Sanna Kivijärvi is a doctoral candidate at the Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts Helsinki, Finland. She has an interdisciplinary educational background with an emphasis in special education, music education, and sociology, and a focus on (dis)Ability studies, critical educational studies and sociology of the arts. During the academic year 2019–2020, she works as a Fulbright research fellow at Teachers College, Columbia University and as a visiting research scholar at Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development, New York University. The visiting scholar periods are funded by the Fulbright Finland Foundation, American-Scandinavian Foundation and University of the Arts Helsinki.
Sanna Kivijärvi’s academic interests derive from ways in which music and music education can advance democracy, equity and justice at all levels of society. Her doctoral dissertation is a thesis by publication that examines the approximation of micro- and macro-level education policies by analyzing an innovation for educational equity, Figurenotes (Kuvionuotit), from both pedagogical and educational policy perspectives. Through the case of Figurenotes, this project examines how the application of notation systems creates equity or inequity within music education. In order to resolve educational policy concerns, the dissertation focuses on the concept of reasonable accommodation (United Nations, 2006) in music education. The dissertation consists of sub-studies reported in four academic peer-reviewed journal articles and a dissertation summary presented in kappa.
In addition to her doctoral research, Sanna Kivijärvi has published several peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on accessibility, equity and other policy issues in the Finnish music education system and beyond. She is researching the concert audiences of the Helsinki-based Resonaari Music Centre and embodiment in music education with diverse learners. Her projects are part of Academy of Finland's Strategic Research Council funded research initiative ArtsEqual that regards arts and arts education as a basic public service that should be equally accessible for all. Her research projects have also been funded by the Finnish Cultural Foundation, Otto Malm Foundation, Oskar Öflund Foundation, and the Finnish Concordia Foundation for Women in Academia. She also serves as a reviewer for academic journals and conferences.
Among other teaching assignments, Sanna Kivijärvi has worked as a lecturer of music education at Sibelius Academy, UniArts Helsinki. She has taught Bachelor- and Master-level students in research seminars, including theses supervision, as well as pedagogical courses, such as special education in the arts. She frequently holds visiting lectures, and presents papers in international and domestic conferences in music education and the related fields.
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