Professor Emeritus


I retired as July 2017 after 25 years of teaching and research at UBC. I joined the Department of Educational Studies in 1997 and taught courses in the foundations (history and philosophy) of adult education, community-based adult education, leadership and policy, feminist approaches to social justice, research methodology, and teacher education. My teaching included advising many masters and doctoral students. My research interests are diverse with much attention given to studies of women’s learning in a number of contexts including government employment programs, on-the-job learning, as well as social movements. I also have undertaken critical policy studies, examining how policy shapes everyday experiences and practices of education and have been a research associate of the Canadian Centre for Policy Studies since 1997. Community-based, participatory, and arts-based methodologies are a strong interest of mine that I bring to both my research and my teaching


University of British Columbia, 1993, EdD (Adult Education)
University of British Columbia, 1987, MA (Adult Education)
University of British Columbia, 1976, BSc (Nursing)

Research Projects

Community Service-Learning in Canadian Higher Education Current

I was the co-investigator (working with Dr. Alison Taylor) of this project which is funded by a SSHRC Knowledge Synthesis Grant which focused on exploring “What new ways of learning in higher education (HE) will Canadians need to thrive in an evolving society and labour market?” We reviewed the CSL literature to determine the following: 1) How can service learning be delivered in universities and colleges to enhance student engagement and outcomes? 2) How does CSL contribute to new ways of learning fostering greater knowledge and competency in critical and analytical thinking, problem solving, and communication of complex ideas and data? 3) What are promising practices to ensure access to and/or mobility within Canadian education for a diverse student body including persons with disabilities, adult learners, international students and immigrants? 4) What institutional structures and supports are necessary for CSL to flourish?
You can download the SSHRC report at URL:″>here.

This project led to a TLEF funded initiative beginning in 2017 that is documenting the experiences of students, faculty, and community partners of service learning. Working in partnership with the UBC Learning Exchange, the goal is to generate principles for building and sustaining successful partnerships.

The Arts-Based Social Movement Learning of the Philippine Women Centre of BC Current

The purpose of this SSHRC funded (2010-2014) action-oriented case study was to explore the arts-based social movement learning, specifically the visual and performance art created by Filipino activists in Canada, to understand: a) how and why particular creative genres were chosen and how they inform learning, b) how these creative processes and products contribute to the development of artists’ political consciousness, identity and a sense of community, and c) the link between arts-based learning and political activism. My study in partnership with the Philippine Women’s Centre of BC with Kim Villagante a PWC member who served as the main Research Assistant throughout the project; we focused on the creation of three political fashion shows.

Women’s Alternate and Informal Learning Pathways to Jobs in the IT Sector Completed

This was a case study women’s alternate and informal learning pathways to IT jobs, one of 12 case studies in of an Initiatives for the New Economy network grant (SSHRC). I partnered with a non-profit organization in Ontario (ACTEW).

Welfare Reform and Access to Adult Education Completed

I have completed two studies as a Research Associate of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA); both studies examined welfare reform in BC and the impact of such policy on access to adult education and learning opportunities for recipients of welfare support. They can be downloaded from the CCPA website.
1. Meaningful Training Programs for BC Welfare Recipients with Multiple Barriers: Help First, Not Work First
2. A Path Out of Poverty – Helping Income Assistance Recipients Upgrade Their Education

Selected Publications


Butterwick, S., & Roy, C. (Eds.) (2016). Working the margins of community based adult-learning: The power of arts-making in finding voice and creating conditions for seeing/listening. Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publisher.

Clover, D., Butterwick, S. & Collins, L. (Eds.) (2016) Women, adult education, and leadership in Canada. Toronto: Thompson Educational Publisher.


 Clover, D., Sanford, K., & Butterwick, S. (2014). Aesthetic Practices and Adult Education. London: Routledge



Canada’s live-in caregiver program (lcp) and childcare: A short animation

* This animation was created as a result of the study being funded by SSHRC where I am collaborating with the Philippine Women`s Centre of BC.

Journal Articles:

Taylor, A., Taylor R,. & Butterwick, S. (forthcoming 2018) Squaring the circle: A critique of Canada’s Research Ethics Regime. European Educational Research.

Butterwick, S. (2017). The contributions of political fashion shows and fabric to visual arts-based practice. In. K. Yang & R. Lawrence (Eds.), Participatory Visual Approaches to Adult and Continuing Education: Practical Insights (pp. 71-81).  New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education. Summer, 154.

Shan, S. & Butterwick, S. (2016). Transformative learning of mentors from an immigrant workplace connections program. Studies in Continuing Education, 38(2).

El-Guebaly, L. & Butterwick, S. (2016). Exploring young adults’ perspectives on sexualized media: Lessons for developing sexual health and wellness literacy. Canadian Journal for Studies in Adult Education, 28(1), 63-79.

Butterwick, S.; Carrillo, M. & Villagante, K. with the Philippine Women’s Centre of B.C. (2015). Women’s fashion shows as feminist transformation. Canadian Journal for the Study of Adult Education. 27 (2), 79-99.

Butterwick, S., & Elfert, M. (2014). Women social activists of Atlantic Canada: Stories of re-enchantment, authenticity, and hope. Canadian Journal for the Study of Adult Education. 27(1), 15-32.

Butterwick, S. (2014). But you’re not a teacher: The spaces between adult education and teacher education. Canadian Journal for the Study of Adult Education, 26(2), 59-66.

Creighton, G., Oliffe, J., Butterwick, S., & Saewyc, E. (2013). After the death of a friend: Young men’s grief and masculine identities. Social Science & Medicine, 84, 35-43.

Butterwick, S., & Selman, J. (2012). Embodied knowledge and decolonization: Walking with theatre’s powerful and risky pedagogy. New Directions for Adult and Continuing Education, 134, 61-70.

Escueta, M., & Butterwick. S. (2012). The power of popular education and visual arts for trauma survivors’ critical consciousness and collective action. International Journal for Lifelong Education, 31(3), 325-340.

Butterwick, S., Cockell, J., McArthur-Blair, J., & McIvor, S. (2012). Connectivity and collectivity in a doctoral cohort program: An academic memoir in five parts. Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 57 (4), 1-14

Butterwick, S. & Selman, J. (2009). Shaking the Belly: Laughter as ‘Good Medicine’ in Anti-Oppressive Work.. Educational Insights, 13(2).

Jubas, K. & Butterwick, S. (2008) Hard/soft, formal/informal/work/learning: Tenuous/persistent binaries in the knowledge-based society. Journal of Workplace Learning, 20 (8), 514–25.

Butterwick, S., Dawson, J. & Munro, J. (2007). A script for three voices: ‘Undone business’ in the academy. Educational Insights. 11 (3).


Butterwick, S. & Selman, J. (2006). Embodied Metaphors: Telling Feminist Coalition Stories through Popular Theatre. In D. Clover & J. Stalker (Eds.) (2005). Special Issue: The art of social justice: Re-crafting activist adult education, New Zealand Journal of Adult Learning, 34(2), 42–58.

Book Chapters:

Butterwick, S. (forthcoming 2018). Community as teacher: Who’s learning? Who’s teaching? In D. Lund  & K. Grain (Eds.) Wiley International Handbook of Service Learning for Social Justice.

Roy, C., & Butterwick, S. (2017). Voice and engagement: The power of arts-based adult learning. In A. Knox, S. Conceição, & L. Martin (Eds.), Mapping the adult and continuing education field. American Association for Adult and Continuing Education.

Walters, S. & Butterwick, S. (2017).  Moves to decolonize solidarity through feminist popular education. In A. von Kotz & S. Walters (Eds.) Forging solidarity: Southern perspectives of popular education (pp. 27-38). Sense.

Butterwick, S. (2016). Feminist adult education: Looking back, moving forward. In D. Clover, S. Butterwick and L. Collins (Eds.) Women, adult education, and leadership in Canada (pp 3-10). Toronto: Thompson Educational Publisher.

Butterwick S. & Elfert, M. (2016) Exploring the learning and wisdom of elder social activists in Atlantic Canada. In D. Clover, S. Butterwick and L. Collins (Eds.) Women, adult education, and leadership in Canada. Toronto: Thompson Educational Publisher.

Butterwick, S., & Fisher, J. (2014). The vision and pedagogical sensibility of Isabel Wilson: Giving credit where credit is due. In S. Imel & G. Bersch (Eds.), The Handbook of North American Early Women Adult Educators: 1925-1950 (pp. 253-259). Charlotte, NC: Information Age Publishers.

Butterwick, S., & Clover, D. (2013) Fear of glue, fear of thread: Using and teaching arts-based education the university classroom. In D. Clover & K. Sanford (Eds.), Lifelong Learning, the Arts and Creative Cultural Engagement in the Contemporary University – International perspectives (pp. 66-78). Manchester, UK: Manchester University Press.

Butterwick, S. (2013). Class and poverty matters: The role of Adult education in reproduction and resistance. In T. Nesbit, N. Taber, S. Brigham & T. Gibb (Eds.), Building on Critical Traditions: Adult Education and Learning in Canada (pp. 129-138) Toronto: Thompson Educational Publishing.

Butterwick, S. (2012). The politics of listening: The power of theatre to create dialogic spaces. In L. Manicom & S. Walters (Eds.), Feminist Popular Education in Transnational Feminist Debates: Building Pedagogies of Possibility (pp. 59-74). Palgrave MacMillan, NYL New York.

Butterwick, S. ( 2011). Travels with feminist community based research: Reflections on Social Location, Class Relations, and Negotiating Reciprocity. In G. Creese and W. Frisby (Eds.) Feminist Community Research: Negotiating Contested Relationships (pp. 56-74). UBC Press.

Butterwick, S., & Egan, J. (2010). Sociology and economy of adult and continuing education. In Kasworm, C., Rose, A., & Ross-Gordon, J. (Eds.), 2010 Handbook of Adult and Continuing Education (pp. 113-122). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Butterwick, S. & Gurstein, P. (2010). Community-based action research as community engagement: Tales from the field. In H. Schutze & P. Inman (Eds.) The Community Engagement and Service Mission of Universities (pp. 213-230). NIACE.

Butterwick, S. & Jubas, K. (2010). Hitching a ride on the IT highway: Women’s informal and alternative pathways to IT jobs. In D. Livingstone (Ed.) Lifelong Learning in Paid and Unpaid Work (pp. 119-136). New York: Routledge.

Butterwick, S. (2009) Towards economic security: Social welfare policies and practices that support low income single mothers. In M. Griffin Cohen & J. Pulkingham (Eds) Public Policy for Women in Canada: The State, Income Security and Labour Market Issues (pp. 184–203). Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Butterwick, S.; Jubas, K. & Liptrot, J. (2008). Lessons of gender politics from the centre and the fringes of the knowledge-based society. D.W. Livingstone, K. Mirchandani & P. Sawchuk (Eds.) The Future of Lifelong Learning and Work – Critical Perspectives (pp. 107–18). Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.

Verjee, B., & Butterwick, S. (2014). Conversations from within: Critical race feminism and the roots/routes of change. In S. Iverson & J. James (Eds.), Feminist Community Engagement (pp. 42-73). New York: Palgrave MacMillan.

Policy Reports:

Butteriwck, S. (2010 July). Meaningful Training Programs for BC Welfare Recipients with Multiple Barriers: Help First, Not Work First. Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
Butterwick, S. with White, C. (February, 2006). A path out of poverty: Helping BC income assistance recipients upgrade their education. Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. Available online:

Butterwick, S. with White, C. (February, 2006). A path out of poverty: Helping BC income assistance recipients upgrade their education. Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. Available online:



Students Supervised

Name Degree Title
Sharon Jarvis MEd 2017 A WOE Worldview: One Métis Woman’s Story
Kapil Regmi PhD 2017 Lifelong learning in least developed countries: The case of Nepal
Erin Graham PhD 2015 More than condoms and sandwiches: A feminist investigation of the contradictory promises of harm reduction approaches to prostitution
Cathy Robinson EdD 2015 Can memoir contribute to a more collaborative approach to treating eating disorders that respects and includes the family?
Erin Graham PhD 2014 More than condoms and sandwiches: A feminist investigation of the contradictory promises of harm reduction approaches to prostitution
Kathy Fukuyama PhD 2013 Negotiating the education and practice disjuncture in nursing clinical placements: Nursing faculty’s perspectives
Tom Weegar PhD 2013 Excellence in educational leadership: Appreciative leadership within BC community colleges
Currently President, Cumberland College, Saskatchewan.
Janine Hadfield PhD 2012 Gadamer and praxis: Towards a dialogic praxis in nursing curriculum Genevieve Creighton PhD 2011 Troubled masculinity: Exploring gender identity and risk-taking following the death of a friend Fiona Lee MA 2010 learning to be a mother, to be a mother learning, a mother learning to be (Kuljinder) Bob Atwal MA 2010 ‘Indo-Canadian’ experience: A performance of voices of a socialization process of a ‘brown’ man in Canada Mok Escueta PhD 2010 Popular Education in Collective Recovery and Reconstruction from Continuing Complex Traumatic Stress: A Collaborative Psycho-education Approach
Shannon McCune Dickerson MEd 2009 Training Needs of Parent Educators: A Needs Assessment of BC Practitioners
Suzanna Huebsch MEd 2009 Computer Clubs for Women on Low Income: Moving From the Digital Divide to Digital Equity Marilynne Waithman EDD 2009 The Politics of Redistribution and Recognition: A Retrospective Case Study of One Inner-city School
(2010 TB Greenfield Dissertation Award) Kaela Jubas PhD 2008 Promise and Trouble, Desire and Critique: Shopping as a site of Learning about Globalization, Identity and the Potential for Change (IIQM 2009 Dissertation Award)
MJ Moran EDD 2008 Searching for the Good in My Teaching Practice
Marc Legacy MEd 2008 Conscientizing Prevention and Awareness – An Ecological Model for Halting Violence Against Women and Family Violence
Jocelyn Wong MEd 2008 Autobiography, Learning and Inquiry in Adult Education Val Peachey EDD 2007 Staying the Course: Stories of Eight Entrepreneurial Women Tanya Brann-Barrett PhD 2007 The Way We See It: An Analysis of Economically Disadvantaged Young People’s Experiences and Perceptions of Social and Economic Health in Their Semi-Rural Community
Carol Ng MEd 2007 Rethinking Patient Education in Rehabilitation Settings: A Critical Perspective Genevieve Creighton MA 2007 Remaining Patient: How health care constitutes the identities of teen mothers
Caroline Lindholm MEd 2007 Podcasting and Its Potential Use in Adult Education
Virginia Wong MEd 2007 Culturally Relevant Adult Education
Garnett Bucknor MEd 2007 An Overview of Provincial and Territorial Welfare Policies and Employment Assistance Training Programs Linde Zingaro PhD 2007 Rhetorical Identities: Contexts and Consequences of Self-disclosure for ‘Bordered’ Empowerment Practitioners
(2008 IIQR Dissertation Award) Jackie Amsden MA (CCFI) 2007 Youth as Citizens, Youth as Workers: An Action Research Approach to Community Mapping
Lee Price MEd 2006 Caring: A Homecare Support Program Deborah Prieur MA 2006 Discourses of Concealment and Resistance: A Critical/Feminist Disability Analysis of BC’s Disability Designation Review Dave Smulders MA 2006 Whither PACE? The Pacific Association for Continuing Education and the Transformation of Adult Education Lynnette Harper PhD 2006 A Multi-site Ethnography Exploring Culture and Power in Post-Secondary Education Partnerships Amanda Benjamin PhD 2006 Grown-Ups Have Careers: Discourses of Career and Adulthood in British Columbia High Schools Sarah Evans MA 2005 Limits of the possible: The theory and practice of worker-centred literacy in the context of global capitalism. Anna Treadway MA 2005 The Revolution Begins in the Heart: Exploring the Spiritual Lives of women Activists for Social Justice Morna McLeod MA 2005 In Search of a Democratic Participation Structure Begum Verjee EDD 2005 Women of Colour Talk Back: Towards a Critical Race Feminist Practice of Service-Learning Jennifer Rodrigues EDD 2005 Presence, Clarity and the Space of Receptivity in Counselling: Shambhala Buddhist Counsellors’ Narratives of Experiences Martha Jean Cockell EDD 2005 Making Magic: Facilitating Collaborative Processes
Cleo Whiting MEd 2004 The Sheway Project for Drug And Alcohol Using Pregnant Women and Mothers: A Portfolio for Critical Reflection Joan McArthur Blair EDD 2004 The Inner Life: A Conversation with Leaders
Carolanne Oswald MEd 2004 Creating a Brighter Future: Promoting a Global Civil Society Through Education on Social Responsibility Cynthia Low MA 2004 Multiculturalism, Immigration and Citizenship: A View of Social Relations in Canada Kyleen Myrah EDD 2003 A Study of Public Post-Secondary Entrepreneurship Education in British Columbia: The Possibilities and the Challenges of an Integrated Approach
Eleanor Pang MEd 2003 Arts & Textiles: A Portfolio about Teacher Professional Development
Susan Hamilton MEd 2003 Adult education and the Humanities 101 Storefront Project: My Personal and Academic Journey
Kathy Musial MEd 2003 Towards a Critical Freirian Approach to Working with Adults with Learning Disabilities Kathy Coyne EDD 2002 Listening for the Words and the Music: Learning about Community Development from Low-Income Residents of Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside Strathcona John Egan PhD 2002 Examining Practice, Understanding Experience: AIDS Prevention Workers and Injection Drug Users in Vancouver, Canada Cheryl Magnusson MA 2002 The meaning of Self-Care for Women with Rheumatoid Arthritis Lu Ripley MA 2002 It’s Not About Being Male, It’s About Being Cool: A Case Study of Male Sexual Health Educators Joanna Ashworth EDD 2001 Understanding Educational Leadership Anew: Adult Educators’ Stories in Conversation
Sarah Bains MEd 2001 Career Paths of UBC MA & MEd Adult Education Graduates
Joanne Eaves MEd 2001 Vampire Capitalism the “Dependency” Discourse and HRDC Policy: A Feminist Examination of an HRDC Policy Document and Critical Reflection on Taking this Policy to Practice
Coralie Fisher MEd 2001 Construction of a Crisis: The “Billion-Dollar Boondoggle”
Sue Murphy MEd 2001 Prior Learning Assessment and Physiotherapy Assistants: A Dynamic Duo for the New Millennium Donna Brockmeyer EDD 2000 Education to Nurture the Soul: An Interpretive Study of a Professional Leadership Institute for Librarians
Shirley Kammerling-Roberts MEd 2000 The Changed Place of Higher Education: Helping You Get There
Diego Marchese MEd 2000 The Development of a School-Based Heart Health Program: From Conception to Outcome
Deirdre Maultsaid MEd 2000 Open Spaces/Nurturing Places: Stories of Learning and Teaching Raimund Stamm MA 2000 Déjà Vu: An Overview of 20th Century Adult Education in BC as Reported by the Mainstream Press
Lara Taylor MEd 2000 Affairs of State: The Case of the New Degree Approval Process in B.C.
Pat Thom MA 2000 Places Around the Table: A Qualitative Enactivist Exploration of Food Practices in a Familial Context
Louise de Bruijne MEd 1999 Feminist Networks and Institutional Change: A Case Study of the BCTF Provincial Status of Women Committee Susan Diane MA 1999 Amazing Grace(s): A Qualitative Study of Lesbian Helping Professionals John Egan MA 1999 Interdictions and Benedictions: An Analysis of AIDS Prevention Materials in Vancouver Canada
Carol Hansen MEd 1999 In Search of the Heart of a Curriculum for Practitioners in Gerontology Deborah MacNiel MA 1999 Conversations of Privilege: Exploring with Diversity Educators “White Culture”, Dominance and Oppression
Barbara Knox MEd 1998 Using Stories of Women and Work in an Individualized ABE Curriculum
Laurie Campbell MEd 1997 Queering the Air: Lesbians in Higher Education

Courses Taught

Foundations of Adult Education
Perspectives on Adult Education
Women and Education Seminar
Research Methods
Community Based Practice of Adult Education
Doctoral Seminar on Leadership and Policy

Community Work

Linking with communities is central to my research practice. From 2003 to 2007, I partnered with ACTEW: A Commitment to Women’s Training and Employment for Work, to study women’s informal and alternate learning pathways to IT jobs. Between 2006 and 2009 I served as external evaluator for the National Alliance for Philippine Women of Canada (NAPWC), examining their project “Making the Filipino Community Count”. Community-based participatory action research (CBPAR) was the main organizing method employed by the NAPWC. I was greatly impressed with their creative use of CBPAR and their persistent critical analysis of policy and how it contributes to (and can transform) structural inequalities that support economic marginalization, racism, and sexism.

My research with NAPWC led to a partnership with the Philippine Women’s Centre of BC where we explored their use of arts-based activities and my research into their use of Political Fashion Shows.

In many other earlier research projects, I collaborated with a variety of community groups including the Poor Women’s Collective (Surrey) and the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre, among others.