Term of Award

Fall 2015

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading

Committee Chair

John Weaver

Committee Member 1

Dan Chapman

Committee Member 2

Marla Morris

Committee Member 3

Peter Appelbaum

Committee Member 3 Email



This work is an attempt to analyze some of the conditions and activities that surround improvisation. I will argue that the process of improvisation and even the attempt at improvisation can offer the curriculum scholar an important pedagogical model. Importantly, this model will offer no direct solutions which might improve one’s pedagogical stance. Instead, these models are best interpreted as a provocation, or an invitation to think of a better relationship, for example, of teacher and student. I interrogate jazz improvisation, theatrical improvisation, and popular culture. I also examine a version of performativity that could provide a degree of agency to those who wish to challenge the status quo or the taken for granted.