Commonwealth Society of Teachers of Dancing

The C.S.T.D. is one of the great International Dance Societies proudly serving Dance for 80 years providing examinations in all major dance disciplines from Tinies to Teacher qualifications throughout Australia & the Asian Pacific region. If you are a dance teacher who is looking for a Teaching Qualification, C.S.T.D provides Teaching Certificate in all dance disciplines from Classical Ballet, Modern Jazz, Contemporary, Theatrical, Tap to Dancesports. Once you obtain your Eligible Teaching Certificate, you will then be able to enter your students for C.S.T.D. examinations.

About CSTD

2013 marks the 80th Anniversary of the Commonwealth Society of Teachers of Dancing (CSTD).

The Society had its beginnings in 1933 with the formation of the National Examination System and the Victorian Society of Dancing. Established in 1931 and 1933 respectively, the two organisations were founded to establish Examination Standards and to raise the standard of dance in Australia.

The later amalgamation of the two societies into the Commonwealth Society of Teachers of Dancing consolidated the work of the two organisations into one democratic society which today occupies a unique position amongst the dance societies of the world, catering for all major forms of dance.

Examinations are held throughout Australia and the Asian Pacific Region in the various syllabi.

The national operations of the Society are managed by an Executive Committee elected annually by the membership. The real estate assets of the Society are administered by the Board of Trustees.

Teacher Qualifications

Teachers who have a full teachers’ diploma use the letters CSTD together with the distinguishing letters for the syllabus, eg. CSTD/cb (classical ballet).

Affiliate membership is available to teachers of dancing, professional dancers and student dance teachers who do not hold the Society’s teaching qualification.

Competitions, Festivals, Championships and other member activities are programmed each year to meet the needs of members in each state.

CSTD Curriculum


The Classical Ballet Syllabus is a comprehensive training system from Pre-Grades to teaching qualifications. Printed music, CDs and videotapes are available to members.

The Pre-Grades Syllabus covers:

  • Pre-Ballet
    Pre-Ballet is the Foundation of Technique and prepares students for the work in the Grades. Children also learn to mime, which develops into self-expression. It is an introduction to the examination room in the form of a performance test and to build confidence in the child.

  • Primary Ballet
    Primary is the Development of Technique. Here children learn to listen and to recognize different rhythms in music, which will develop into musicality in their dancing. It gives them the ability to feel the movement and to dance with freedom and enjoyment.
    * This syllabus caters for students from 5 years of age upwards.

The Grades Syllabus covers:

  • Grade 1 to Grade 6


  • Dorothy Gladstone Award (Public Performance)
    and caters for Girls and Boys from 7 years of age upwards. Demi-Character and National Character styles are also included.
    * This Syllabus was fully revised recently and features 118 pieces of original music especially composed for the Syllabus.

The Major Classical Syllabus covers:

  • Sub Elementary

  • Elementary

  • Intermediate

  • Advanced

  • Premiere Danseuse/Premiere Danseur

  • Martin Rubinstein Award (Public Performance)
    * This Syllabus caters for female and male candidates from 12 years of age upwards.

The Teaching Syllabus covers:

  • Teaching Certificate
    Candidates who have passed Elementary may sit for this examination.

  • Teaching Diploma
    Candidates who have passed the Teaching Certificate and Intermediate may sit for this examination.


*This Syllabus caters for candidates from 5 years of age upwards. CD's & DVD's are available to members.

  • Pre Jazz & Junior Jazz

  • Grade 1-Grade 8

  • Public Examinations

  • Teaching Qualifications


*This Syllabus caters for students from 9 years of age upwards. Syllabi, DVD's and CD's are available to members who have attended the workshops conducted by the choreographer Jason Winters.

  • Foundation Level

  • Level 1

  • Level 2

(further levels to be released)


  • Preliminary 1 & 2

  • Elementary Medals

  • Intermediate Medals

  • Advanced Medals

  • Public Examinations

  • Teaching Qualifications


This Syllabus focuses on performance and is broad-based, covering several different dance styles. Students commence examinations in two subjects and then progress to three. It is available from the age of four years, as the Tiny Tots Medal Syllabus, up to adult and teaching qualifications. Dance styles covered are:

  • Classical Ballet & National Character

  • Jazz Ballet & Contemporary

  • Tap

  • Acrobatics


  • Primary to Grade 4

  • Junior & Senior Medals

  • Public Examinations

  • Teaching qualifications


  • Latin American

  • Modern

  • Australian New Vogue

  • English Old Time
    Medal tests and professional Teachers' Diplomas in all styles.


How do I become a member?

Simply email us to for a membership application form. We will give you the instructions on how to become a member and the fees needed to be paid. If you require any assistance contact us on 021-30010303.

I belong to another Society. Can I become a member of the CSTD?

Yes you may become a member of CSTD if you belong to another Society. If you want to teach all or any of our syllabi, you may apply for Affiliate Membership with CSTD. This entitles you to purchase and teach our syllabi as well as enter candidates for examinations.

I do not hold any CSTD qualifications. Can I become a member of the CSTD?

As above, you can apply for affiliate membership and commence examinations with CSTD in order to gain our qualifications.