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Personal profile

Personal Statement

Dr Katja Frimberger is Lecturer in Education/Cultural Studies and programme lead for the January intake of the MSc Education Studies at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.

Curious to understand the relationship between theatre, film and education (in its broad sense of ‘formation’), Katja is particularly interested in the production-oriented elements of theatre/film-making and how these are theorised as education.

She has published on German theatre maker Bertolt Brecht’s and Latvian director Asja Lācis' educational theatre philosophy; the ethics of participatory documentary/filmmaking and arts-based education/ research.

Her two main areas of interest are:

  • Educational philosophy of theatre and film-making.
  • Ethnographic and hermeneutic-phenomenological research into the formative/educational influence of theatre/filmmaking practice.

Katja was previously Lecturer in Theatre at Brunel University London, where she taught Applied Theatre, Performance Theory & Directing for the BA Theatre.

In her role as Research Associate at the University of Glasgow for the 3-year, Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)-funded, £2 mill. large grant project 'Researching Multilingually at the Borders of the Body, Language, Law & the State', she theorised the role of arts-based research methods in multilingual settings.

When working as an independent researcher, she co-lead on a range of film and digital animation education projects with filmmaker Simon Bishopp, funded through Creative Scotland, the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and the School for Social Entrepreneurs.

Katja was awarded a fully funded PhD research scholarship (2009-2013) in the area of Theatre Education, from the School of Education at the University of Glasgow. She explored international students' lived experiences of 'interculturality' through a performance-based research pedagogy, based on German theatre maker Bertolt Brecht's theatre/actor training theory and practice.

Prior to her academic career, Katja worked as a language (English, German) and drama teacher, mainly in secondary and adult/community education, in Germany, Venezuela, Ireland and Scotland.

Research Interests

Research Interests:

  • Educational philosophy of theatre and film-making (esp. in historical contexts/early 20th century/Weimar Germany).
  • Ethnographic and hermeneutic-phenomenological research into the formative/educational influence of theatre/filmmaking practice (in wider cultural context).


  • The International Network of Philosophers of Education (INPE)
  • The Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain (PESGB)
  • The Scottish Educational Research Association (SERA)
  • Member of the EXET Research Group (Experiments in Educational Theory): https://www.exet.org

Research Projects:

  • Contributor to a book project for the centennial birthday (in 2024) of the philosopher Paul Feyerabend (organised by Dr Karsten Kenklies and Dr Sebastian Engelmann) entitled "Paul Feyerabend: Education for a Free Society"
  • Organiser, with Dr Karsten Kenklies, of the research workshop "The Theatricality of Pedagogy: An exploration of the open and hidden connections between theatre and pedagogy".
  • Member of the international 'Performative Arts & Pedagogy Project'. PAPP is comprised of a team of creative arts practitioners, language teachers and academics from Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Ireland and the UK. The group is aiming at an increased awareness of (culture-) specific concepts and associated terminologies that are applied in Performative Arts & Pedagogy contexts. You can access the latest publication (open-access) here.
  • Member of the 'Creative Multilingualism: from Practice to Research to Education' research project (Feb 2020 - Dec 2022) is located at the University of Thessaly in Greece, led by Prof. George Androulakis and funded through the Greek Foundation for Research and Innovation (HFRI - ELIDEK).

Film Projects:

  • Collaborator (as project facilitator/producer) on the animation education projects 'Little Animation Studio' (LAS) and the participatory filmmaking project 'Scotland, Our New Home',with filmmaker Simon Bishopp- funded by Creative Scotland and the Paul Hamlyn Foundation. 
  • Collaboration (as performer, poduction assistant) with filmmaker Simon Bishopp on the Science Fiction Short Film “Refuge” . The film has been selected by Alex Proyas (director of The Crow, Dark City, I-Robot, Gods of Egypt) for his new 2022 Streaming Platform Vidiverse. It has previously screened at Glasgow Short Film 2017; the London Sci-Fi Festival 2018; Inverness Film Festival 2018 and was selected for Film Hub Scotland’s/BFI’s “Shorts in Support” scheme, which aims to revive the tradition of the supporting short film by distributing eight new short films to cinemas and film societies to screen before features.

Expertise & Capabilities

  • Academic reviewer: reviewer for a variety of academic journals, including the Film Education Journal; Scenario: the Journal for Performative Teaching and Learning; the Journal of Philosophy and Education; the Critical Multilingualism Journal.
  • CPD Trainer: designed & delivered CPD sessions on arts-based language teaching for primary/secondary school teachers; on arts-based research for early career researchers; on participatory filmmaking for social workers/ teachers/community educators (with Simon Bishopp).

Academic / Professional qualifications

I received a full PhD scholarship from the School of Education at the University of Glasgow, which resulted in a PhD project that explored international students' lived experiences of 'interculturality' through an arts-based research pedagogy based on a Brechtian notion of Verfremdung (estrangement).

I hold an M.A. in Drama & Theatre Studies from University College Cork (UCC) in Ireland.

My M.Ed. (Education, with English & German) comes from Universität Hildesheim in Germany, where I also qualified as a secondary school teacher for German & English in the federal state of Lower Saxony (Niedersachsen).

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, University of Glasgow

1 Oct 200913 May 2013

Award Date: 10 Dec 2013

2. Staatsexamen (PGDE + probationary year equivalent), Studienseminar (Teacher Training College) Hildesheim, Germany

1 Sep 20051 May 2007

Award Date: 20 May 2007

Master of Arts, University College Cork (Ireland)


Master of Education, Universitaet Hildesheim (Germany)



  • Education Studies
  • Bertolt Brecht
  • Phenomenology of Pedagogical Practice
  • Film & Education
  • Theatre & Education
  • Cultural Studies


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