Doctor Rachael Jacobs

Doctor Rachael Jacobs

Lecturer Primary Creative Arts,
Primary Education (Soe)


Rachael Jacobs is a lecturer in Creative Arts Education at Western Sydney University. She is a former secondary teacher (Dance, Drama and Music) and primary Arts specialist. Her research interests include assessment in the arts, pre-service teacher education and embodied learning. Rachael conducts research projects situated in refugee communities in Sydney in partnership with the Sydney Theatre Company. She has been engaged by the OECD to assist in the development of the Sustainable Development Goals for 2030. In 2013 Rachael released her first textbook, addressing arts education in the Australian Curriculum. She is the current Director of Research for Drama Australia. Rachael is a community activist, a freelance writer, practicing dancer and choreographer. She is on the organising committee of the community group, Teachers for Refugees and runs her own intercultural dance company.  

This information has been contributed by Doctor Jacobs.


  • Phd University of Western Sydney
  • MEd University of Southern Queensland
  • BEd University of Sydney

Professional Memberships

  • Drama Australia - Director of Research (2017 - 2017)
  • Ausdance (2017)
  • Drama NSW (2017)
  • International Society for Music Education (2018)
  • Australian Society for Music Education (2018 - 2018)
  • AARE (2004)


  • Assessment
  • Creative Arts Education
  • Drama Education
  • Initial Teacher Education

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Primary Education (Soe)


Phone: (02) 9772 6630
Location: 4.1.16

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Previous Teaching Areas

  • 101585 Primary Creative Arts, 2017
  • 102091 Secondary Curriculum 2B, 2017



  • Jacobs, R. and Poli, K. (2018), 'Big Arts!', : Top Hat Publishing .
  • Jacobs, R. (2013), 'Nice Arts!', : Pearson 9781486010899.

Chapters in Books

  • Jacobs, R. (2019), 'Bill & Ted's assessable adventure : a frame analysis of assessment representations in popular culture through Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure', Teachers and Teaching on Stage and on Screen: Dramatic Depictions, Intellect Books 9781789380675.
  • Jacobs, R. (2018), 'Assessing creativity : four critical issues', Creativity Policy, Partnerships and Practice in Education, Palgrave Macmillan 9783319967240.

Journal Articles

  • Jacobs, R. (2019), '[In Press] Stories told and performed : a methodology for researching drama assessment in schools', Qualitative Research Journal, .
  • Jacobs, R. (2019), '[In Press] Cultural aspects of drama : the effect of Australian drama assessment policy on practice', Arts Education Policy Review, .
  • Jacobs, R. (2019), 'Drama and the culture of challenge', Journal of Queensland Drama Educators, vol 42 , pp 22 - 25.
  • Jacobs, R. (2017), 'Six critical issues in senior secondary drama performance assessment in Australia', NJ: Drama Australia Journal, vol 41, no 2 , pp 127 - 140.
  • Jacobs, R. (2017), 'Assessing the aesthetic : narratives from drama education', Journal of Artistic and Creative Education, vol 11, no 1 , pp 140 - 153.
  • Jacobs, R. (2016), 'Using scripts and stories : illustrating the influences on drama performance assessment', NJ: Drama Australia Journal, vol 40, no 1 , pp 53 - 65.
  • Jacobs, R. (2016), 'Challenges of drama performance assessment', Drama Research, vol 7, no 1 .
  • Sanchez, M. and Jacobs, R. (2016), 'Integrating technology with classroom pedagogy', FACULTY, vol 3, no 2 , pp 3 - 6.
  • Jacobs, R. (2012), 'Assessing the aesthetic : narratives from drama education', Journal of Artistic and Creative Education, vol 6, no 1 , pp 74 - 93.
  • Jacobs, R. (2012), 'Curator and critic : role of the assessor in aesthetic fields', Higher Education Studies, vol 2, no 4 , pp 114 - 125.
  • Jacobs, R. (2011), 'Aesthetic development in higher education : an interdisciplinary dialogue', Practice and Evidence of Scholarship of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, vol 6, no 3 , pp 232 - 248.
  • Jacobs, R. (2010), 'Performance footprints across Australia : assessment in senior secondary drama', NJ: Drama Australia Journal, vol 33, no 2 , pp 45 - 55.
  • Jacobs, R. (2010), 'Movement in liturgical spaces : a delicate dance', Journal of Catholic School Studies, vol 82, no 1 , pp 15 - 24.
  • Jacobs, R. (2009), 'Measuring aesthetic development : a national dialogue', Journal of Artistic and Creative Education, vol 3, no 1 , pp 68 - 85.
  • Jacobs, R. (2008), 'When do we do the Macarena? : habitus and arts learning in primary pre-service education courses', International Journal of Pedagogies and Learning, vol 4, no 5 , pp 58 - 73.

Conference Papers

  • Jacobs, R. (2011), '"How about an creative revolution?" : teachers' experiences of the decline of arts education in the education revolution', Global Conference on Creative Engagements, Oxford, England.
  • Jacobs, R. (2011), 'Aesthetic development in higher education : an interdisciplinary dialogue', International Conference on Education in a Changing Environment, Salford, U.K..
  • Geiger, V., Jacobs, R., Lamb, J. and Mulholland, J. (2009), 'An approach to student-lecturer collaboration in the design of assessment criteria and standards schemes', ATN Assessment Conference, Melbourne, Vic..
  • Jacobs, R. (2009), 'Breaking the surface in arts education', ISATT Conference, Rovaniemi, Finland.
  • Jacobs, R. (2008), 'When do we do the Macarena? : exploring perceptions of the arts within primary education courses', World Dance Alliance Global Summit, Brisbane, Qld..

Other Publications

  • 2019, 'Understanding the Experience and Perceived Impact of the Ready Arrive Work Program', Report

Research interests:

  • Assessment
  • Creative Arts Education (Dance, Drama and Music)
  • Creativity in Education
  • Assessment in the Arts
  • Pre-service teacher education

This information has been contributed by Doctor Jacobs.

Current Projects

Title: Interconnected: Drama and EAL/D Learning in Tasmania
  • Department of Education Tasmania
Western Researchers: Rachael Jacobs
Years: 2019-06-19 - 2020-12-31
ID: P00026020
Title: Dance for Life: Expressive arts for cultural wellbeing with young people
  • University of Western Sydney
  • Kulture Break
Western Researchers: Karin Mackay and Rachael Jacobs
Years: 2019-11-04 - 2020-12-31
ID: P00026166

Previous Projects

Title: Practice Changing Practice: Leadership Development through Action Research (Phase 1)
  • Metella Road Public School
Western Researchers: Catherine Attard, Rachael Jacobs, Maree Skillen and Annette Sartor
Years: 2019-05-09 - 2020-02-28
ID: P00025722
Title: An Evaluation of the Ready Arrive Work (RAW) Program
  • Department of Education (NSW)
Western Researchers: Susanne Gannon, Danielle Tracey and Rachael Jacobs
Years: 2019-01-01 - 2019-09-30
ID: P00025547


Current Supervision

Thesis Title: The Value of Drama in Engaging 21st Century Learners
Field of Research:

Western Sydney University

Locked Bag 1797
Penrith NSW 2751

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