graduate Academic Writing
Elective credits may be completed as follows in consultation with the major advisor and at the approval of Teachers College:
Graduate level elective credits completed at Teachers College (Ex: A&H 5002 Assessment Strategies for the Arts)
Graduate level elective credits not offered at Teachers College and completed during doctoral study through the Inter-University Doctoral Consortium (IUDC) at IUDC member institutions.
Graduate courses previously completed at other institutions that have been accepted by Teachers College and the Ed.D. program for transfer credit (up to 30 points total).
Presentation Requirement (0 points)
Performance (adjudicated) OR
Publication (refereed) OR
Conference Presentation (refereed)
Students are required to complete one of the above presentation formats. The presentation must directly relate to the student’s dissertation research problem and questions. The presentation must be proposed to and approved by the major advisor.
Praxis Project (0 points)
Teaching of Adults/Teachers
Mentoring of Adults/Teachers
Leadership of Adults/Teachers
Prerequisite: A&HD 6000 and A&HD 6001. Students are required complete a praxis project in which they teach, mentor or lead adult learners , the proposal for which is developed in A&HD 6001 and in advisement and approval by the major advisor. The praxis project must relate directly to the student’s dissertation research problem or questions. It may be implemented in conjunction with A&HD 6482.
Doctoral Certification (0 points)
Dissertation Proposal & Hearing
Completion of at least 60 points
Composite grade decile of 6 or above in courses taken before certification
Recommendation for certification by the advisor and department