If life is what happens to our plans, then dance is what happens to our steps.
ideas sometimes when you wait they come to you.

Preparation for starting with BAPP

Monday, 9 October 2017

Module Two - cycle and crafting your inquiry is a way to better understand your own field of practice

Module Two sessions

Also have a look at what people in the session posted about it.

Important points we discussed:
Do all the tasks in the handbook as a cycle – go through them once, this will help start to shape your inquiry. But do not take too much time on one if it does not move you forward. Then go through them again this time the parts that you were stuck on will have shifted because of the work you did on the other tasks. For instance – in the first cycle of doing the tasks, your inquiry field might be vague. Don’t spend days and days trying to get a perfect question. Have an area then start thinking about the ethical considerations/ concerns/ arguments/ reflections in that area. This might make you clearer about the area in the general field you are interested in. Or it might be as you start to think about data collections tools you have an aha moment. After the literature review you should have had some changes because you would have explored and discovered new ideas from other people around the topic. Try to do the cycle of tasks at least three times layering and shaping your inquiry each time.

The literature review is the most important tool to help you see what you don’t know. It helps you realise other perspectives on your topic and it is these other perspectives and ideas your inquiry should be about. Your inquiry should not be about proving something you already feel or know because:
Firstly, the 12 weeks of Module Three is not long enough to ‘prove’ something.
Secondly, this does not help your practice or helps you develop  – it just makes you feel better about where you are currently! That is not what your BA is for – that is your best friends job!!

The inquiry should inform your practice – help you develop it. BUT NOT help you start a whole new branch of practice. You should be able to clearly explain how your past work, and current work inform your inquiry. But the inquiry gives you time to really focus or understand something within your practice. It is very useful to focus on a kind of historical inquiry where you find out what other people have done and how that fits with the 2017 field of practice that you are involved with.

Tip: if you think not much has been written or done on your topic – a historical inquiry will be really useful because it is likely you just don’t know about it not that nobody else in the history of arts practices has thought of what you are thinking of!!

In the on-line session we used a adapted version of Liz Lerman’s https://lizlerman.com   Critical Response Process: A method for getting useful feedback on anything you make from dance to dessert.

Each person in the call spoke about their practice and their inquiry and we followed the Liz Lermans Critical Response Process to feedback. This is something you can do with a friend or your SIG group. Describe your inquiry and get feedback on what people understand about what you are doing and how clearly they see it fitting with your practice. IT IS NOT to get feedback that you are doing a good job!! Or to get them to tell you what to do. It is to see if what you are thinking makes sense outside of your own head!! Also talking about your inquiry plans  and asking and answering questions helps you to better understand your own thinking-feeling.

Liz Lerman is presenting at Middlesex University this month as part of Dance Umbrella. Tuesday October 10th 6pn at Hendon  MDX and Wednesday 11th 4;30 at National Theatre http://www.danceumbrella.co.uk/event/dance-umbrella-lecture/  (if you are in London, UK those days).

Have a go exploring your ideas through feedback. Here is how her steps are described:


  1. Hi Adesola

    I found this really helpful. It is difficult to chose a suitable professional inquiry topic. Reminding us that is not a new branch of inquiry as we only have a few weeks but a topic that is relevant and meaningful to us and hopefully others. It is also encouraging that we are looking for the shape of our inquiry at the moment as the research my open up new thoughts or completely change our minds.

  2. Thank you for posting this Adesola - it has really helped make things clearer for me. My attitude towards the tasks was to throw myself into them and not to worry too much about the intricate details. I feel letting the path pave its own way is a productive way for my work to function. By doing this, I labour less on the small things and get a bigger picture of what direction I can possibly go in.

  3. This post haas made things much clearer for me as I have found myself reading the same tasks over and over again in order to try and get it 'right' the first time.
    I am going to now give this a go and hopefully feel like I am understanding it more.