Background and activities

Tone Pernille Østern, with a Dr. of Arts in Dance from the University of the Arts Helsinki, Theatre Academy, is a Professor in Arts Education with a focus on Dance at NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology. She also holds a position as Visiting Professor in Dance Education in Contemporary Contexts at Stockholm University of the Arts. She is active as Artist/Researcher/Teacher, with a special interest in socially engaged art, dance in dialogue with contemporary contexts, choreographic processes, performative research, inclusive and critical pedagogies, and bodily learning. Practice-led research, ARTography and Educational Design Research have been important approaches in her research. Since year 2000 she is part of Inclusive Dance Company, which she co-funded with Arnhild Staal Pettersen and Luis Della Mea (; She supervises master and PhD students in Norway and abroad. She has extensive leadership experience as Head of Arts, Media and Physical Education in 2010-2016 and Head of Arts, Physical Education and Sports in 2017-2021 at Department for Teacher Education, NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology, and as Creative Leader for Inclusive Dance Company since 2001 (ongoing).

Doctoral thesis

Østern, T.P. (2009). Meaning-making in the Dance Laboratory. Exploring Dance Improvisation with Differently Bodied Dancers. (Diss.) Helsinki: Theatre Academy. Download:

Selected activities

Creative outcomes

Decolonizing tertiary dance education. Time to act. Video documentation of the conference April 7-8, 2022 at Stockholm University of the Arts and Makerere University

The Different Bodies Lab documentary (2022) about difference as a value in arts and society, produced by Cédric Audinot for Scenekunstbruket/Norway, Imaginate/Scotland, Aaben Dans/Denmark, Krokusfestival/Belgium and The Ark/Ireland.

Leadership tasks

2022- Program Leader for the Master Program in Education at Department for Teacher Education, NTNU

2017-21 Head of Arts, Physical Education and Sports, Department for Teacher Education, NTNU.

2010-16 Head of Arts, Media and Sports Teaching and Learning, Program for Teacher Education, NTNU.

Study program coordinatorship

2011-20 Coordinator of the Master’s Program in Arts Education. Program for Teacher Education, NTNU.

Research groups

2021-23 Research partner pARTiciPED: Empowering student teachers for cross-sectorial collaborations with The Cultural Schoolbag (TCS) in Norwegian Schools. Funded by Research Council Norway. Project leader Kristien Høeg Karlsen / Østfold University College.

Expert committes

2020-22 Change project expert committee member at Stockholm University of the Arts, with the mandate  to “develop the BA in Dance Pedagogy in a way that is relevant and current, based in an analysis of the local and global world from contemporary, societal perspectives».

Editorial assignments

2015- Editor-in-chief for Dance Articulated. ISSN: 2703-8327.

2020- Editorial Board member JASEd – Journal of Research in Arts and Sports Education. ISSN: 2535-2857.

The most recently completed master supervision

2022     Master thesis in Primary Teacher Education 1.-7., Arts & Crafts, NTNU, by Helene Trælnes. Co-supervisor: Stein Erik Grønningsæter. «Didaktisk design for motivasjon og mestring i kunst og håndverk med teknikken Pouring Paint i akrylmaling. En kvalitativ studie om utvikling av didaktisk design i kunst og håndverk."

The most recently completed PhD supervision

2020 Dr. Ingrid Bjørkøy at NTNU Norwegian University of Science and Technology and DMMH Queen Maud University College of Early Childhood Education, Norway, with the thesis Sang som performativ for samspill i småbarnspedagogisk praksis. Main supervisor: Tone Pernille Østern (NTNU). Co-supervisor: Kristian Nødtvedt Knudsen (Agder University).

Scientific, academic and artistic work

Displaying a selection of activities. See all publications in the database

Journal publications


  • Østern, Tone Pernille; Bjerke, Øyvind; Engelsrud, Gunn Helene; Sørum, Anne Grut. (2021) Kroppslig læring - perspektiver og praksiser. Universitetsforlaget. 2021. ISBN 978-82-15-04370-8.
  • Østern, Tone Pernille; Dahl, Thomas; Strømme, Alex; Petersen, Jesper Aagaard; Østern, Maria Anna-Lena Viola; Selander, Staffan. (2019) Dybde//læring - en flerfaglig, relasjonell og skapende tilnærming. Universitetsforlaget. 2019. ISBN 978-82-15-02972-6.

Part of book/report


  • Audinot, Cedric; Østern, Tone Pernille. (2022) Different Bodies Lab Documentary ( Film documentary [Kunstnerisk og museal presentasjon] . Scenekunstbruket/Norway, Imaginate/Scotland, Aaben Dans/Denmark, Krokusfestival/Belgium and The Ark/Ireland; Online / Youtube. 2022-03-01.
  • Østern, Tone Pernille; Bichao, Helena. (2022) Insectography - with insects as choreographic wonder partners in education in the antropocene. 11th World Environmental Education Congress Building Bridges in Times of Climate Urgency . World Environmental Education Congress & Masaryk University; Praha. 2022-03-14 - 2022-03-18.