Senior Capstone Guidelines

Senior Capstone

The senior capstone project is the product of artistic and scholarly work of high academic quality.


Junior Year:  First week of April:

Submit a statement of intent for your senior capstone project.  Identify a faculty adviser who is familiar with your work and has agreed to oversee the project.  Then, submit your statement to the chair of the department.  Faculty will then review the stated project and accept or reject it.  The statement should include the following:

  • Clearly state what the project is, how you plan to accomplish the work, and why it is important. 
  • Clearly state your choreographic process, concepts and influences to your proposed work.  List courses, previous independent work and so forth.
  • Include a bibliography with readings, articles, performances, choreographers and other research.


Complete a large portion of research for your project, investigating but not limiting yourself to, readings, choreographic viewings, dance classes, performance attendance, choreographic workshops, musical scores and choreographic plans.

Fall of Senior Year:

Register for the D390 senior capstone course. 

First week of October:

Submit a first draft of the research component of your project including the majority of the work completed during the summer. 

Last week of October:

Present a choreographic review and showing for your project.  Include a log documenting rehearsal time.   A project will not be considered for the senior capstone if the above deadlines are not strictly followed.


Register for the D390 senior capstone course.


Senior Concert Performance. 

First week of April

Submit a draft of your final paper to your project adviser.  This draft should be between 5 and 10 pages.

Third week of April

The final paper for capstone projects is due.  Submit a DVD of your choreography to the department chair.

Capstone Options in Dance

  1. Theory/Research
    The most important components of a capstone in dance theory are the quality of the research, the originality of the thinking, the ability to link the work to theoretical issues of importance in the field, and the quality of the writing.
  2. Original Choreography
    Students selecting to present choreography must take a minimum of two levels of composition courses.  The project must demonstrate a theoretical component related to the field of research, the question, historical inquiry and relevance to current trends or historical trends in choreography.  

It is the responsibility of the student to independently pursue the goals described in her project proposal and to arrange for meetings with her adviser. The faculty adviser and student will work out a time schedule at the beginning of the project to include meetings with adviser, showing dates of choreography (if applicable), final performance dates and a due date for the written portion of the capstone project.

In rare instances a capstone project will be considered for thesis work.  A standard thesis choreographic project consists of a fifteen to twenty-minute choreographic work presented on a concert in March and a minimum of a 25-page paper. A non-choreographic project is 50 to 75 pages in length.