Barbara McIntyre Scholarship in Theatre and in Applied Theatre

Barbara May McIntyre (1916 - 2005)

Dr. Barbara McIntyre has a B.A. in Theatre, an M.A. in Children's Theatre, and a Ph.D. in Speech and Hearing Disorders, and she has combined her interest in all these areas to the benefit of children and teachers all over the globe.  Through her work as a teacher in public and private schools, as a professor at universities, as an author of journal articles and a creator of phonodiscs, and as a speaker at conferences here and abroad, she has found many ways to share the versatility of her knowledge.

Barbara was born in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, the second oldest of six children, and was raised there during the Depression.  She knew from an early age that education was important, and she recalls how hard her father worked to provide his children with opportunities.  She worked as well, following an education at Central Collegiate in Moose Jaw, in department stores to earn money to further her education. She attended Normal School, was awarded an interim teaching certificate, and in 1940 began her teaching career in a rural one-room school, which brought together 14 children from Grades 1 through 9.  From there she moved to a small town school and taught 22 children in Grades 5 and 6, and then on to a city school in Regina where her classroom held 38 children, all in Grade 3.

In 1945 she applied to the University of Minnesota, and with the help of a $200 scholarship from the government of Saskatchewan and work as a counsellor in the dormitory, she earned her Bachelor's degree in 1947.  During the next year, she worked as a special teacher of creative dramatics in the public schools of Evanston, Illinois, and began seven years of summer employment as director of the Junior Division of the Cain Park Creative Playshop, an educative centre connected to municipal theatre in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, and well-known for innovative approaches to developing children's creativity.  She completed her Master's degree at the University of Minnesota in 1950, and her thesis focused on An Evaluation of Material Chosen by Children for Creative Dramatics.  She then spent two years as Head of the Speech Department at Mary Institute in St. Louis, Missouri, but her real interest was in using creative drama to help children, and it took little to coax her into graduate work in speech and hearing at the University of Pittsburgh in 1951.  She continued to work, as a part-time instructor and then an assistant professor in the Speech and Theatre Arts Department, and was awarded her doctorate in 1957.  Her doctoral dissertation was on The Effects of a Six-Weeks Summer Program of Creative Activities upon the Consonant Articulation Skills of Adolescent and Pre-Adolescent Children with Speech Disorders.  She was promoted to the rank of associate professor before she left in 1966 to become an associate professor of speech at Northwestern University in Illinois.  She held this position for five years before her interest in Victoria, developed at least to some extent during visits with her parents and other family members since their move here in 1948, brought her to the University of Victoria. For ten years she was a professor in the Theatre Department at UVic. and for most of that time was also Chair of the Department.  She retired officially in 1981, but returned as acting chair during the 1983-84 term.

During her career, Barbara McIntyre published in many scholarly journals, including Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, Education, Speech and Drama, Children's Theatre Review and Abracadabra.  She also published monographs, contributed to anthologies and summaries of symposiums, and penned two books: Informal Dramatics: A Language Arts Activity for the Special Child (Stanwix House, Pittsburgh, 1963) and Creative Drama in the Elementary School (F. E. Peacock Publishers, Itasca, 1974). Specific topics in her published works have varied, but the thread that connects them all is her desire to help children, particularly special children.  In addition, she created two series of phonodiscs to help children with language and speech development. Listening with Bunny Big Ears (Educational Activities, Freeport, N.Y., 1965) is a series designed for kindergarten and first grade children, and Count Down for Listening (Educational Activities, Freeport, N.Y., 1969) is designed for intermediate grade children.  Dr. McIntyre was in demand as a speaker, and has addressed conferences from Vancouver to St. John's in Canada, all over the U.S., and abroad in the U.K.

Although she retired in 1981, she was active at the University of Victoria, as President of the Association of UVic Retirees, and honorary president of the UVic Alumni Association.  She worked in the broader community for theatre organizations, including sitting on the Board of the Bastion Theatre in Victoria for many years.  Dr. McIntyre passed away in 2005.

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