Dance Movement Psychotherapy

Postgraduate School of Psychology

Build a rewarding career as a professionally-qualified registered dance movement psychotherapist. Graduates are eligible to register with the Association for Dance Movement Psychotherapy UK. This programme is designed for people who have prior dance experience and professional or volunteering experience with people in need.

Dance Movement Psychotherapy

2 years (full-time)
3 years (part-time)

Number of Credits


Start date

September 2024

Degree Type



These modules are those we currently offer and may be subject to change.

Your curriculum

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Dance movement psychotherapy is a relational process in which a client and therapist engage in an empathetic creative process using body movement and dance to assist the integration of emotional, cognitive, physical, social and spiritual aspects of self.

We believe that focusing on the creative potential of individuals in a relationship creates a sound ethical basis for psychotherapeutic work.

You will be taught by leading experts who will equip you with the skills, experience, and confidence to work as a dance movement psychotherapist.

All graduating students are eligible to apply for registration with the Association for Dance Movement Psychotherapy (ADMP UK). Graduates often create their own positions; facilitating dance movement psychotherapy sessions within settings including: social services; special needs; schools; psychiatry; probationary and rehabilitation units; forensic psychiatry. 

How you'll learn

The MA in DMP benefits from tutors’ practice-based research, which feeds directly in teaching.

Our uniquely interdisciplinary MA Dance Movement Psychotherapy integrates theoretical, experiential and clinical learning, preparing students to practice as dance movement psychotherapists. Practice-based research cascades into teaching emphasising the social, biological and psychological construction of the moving body and meaning-making. The programme offers opportunities for you to explore and expand movement preferences, ways of interacting with others, belief systems, prejudices and values. Emphasis is placed on development of your own style as a dance movement psychotherapist. You also have the opportunity to perform and exhibit your ongoing work in a yearly Arts Therapies exhibition.

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The programme ethos emphasises a critical consideration of different descriptions and explanations of bodies, human systems and therapeutic practices in different places and times. In the context of an individual student's experiences, beliefs, values and different 'cultures', our teaching actively promotes a participatory ethic, self-reflexive practices and the ability for critical reflection on: creative processes, intersubjectivity and the construction of social and power differentials, in learning and in psychotherapy.

Short courses

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We also offer weekend introductory courses, 5 day Summer Schools, and 20 week part time evening Foundation Courses which provide a useful background in related professions. For more information, see our Psychology Short Courses. 

Career options

Graduates can enter a variety of roles including: 

  • NHS clinical practice within in and outpatient services
  • community services
  • prison services
  • special needs schools
  • performing arts contexts
  • drug rehabilitation
  • in social services with immigrants and asylum seekers
  • in shelters with women who have suffered domestic abuse
  • dementia services
  • learning disabilities services
  • child and adolescent mental health services. 
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Our careers team is available to support you from the start of your studies until after you graduate. We will help you build your CV, prepare for interviews, and meet and learn from successful graduates working at the top of their careers.

Application Info

How to apply

Postgraduate programmes

If you need any help or advice with your application, or just want to ask us a question before you apply, please do not hesitate to contact us.

International students
Please note that most international applicants have to pay a deposit before securing their place.

  • See our Finance pages for more details

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Tuition fees and funding

September 2024 entry tuition fees

Full-time (2 years)
UK EU and International
Total fees for the course
Total fees for the course


Part-time (3 years)
UK EU and International
Total fees for the course
Total fees for the course

Specific Entry Requirements

Specific entry requirements

All eligible applicants to the programme will be interviewed/auditioned by the Programme Coordinator with Programme staff. Selection will be based on the following admissions criteria:

  • Applicants will normally be required to hold a good second-class honours degree (or above); in most cases this will be in a dance-related discipline or a clinically related discipline such as Dance, Psychology, Mental Health (Psychiatric) Nursing, or Social Work etc. Alternatively graduate level professional qualifications in appropriate disciplines such as Dance, Drama, Performing Arts, Occupational Therapy, Probation Officers or Social Work, are also accepted.
  • Applicants must attend an admissions day which includes experiential work and an interview, or a skype interview for international applicants.
  • Applicants will be expected to have prior appropriate clinical experience of having worked within a setting and with clients appropriate to the programme. Normally applicants will be expected to have a minimum of 1 year prior clinical experience. This might include working with children, adults or older adults in the areas of learning disabilities, mental health, hospice care, dementia care, neuro-disability, homelessness, addictions etc (this is not an exhaustive list). This work can be on a voluntary or employed basis.
  • It is expected that applicants will have prior movement and dance movement experience either having worked professionally in a dance movement/performance context or having practiced continuously for a minimum of 2 years prior to training. Knowledge and experience of at least two dance movement techniques/styles is required.
  • Applicants should also demonstrate personal qualities considered important to train as a therapist, such as their capacity to form and maintain appropriate empathic relationships with clients. They should also demonstrate emotional literacy and robustness and an ability to be self-aware and open.
  • Applicants will be required to supply two completed references within their application; normally one of these should be able to comment on the applicant’s academic suitability and the other the applicant’s clinical suitability for the programme.
  • In addition to these requirements, all students must be prepared to enter mandatory on-going personal therapy for the duration of the programme.
  • All applicants’ movement capacity will be ascertained as part of the interview.
  • We also offer 20 week evening foundation courses which provide a broad oultine and introduction in the arts and play therapies.

Personal Statement

The typed personal statement (approx 500 words) should cover the following main areas:

  • What has led you to wish to train as a therapist at this time?
  • How does this connect with your dance background, experience and hopes for the future?
  • what is your experience of how dance movement may enhance lives and facilitate change? (Specific reference to work or volunteering with vulnerable people is helpful).
  • Mention relevant courses, conferences and reading, any meetings with dance movement or other therapists.

The personal statement is also an indication of how well you express yourself in writing and helps us to identify any needs for specific support and development before or during the programme.

Need help before you apply?

Course Facilities

Image -  Newly refurbished dance studio  
  Develop core clinical skills, informed by practice in movement, feedback from observation and reflection.   

Newly refurbished dance studio 

Develop core clinical skills, informed by practice in movement, feedback from observation and reflection. 

Image -  Manresa Hall in Whitelands College    
  On top of a 24 hour computer room, the College also has two dedicated quiet study areas.

Manresa Hall in Whitelands College 

On top of a 24 hour computer room, the College also has two dedicated quiet study areas.


Our Research

For an overview of the research carried out by psychology academics within the School of Psychology, please visit the departmental research pages.

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