Qualification: MFA
Course Length: 24 Months
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Programme overview

This programme is one of very few in this fast-growing and impactful professional field and one which notably includes intimacy coordination.

This intensive course offers a range of approaches to the field of movement direction. Training will include contemporary approaches to movement teaching and coaching, which will equip you to work with performers across a diverse range of disciplines and confidently lead classes and rehearsal processes.

We keep our cohorts small to ensure you get personal attention and contact from our expert teachers, who have extensive first-hand experience in professional theatre in the UK and the US.

This is a practice-based interdisciplinary programme that will provide a unique opportunity for the research and development of specialist early career teachers and practitioners from backgrounds who may not otherwise enter the teaching and coaching profession.

The University of Surrey is home to the National Resource Centre for Dance which includes the personal archives of the prominent movement theorist Rudolf Laban as well as collections from companies, choreographers, dancers, teachers and other artists including the Bice Bellairs collection.

GSA operates a pedagogic approach that utilises student-centred learning. Every module has an ethos of nurturing and enabling employability and personal development opportunities for the students. Our working practices encourage dialogue and are most effective when a collaborative approach is undertaken. Our learning environment grants our students the freedom to take risks and to embrace spontaneity.

What you will study

Through a series of modules focusing on specific aspects of movement practice, you will build your skills in movement practices and approaches relevant to today’s performers.

Modules will focus on movement pedagogy, movement directing, devising and choreography, and intimacy coordination, allowing you to develop a thorough understanding of the body and its possibilities, and an overview of historical and contemporary movement practices.

You will work practically and experientially to gain key movement teaching and coaching skills and develop your personal approach to leading and directing movements for performers.

Applying your learning gained within the studio to classes and productions across the School will support you to develop your practice and understanding of specific project-based work.

The MFA builds on the MA, providing the opportunity for a hybrid approach in the second year and the chance to deepen and extend your professional practice.

You will have the opportunity to go on a work placement.

Our campus boasts great transport links to London, so you’ll be close to the heart of the UK theatre in London’s West End.

You will work closely with students from undergraduate and postgraduate programmes across the School, gaining practical experience supporting classes and movement direction for productions.

Opportunities for observation, assisting, and leading activities are embedded in the programme, working with faculty and visiting creative staff and building your practical understanding and application of movement directing and teaching.

Programme structure

To view the course structure please click here

Modules are indicative, reflecting the information available at the time of publication. Please note that modules may be subject to teaching availability, student demand and/or class size caps.

The structure of our programmes follows clear educational aims that are tailored to each programme. These are all outlined in the programme specifications which include further details such as the learning outcomes:

    Please note: this course is subject to validation, therefore no modules have been confirmed at this moment in time. These modules will appear once the course has been validated.

    GSA delivers its provision across three teaching blocks, within the University of Surrey’s existing semester structure.

    Course timetables are normally available one month before the start of the semester. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week (Monday - Friday). Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week, details of which can be obtained from the Academic Hive. View our Code of practice for the scheduling of teaching and assessment (PDF).


    Contact hours can vary across our modules. Full details of the contact hours for each module are available from the University of Surrey's module catalogue. See the modules section for more information.


    We offer career information, advice and guidance to all students whilst studying with us, which is extended to our alumni for three years after leaving the University. Our graduates have lifetime access to Surrey Pathfinder, our online portal for appointment and events bookings, jobs, placements and interactive development tools.

    GSA has an excellent reputation as a conservatoire, and graduates are sought for a variety of roles in the performing arts, as performers, creatives and as production staff.  We consistently nurture students to become highly employable and resilient graduates, with a sophisticated toolkit of transferable skills. GSA offers career advice throughout your study course and fully supports students with their first steps into the profession. We strive to ensure that our graduates develop the skills to help them enter the profession industry-ready.

    GSA is part of the Federation of Drama Schools (FDS), the Alliance of Musical Theatre Conservatoires (AMTC) and the Global Conservatoire Alliance (GCA).

    The MFA programme focuses on the development of specialist skills and knowledge, producing highly skilled graduates, ready to enter their respective specialist workforces. Students study core aspects of each field, gaining theoretical and practical skills as well as work placement, networking and career planning opportunities. All GSA students are equipped with both a practical and theoretical understanding of potential employment opportunities and how to navigate them upon graduation.

    Former graduates of GSA’s Master's programmes have moved into careers related to Movement direction, choreography and stage direction.

    An MFA qualification offers opportunities to teach at the university level (internationally) and will help students develop business skills, creativity and imagination, customer service skills, dexterity, and good interpersonal skills.

    2023 entry requirements


    To view the entry requirements please click here

    For more audition information please visit AUDITIONS & INTERVIEWS


    Find out all about fees and funding here.

    Visit our Scholarships and Bursaries page for more details.



    Thinking of continuing your education at Surrey? As an alumnus of Surrey, you may be eligible for a ten percent discount on our taught Master's programme fees.


    We often give our students the opportunity to acquire international experience during their degrees by taking advantage of our exchange agreements with overseas universities.

    In addition to the hugely enjoyable and satisfying experience, time spent abroad adds a distinctive element to your CV.

    Learn more about opportunities that might be available for this particular programme by using our student exchanges search tool.