ABT: AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE AMERICA'S NATIONAL BALLET COMPANY®

Photo: Rosalie O'Connor.
© Copyright 2017
Ballet Theatre Foundation, Inc.
All rights reserved.

Frequently Asked Questions:

 
Q: How do I become an ABT Certified Teacher?
A: To become an ABT Certified Teacher, candidates must complete intensive training in the ABT National Training Curriculum and successfully pass comprehensive examination(s). ABT Certified teachers are permitted to teach the ABT National Training Curriculum only to the levels in which they have successfully completed the training intensive and required examination.

There are three levels of certification, which must be obtained in succession:

Pre-Primary - Level 3
Pre-requisite: Candidates must have reached an advanced or professional level of ballet training. While there is no maximum age limit, the minimum age for candidates applying for the teacher training intensive is at least 17 years old by the start of the first training session, with the further pre-requisite of having reached an advanced/professional level of dance training.
This is the foundation of the curriculum and prepares teachers to instruct ballet students ages 3+. Course length is nine full days.

Level 4 - 5
Pre-requisite is certification in Pre-Primary - Level 3.

This continuation of the course prepares teachers to instruct intermediate and advanced ballet students age 11 - 13+. Course length is six full days.

Level 6, 7 & Partnering

Pre-requisite is certification in Pre-Primary - Level 5, along with a 1500-2000 word essay on one of four topics, which will be available upon registration; additionally, teachers must successfully present a minimum of 12 students for ABT Student Examinations prior to attending the Level 6, 7 & Partnering course.

This further continuation of the course prepares teachers to instruct advanced and pre-professional ballet students ages 14+. Course length is six full days.

Q: What is the cost of the teacher training sessions?
A: The cost of each session varies. Below is a breakdown of the cost for each session:
Training Session #1: Pre-Primary Level - Level 3: $1650 + $150 materials fee
Training Session #2: Level 4 & 5: $1500 + $50 materials fee
Training Session #3: Level 6,7 & Partnering: $1500 + $25 materials fee
The cost of completing the entire program, though a teacher could not complete the whole training in one summer, would be $4650 + $225 for materials.
Please note that candidates registering for both training sessions 2 & 3 together will receive a $100 tuition discount.

Q: Is housing provided?
A: No. Teachers are responsible for finding their own accommodations during the teacher training sessions. A housing resource list is provided by ABT to all participants.

Q: What can I expect during the certification exam?
A: The written section of the exam has multiple choice questions, true/false questions, matching questions, open-ended questions, and Health Guideline questions, and will be based on material covered during the training. There is also an oral exam which is given by an adjudicator with an observer in the room.

Q: What happens if I do not pass the exam?
A: Participants who do not pass are encouraged to continue to study the curriculum and repeat the training at their earliest convenience. There is a consecutive two-year time limit to repeat a teacher training session. The second time registering for that course, there is a $150 fee in place of tuition.  If the candidate does not pass the exam for a second time, they are no longer eligible to register for that course due to the level of proficiency required as an ABT Certified Teacher.  

Q: Can I become certified in all levels during one year?
A: Yes, however the intensives must be taken in sequential order. Candidates must pass their qualification exam in Pre-Primary to Level 3 before attending the Levels 4-5 training. Before attending the training for Levels 6, 7 & Partnering, candidates must pass their qualification exam in Levels 4-5, write a 1500-2000 word essay on one of four topics, and successfully present a minimum of 12 students in ABT Student Examinations.  

Q: What benefits are there to becoming an ABT Certified Teacher?
A: ABT Certified Teachers are provided with the latest curriculum updates, listings of special opportunities, and networking connections with other teachers. They are able to use the ABT National Training Curriculum logo on their websites and in promotional material and to list their credentials in bios and programs. ABT Certified Teachers are listed on ABT’s own website and receive an official certificate listing their levels of certification. There is also an opportunity to become an ABT Affiliate Teacher.

Q: What should I bring/wear to the training?
A: We recommend that you wear comfortable clothing that you can move in. Dance clothing is optional. Proper teaching attire and footwear are required for the oral portion of the certification exam.

Q: Is there an age requirement to attend the training?
A: Yes. While there is no maximum age limit, the minimum age for candidates applying for the teacher training intensive is at least 17 years old by the start of the first training session, with the further pre-requisite of having reached an advanced/professional level of dance training.

Q: Is the ABT National Training Curriculum incorporated into the training programs at ABT?
A: Yes. All of the training programs for dancers offered at ABT, including the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School and the ABT Summer Intensive Program, are utilizing the ABT National Training Curriculum.

Q: Is there a cost to maintain certification?

A: There is a $100 fee per calendar year to cover administrative costs, National Training Curriculum updates, NTC website maintenance and invitations to events exclusive to NTC Certified Teachers. This fee is waived for teachers that have already paid to attend a teacher training, a refresher course or presented students for ABT Student Examinations during that year.

Q: I am a current or former ABT dancer. How can I become certified?
A: ABT Dancers and alumni are offered the opportunity to become an ABT Certified Teacher and attend the trainings on full scholarship. Alumni are welcome to attend the regularly scheduled trainings, but need to register.

Q:Why are teachers required to successfully present a minimum of 12 students for ABT Student Examinations before they are allowed to attend the Level 6, 7 & Partnering course?
A: ABT’s Artistic Staff, led by Kevin McKenzie, are eager to see the work of our ABT Certified Teachers as it allows them the opportunity to understand what aspects of the ABT National Training Curriculum are most successful and what needs to be revised and improved. The ABT Student Examinations are the best assessment of the merits of the ABT National Training Curriculum and a vital part of keeping the dialog open between ABT’s Artistic Advisors and our network of talented ABT Certified Teachers.

Our NTC Staff is eager to work with ABT Certified Teachers to make this requirement attainable, successful and part of the learning process for both the teacher and the students. The students can be presented in any level that the ABT Certified Teacher has completed their certification.