Emma Thayer

​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​Position:​Senior Lecturer of Drama
​School:Cardiff School of Education and Social Policy
​E- mail:ethayer@cardiffmet.ac.uk
​Telephone:​029 2041 6535
​Room No:​B112



Research Interests:
• Active, ensemble approaches to Shakespeare in education
• Nurturing collaboration and ensemble principles in HE
• Drama pedagogy and praxis within an educational context
• Drama pedagogy and praxis within an educational context


Professional / non-refereed publications:
Thayer, E. (2015) ‘An analysis of Higher Education Drama students’ attitudes towards group work and subsequent learning’, Research Papers 7, Cardiff Metropolitan University.

Conference Papers:
Thayer, E. (2016) ‘Transitions in Approach, Shakespeare as a Constant: Our Journey with the RSC’, Shakespeare and Education. Presented at University of Brighton, Brighton, 29-30 April.

Other Publications:
Thayer, E. (2015) International Professional Learning Community (IPLC) Delegation to Los Angeles, 1-7 February 2016. Final Report of the IPLC Arts in Special Educational Needs (USA) Visit to the British Council Wales. Internal British Council Wales Report. Unpublished.


I began my career as a Secondary and FE (Further Education) Drama teacher whilst simultaneously performing and directing in semi-professional productions in Cardiff. I trained with the Royal Shakespeare Company in partnership with Warwick University for three years as part of their Learning Performance Network, subsequently gaining a Postgraduate Certificate in The Teaching of Shakespeare. Through this experience and further training, I developed a passion for Drama as a vehicle for community cohesion. I designed and facilitated two large-scale Shakespeare projects – ‘Regional School’s Festival’ production of The Merchant of Venice (2012) and ‘Shakespeare on Film’ (2013). The aforementioned projects met a community agenda but were also nationally recognised – the BBC gave media coverage to both events and the ‘Regional School’s Festival’ took place as part of the ‘World Shakespeare Festival’ in conjunction with ‘The Cultural Olympiad’, 2012.

I was taken on as lecturer of Drama at Cardiff Metropolitan University in September, 2013 and developed several new undergraduate modules (‘Drama as a Cross-curricular Tool for Learning’, ‘Exploring the Teaching of Drama’ and ‘Other Theatres’) whilst undertaking my MA (Ed), which I completed in 2015. During my second academic year at Cardiff Met, I was appointed as a researcher for the British Council Wales as part of an International Professional Learning Community trip to Los Angeles, where I (along with my fellow delegates from the teaching profession) investigated the use of the Arts within Special Educational Needs contexts.

In 2016 I was successfully appointed as Programme Leader for PGCE Secondary Drama and have since continued to develop my research profile and professional practice. I am currently co-investigating (with other PGCE colleagues) cross-curricular approaches to teaching and learning within Initial Teacher Education in response to Donaldson’s Successful Futures (2015) curriculum reform recommendations.

Further Information

Current teaching:
• Programme Leader for PGCE Secondary Drama.
• Lecturer in Drama on the Humanities matrix Programmes.

Postgraduate research:
• The Arts and SEN Learners: Impact and Implementation.
• Teaching Shakespeare – Active and Ensemble Approaches in Secondary Education.
• Use of formative assessment methods in a Higher Education Drama context.
• The use of group work to support learning in a Higher Education Drama context.