John Kubiak

John Kubiak

Teaching & Learning Officer(Curriculum), Education


+353 1896 3442


Dr John Kubiak lectures at the School of Education, TCD and is based in the Trinity Centre for People with Intellectual Disabilities. He was programme coordinator of the Certificate in Contemporary Living and the certificate in Arts, Science and Inclusive Applied Practice (ASIAP), an inclusive tertiary education programme for people with intellectual disabilities. John's doctoral research - which was conducted with the input of co-researchers with intellectual disabilities - has led to the development of a model of how people with intellectual disabilities experience learning while in tertiary education. John teaches on a variety of courses for the ASIAP and his efforts to raise awareness on equality issues and promote diversity in Trinity resulted in being a recipient of the Equality Fund Project on two occasions (2013-14 and 2015-16) in collaboration with the Trinity Sports Centre. John supervises at post-graduate level on the School's M.Ed. and PME programmes. In 2012 John was a recipient of the prestigious Provost Teaching Award. In 2013, he was awarded a Post-doctorate research position and bursary with TCD's School of Education and is a member of the research group Inclusion in Education and Society.

Publications and Further Research Outputs

Kubiak J, Aston D, Devitt M, Ringwood B, University Students with Intellectual Disabilities: Empowerment through Voice, Empowerment through Voice. Education Sciences, 11, (571), 2021, p1 - 12Journal Article, 2021 URL

Effective Practices for Helping Students Transition to Work in, Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Education, Oxford University Press, 2020, [Shevlin, M., Kubiak, J., O'Donovan, M., Devitt, M., Ringwood, B., Aston, D., & McGuckin, C.]Book Chapter, 2020 URL DOI TARA - Full Text

Kubiak, J. , Poetry pedagogy and university students with intellectual disabilities, Journal of Poetry Therapy , 33, (3), 2020, p137 - 151Journal Article, 2020

Developing Post-Secondary Education Programmes for People with Intellectual Disabilities in Trinity College, the University of Dublin in, editor(s)Patricia O'Brien, Michele Bonati, Friederike Gadow, Roger Slee. , People with intellectual disability experiencing university life, The Netherlands, Sense Publications, 2019, pp141 - 153, [Kubiak, J., Spassiani, N., Shevlin, M., & O'Keeffe, M. ]Book Chapter, 2019

Piazzoli, E., & Kubiak, J., 'The only learning I'm going to get': Students with intellectual disabilities learning a second language through performative pedagogy, Scenario , 13, (1), 2019, p21 - 41Journal Article, 2019

O'Donovan, M. A., Kubiak, J., Devitt, M., Ringwood, B., Mc Guckin, C., & Shevlin, M. , Transition to postsecondary education for young people who have an intellectual disability. , Thirtieth Annual Conference of the Irish Association of Teachers in Special Education (IATSE): Thinking Inclusively, Acting Inclusively and Planning InclusivelyDublin City University, St Patrick's Campus, Drumcondra, Dublin 9, County Dublin, Ireland.25-26th May, 2018, 2018Conference Paper, 2018

Kubiak, John , Social Constructivist Pedagogy and the Inclusion of Adults with Intellectual Disabilities in Higher / Postsecondary Education programmes: from Theory to Practice, Diversity-sensitive Teacher Education Salzburg, Austria 18-19 Oct 2018 , 2018Conference Paper, 2018

Kubiak,J. , Using 'voice' to understand what college students with intellectual disabilities say about the teaching and learning process., Journal of Research in Special Education Needs , 17, (1), 2017, p41 - 48Journal Article, 2017 TARA - Full Text

Kubiak. J and Piazzoli, E. , 'What effects does embodiment have on the language learning process of adult students with an intellectual disability?' , 2nd International SCENARIO forum Conference 2017University College CorkMay 24th - 29th 2017, 2017Conference Paper, 2017

Facilitating collaborative reflection: researching with college students with intellectual disabilities in, editor(s)Adele Flood and Kathryn Coleman , Reflective Practice in Learning and Teaching, USA, Common Ground Publishing, 2016, pp270 - 296, [Kubiak, John ]Book Chapter, 2016

Kubiak, J. , Using Concept Mapping as a Learning Tool for College Students with an Intellectual Disability, The International Journal of Learning in Higher Education , 23, (2), 2016, p7 - 21Journal Article, 2016

The impact and journey of the Certificate in Contemporary Living, a third level course for adults with intellectual disabilities at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. in, editor(s)Tobias Buchner, Oliver Koenig & Saskia Schuppener , Inclusive Research , Germany , 2016, pp306 - 319, [O'Keeffe, M., Iriarte Garcia, E., Kubiak, J., O'Doherty, S., Murphy, T & Lally, N.]Book Chapter, 2016

Kubiak, J. , How students with intellectual disablities experience learning in college, ESAI 40th Annual Conference Maynooth University9th-11th April 2015, 2015Conference Paper, 2015

Experiencing Learning: Students with Intellectual Disabilities in Higher Education in Ireland in, editor(s)Rhonda G. Craven; Alex Morin; Philip Parker; Danielle Tracey , International Advances in Education: Global Initiatives for Equity and Social Justice , USA, Information Age Press, 2015, pp139 - 162, [Kubiak, J., & Shevlin, M.]Book Chapter, 2015

Kubiak, J. , Researching Inclusively with College Students with Intellectual Disabilities , International Journal of Learner Diversity and Identities , 22, (3), 2015, p37 - 50Journal Article, 2015 TARA - Full Text

Kubiak, J., Using voice as a research approach , Inter University Symposium Journal, School of Education, Trinity College Dublin, 1, 2014, p11 - 18Journal Article, 2014 TARA - Full Text

Kubiak, J., Intellectually Disabled Students' Experiences of Learning in one Irish College, Exploring Difference and Diversity in Irish Higher Education School of Education, Trinity College Dublin.June 12th 2013, 2013Conference Paper, 2013

Kubiak,J. & Twomey, M. , The use of 'voice' as a research approach (Keynote speaker), Approaches to Inclusive Research in Education: Opportunities and ChallengesLong Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin6th June 2013, 2013Conference Paper, 2013

Kubiak, J, Using a phenomenographic approach to explore the learning experiences of students with intellectual disabilities in tertiary education., Trinity Education Papers, Special Issue: Examining Theory & Practice in Inclusive Education, 2, (2), 2013, p132 - 148Journal Article, 2013 TARA - Full Text

O'Connor, B., Kubiak, J., Espiner, D., & O'Brien, P. , Lecturer Responses to the Inclusion of Students with Intellectual Disabilities Auditing Undergraduate Classes, Journal of Policy and Practice in Intellectual Disabilities , 9, (4), 2012, p247 - 256Journal Article, 2012

Kubiak, J, Intellectually Disabled Students' Experiences of Learing in Tertiary Education: an 'Inclusive' Phenomenography, Conference paper, Examining Theory and Practice in Inclusive Education Trinity College Dublin25th April 2012, 2012Conference Paper, 2012

Kubiak,J., Lally, M., & Murphy, T. , Our experience of attending undergraduate lectures at Trinity College - A students' perspective, Conference paper, 11th Nordic Network on Disability Research (NNDR) Research Conference Reykjavik, IcelandMay 27-28, 2011, 2011Conference Paper, 2011

O'Brien,P., Kubiak,J.,Espiner,D., O'Connor. B.,& O'Keeffe, M., Including students in undergraduate classes within a university setting, Conference paper, 3rd IASSID-Europe ConferenceRome, Italy20-22 October, 2010, 2010Conference Paper, 2010

O'Brien , P., Kubiak,J., Espiner, D., O'Connor, B., O'Keeffe, M., Including students in undergraduate classes within a university setting, Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 23 , (5), 2010, p440 - 447Journal Article, 2010

Espiner, D., O'Brien, P.,and Kubiak, J. , Being a real student: Students' perceptions of one inclusive tertiary educational experience, Conference paper, Australasian Board of the Society for the Study of Intellectual Disability (ASSID) 44th Conference Tasmania4th - 7th Nov 2009, , 2009Conference Paper, 2009

O'Brien, P., Shevlin, M., O'Keeffe. M.,Curtis, S., Kubiak, J.,M., Fitzgerald, S., Kenny, M., & Espiner, D. , Opening up a whole new world; Students with intellectual disability being included within a university setting, Conference paper, 43rd ASSID conferenceUniversity of MelbourneNovember, 2008, 2008Conference Paper, 2008

Espiner, D., O'Brien, P., Kubiak, J., & O'Connor, B. (2012), The three C's of inclusion in a university setting: Choice, Commitment and Capacity, NZ ASID, Research to Practice ConferenceWellington, New Zealand Nov. 8th 2012Conference Paper,

Kubiak, J., Understanding how College Students with an Intellectual Disability Learn through Concept Mapping, Learner Voice ConferenceTrinity College Dublin 26th-27th June 2015Conference Paper,

Kubiak, J., "Using "Voice" to Understand What College Students with Intellectually Disabilities Say about Learning" , Twenty-First International Conference on Learning Lander College for Women, New York14-17 July 2014Conference Paper,

Kubiak, J., How students with intellectual disabilities experience learning in one Irish university, Irish Educational StudiesJournal Article,

Kubiak, J (Ed), Pen and Palette, A selection of poetry and paintings by students of the National Institute for Intellectual Disability Trinity College Dublin , 2014Book, 2014

O'Brien, P., O'Keeffe, M., Healy, U., Kubiak, J., Lally, N., & Hughes, Z. , 74, (2009), The Frontline of Learning Disability, [eds.]Journal, 2009

Kubiak, J. & Epiner,D., 74 , (2009), The Frontline of Learning Disability, [eds.]Journal, 2009

Research Expertise

    • Title
      • Including Students with Intellectual Disabilities in Third Level Undergraduate Programmes'
    • Summary
      • This research built upon a pilot study conducted at Trinity College in 2005 - 2006. The success of this small scale project was replicated with a larger group of students with an intellectual disability who were enrolled on the Certificate of Contemporary Living (CCL). CCL students were matched with a volunteer mentor who supported them to attend mainstream courses on the Trinity campus. Lecturers volunteered to be part of this research project and supported the CCL student to attend class. The outcomes of this process were captured through the facilitation of focus groups, interviews, administration of questionnaires and observation schedules and the collation of field notes. This research will build on the body of literature to better support students with intellectual disability to attend third level educational programmes along with the wider student body. It will increase the capacity of Trinity College to respond to the ongoing personal and professional development of this group of marginalised students.
    • Funding Agency
      • European Union - Marie Curie Actions
    • Date From
      • 2008
    • Date To
      • 2009


    • Title
      • Widening Participation: The Roll-out of the Certificate in Contemporary Living
    • Summary
      • The objective of this project was to further develop and roll-out the Certificate in Contemporary Living(CCL) across other third level institutions in Ireland with UCC as a first site and partner. This project consisted of four main areas of activity: (1) development of curriculum materials; (2) implementation of a national network of third level teaching staff; (3) training staff in third level institutions, and (4), monitoring the implementation of the curriculum.
    • Funding Agency
      • Strategic Innovation Fund II
    • Date From
      • 2009
    • Date To
      • 2011

Higher Education; INCLUSION; INTELLECTUAL DISABILITY; Social Inclusion

Publications and Further Research Outputs

    Provost's Teaching Award (Trinity College Dublin)2012

    Post-Doctorate Research Associate and Bursary (School of Education)2013

    Master in Arts (jure officii) Trinity College Dublin22 July 2018

Irish Disabilities Studies Association2013

Educational Studies Association of Ireland2015

Irish Federation of University Teachers (IFUT)2015

The Learner Knowledge Community2013-

Reviewer for: The International Journal of Research and Methods in Education; The Journal of Intellectual Disabilities; The Africa Education Review. Associate Editor for The International Journal of Interdisciplinary Educational Studies.