Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Honors Thesis



First Advisor

Susan McGuire


Can you remember the first time you were exposed to the arts? Might it have been in elementary school? Many schools in today's society face budget cuts to art programs since they are overlooked for their educational benefit. However, one might not even realize that these art programs, such as dance classes, can have positive effects on a student's self esteem and social interactions with others.

An alternate way for students to become exposed to the arts is through educational outreach programs. Dance educational outreach programs have been established by schools, community centers, and dance companies as a means of distributing dance to students across America. These outreach programs provide dance education to students who are not usually exposed to any forms of dance. Dance not only provides students with a great source of exercise, but also with a means of expression. Students that participate in dance classes gain confidence in themselves, which is also known as intrapersonal intelligence. Interactions with other students in a dance class, such as the teamwork needed to perform a dance, require interpersonal intelligence.

Howard Gardner established a theory of nine multiple intelligences including the interpersonal and intrapersonal intelligence. These two intelligences are a vital part of a child's life that is supplemented by dance classes. In order to prove the value of dance educational outreach programs and the importance they have on a child's development, this theory is put to the test. Elementary ages students are tested in their intrapersonal and interpersonal intelligences before and after participating in an extended period of dance educational outreach classes. My project will research the worth of dance educational outreach programs as well as the value of the arts in a child's interpersonal and intrapersonal development.