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 practices

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.

Med kroppen och dansen som läromedel/Läromedelsväktarna

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

2022 Dr. Ida Pape-Pedersen at NORD university, ph.d.-program Studies of professional practice, with the thesis “Pedagogkroppen. En studie av kroppslig profesjonskunnskap(ing) i barnehagen». Co-supervisor: Ann Karin Orset (NORD).

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.