MA in Professional Practice: Dance Technique Pedagogy

This qualification is aimed at newly qualified or experienced dance teaching practitioners working in and beyond schools who wish to develop their dance teaching practice within the area of dance technique pedagogy and receive HE acknowledgement for their skills and expertise. It is designed to allow applicants who wish to engage with Masters level study to reflect on and extend their existing knowledge base, to focus on their own development as a practising educator through critical reflection, and to advance their own pedagogic practice.

The programme has been developed especially to allow you to continue working and integrate your professional expertise with academic learning through a work-based learning methodology. We appreciate that, as a dance teacher, you are often self-employed, have families or may be unable to commit the time or resources to study full time. There is also a strong element of independent study, which is supported by detailed course learning guides, online tutorial support and peer help.

The course's long-term value derives from its innovative structure. By recognising your professional experience and/or prior professional dance teaching qualifications, you are invited to reflect on past achievement, current work and future direction. This then forms the basis for a major project with a focus on technique pedagogy. The course enables you to make full use of your skills and knowledge, and find ways to align current work with future aspirations.

Please click on the relevant links below for more information on the qualification. 

What do I need to have to begin my study?

How is the programme constructed?

How can I achieve the required 90 credits at Level 7?

How can I study for this programme?

How long will it take me?

What forms part of the programme run by Middlesex University?

When can I start?

In which languages will this programme be available?

How much will the qualification cost?

Is there an upper age limit for the qualification?

What happens next?

Glossary of terms


What do I need to have to begin my study?

To start the programme, you should be an experienced dance teacher of at least five years and hold one of the qualifications listed below:

  • ISTD Licentiate;
  • ISTD Fellowship;
  • Level 6 Diploma in Dance Pedagogy (DDP);
  • BA (Hons) Professional Practice (BAPP).

 If you do not hold any of the qualifications listed above, please do not worry.

 If you hold qualifications of a similar level that are not listed above (e.g. DTLLS), please contact either the Education & Training Department of the ISTD directly who will discuss with you the specifics of your situation.

  • If you do not have any of the qualifications, but have substantial prior experiential learning (more than five years dance teaching practice), an experience practitioner route is available. This involves a module in which you are required to evidence your prior experiential learning in order to gain academic credit for this through assessment. 
  • If you are a newly qualified/less experienced dance teacher, you are most welcome. On application, the details of your professional experience and/or prior dance teaching qualifications will be reviewed to ensure your suitability for the programme.

How is the programme constructed?

The programme will be divided into two distinct sections:

  •  Achievement of 90 credits at level 7 (postgraduate level);
  •  Achievement of 90 credits at level 7 (postgraduate level) delivered by Middlesex University as work-based learning modules over a period of 12 months.

You can refer to the diagram below for an illustration of how the programme is constructed

MAPP diagram

Recognising professional experience and trainingis at the core of the relationship between the ISTD and Middlesex University. Middlesex University wishes to recognise professional training undertaken with the ISTD, and learning achieved through professional experience. If you wish to mix various ISTD and other qualifications for progression onto the MAPP DTP programme, please discuss this with Middlesex University directly.

How can I achieve the required 90 credits at Level 7?

Prior to accessing the MAPP DTP programme with Middlesex University, it is essential to have achieved 90 credits at Level 7 (postgraduate level). This can be done in a variety of ways.

  • ISTD Level 7 CPD modules

We are currently finalising the full details of our CPD modules which have been tailored to meet the needs of the professional development of an experienced dance teacher. As soon as we are able to advise on the content of these modules, we will update this page.

  • Middlesex University Level 7 CPD modules

Middlesex University is offering its own provision of Level 7 CPD modules (please see the details listed below). If you are interested in taking part in these modules to achieve any of the required 90 credits at Level 7, please contact Middlesex University directly: Paula Nottingham

  • Advanced Dance Technique – 10 credits at Level 7
  • Advanced Dance Technique (Humphrey) – 10 credits at Level 7
  • Dance Technique Pedagogy 1 – 5 credits at Level 7
  • Dance Technique Pedagogy 2 – 5 credits at Level 7
  • Dance Technique Pedagogy 3 – 5 credits at Level 7
  • Teaching Dance Techniques at Level 4 (Year 1 HE) – 20 credits at Level 7
  • Teaching Dance Techniques at Level 5 (Year 2 HE) – 20 credits at Level 7
  • Teaching Dance Techniques at Level 6 (Year 3 HE) – 20 credits at Level 7


  • APEL

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning, or APEL, is a portfolio-based process where you are required to explain learning achieved from prior experience. Please note that this is not available to teachers who are newly qualified or less experienced.

The APEL process is fully supported by Middlesex University and enables you to target the required credits needed at specified levels. 

Please apply to Middlesex University directly to arrange for the completion of APEL.


  • Other Level 7 credits

You may have already achieved Level 7 credits as part of a different qualification, for example a PGCE. If this is the case and if the qualification lies within the scope of the subject of dance teaching, it is possible to claim these. Please ensure you state these in your application.

How can I study for this programme?

This flexible programme can be studied for at your own pace wherever you are in the world. 

The methods of delivery and study vary depending on the elements of the programme. 

For the ISTD-run elements of the programme, as full details of the CPD modules are currently not available, we cannot confirm the exact methods of delivery and study. However, we are designing the modules to be as accessible as possible to participants wherever they are located in the world, making full use of distance learning study. 

The Middlesex University run programme is accessible via distance learning with no traditional taught elements requiring attendance at the University. You are assigned a personal academic advisor who supports you through the course phases. Contact is normally maintained by email, Skype and phone as well as optional campus-based tutorials. Every module has a detailed distance learning handbook. As a student on the course you will have full access to the e-resources of the university’s library and learning resources at both the Trent Park and Hendon libraries. Furthermore, the university makes significant use of social media technologies for tutoring, mentoring and peer support, ensuring that you will be able to engage in learning activities when and where it best suits you and your professional commitments.

How long will it take me?

The time it will take you will depend on the prior accreditation and experience you bring with you and therefore may take less time or slightly more depending on your personal circumstances. Please contact the ISTD or Middlesex University for further guidance.   


What forms part of the programme run by Middlesex University?

The programme delivered by Middlesex University will involve the following:

  • Achievement of 30 credits through the Advanced Practitioner Inquiry module, where you plan an in-depth piece of research of your choice within the field of dance technique pedagogy 
  • Achievement of 60 credits through the Negotiated Work Based Learning Project module, where you apply your research plan, developing a high-level understanding of an issue, or develop a work-related solution, within the field of dance technique pedagogy.

Progression onto this programme is subject to normal application processes. Applicants with ISTD qualifications should discuss their application with Middlesex University to ensure their full range of professional training and experience is recognised.

For more information on this element of the programme, please visit this website or contact Avni Shah (Work Based Learning Administrator) directly.

When can I start?

This depends on which part of the programme you are starting.

As soon as the ISTD Level 7 CPD is in place, we will open applications. The website will be updated with the information when possible.

If you are completing Level 7 CPD through Middlesex University and/or are going through the APEL process, please apply through Middlesex University directly.

For Part 2, Middlesex University operates the programme as a 12 month part-time programme and deals with all applications onto the programme. There are 2 separate entry dates for this programme in January and September of each year.

To receive a Middlesex University application pack, please contact the Work Based Learning office the School of Arts and Education directly: Paula Nottingham


In which languages will this programme be available?

At this time the programme is available in English only but it may become available in other languages if demand dictates.

Where English is not your first language, you will need to provide IELTS results of at least 6.5, or TOEFL 575 paper or 232 computer, or an equivalent before starting the programme.

How much will the qualification cost?

The cost of the programme and related assessment and certification will vary depending on your prior accreditation and experience.  The cost of the programme for you will therefore be agreed in a discussion between you and the ISTD and will be based on your programme of study. 

There are a certain amount of standard costs associated with this programme (this are correct for 2012).


ISTD entry fee (if you are completing ISTD CPD courses)


Fee for ISTD CPD modules


APEL fee through Middlesex University


Fee for MAPP DTP through Middlesex University (for UK and EU based applicants)


International applicants should contact Middlesex University for information about fees for the MAPP DTP.


If you have any questions regarding the ISTD related fees, please email at

The fees associated with the elements of the programme run by Middlesex University are listed for reference purposes only. If you have any further questions about them, please visit the Middlesex University website or contact Paula Nottingham directly. 

Is there an upper age limit for the qualification?

No - the ISTD and Middlesex University welcome learners of all ages.

What happens next?

This is a programme of a demanding academic level of study. Applicants are likely to already working at a sophisticated professional level as dance teachers or related leadership, management or development roles. Successful participants will benefit from an academic qualification that establishes and demonstrates to a professional audience exacting standards of knowledge and skills, the ability to work with and communicate complex ideas and to bring to fruition a large, work-related project.

Once you have completed the programme what happens next really depends on you.

It is not possible to achieve Licentiate or Fellowship status of the ISTD based purely on completion of this programme. You may be eligible for this status based on other ISTD qualifications you have already achieved.

Glossary of terms

Are you baffled by all the acronyms used?  Please click here for more information.

MAPP Case Study - Mary Grigg