Practice what you preach: research-based theatre as a method to investigate drama teacher professional identity

Kelly McConville, Michelle Ludecke

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


    Teachers’ perceptions of their own professional identity affect their efficacy and professional development, as well as their ability and willingness to cope with educational change and implement innovations in their own teaching practice. Despite this, few opportunities are provided that engage teachers in developing an understanding of their professional selves. In this paper, we present two cases of using research-based theatre as a way to understand and develop teachers’ sense of professional identity. A performative inquiry yields insights into the influences on teachers’ professional identities. Engaging in identity work through a teacher’s craft can result in shifts in perspective that positively impact future practice. We conclude that drama teachers ‘practicing what they preach’ by engaging in embodied reflections enhances agency and autonomy. Our findings demonstrate the benefits to all teachers engaging in embodied reflective work to better understand their own professional identities and harness their professional potential.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)83-99
    Number of pages17
    JournalN J Drama Australia Journal
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2019


    • research-based theatre
    • Identity
    • drama teachers
    • Professional learning
    • audience

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