Associate Professor Drama/Theatre Education
442 Education Centre South
(780) 492-9402 (fax)
Dr. Diane Conrad is Associate Professor in the Department of Secondary Education with a focus on Drama/Theatre Education and Curriculum Studies. She completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing (Playwriting) at the University of British Columbia and a Bachelor of Education degree at the University of Ottawa with drama as her major teaching subject. Her first teaching experience was as a volunteer with World University Service of Canada in Lesotho, Southern Africa where she spent five years. She taught in the Northwest Territories for three years before coming to Edmonton to do graduate work. She obtained her MEd and PhD at the University of Alberta.
In the Department of Secondary Education, Dr. Conrad teaches undergraduate curriculum and instruction courses in drama education and graduate courses in curriculum foundations, curriculum inquiry and arts-based research.
Dr. Conrad has published in academic journals in the areas of education, drama/arts education and qualitative research, and regularly presents at conferences locally, nationally and internationally.
Graduate students with an interest in drama education, applied theatre, youth justice, “at-risk” youth, participatory research, arts-based research or other areas related to Dr. Conrad’s research are welcome to contact her.
A critical educator, Dr. Conrad’s research in curriculum and pedagogy in the area of drama/theatre education uses popular or applied theatre approaches with “at-risk” youth.
Her doctoral research involved doing participatory drama with a group of rural Alberta students to explore their experiences around issues they identified as relevant to their lives including experiences deemed “at-risk.” Her research re-framed the concept “at-risk” based on the perspectives of youth.
Conrad’s current funded research uses popular or applied theatre with incarcerated youth at a local youth offender facility. Her study The Transformative Potential of Drama in the Education of Incarcerated Youth won the 2006 SSHRC Aurora Prize.
Dr. Conrad uses participatory arts-based methods in her research. Participatory research is a new paradigm approach which focuses on the collective production of knowledge, community dialogue, education for consciousness raising, and mobilizing for action. Her research in youth justice has a strong advocacy component. Arts-based research is an emerging and innovative qualitative method which brings together arts-based practices and scholarly inquiry. Specifically she uses applied theatre, as a participatory and performative pedagogical approach and research method, and performed ethnography or ethnodrama as a way of disseminating her research.
Conrad, D. & Kendal, W. (in press). Making space for youth: ihuman Youth Society & arts-based participatory research with street-involved youth in Canada. In D. Kapoor & S. Jordan (Eds.) Global contexts of participatory action research, education and social change. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
Conrad D. & Campbell, G. (2008). Participatory research – An empowering methodology with marginalized populations. In P. Liamputtong & J. Rumbold (Eds.) Knowing differently: Arts-based & collaborative research methods (pp. 247-263).New York: Nova Science Publishers.
Conrad, D. (2007). Drama, role theory & youth: Implications for teacher education. Theatre Research in Canada, 28(2), 1-10.
Conrad, D. (2006). Justice for youth versus a curriculum of conformity in schools and prisons. Journal of the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies, 4(2), 1-20. http://www.csse.ca/CACS/JCACS/V4N2/PDFContent/1._conrad_4.2_jcacs_formatted.pdf
Conrad, D. & Campbell, G. (2006). Arresting change: Popular theatre with young offenders. In L. McCammon & D. McLauchlan (Eds.), The universal mosaic of drama and theatre: The International Drama/Theatre Education Association 2004 Dialogues (pp.375-391).Welland, ON: IDEA Publications/Soleil.
Conrad, D. (2006). Entangled in the sticks: Ethical conundrums of popular theatre as pedagogy and research. Qualitative Inquiry, 12(3), 437-458.
Conrad, D. (2005). Rethinking “at-risk” in drama education: Beyond prescribed roles. Research in Drama Education, 10(1), 27-41.
Conrad, D. (2004). When autobiography and research topics collide: Two risky school dance stories. Taboo: The Journal of Culture and Education, 8(1), 85-95.
Conrad, D. (2004). Popular theatre: Empowering pedagogy for youth. Youth Theatre Journal, (18), 87-106.
Conrad, D. (2004). Exploring risky youth experiences: Popular theatre as a participatory, performative research method. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 3(1) Article 2 [Online.] http://www.ualberta.ca/~iiqm/backissues/3_1/pdf/conrad.pdf
Conrad, D. (2003). Unearthing personal history: Autoethnography & artifacts inform research on youth risk-taking. Journal of Social Theory in Art Education, (23), 44-58.
Selected Conference Presentations
Conrad, D. (October, 2008). Lock 'em up, but where's the key? Transformative drama with incarcerated youth. UNESCO Canadian Arts & Learning Symposium. Kingston, ON.
Conrad, D. (June, 2008). The ethics & aesthetics of performing incarceration: Dramatizing applied theatre-based research with youth in prison. CSSE, Vancouver, BC.
Conrad, D. (April, 2008). Lock 'em up, but where's the key? Transformative drama with incarcerated youth. Researching Applied Drama Theatre and Performance.Exeter, UK.
Conrad, D. & Hunt, L. R. (April, 2008). Setting goals for a brighter future: Image theatre and digital photography with incarcerated youth. Researching Applied Drama Theatre and Performance. Exeter, UK.
Conrad, D. (September, 2007). Popular arts-based research with incarcerated youth: In search of transformative potential. Advances in Qualitative Methods. Banff, AB.
Conrad, D. (August, 2007). The transformative potential of drama in the education of incarcerated youth. American Alliance for Theatre and Education. Vancouver, BC.
Conrad, D. & Krammer, D. (May, 2007). An arts-based study of incarcerated male youths’ constructions of gender identity. Canadian Society for the Study of Education. Saskatoon, SK. (principal investigator with graduate student)
Conrad, D. & Spence-Campbell, S. (April, 2007). Popular arts on the inside: Digital storytelling with incarcerated youth. American Educational Research Association. Chicago, IL.
Conrad, D. & Krammer, D. (February, 2007). Exploring visual literacy and identity through drama with incarcerated youth. Provoking Curriculum Conference. Banff, AB.
Conrad, D. (May, 2006). Justice for youth versus a curriculum of conformity in schools and prisons. Canadian Society for Studies in Education. Toronto, ON.
Conrad, D. & Campbell, G. (May, 2006). Arresting change: Theatre with incarcerated youth. Pedagogy & Theatre of the Oppressed Conference. Chapel Hill, NC.
Conrad, D. (July, 2005). “Life in the sticks:” Youth experiences, risk & popular theatre process. American Alliance for Theatre and Education. Chicago, IL.
Conrad, D. (May, 2005). Drama, Role Theory and “At-risk” Youth: Implications for Teacher Education. Association for Canadian Theatre Research. London, ON.
Conrad, D. (April, 2005). Rethinking “at-risk” in drama education: Beyond prescribed roles. American Educational Research Association, Montreal, QC.
Conrad, D. & Campbell G. (July, 2004). Arresting change: Popular theatre with young offenders. International Drama & Education Association, Ottawa, ON.
Conrad, D. & Campbell G. (January, 2004). Arresting change: Popular theatre with young offenders. Advances in Qualitative Methods, Edmonton, AB.
Conrad, D. (May, 2004). Reframing “at risk:” Popular theatre explores youths’ perceptions of their risky behavior. Canadian Society for the Study of Education, Winnipeg, MB.
Conrad, D. & Campbell G. (October, 2003). Arresting change: Popular theatre with young offenders. Performing the World, Montauk, NY.
For Education Drama Minors in the Introductory Professional Term:
EDSE 322 - Curriculum & Instruction in Secondary Drama
For Education Drama Majors in the Advanced Professional Term:
EDSE 422 – Curriculum & Instruction in Secondary Drama I
EDSE 423 – Curriculum & Instruction in Secondary Drama II
EDSE 451 – The Integration of Theory and Practice
EDSE 503 – Curriculum Foundations
EDSE 504 – Curriculum Inquiry
EDSE 612 – The Theory and Practice of Arts-based Educational Research