Unit of competency details

CUADAN507A - Refine dance partnering techniques (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Is superseded by and equivalent to CUADAN507 - Refine dance partnering techniquesUpdated to meet Standards for Training Packages. 20/Nov/2013

ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 06/Oct/2011


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 100105 Dance  

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 100105 Dance  12/Apr/2012 
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Modification History




This version first released with CUA11 Live Performance Training Package version 1.0

Unit Descriptor

This unit describes the performance outcomes, skills and knowledge required to practise and execute complex dance sequences with a partner.

Application of the Unit

This unit applies to those who are consolidating their career in contexts where a high level of partner work is required for performances. These skills are applied in different ways depending on the dance style.

At this level, dancers are challenging themselves with dance sequences of increasing technical and physical complexity. While some supervision and guidance are provided in practice sessions and rehearsals, dancers are expected to be self-directed and display a high level of motivation and sense of responsibility for themselves and others.

Licensing/Regulatory Information

No licensing, legislative, regulatory or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of endorsement.


Not applicable.

Employability Skills Information

This unit contains employability skills.

Elements and Performance Criteria Pre-Content


Performance Criteria 

Elements describe the essential outcomes of a unit of competency.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element. Where bold italicised text is used, further information is detailed in the required skills and knowledge section and the range statement. Assessment of performance is to be consistent with the evidence guide.

Elements and Performance Criteria

1. Maintain a physical conditioning program

1.1. Set realistic physical conditioning goals aimed at improving own dance technique

1.2. Apply a range of techniques to improve stamina, strength and flexibility

1.3. Identify risk factors  that may inhibit the achievement of goals and seek professional advice as required

1.4. Take fatigue, personal limitations and boundaries into account when undertaking physical conditioning program

1.5. Always perform warm-up and cool-down  activities in conjunction with dance activities

2. Practise partnering techniques of increasing difficulty

2.1. Dissect complex partnering routines into discrete elements  and work through each element separately

2.2. Practise combining elements until the required level of precision and technique is achieved

2.3. Practise executing lifts and counterbalances with surety and understanding

2.4. Practise going into and out of movements safely and gracefully

2.5. Experiment as required with timing, body position and other techniques associated with multiple partnering 

2.6. Develop a high level of rapport  with partner

3. Maintain expertise

3.1. Apply professional work ethic  to all practice and performance activities

3.2. Incorporate injury-prevention techniques  into all dance and movement activities

3.3. Maintain and update knowledge of dance terminology

3.4. Use feedback from teachers and mentors to identify and develop ways to improve own dance partnering technique

3.5. Regularly view performances by industry practitioners as a way of sourcing new ideas and trends, maintaining motivation, and improving own technique

Required Skills and Knowledge

This section describes the skills and knowledge required for this unit.

Required skills 

  • communication skills to:
  • discuss physical conditioning issues and dance partnering techniques with relevant personnel
  • respond appropriately to feedback on own skill development
  • initiative and enterprise skills to:
  • work creatively with music and dance movements
  • communicate the mood or style of dance sequences
  • respond creatively and flexibly to partner while dancing together
  • learning skills to:
  • develop strong dance partnering techniques through:
  • practising complex movements and routines
  • a positive attitude to performing
  • developing a high level of rapport with partner
  • implement a personal physical conditioning program
  • develop a movement memory
  • planning and organising skills to plan practice time
  • problem-solving skills to:
  • break complex dance sequences down into their component parts
  • anticipate and find solutions to problems that could arise while performing complex partnered sequences
  • self-management skills to:
  • maintain a professional work ethic
  • apply safe performance practices
  • teamwork skills to:
  • work closely with a partner
  • work collaboratively with others involved in practice sessions and classes.

Required knowledge 

  • principles underlying dance movements and techniques, such as:
  • relationship with gravity
  • spatial awareness
  • successional movement
  • use of breath
  • folding
  • extending
  • rotating
  • shifting weight
  • anatomical foundations, including:
  • articulation of the spine
  • engagement of the feet
  • bases of support, including feet, legs, hands, arms and torso
  • range of motion of the joints
  • differentiation of the legs and pelvis
  • terminology associated with chosen dance style
  • stage geography and directions
  • musical rhythms, including:
  • time signatures
  • beat
  • tempo
  • syncopation.

Evidence Guide

The evidence guide provides advice on assessment and must be read in conjunction with the performance criteria, required skills and knowledge, range statement and the Assessment Guidelines for the Training Package.

Overview of assessment 

Critical aspects for assessment and evidence required to demonstrate competency in this unit 

Evidence of the ability to:

  • perform a complex dance sequence with a partner on at least two occasions, demonstrating:
  • competent execution of advanced techniques:
  • overhead lifts
  • counterbalances
  • smooth transitions between movement elements
  • harmony of movement
  • rapport with partner
  • respond appropriately to constructive feedback on own performance.

Context of and specific resources for assessment 

Assessment must ensure access to appropriate dance performance areas or spaces.

Method of assessment 

A range of assessment methods should be used to assess practical skills and knowledge. The following examples are appropriate for this unit:

  • direct questioning combined with review of portfolios of evidence
  • third-party workplace reports of on-the-job performance
  • evaluation of performance (live or recorded)
  • verbal or written questioning to test knowledge as listed in the required skills and knowledge section of this unit
  • case studies and scenarios as a basis for discussion of issues and challenges that arise in the context of refining partnering techniques
  • direct observation of candidate in classes.

Assessment methods should closely reflect workplace demands (e.g. literacy) and the needs of particular groups (e.g. people with disabilities and people who may have literacy or numeracy difficulties, such as speakers of languages other than English, remote communities and those with interrupted schooling).

Guidance information for assessment 

Holistic assessment with other units relevant to the industry sector, workplace and job role is recommended, for example:

  • CUADAN501A Refine ballet technique
  • CUADAN505A Refine contemporary dance technique
  • CUADAN508A Develop expertise in allied contemporary dance techniques
  • CUAOHS501A Maintain a high level of fitness for performance
  • CUAOHS601A Apply advanced gym and weight training to ballet.

Range Statement

The range statement relates to the unit of competency as a whole. It allows for different work environments and situations that may affect performance. Bold italicised wording, if used in the performance criteria, is detailed below. Essential operating conditions that may be present with training and assessment (depending on the work situation, needs of the candidate, accessibility of the item, and local industry and regional contexts) may also be included.

Risk factors  may relate to:

  • consistency of a physical fitness regime
  • own ambition
  • expectations of others
  • injury-prevention strategies
  • gender issues
  • body image and eating disorders
  • insufficient hydration
  • poor nutrition
  • incorrectly fitting footwear
  • gender-appropriate performance techniques.

Warm-up and cool-down  activities may include:

  • stretching
  • joint-mobility exercises
  • flexibility exercises
  • aerobic activities
  • anaerobic exercises
  • coordinated breathing activities
  • floor work.

Elements  may include:

  • arabesque
  • promenade
  • jumps
  • pirouettes
  • turns
  • footwork
  • transitions
  • adage
  • lifts.

Multiple partnering  relates to:

  • lifting a number of dancers simultaneously
  • one dancer being lifted by several other dancers.

Rapport  may relate to:

  • harmony of movement
  • eye contact
  • dramatic nuance
  • anticipating signals
  • responding with ease and assurance to spontaneous movements
  • trust
  • cooperation
  • mutual consideration
  • touching and body contact
  • contact improvisation.

Professional work ethic  may refer to:

  • attentive behaviour in creative practice
  • awareness of:
  • substance abuse
  • addictive behaviours
  • expectations of others
  • eating disorders
  • effective management of personal finances
  • balanced diet
  • energy levels and personal limitations
  • stage and theatre etiquette
  • developing strategies to:
  • cope with performance anxiety
  • maintain motivation
  • effective personal hygiene habits, such as:
  • clean and short nails
  • clean and tied-up hair
  • clean hands
  • ongoing dedication to a physical conditioning exercise program
  • maintaining concentration, focus and physical alertness in all performance activities
  • maintaining costumes and other apparel
  • maintaining a work-life balance
  • punctuality and reliability
  • working creatively with individual differences.

Injury-prevention techniques  may include: 

  • warming up and cooling down before and after class and performance
  • wearing appropriate clothing and footwear
  • applying intent and focus while dancing
  • not overstretching
  • wearing appropriate bandaging and bracing where appropriate to support body
  • appropriate diet and rest
  • using appropriate equipment, such as barre, mirror and sprung floors
  • attention to teacher.

Unit Sector(s)

Performing arts - dance

Custom Content Section

Not applicable.