Dr William Barlow
My research uses drama education and theatre approaches. I primarily work with students and young people though I have extensive experience of working in non-institutional contexts with a range of adult groups. My interests and experience include the theory, policy and practice of education and life transitions, site-specific theatre, reminiscence theatre, care experienced education, CLPL for teachers, theatre and drama workers and creative education.
Prior to Joining the School of Education in 2016, I worked at the University of Plymouth (lecturer in Education) and as a Faculty Head of Expressive Arts in the west coast of Scotland. I have experience of working with young people, adults and senior communities throughout the United Kingdom and abroad. Previously, I was a chairperson in the South East of Glasgow's Children's Panel and have worked with looked after children (including accommodated) across Scotland. My community education work includes young offenders, prison education and additional support needs learning and teaching (public and private sectors). I have consulted, written and examined for the SQA. Moreover, I consult for theatre companies and education departments in Scotland and abroad.
I guest lecture for several higher education institutions at home and abroad.
At the University of Aberdeen, I undertake the following duties:
PGDE Drama Secondary and Primary curriculum
MA 3 Professional Focus input for Educational Drama
MA 4 Primary Drama curriculum
MSC Educational Research
Professional studies tutor
Post-graduate supervision and teaching
Leader of Expressive Arts
Memberships and Affiliations
- Internal Memberships
Pedagogy and digital learning
Short life working group - assessment
- External Memberships
Specialist examiner - RCS
External examiner - Rose Bruford College (Actor musicianship and Theatre for young audiences)
Editorial board member International Journal of Educational and Life Transitions
Standing Committee Initial Teacher Education for Drama
Reviewer for the following journals:
Prizes and Awards
AHRC - CI
Drama in Education, Primary-Secondary Transition, Looked After (and Accommodated) Children's Education, Inclusive Pedagogy, Creative/Aesthetic Pedagogies and Teacher Education.
I seek to integrate my research and teaching by working with a range of practitioners. Currently, I am researching primary-secondary transition and drama conventions, site specific theatre, reminiscence theatre and intergenerational learning.
I work with a range of practitioners (local, national and international) to develop my research and praxis.
Recently, I have worked (and/or continuing to work) with the following collaborators (this list is not exhaustive):
Aberdeen City Creative Learning - Senior Drama Group
School based Drama departments across the country
National Theatre of Scotland
Visible Fictions Theatre Company
Perth Repertory Theatre
Dundee Repertory Theatre
Out of the blue Theatre Company
Tony Goode (chief collaborator)
Dr Mark Harvey - University of Auckland
University of Strathclyde - visiting tutor on undergraduate and postgraduate ITE
University of Plymouth
University of Dundee - Professor Divya Jindal-Snape (Primary-Secondary transitional learning)
New York University - Educational Drama
Funding and Grants
Recently, I have won a Santander Motability Award. This fully funded award has enabled me to visit New York University Educational Drama Department.
I was a CI on a recent AHRC grant to create a devised site specific promenade piece of theatre with senior citizens. This devised piece was based upon the history of the colony site based at Bennachie (a site of historical interest).
Co-ordinator Drama Distance Learning Initial Teacher Education (DLITE)
ED2056 MA2 Workshop leader for MA2 Creativity Conference
ED302C MA3 Professional Focus Option Educational Drama
ED402A learning and teaching in schools: developing professional practice 1 (PGDE)
ED452A learning and teaching in schools: developing professional practice 2 (PGDE)
ED40XI learning and teaching in schools (DRAMA)
ED40XZ learning and teaching in schools: (PRIMARY)
Postgraduate research students
New York Univeristy
The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS)
University of Strathclyde
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Primary-Secondary Transition – Building Hopes and Diminishing Fears Through DramaTransitions Through Education. Hannah, E. F. S., Jindal-Snape, D. (eds.). Frontiers S.A., pp. 71-87Chapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters
Forging New Realities: Using Drama Conventions and Poetry to Explore the Issue of TerrorismEnglish in Education, vol. 56, no. 2, pp. 174-185Contributions to Journals: Articles
Conceptualising primary-secondary school transitions: A systematic mapping review of worldviews, theories and frameworksFrontiers In Education, vol. 6, 540027Contributions to Journals: Articles
Primary-secondary transition – building hopes and diminishing fears through dramaFrontiers in Education, vol. 5, 546243Contributions to Journals: Articles
‘We ur al aff tae th’ big schuil’: pupils' and teachers’ views and experiences on using Drama Conventions to support primary-secondary transitionEducation 3-13: International Journal of Primary, Elementary and Early Years Education , vol. 48, no. 8, pp. 893-908Contributions to Journals: Articles
Context and Implications Document for: Systematic Literature Review of Primary‒Secondary Transitions: International ResearchReview of Education, vol. 8, no. 2, pp. 567-569Contributions to Journals: Articles
Systematic literature review of primary-secondary transitions: International researchReview of Education, vol. 8, no. 2, pp. 526-566Contributions to Journals: Articles
Life transitions: A ‘Covid-19’ pregnancyNon-textual Forms: Web Publications and Websites
DramaScottish Education. Bryce, T. G. K., Humes, W. M., Gillies, D., Kennedy, A. (eds.). 5th edition. Edinburgh University PressChapters in Books, Reports and Conference Proceedings: Chapters
Learning drama from age 3 to 18DRAMA - Nordisk dramapedagogisk tidsskrift, vol. 3, pp. 32-33Contributions to Journals: Articles