CRPR09001 2019 Creative Practice Research Methods

General Details

Full Title
Creative Practice Research Methods
Transcript Title
Creative Practice Research Met
80 %
Subject Area
CRPR - Creative Practice
YADA - Yeats Academy Art Dsgn & Arch
09 - NFQ Level 9
10 - 10 Credits
Start Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Bernadette Donohoe, Diarmuid Timmons, Ronnie Hughes, Rowan Watson, Una Mannion, Emmet O'Doherty, Rhona Trench, Niall Rea
Programme Membership
SG_GCREA_M09 201900 Master of Arts in Creative Practice

Aim:  This module develops an understanding of the major critical issues in the field of creative practice as research and research for the arts and design.  It introduces a range of methodologies appropriate to the production, documentation and analysis of performance, design, film, text, arts and literary practice.

Content: Through an interdisciplinary approach, students will be placed in a creative and critically informed environment in which to evolve, critique and consolidate their individual practice and/or enquiry. The theatre/studio, akin to a laboratory, will be key to exploring the relationship between the creative enquiry and its critical investigatory purpose. This module will equip postgraduate practitioners and researchers with a broad introduction to constructing and designing research appropriate to their type of enquiry.

Initially, students will survey divergent contemporary approaches to creative practice and research by way of analysis and engagement with critical theory – including issues of semiotics, phenomenology, ethnography, technology, gender and the body in performance. In the second half of the semester, students will work to define and engage with a particular creative research question/problem and explore their critical approaches with both supervisor and peer review support. Students will complete a final research paper/practical project that frames and supports their practice and/or research, including research documentation.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Demonstrate in-depth knowledge and understanding of major critical issues in the field of creative practice research appropriate to the production, documentation and analysis of performance, design, film, text, arts or literary practice


Critically analyse and reflect upon the practitioner’s own work and other artists’ practices and contexts.


Source, collect, manage  and reference data and literature appropriate to the learners area of enquiry


Demonstrate a critical understanding of the ethical and practical implications of research


Demonstrate the relationship between theory and methodology

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Learners will engage with the research methods of speakers/practitioners from different disciplines.

Learners will engage in peer-to-peer learning and tutor led discussion.

Learners will have a broad introduction to constructing and designing research:

  • ​questions, aims and  objectives
  • theoretical frameworks underpinning methods
  • contextualising research and literature
  • ethics
  • backwards planning

Module Assessment Strategies

Students will complete a final research paper/practical project that frames and supports their practice and critically engages with the results of that practice.

Students will:

- formulate a practice-based research question and write an abstract contextualising it - 20% (1,000-1,500 words)

- present a piece of creative work that answers this question - 60%

- write a reflection on the creative research practice and its findings - 20% (1,000-1,500 words)

Repeat Assessments

Repeat Attend the module

Indicative Syllabus

Learners will explore different approaches to research for and through creative practice.

Learners will be introduced to the sourcing, reading, storing and referencing ​of academic literature around creative practice.

Learners will be shown both arts practice based and social science derived methods and methodologies (including areas such as grounded theory, ethnographic research and traditional phenomenological research)



Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
100 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Continuous Assessment Coursework Assessment Assessment 60 % End of Term
2 Written Abstract and Reflection Coursework Assessment Assessment 40 % End of Term

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Group Learning Flat Classroom Creative Practice Research Methods 3 Weekly 3.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 3.00 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Required Reading
2010 Designing and Conducting Ethnographic Research Rowman Altamira
ISBN 9780759118690 ISBN-13 0759118698

This first volume of the Ethnographer's Toolkit provides a practical, straightforward introduction to ethnography and ethnographic practice to the student and novice fieldworker.

Required Reading
2016-12-13 Doing Ethnography Sage Publications Limited
ISBN 1412962269 ISBN-13 9781412962261

With new coverage of digital research tools and social media, as well as that of areas such as autoethnography, visual and feminist ethnography, this important introduction continues to provide readers with the perfect mix of theory and practical advice to ensure their research is carefully thought through, replicable, and ethically sound

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Arlander, Annette, Barton, Bruce, Dreyer-Lude, Melanie, and Spatz, Ben, eds., Performance as Research: Knowledge, Methods, Impact (Abingdon: Routledge, 2018)

Barrett, Estelle and Barbara Bolt, Practice as Research, Approaches to Creative Arts Enquiry (London: I.B Tauris, 2010)

Barrett, T., (2012). Why is that Art?. Oxford University Press, USA. 

Barthes, Roland, Image Music Text (Glasgow: William Collins Sons & Co., 1997)

Baugh, Christopher, Theatre, Performance and Technology: The Development of Scenography in the Twentieth Century (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005)

Bouthillette, Anne-Marie, Brent Ingram, and Yolanda Retter, eds., Queers in Space: Communities/Public Places/Sites of Resistance (Seattle: Bay Press, 1997)

Bush-Bailey, Gilli, ‘Putting into Practice: The Possibilities and Problems of Practical Research for the Theatre Historian’,Contemporary Theatre Review, 12 (2002), pp. 77-96

Campbell, Alyson, and Stephen Farrier, ‘Queer Practice as Research: A Fabulously Messy Business’, Theatre Research International, 40 (February, 2015), pp. 83-87

Carlson, Marvin, The Haunted Stage, The Theatre as Memory Machine (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2001)

Collins, H., ed., Creative Research: The theory and practice of research for the creative industries (Lausanne: AVA Publishing SA, 2010)

Collins, Jane, and Andrew Nisbet, eds., Theatre and Performance Design: A Reader in Scenography (London: Routledge, 2010)

Conquergood, Dwight, Cultural Struggles: Performance, Ethnography, Praxis (Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press, 2013)

Davis, Tracy C., The Cambridge Companion to Performance Studies (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008)

Diamond, Elin, Unmaking Mimesis: Essays on Feminism and Theatre (London: Routledge, 1997)

Emmison, M., Smith, P., (2000). Researching the Visual. SAGE

Fleishman, Mark, ‘The Difference of Performance as Research’, Theatre Research International, 37 (2012), pp. 28-37

Fortier, Mark, Theory/Theatre: An Introduction (Oxon: Routledge, 1997)

Francina, F., Harris, J., (1994)  Art in Modern Culture: An Anthology of Critical texts, . 1st Edition. Phaidon

Freeman, John, Blood, Sweat and Theory: Research through Practice in Performance (Faringdon: Libri, 2009)

Heddon, Deirdre, Autobiography and Performance (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008)

Howard, Pamela , What is Scenography? (London: Routledge, 2002)

Jackson, Shannon, Professing Performance: Theatre in the Academy from Philosophy to Performativity (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004)

Kershaw, Baz, ‘Performance as Research: Live Events and Documents’, in Tracy C. Davis, ed., The Cambridge Companion to Performance Studies (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008), pp. 23-45

McKinney, Joslin, and Philip Butterworth, The Cambridge Introduction to Scenography (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009)

Merleau Ponty, M. A phenomenology of perception (Translation Smith, C.), (London:  Routledge and Paul Kegan, 1962)

Nelson, Robin, ‘Practice-as-Research and the Problem of Knowledge’, Performance Research: A Journal of the Performance Arts, 11 (2006), pp. 105-16

Nelson, Robin, Practice as Research in the Arts: Principles, Protocols, Pedagogies, Resistances (Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2013)

Oddey, Alison and Jessica Naish, '"Paper or Practice?" A Dialogue Debating Key Issues of Practice as Research,' Contemporary Theatre Review, 12 (2002), pp.9-24

Oddey, Alison, Re-framing the Theatrical: Interdisciplinary Landscapes for Performance (Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2007)

Pearson, Mike, and Michael Shanks, Theatre/Archaeology (London: Routledge, 2001)

Phelan, Peggy, Unmarked: The Politics of Performance (London: Routledge, 1993)

Sauter, Willmar, ‘Thirty Years of Reception Studies: Empirical, Methodological and Theoretical Advances’, About Performance,10 (2010), pp. 241-63

Schratz, Michael, and Rob Walker, Research as Social Change: New Opportunities for Qualitative Research (London: Routledge, 1995)

Smith, Hazel, and Roger T. Dean, Practice-Led Research, Research-Led Practice in the Creative Arts (Edinburgh, Edinburgh University Press, 2009)

Smith, P.; Flowers, P.; Larkin, M. Interpretative phenomenological analysis: theory, method and research (London: Sage, 2009)

Somers, John, ‘Drama Making as a Research Process’,Contemporary Theatre Review, 12 (2002), pp. 97-111

Sturken, M., Cartwright, L., (2017). Practices of Looking. Oxford University Press, USA

Sullivan, G. Arts practice as research- inquiry in visual arts (2ndedition), (Los Angeles: Sage, 2010)

Turner, Cathy, and Behrndt K. Synne, Dramaturgy and Performance (Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2008)

Van Manen, M, (1990)Researching Lived Experience: human Science for an action sensitive pedagogy. New York: The State University of New York Press

White, Christine A., ‘Practice as Research: Knowledge How and Knowledge Whether’, Contemporary Theatre Review, 12 (2002), pp. 113-20



Journal Resources

JSTOR available in IT Sligo