Associate Professor Ralph McKay Buck

PhD, MA, BEd


Dr Ralph Buck is an award winning teacher and academic leader. Ralph’s teaching has been recognised with an Excellence Award in Equal Opportunities for Community Teaching, 2006; University of Auckland Sustained Excellence in Teaching Award, 2008; and, Academic Leadership Award, 2010. Ralph’s research has been featured at the UNESCO Second World Conference on Arts Education; the University of Auckland ‘Research Works Wonders’ website and on New Zealand television. He is a Principal Investigator with the Centre for Brain Research, and has published in leading peer reviewed journals. Ralph is also on the International Editorial Boards of Research in Dance Education (RIDE) and Journal of Dance education (JODE) the two world leading journals in this field.

Ralph has invested much time and energy in building international partnerships in arts education. He has collaborated with UNESCO in raising the profile in Arts Education around the world. He co-initiated, advocated for and planned UNESCO’s International Arts Education Week. He is on the Executive Council of the World Alliance for Arts Education that represents over 3 million arts educators in school and communities. Ralph has provided master classes, and keynote addresses in Copenhagen, Stockholm, Singapore, Hong Kong, Melbourne, Brisbane, Taipei, Beijing, Suva and Auckland. His research and publications focus upon dance teaching and learning, and community dance. 

Research | Current

  • Dance education theory and practice
  • Dance pedagogy
  • Community Dance
  • Qualitative methodology
  • Dance curriculum

Teaching | Current

Courses currently taught include:

DANCE 131 Dance Education

DANCE 722 Dance Education and Community Dance Research


  • The University of Auckland Sustained Excellence in Teaching Award, 2008
  • The University of Auckland, Excellence Award in Equal Opportunities: Community Dance Programme, 2006
  • Faculty Academic Leadership Award, 2010


Head of Dance Studies

Associate Dean, Equity and International, NICAI

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Riegle van West, K., Stinear, C., & Buck, R. (2018). The Effects of Poi on Physical and Cognitive Function in Healthy Older Adults.. Journal of aging and physical activity. 10.1123/japa.2017-0273
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Cathy Stinear
  • Buck, R. M. (2018). The future of dance education. Paper presented at 2018 International Dance Education Forum, Beijing Dance Academy. 27 October - 27 October 2018. Related URL.
  • Riegle van west, K., Stinear, C., & Buck, R. (2018). The effects of Poi on physical and cognitive function in healthy older adults. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 1-24. 10.1123/japa.2017-0273
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Cathy Stinear
  • Buck, R. M., & Snook, B. (2018). Education est l'art et l'art est l'education: Un apercu de l'education artistique en Nouvelle Zelande (Education is art and art is education: an overview of arts education in New Zealand). In E. Fourreau (Ed.) L'éducation artistique dans le monde: Récits et enjeux (Art education in the world: Stories and issues) (pp. 197-201). Toulouse, France: Attribut. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Barbara Snook
  • Buck, R., & Snook, B. (2018). Furthering the discussion on access to arts learning: A New Zealand reflection on results of the MONAES survey. In T. Ijdens, B. Bolden, E. Wagner (Eds.) International yearbook for research in arts education (pp. 142-147). Munster, Germany: Waxmann. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Barbara Snook
  • Martin, B. H., Snook, B., & Buck, R. (2018). Creating the dance and dancing creatively: Exploring the liminal spaces of choreography for emergence. Journal of the Canadian Association for Curriculum Studies = La revue de l'association canadianne pour l`étude du curriculum, 16 (1), 162-174. Related URL.
  • Buck, R., & Snook, B. (2018). Undisciplining arts education: Towards arts integration. Journal of Artistic and Creative Education, 12 (1), 21-40. Related URL.
  • Rowe, N., Martin, R., Buck, R., & Antilla, E. (2018). Researching dance education post-2016: The global implications of Brexit and Trump on dance education. Research in Dance Education, 19 (1), 91-109. 10.1080/14647893.2017.1354839
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Nicholas Rowe

Contact details

Primary office location

BUILDING 113 - Bldg 113
Level 1, Room 102
New Zealand