Award Recipients 2018
Stephanie Milling, Associate Chair and Undergraduate Director, Theatre and Dance, Interim Administrative Coordinator Dance Program and the Head of Dance Education
Integrative Learning in Dance as a Catalyst for Develop Emerging Leaders in the Field (Dance 470)
In reviewing scholarship on teacher preparation in dance from the 1980s until the present, scholars perpetually indicate that to meet current and future demands of the field, dance educators need to be able to draw upon skills that extend beyond the knowledge acquired from an isolated, narrow disciplinary practice (Stinson 1993; Kalich 1993; Andrezejewski 2009; Kassing 2010; Stinson 2010; Risner 2010). The proposed outcome for Stephanie Milling's grant project is to develop a systematic approach that allows students to demonstrate the knowledge gained in the course through a project that is connected to their beyond-the-classroom experiences, as well as their own professional development/leadership pursuits (conference presentations, professional development workshops, and future teaching), and generate research data relevant to current topics in the dance scholarship.
DANC 470, Dance Pedagogy for Middle and High School focuses on topics relevant to middle and high school dance classrooms. Teaching dance in K-12 education requires one to be extremely well-rounded in the discipline by demonstrating the ability to teach dance performance, choreography, history and culture, and arts integration to all populations, including gifted and talented students and students with disabilities. In addition, dance educators need to be trained as arts advocates who can communicate the benefits of dance education to stakeholders responsible for policy and funding. Therefore, postsecondary teacher preparation programs in dance need to offer curricula that extend beyond the nuts and bolts of teaching and include leadership development. Due to its broad scope, Dance 470 has inadvertently become a “catch-all” course that covers general dance studies content outside of some of the more the specialized dance topics included other courses. Currently, assignments are not interconnected to form a framework for comprehensive learning that demonstrates breadth and depth of knowledge. The Innovative Teaching Faculty Mentor Grant provides the perfect opportunity to support the redesign of this course.
While USC’s dance education program currently offers a uniquely meaningful experience when compared to other dance education programs across the country, having comprehensive evidence to support this claim would provide helpful data for recruitment, accreditation, internal program review by the College of Education, and practice-based scholarship. Millings believes that the groundwork established over the past three years in addition to this opportunity would provide her with ample tools to serve as a faculty mentor for other faculty on campus who are trying to redesign their curricula to align with perspectives beyond the classroom such as current personnel needs in their respective fields, accreditation and industry standards, program and institutional effectiveness and overall student development.
Lesly Wade-Woolley, Associate Professor, Communications Sciences and Disorders, Arnold School of Public Health