My experience has been more like Ithink's than like that of most of the other posters (though without the competition aspect). I started learning WCS in a ballroom studio environment. I've been taking pure WCS classes and going to the associated socials for less than a year. I prefer WCS socials to the ballroom socials I attend because I get more invitations to dance, the leaders are aware of the music, and the level of dance skill is higher. I sometimes receive suggestions during WCS class warm-ups, but rarely at a social. I get a lot more verbal leads at the ballroom socials. It seems it's partly a matter of the culture of the local environment. I'd hate to think mid-dance teaching is as common as it seems from previous posts ... but since I'm likely to stick around my apparently-blessed corner of the westie world, I'll just be happy where I am.