The master of arts in dance is an academic degree focused on research-based activities related to dance aesthetics, theory, history, cultural studies, or educational perspectives. Designed for dance scholars who want a vigorous studio practice, this master’s degree is often a step toward the PhD or other research and writing activities. As a Master of Arts candidate you will find yourself in an intimate environment of focused study, working closely with talented peers and distinguished faculty. Courses in the master’s curriculum span history, theory, technique, and include special seminars such as: Ideas about Space, and Live and Media Performance.
Located in the center of one of the largest and most innovative dance communities in the country, the Mills Dance Department provides the kind of intense laboratory environment so important to advanced study. Integral to that for MA candidates is a capstone project involving a substantial written thesis and oral presentation. Our master of arts students are movers, too, and are required to demonstrate an intermediate level of practical modern dance technique. Because of the renown of all the fine arts programs at Mills, we encourage students to collaborate across disciplines and to create a highly creative and individually tailored course of study. We also build opportunities that allow students to work with esteemed local organizations and renowned dance artists via departmental collaborations and master classes. Through committed mentorship of the library staff, the availability of important historical resources in the Special Collections of our F. W. Olin Library, and our relationship with UC Berkeley, master's candidates have abundant resources at their disposal.