Doctor David Wright

Doctor David Wright

Senior Lecturer,
Adult and Postgraduate Education (SoE)

Senior Lecturer,
Adult and Postgraduate Education (SoE)


David works through the Social Ecology group in the School of Education. He teaches in the Masters of Education program and the Education Studies major in units concered with transformative, ecological and holistic approaches to learning. He has a background in writing for performance and drama and performance studies and brings this to work in his thinking about learning and social-ecological relationships. David is currently Academic Course Adviser for studies in Social Ecology. He is increasinlgy interested in how ecological understanding can be articulated, communicated and approached through effective learning programs. He is interested in and writes about transformative learning processes, throug reference to critical inquiry, communication, critical reflection and creativity. He is interested in how schooling systems work with these processes and how they conceptualise and work to facilitate an ecological understanding in students faced with an uncertain future, under the shadow of climate change. His work as an academic research supervisor covers these issues as well as mulitlingualism, creative learning processes and alternative education systems. 

See a discussion of my research interest and experience at:

This information has been contributed by Doctor Wright.


  • PhD University of Western Sydney,Nepean
  • MA University of Western Sydney,Nepean
  • GDipEd Sydney College of Advanced Education
  • BA The Australian National University

Professional Memberships

  • Drama NSW (1990)
  • Drama Australia (1990)
  • Australian Association of Environmental Education (2012)
  • American Society of Cybernetics (2000 - 2010)

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Adult and Postgraduate Education (SoE)
  • Adult and Postgraduate Education (SoE)


Phone: (02) 47360 267
Location: J.1.06
Penrith (Kingswood)

PLEASE NOTE: obtaining information from this Directory must be for the legitimate purposes of doing business with and within Western Sydney University, and must not be used for unsolicited bulk e-mailing (spamming) or similar purposes.


Previous Teaching Areas

  • 101263 Education and Transformation, 2014
  • 101654 Researching Social Ecology, 2014
  • 101658 Transformative Learning, 2014



  • Wright, D. and Hill, S. (2021), 'Social Ecology and Education: Transforming Worldviews and Practices', : Routledge 9780367471088.
  • Wright, D., Camden-Pratt, C. and Hill, S. (2011), 'Social Ecololgy: Applying ecological understanding to our lives and our planet', : Hawthorn Press 9781907359118.

Chapters in Books

  • Wright, D. (2021), 'Teaching social ecology', Social Ecology and Education: Transforming Worldviews and Practices, Routledge 9780367471088.
  • McGowan, C. and Wright, D. (2021), 'Being effective : social ecological understanding in action', Social Ecology and Education: Transforming Worldviews and Practices, Routledge 9780367471088.
  • Rosmilawati, I. and Wright, D. (2020), 'Successful student mobility : what makes an Indonesian alternative education beneficial for internal youth migration', Preparing Indonesia Youth: A Review of Educational Research, Brill 9789004393653.
  • Gannon, S., Moustakim, M., Stoilescu, D. and Wright, D. (2018), 'Mapping possible futures : funds of aspiration and educational desire', Resisting Educational Inequality: Reframing Policy and Practice in Schools Serving Vulnerable Communities, Routledge 9781138089303.
  • Rosmilawati, I., Reid, C. and Wright, D. (2018), 'Alternative schooling for disadvantaged young people in Indonesia', International Perspectives on Alternative Education: Policy and Practice, UCL Institute of Education Press 9781858567822.
  • Wright, D. (2017), 'The ecological curriculum : teaching, learning, understanding', Reimagining Sustainability in Precarious Times, Springer 9789811025488.
  • Wright, D. (2015), 'Drama and ecological understanding : stories of learning', The State of the Art: Teaching Drama in the 21st Century, Sydney University Press 9781743320273.
  • Wright, D. (2015), 'Drama and ecological understanding : reflections upon ecology, performance, place and indigenous knowledge systems', Playing in a House of Mirrors: Applied Theatre as Reflective Practice, Sense 9789463001175.
  • Wright, D. (2012), 'Loss and learning : personal reflections upon the learning contained in profound grief', Learning Life from Illness Stories, Post Pressed 9780646579320.
  • Wright, D. (2011), 'Ecological understanding and drama', Social Ecology: Applying Ecological Understandings to Our Lives and Our Planet, Hawthorn Press 9781907359118.
  • Wright, D. (2010), 'Imaginative Education: Nurturing our Social Ecology', Imagination in Educational Theory and Practice: A Many-sided Vision, Cambridge Scholars Press 9781443821421.
  • Wright, D. (2008), 'The mythopoetic body: Learning through creativity', Pedagogies of the imagination: Mythopoetic curriculum in educational practice, Springer 9781402082818.
  • Wright, D. (2008), 'Cross-cultural consciousness: Peking Opera and Australian theatre traditions', Music of the Spirit: Asian-Pacific Musical Identity, Australian Music Centre 9780909168650.
  • Wright, D. (2004), 'Embodied Learning and Drama Education', The State of our Art, Currencey Press & Educational Drama Ass'n of NSW 0868197459.
  • Wright, D. (2003), 'Performance and Place', Changing places: Reimaging Australia, Longueville Books 192068106X.
  • Dimitrov, V. and Wright, D. (2002), 'Emotions: A complexity perspective', Complexity Thinking: A catalyst for creativity, University of Western Sydney 1863419012.

Journal Articles

  • Chen, H., Han, J. and Wright, D. (2020), 'An investigation of lecturers' teaching through English medium of instruction : a case of higher education in China', Sustainability, vol 12, no 10 .
  • Wright, D., Gannon, S., Moustakim, M. and Stoilescu, D. (2018), 'Encounters of life and scholarship : opening to transformations, inquiries and vulnerabilities', Educational Journal of Living Theories, vol 11, no 1 , pp 23 - 40.
  • Burrell, A., Gray, T., Wright, D. and Ward, K. (2017), 'The way digitized lectures and film presence coaching impact academic identity : an expert facilitated participatory action research case study', International Journal of Social, Behavioral, Educational, Economic, Business and Industrial Engineering, vol 11, no 6 , pp 1398 - 1403.
  • Wright, D. (2013), 'Schooling ecologically : an inquiry into teachers' ecological understanding in 'alternative' schools', Australian Journal of Environmental Education, vol 29, no 2 , pp 136 - 151.
  • Wright, D. (2011), 'The pattern that connects: Drama as a vehicle for ecological understanding', Applied Theatre researcher / IDEA Journal, , no 12 .
  • Wright, D. (2011), 'Social ecology's Australian metamorphosis', The Trumpeter: Journal of Ecosophy, vol 27, no 3 , pp 113 - 122.
  • Blom, D., Bennett, D. and Wright, D. (2011), 'How artists working in academia view artistic practice as research : implications for tertiary music education', International Journal of Music Education, vol 29, no 4 , pp 359 - 373.
  • Wright, D., Bennett, D. and Blom, D. (2010), 'The interface between arts practice and research : attitudes and perceptions of Australian artist-academics', Higher Education Research and Development, vol 29, no 4 , pp 461 - 473.
  • Bennett, D., Wright, D. and Blom, D. (2010), 'The artistic practice-research-training (ART) nexus : translating the information flow', Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice, vol 7, no 2 .
  • Bennett, D., Wright, D. and Blom, D. (2009), 'Artist academics: performing the Australian research agenda', International Journal of Education & the Arts, vol 10, no 7 , pp 1 - 15.
  • Wright, D. (2008), 'A son's tears : searching learning in emotion', Educational Insights, vol 12, no 1 .
  • Wright, D. (2007), 'Constructivist inquiry and learning in drama', NJ: Drama Australia Journal, vol 31, no 1 , pp 45 - 54.
  • Wright, D. (2005), 'Embodying, emotioning, expressing learning', Reflective Practice, vol 6, no 1 , pp 85 - 93.
  • Wright, D. (2005), 'Reflecting on the body in drama education', The Applied Theatre Researcher / IDEA Journal, vol 6 .
  • Wright, D. (2002), 'Reflections on Writing a Cross-cultural Theatre Text', Double Dialogues, .
  • Wright, D. (2002), 'Loss Story', Journal of Loss & Trauma, vol 7, no 4 , pp 275 - 283.
  • Wright, D. (2001), 'Creativity and Learning: Creative work and the construction of learning', Reflective Practice, vol 2, no 3 , pp 261 - 273.
  • Wright, D. (2001), 'Divining the Aleph', The Trumpeter, vol 17, no 1 .
  • Wright, D. (2001), 'Drama Education: a 'self-organising system' in pursuit of learning', Research in Drama Education, vol 5, no 1 , pp 23 - 31.

Conference Papers

  • Blom, D., Bennett, D. and Wright, D. (2010), 'Arts practice as a site of knowledge/research: An Australian perspective of the artist in academia.', 29th World Conference of the International Society for Music Education, Beijing, China.
  • Bennett, D., Wright, D. and Blom, D. (2009), 'Modulating into a new research environment: an Australian case study of artist academics', New Zealand National Music Education Conference, Christchurch, NZ.
  • Blom, D., Wright, D. and Bennett, D. (2008), 'The artist as academic : arts practice as a site of knowledge', ISME 2008 - International Society for Music Education World Conference -17th International Seminar, Italy.
  • Blom, D., Bennett, D. and Wright, D. (2008), 'The artist as academic : arts practice as research/as a site of knowledge', Australian and New Zealand Association for Research in Music Education, Melbourne.
  • Wright, D. (2005), 'Performance, vulnerability & masculinity : the Theatre of the body', Masculinities: Gender, Art & Popular Culture Symposium, Melbourne.

David researches in the overlapping areas of creativity, consciousness, systems thinking, ecological understanding and learning.

See a discussion of my research and supervisory interests at:

This information has been contributed by Doctor Wright.


Doctor Wright is available to be a principal supervisor for doctoral projects

Current Supervision

Thesis Title: Comparing the moderation procedures for Drama Performance tasks in the Senior Secondary School in NSW, the ACT and Queensland; Examining teacher perceptions of the process
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Classical Mythology: an Interpretive Tool in the Analysis of Stage 5 English Texts
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: The Value of Drama in Engaging 21st Century Learners
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Re-Storying Personal Cultural History Through Indigenous Research Methodologies: Reclaiming Our Place in Land, Story and Time
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Academic Stage Fright - considering a theoretical solution
Field of Research:

Previous Supervision

Field of Research: Society And Culture
Thesis Title: ACTING AND ESSENCE: Experiencing Essence, Presence and Archetype in the Acting Traditions of Stanislavski and Copeau
Field of Research: Performing Arts
Thesis Title: The Knowing Body: Meaning and Method in Yat Malmgren's Actor Training Technique
Field of Research: Education Studies
Thesis Title: The Psychodynamic Body: A Mythos of Psychotherapy
Field of Research: Psychology
Thesis Title: 'Soul-making' in the investigation, determination and resolution of allegations of child abuse perpetrated by persons in ministry for the Catholic Church
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: An Investigation into Appreciative Approaches to Pedagogy: The Perspective of a Volunteer Teacher Researcher in Language Classrooms in NSW Public Schools
Field of Research: Education
Thesis Title: A Creative Imaginary for Cultural Change, Explored Through a Feminist Spirituality and Women's Textile Art.
Field of Research: Indigenous Studies
Thesis Title: The Evolution of Young Adult Literature and its Growth and Development in Australia: The guidance to write an Australian Young Adult novel
Field of Research: Creative Arts
Thesis Title: Disadvantaged Youth in Alternative Schooling: Investigating Indonesian Young People's Re-Engagement with Education
Field of Research: Other Education; Education Studies
Thesis Title: Climate Change and Psyche: Mapping Myths, Dreams and Conversations in the Era of Global Warming
Field of Research: Counselling; Psychology
Thesis Title: Peak Creative Performance
Field of Research: Psychology
Thesis Title: Drama Performance Assessment in Senior Secondary Years: A Study of Six Australian Schools
Field of Research: Curriculum And Education Studies
Thesis Title: Ethics, Environment and Islam
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Quality International Schools in Kuwait? History, Ideology, and Practice
Field of Research: Curriculum Studies; Other Education; Education Not Elsewhere Classified; Education Studies
Thesis Title: Steiner Waldorf Education in Transition: Critical Narratives Towards Renewal
Field of Research: Curriculum And Education Studies; Education; Teacher Education
Thesis Title: Localised and Student-Centred Curriculum Construction: A Case Study of Making Chinese Learnable for Australian Primary School Students
Field of Research: Curriculum And Education Studies; Other Education
Thesis Title: Research Candidates' Multilingual Capabilities as Potential Resources for Original Contributions to Knowledge: Creating a Common Intellectual Space in Anglophone Universities
Field of Research: Teacher Education: Higher Education; Other Education; Linguistics; Policy Studies


Title: Video presentation
Description: You tube presentation on my supervisory and research interests

Western Sydney University

Locked Bag 1797
Penrith NSW 2751

Tel: +61 2 9852 5222

ABN 53 014 069 881
CRICOS Provider No: 00917k

Visit our mobile site