The term "inclusion" has been increasing in its use with students of various abilities, specifically students with autism. Creating inclusion work is a growing need within the field of theatre, and a catalyst for this work can be seen through the creation of the Theatre Development Fund's sensory-friendly performances in 2011. These sensory-friendly performances are primarily marketed to families and students who have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, as ASD often creates a sensory sensitivity to bright lights, sudden movements, or loud sounds. As a theatre practitioner, the guiding question of my research is exploring whether inclusion practices can be enforced beyond the stage and into educational programming for students with ASD? Can inclusion practices strengthen the intuitive skill sets of teaching artists? How can theatre artists seek inclusion training? Can the use of inclusion practices within classroom settings perpetuate consistent work for teaching artists? The goal for my research is to use the fields of education, psychology and theatre to acknowledge and inform the difficulty in defining inclusion and create a supplemental resource for theatre teaching artists to use in practice. My methodology is reflecting on my experiences as a graduate student pursuing the Autism Spectrum Disorders certificate in addition to my MFA in Theatre at the University of Central Florida.
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Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Theatre; Theatre for Young Audience
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Thomas, Leah, "Structural Inclusion Tools for Theatre Teaching Artists" (2018). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 5860.