I have been working as a midwifery lecturer since 2004 when I began at the University of the West of England. I joined the midwifery team at Oxford Brookes in May 2012 having previously studied here for my midwifery degree from 1990-1994. Between qualifying as a midwife in 1994 and moving into education in 2004 my clinical work took a variety of forms. I worked in the John Radcliffe Hospital and as a community midwife in Oxford City and at Wallingford midwifery led unit. I went on to be a Sure Start midwife at Rose Hill and implemented and trained a breast feeding peer support group whilst there.
Prior to embarking on midwifery I graduated from the University of Exeter with a degree in English and Drama, and I now combine these two elements, drama and midwifery, with my directorship of a midwifery theatre group called Progress Theatre. We use a form of theatre based on the work of a South American dramaturge Augusto Boal - forum theatre - to facilitate debate and analysis of familiar aspects of clinical life. Our shows are devised using our own and other midwives' experiences, and entail a high level of interaction and participation with audience members. I have also facilitated the development of two shows by service users, working with a Consultant Midwife and a National Teaching Fellow respectively.
I was External Examiner for the midwifery programme at the University of Bradford from 2007 to 2011 and am currently External Examiner for the short course (post nursing qualification) at Canterbury Christ Church University.
Membership of Professional Bodies
I am a member of The Royal College of Midwives and hold NMC registration as a midwife and as a midwife teacher.
I am module leader for the first module undertaken by the midwifery short course students, and also for the final practice module prior to qualification, Preparation for Registration. I teach across our undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. I am a member of the Electives module team and support midwifery students choosing to undertake an elective. I am an academic adviser, and a link lecturer for the Oxford city community teams.
Teaching and Research Interests
- Teaching physiology related to childbearing using interactive drama.
- Using drama in midwifery education.
- Student midwives’ affective learning and professional socialisation.
- Global perspectives on maternity care.
- Sociology of birth and maternity care.
- Emotion work and maternity care.
- Baker K (2008) ‘Peeling Onions – using drama to explore emotions in maternity care’ in Hunter B and Deery R (eds) Emotions in Midwifery and Reproduction, London, Palgrave
- Baker, K (2005) ‘Looking at Ourselves: Using theatre to examine structures around birth’ in Art and Soul: Creativity in Midwifery Education, Davis L (eds) Elsevier
Theatre productions (with Progress Theatre):
- How Was It For You?
- Swimming in Concrete (commissioned by Improving Working Lives, Department of Health 2001)
- I Don’t Know How She Got Pregnant
- Fixing It (commissioned by Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust 2007)
- Every3Days (commissioned by Thames Valley Partnership 2009)
- Risky Business(commissioned by the Normal Birth conference and the Royal College of Midwives 2011)
- I’ll Get Back to You (commissioned by the Normal Birth conference 2013)
- 2013 ‘I’ll Get Back to You’ (with Progress Theatre) at Normal Birth Conference, Grange over Sands
- 2011 ‘Risky Business’ (with Progress Theatre) at Risk Colloquium hosted by Normal Birth conference and Royal College of Midwive
- 2011 ‘Not There’ (dramatic duologue) at Child Law Conference, University of the West of England
- 2010 ‘Exploring students’ understanding of normality’ at Normal Birth Conference, Vancouver
- 2010 ‘Up To Here’ (with Dramatic Voices) at Reflective Practice Conference, University of Luton
- 2009 ‘Gap junctions and the Mexican wave’ at Normal Birth Conference, Grange over Sands
- 2008 Keynote address (with Progress Theatre) at Nursing and Midwifery Council Annual Midwifery Conference, Manchester
- 2008: ‘Midwifery and the magic ‘if’’ at Passionate Midwifery; Tricia’s Day, University of Bournemouth
- 2008: with Hunter B and Deery R ‘Peeling Onions: an interactive workshop to explore emotions in maternity care’ at International Confederation of Midwives, Glasgow.
- 2007 ‘Finding a Voice’ workshop presentation at Authenticity to Action: Involving Users and cares in Higher Education Conference, Grange over Sands
- 2006 Byrom S, Baker K ‘Birth Day Theatre’, Paper presented at the Royal College of Midwives conference
- 2006 with Birth Day Theatre ‘Speech to Rita’ at Normal Birth Conference, Grange over Sands