What is the different between a BFA and a BA dance degree?
The decision to dance in college is far more involved then it may seem. Do you want to be a part of a dance team or would you rather pursue a BFA/BA degree? Since it is very easy to find out if a school has a dance team, I am going to be focusing on the difference between the two degrees offered in the field of dance. Both degrees are not offered at every college, so you have to do your research!! The main different between these two degrees is the amount of studio time versus liberal arts courses required.
A BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) is more performance driven. This path will involve more “studio practice” time and focus on the physical dance training. This program will challenge dancers to work creatively and technically. Across universities, a BFA will consist of two-thirds studio time and one-third liberal arts. This track is best if you are striving to become a professional performer.
A BA (Bachelor of Arts) consists of more liberal arts classes. Since it is geared towards the teaching aspect, it required two-thirds liberal arts and one-third physical practice. Here the focus will reside in history, literature, and so on. You will still dance but the time in the studio is less than in the classroom.
Still, no two BFA or BA programs will be exactly the same at every school. Each university has the freedom to focus on various elements, so it is very important not skip the research process. In addition, some schools may offer concentrations, (usually in ballet, modern, jazz, or choreography), while others do not require this selection. Each school provides unique options and paths, so again, do your research on programs, faculty, and courses.
Jenny Rose Kineavy is a TOCD alumni who graduated in 2015. She currently attends the University of the Arts in Philadelphia where she is working to obtain a BFA in Dance alongside a Minor Degree in Creative Writing.