Congratulations to the new PhD  Aušra Kardašienė on the successfully defece of her doctoral dissertation “Creating an Inclusive Culture in Gymnasium Through Informal Musical Activities”  (Education (S 007), scientific  supervisor –  prof. dr. Diana Strakšienė)  and acquirung  the degree of  PhD of Social Sciences in the field of Education.

The dissertation is available in the libraries of Vilnius University, Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuanian University of Sport and on the VU website at:

A short annotation  of the dissertation is presented below: 

The dissertation highlights the assumptions that the changing aspirations of the education system inevitably change the conception of the school as an organisational culture, which is influenced by competition, changing societal demands, expectations of the students, the growing interest of the state, and the requirements of accountability. The theoretical concept of the school as an organisational culture is justified, the phenomenon of school culture in the context of inclusive education is discussed, the concept of inclusive education is conceptualised in the context of educational paradigms, and a qualitative study was conducted, using a semi-structured interview method, which aimed to find out what meanings pupils, teachers, and parents give to the expression of non-formal musical activities in gymnasium, and how it is possible to build an inclusive culture in gymnasium on the basis of the non-formal musical activities.

The study revealed that the development of an inclusive gymnasium culture (IGC) model using informal music activities is significant in creating a school for all, as it eliminates discrimination and exclusion of inclusive students and empowers everyone in the organisation. This culture, where the whole community is actively involved in the life of the school by being open to change, leads to the conclusion that the fundamental values that are built through informal music activities have a positive impact on the pupils’ desire not only to express themselves creatively, to experience success through music, but also to strengthen the collaborative relationship between all the actors in the educational process.

Dissertation Defense Council:

Chair – prof. dr. Romualdas Malinauskas (Lithuanian University of Sport, Social Sciences, Education – S 007),
Prof. dr. Renata Bilbokaitė (Vilnius University, Social Sciences, Education – S 007),
Prof. dr. Beate Hennenberg (University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna, Austria, Humanities, Art History – H 003),
Assoc. prof. dr. Emilija Alma Sakadolskis (Vilnius University, Social Sciences, Education – S 007),
Assoc. prof. dr. Edita Štuopytė (Kaunas University of Technology, Social Sciences, Educational Sciences – S 007).