BFA Curriculum

Ailey/Fordham students complete a diverse curriculum that includes a carefully designed sequence of dance and liberal arts courses, encouraging students to achieve their artistic and academic potential. BFA candidates are full-time students at both institutions.


At The Ailey School, BFA students are part of the Professional Division, trained to be among the vanguard of the finest and most versatile dancers., Students take a rigorous core curriculum of daily classes in Classical Ballet, Horton and Graham-based modern. In addition, students also take a variety of other dance technique and creative courses that are specific to the BFA in Dance program.  At the start of their freshmen year, students take placement classes to determine their appropriate levels in the core dance technique courses. This enables each student in the Ailey/Fordham program to pursue and individualized dance schedule that is consistent with their level of training.

As part of the undergraduate community at Fordham College at Lincoln Center, BFA students take a core-curriculum of liberal arts courses taught by Fordham’s esteemed arts and sciences faculty, 93 percent of whom hold a Ph.D. or other terminal degree. Course work ranges across the fine and liberal arts including music, the social sciences, philosophy, theology, history and foreign languages.

More information about Fordham College at Lincoln Center

BFA Curriculum Overview


Evaluation and Advisement

Each Ailey/Fordham student is assigned a dance advisor at The Ailey School as well as an academic advisor at Fordham University. Both advisors aid the students in making the most of the curriculum and are available for advice and support throughout the program.

At the close of each semester at The Ailey School, students receive detailed written evaluations of their technical and artistic progress in each of their dance classes.  Students also receive written feedback from adjudicated dance classes which are administered in the freshmen and sophomore years.


Performance Opportunities

Throughout the four years, BFA students are provided many opportunities to learn from and perform varied repertory with renowned faculty and guest artists.  Students perform both at the Ailey Citigroup Theater and at Fordham University's Pope Auditorium.  In their senior year, students also perform in venues in the greater New York City area.


Professional Experience for Advanced Students

The Ailey/Fordham program offers its most advanced students the unique opportunity to dance professionally while earning credit toward their BFA degree.  Seniors and occasionally juniors with outstanding dance and academic records may dance with professional companies as apprentices or members with the approval of the BFA Director.


Student Services and Facilities

Ailey/Fordham students may take advantage of the full range of student services offered through both The Ailey School and Fordham University.

The Ailey School:

  • 12 state-of-the-art dance studios
  • Ailey Citigroup Theater
  • Workshops and lectures on nutrition, healthcare psychological wellness and injury prevention
  • On-site physical therapy facility and staff
  • On-site dance video and research library
  • Student teaching opportunities in Junior Division classes
  • On-site Ailey dance boutique and concession stand

Visit The Ailey School

Fordham University:

  • Libraries with more than 2,200,000 volumes, hundreds of computer workstations and a state of the art electronic information center
  • Labs include comprehensive facilities in sciences, media studies and languages
  • Support services that provide comprehensive personal and spiritual guidance
  • Writing Center designed to assist students with any type of writing from their curriculum

Visit Fordham College at Lincoln Center
Take a virtual campus tour

For questions, email the BFA Program  or call 212-405-9124.