This programme provides you with a broad understanding of the theories and practices of dance movement therapy necessary for safe and effective clinical work, and enables you to practise as a dance movement therapist.
Your learning will be underpinned by the principles and practices of psychodynamic psychotherapy within the social, political and multicultural context of mental health care and educational settings. Study is informed by contemporary dance practice, Laban Movement Analysis (LMA) and somatic bodywork.
Through theoretical studies, movement observation studies, dance practice workshops, clinical work and experiential learning, you integrate cognitive understanding and practical experience with a developing awareness of self and other.
The nature of the therapeutic relationship is explored in depth through movement and dance and you have the opportunity to put your learning into practice through at least 90 days of supervised placements. This gives you the opportunity to relate your practical experience to your theoretical studies.
You'll be encouraged to develop your own dance/movement practice and to situate your work in relation to your development as a therapist, to contemporary dance and movement practice. You're required to be in personal therapy throughout the programme (please note that this is at your own cost).
On graduation you are eligible to become a registered professional member of the Association for Dance Movement Psychotherapy (ADMP UK).
Follow us on Facebook for more about the MA, including photos of our graduate show.
We offer a Dance Movement Psychotherapy short course, along with other therapeutic short courses. Visit our short course pages to find out more.
Contact the department
If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Caroline Frizell
What you'll study
The MA in Dance Movement Psychotherapy programme is made up of 240 credits and provides you with a broad understanding of the theories and practices of Dance Movement Psychotherapy necessary for safe and effective clinical work as a Dance Movement Psychotherapist.
It aims to enhance your self-knowledge and interpersonal relationships and to promote your psychodynamic understanding of individuals, groups and society; working with questions of difference, equality and diversity.
Your learning is underpinned by the principles and practices of psychodynamic psychotherapy within the social, political and multicultural context of mental health care and educational settings, and informed by contemporary dance practice and Laban Movement Analysis (LMA). On successful completion of the MA you will be able to apply to the Association of Dance Movement Psychotherapists UK for registration.
|Theory and Practice of Dance Movement Psychotherapy 1||45 credits|
|Experiential Learning 1||30 credits|
|Clinical Placement 1||45 credits|
|Theory and Practice of Dance Movement Psychotherapy 2||60 credits|
|Experiential Learning 2||15 credits|
|Clinical Placement 2||45 credits|
Assessed by coursework, film, portfolio, case study, dissertation, log and reports
Please note that due to staff research commitments not all of these modules may be available every year.
You should have:
- an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a relevant/related subject or, if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.
- A minimum of two years’ experience in dance and/or movement forms
- experience of paid or voluntary work in health, social, education or community services
We accept a wide range of international qualifications. Find out more about the qualifications we accept from around the world.
If English isn’t your first language, you will need an IELTS score (or equivalent English language qualification) of 6.5 with a 6.5 in writing and no element lower than 6.0 to study this programme. If you need assistance with your English language, we offer a range of courses that can help prepare you for postgraduate-level study.
Fees, funding & scholarships
Find out more about tuition fees.
Ebb and Flow bursary
10 x hardship bursaries of £500 each are being offered for this programme.
How to apply
You apply directly to Goldsmiths using our online application system.
Before submitting your application you’ll need to have:
- Details of your education history, including the dates of all exams/assessments
- The email address of your referee who we can request a reference from, or alternatively an electronic copy of your academic reference
- A personal statement – this can either be uploaded as a Word Document or PDF, or completed online
- If available, an electronic copy of your educational transcript (this is particularly important if you have studied outside of the UK, but isn’t mandatory)
You'll be able to save your progress at any point and return to your application by logging in using your username/email and password.
When to apply
We accept applications from October for students wanting to start the following September.
We encourage you to complete your application as early as possible, even if you haven't finished your current programme of study. It's very common to be offered a place that is conditional on you achieving a particular qualification.
Late applications will only be considered if there are spaces available.
If you're applying for funding you may be subject to an application deadline.
Admission is normally by interview day, including a group movement session. We ask international students to submit a movement portfolio demonstrating their ability to move alone and with one or more people, beyond the use of technical movement vocabulary. We will send you further details, and guidelines for the movement portfolio submission, if you are selected for interview.
Fitness to train
Applicants are asked to disclose any criminal record, disciplinary record, significant periods of time off work and significant health problems in writing after interview. If we wish to make an applicant an offer of a place on the course, an anonymised version of the applicant’s written disclosure will be reviewed by a panel which considers the applicant’s suitability for therapeutic studies training. This process is additional to normal ‘fitness to train’ processes.
Find out more about applying.
Staff who specialise in counselling and therapy include:
- Caroline Frizell (Programme Convenor)
- Sue Curtis (Placement Coordinator)
- Marina Benini
- Dawn Batcup
- Tracey French
- Brenda Naso
- Sara Bannerman Haig
- Rebecca Hanson
- Hannah Murdoch
- Fiona Hoo
- Chris Hauke
- Kevin Jones
- Dr Sally Skaife
- Dr Jill Westwood
Find out more about staff in the Department of Social, Therapeutic and Community Studies.
Key employability skills developed on the course include:
- Personal development planning
- Reflective processes
- Tolerance for stress
- Practical and Professional elements
- Interpersonal sensitivity
- Organisational sensitivity
- Written communication
Examples of places that DMP MA graduates are currently working:
- Mainstream, special and therapeutic schools.
- Pupil referral units
- Organisations for adoption and fostering
- Children and adults in not-for-profit organisations
- Drugs intervention team
- Addictions service
- Dance for Parkinsons
- Community, creative and therapeutic dance for children and adults
- Dance therapy and mindfulness based approaches
- Honorary DMP contract – NHS Trust
- Sessional DMP work for C.I.C ‘Dance and Dementia’.
- Creative Therapist, NHS Foundation Trust, CAMHS Specialist Intervention Team
- Lecturing (e.g. UEL on use of the body in the counselling/therapy relationship
- PhD study
Find out more about employability at Goldsmiths.
During their training students will gain clinical experience in both child and adult placement settings. See examples below:
Springfield University Hospital
Springfield University Hospital is a mental health NHS trust and the clinical placement is in a Medium Secure Forensic Unit within this for adults.
Students engage in both individual and group DMP sessions. The trainees may also do assessments; generic and discipline specific. There is ample opportunity for working alongside the professionals in Teams, attending meetings, participant observations, etc. A typical placement day would include meeting with staff and engaging in clinical work with time around this for note taking and professional development.
Trainees are expected to undertake all mandatory trainings within the NHS such as safeguarding, de-escalation, information governance and so on. There are also desired trainings and ad hoc CPD events of various kinds and lengths that they can attend, such as lectures or half day events as well as KUF trainings on personality disorder for instance.
There will be on site provision of reflective practise by a Senior DMP and line management within an Arts Psychotherapies service.
The benefits of having a DMP student are immense. It keeps the profile of the profession and the clinical caseload high. It has given more critical thinking mass in inputting to Teams and in thinking about treatment plans and client need.
Cherry Trees School
Cherry Trees is a special needs school for primary aged boys. We cater to the local community and the pool of regular primary schools in Tower Hamlets, offering a specialised provision for boys with social, emotional and mental health difficulties (SEMH).
The clinical sessions can take the form of individual or group therapy. The students will usually have the opportunity to shadow and interview:
- Speech and Language therapist
- Child adult mental health therapist (CAMHS)
- Community officer from the ‘Docklands Outreach’
Typically the DMP student will attend the morning briefing which is a scheduling forum for all staff regarding the coming day. The DMP student will then plan for their interventions. In their free time they will join a class (away from their clients) and support the class with general learning or targeted one to one work.
We have offered safe guarding and child protection training to DMP student in the past and on site supervision is provided by the Senior/Inclusion manager.
The DMP students have provided an additional intervention to support our pupils. They come with a range of other skills that serve to support the pupils and staff outside of their clinical practice.
Randal Cremer is a two form entry Primary school, serving a diverse community in Hackney, London. We are a new placement opportunity for Goldsmiths and will be taking students again next year.
We have two DMP trainees who run 1:1 and group DMP sessions in the afternoon. During the morning sessions they shadow our Physical Literacy co-ordinator delivering her interventions in Reception and KS1. Furthermore, they also support our KS 2 pupils during their P.E. lessons. As well as delivering and observing clinical sessions the trainees have attended a Transfer review meeting for a child with Autism who was being transferred into an Educational, Health and Care plan. They were able to observe different professionals sharing ideas and advise as well as learning more about the new Code of Practice.
The trainees also organised a parent afternoon to meet with their clients parents. This was useful a useful session, parents could ask questions which the DMP trainees could answer. They also delivered a similar session to teachers, so teachers had a better understanding of their work and how this is supporting pupils. Furthermore, they are involved in lunch time activities, leading on different activities, for example the dance challenge we have during lunch time.
DMP trainees are introduced to the school’s safeguarding procedures and can attend different training sessions if possible. They feedback to the placement manager every week either face to face or via e-mail. The benefits of having DMP trainees at the school has meant extra staff to support vulnerable pupils, developing activities that will engage children to be more fit and healthy. Children receiving the therapy have more confidence, they have fewer arguments with their peers and teachers report they are more focused in class.
Kisharon is an organisation that supports children and adults with learning disabilities within the Jewish Orthodox community. Kisharon Adult Day Service caters for adults aged 16+ across our two sites located in Hackney and Hendon.
Students undertaking a placement in Kisharon have the opportunity to run both individual and group sessions. In order to experience the placement as a professional DMP, students are asked to attend an interview before beginning their placement and will receive a full induction before the commencement of placement which will outline mutual requirements and will include specific information relating to the client group and cultural aspects of the service.
Students attending the placement will be expected to observe the client groups for an agreed minimum period before embarking upon the referral process, give a short presentation to the staff team relating to the work they will be undertaking and attend staff meetings where possible in order to give and receive feedback where appropriate.
Typically, students spend their time liaising with staff and team leader, having individual sessions/ group sessions and will spend time between their clinical sessions to write up clinical notes. Students will also have supervision with the placement manager on a weekly/fortnightly basis and can take advantage of liaising with other therapy students from Goldsmiths from the same course, different therapy courses and different Universities in addition to employed qualified therapists that work within the setting.
The placement offers a full induction including information on learning disabilities and autism and all students are required to read through and adhere to important policies such as safeguarding, confidentiality, data protection and religious ethos. There is potential for students to be enrolled on specific courses relating to their work and this can be discussed on an individual basis.
On site supervision is provided by a qualified music therapist using a psychodynamic approach.
Kisharon has been very grateful to Goldsmiths University for having enthusiastic DMP students on placement in the adult day service who are open and willing to learning about a new client group and culture. The benefit to the organisation is that the people we support receive group and 1:1 therapy sessions as part of their weekly programme, the staff have gained a greater understanding of the therapeutic processes and interventions that can support people both in and out of the therapeutic space and have had positive repercussions on the lives of the people we support.
Community Recovery Service for Older People
Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust provides a comprehensive range Mental Health Services to the residents of Camden and Islington. For a comprehensive list of services please visit our website. The Community Recovery Service for Older People is part of Services for Aging and Mental Health, a speciality that includes Community Mental Health Teams, acute inpatient wards, Crisis team and specialist dementia services. Camden and Islington are diverse multi-cultural inner city London Boroughs and we offer a supportive therapeutic environment providing assessment and treatment to older adults with a range of mental health issues. We are skilled in working with people experiencing, depression, anxiety, psychosis and other serious mental health concerns particularly when complicated by poor physical health.
We are a day service so trainees working at CRSOP can run sessions during the morning, lunch time or the afternoon group time slot. It is an ideal service to gain group experience and trainees working here have run small groups with 4+ service users or taken the whole group 7+ service users. These have worked well. Students have also been able to work individually with patients and could see up to 3 if not running a group or one or two if running a group.
Trainees are based in our Multi-Disciplinary Team Office and will work closely with members of the MDT, i.e. Nurses, Occupational Therapists, Psychiatrists, Art Therapist, Psychologist, exercise practitioner and Support Worker. We are a small and supportive team of highly skilled mental health professionals who have a good understanding of psychodynamic approaches and groups whilst based in a busy frontline service for older adults with severe and enduring mental illness. Trainees are involved in all team meetings both business and clinical and will have the opportunity to take part in other group sessions run for service users. In the past trainees have also taken part in social events such as outings and attending the Christmas party.
Students receive training to use our electronic Note system ‘Care Notes’ and mandatory training in Health and safety, hand hygiene, fire, manual handling, safeguarding and information governance. C&I run a comprehensive programme of training for all employees and once an on honorary contract has been set up for the trainee they can access courses run by our Learning and Development Department. Attending would be dependent on time constraints of clinical work whilst on placement.
Management supervision is provided by the placement manager onsite on a regular basis, she is an Occupational Therapist with an interest in and experience of Psychodynamic group work. In her absence the service manager, also an Occupational Therapist by training, provides supervision. The MDT members are available to offer informal supervision and are a supportive team.
DMP trainees bring a new perspective on working with our service users adding a non-verbal as well as verbal dimension. We are a team that welcomes new perspectives and believe in offering a diverse range of therapeutic interventions to support our service users in their journey to recovery.
The use of dance and movement as a reflective tool is core to the training in Dance Movement Psychotherapy.
Here are some examples of our students' work from the 2016 degree shows, and some filmed movement responses that students submit as part of their assessment: