The diversity in our student body enriches the life of the school, feeding creativity. We are delighted to have students from over 25 different countries, of different ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds and abilities learning together. We work hard to identify the barriers which prevent students from accessing or completing training, and to make adjustments based on an individual’s needs. 35% of our student body has been able to disclose and seek support for a disability since joining NSCD.
At NSCD we encourage a curious, pioneering, innovative and independent attitude. We develop the dance artists of the future who go on to shape the art form, through a curriculum that is informed and enhanced by research and development. Staff research focuses on teaching and learning, technology-enhanced practice, performance, health & well-being and creative practice, and students work with staff on their projects as co-authors in the research process.
Students get the chance to put on both informal and formal performances at NSCD’s own professional theatre, Riley Theatre, experiencing live audiences and engaging in intensive rehearsal blocks.
Our entire staff is made up of industry professionals, and an extensive list of guest artists and companies visit us to lead performance projects, masterclasses, workshops, auditions, contribute to career talks and sit on assessment panels.
Students are encouraged to continue their professional development by participating in external projects and commissions, as well as in-house enrichment classes.
NSCD boasts a ‘scaffolded curriculum’ of interrelated themes: technique and the physical body, creative practice, practice as research and performance in a variety of contexts. Modules prepare students for a portfolio career as a performer, creator, teacher or producer. Ballet and Contemporary dance are re-envisaged through their relationship with other genres, screen dance, site-specific and other technologies.
In the 2020 National Student Survey, 92% of NSCD students said that staff made the subject interesting and were enthusiastic about what they are teaching. 97% said the lecturers were good at explaining things, and 95% thought NSCD had a strong learning community. NSCD is part of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama which is ranked third amongst all UK arts Higher Education Institutions for overall student satisfaction (92%).
Leeds has the UK’s richest dance ecology with three dedicated dance buildings, two international touring companies, one of the first national dance agencies, and the only government-funded dance conservatoire north of London. It’s also one of the UK’s most vibrant, student-friendly cities, voted the Best UK Student City by The Independent (2016) and the fifth Best European Destination by Lonely Planet (2017).
Leeds’ cost of living is much lower than London. Most of the accommodation is in walking distance, cutting down on travel expenses. As well as accommodation and food being cheaper, students can benefit from discounted tickets to see a wide range of theatre performances.
Our Alumni go on to work with a wide range of companies. Many go freelance or set up their own company.
NSCD’s Student Services department is a one stop shop for all students, and aims to be students’ first point of call for all enquiries. These enquiries may range from timetabling, accommodation, safeguarding and attendance.