Professor Susan Orr

Professor Susan Orr, Pro Vice-Chancellor Education and Equalities

Professor Susan Orr is the Pro Vice Chancellor Education and Equalities at De Montfort University. Prior to her appointment at DMU she was PVC: Learning and Teaching at York St John University.  Susan has also held leadership positions at Sheffield Hallam University and University of the Arts London.

At York St John University Susan led on the delivery of the Learning, Teaching and Student Experience strategy and was the Executive Board Sponsor for its successful application for Bronze Athena Swan and for its preparation towards submitting its Race Equality Charter to Advance HE. 

At DMU Susan leads Education 2030 which builds on DMU’s student centred learning approaches to ensure that DMU’s curriculum and pedagogy meets the challenges of our current and future students and graduates.  

Susan is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a Professor of Creative Practice Pedagogy and an HEA  Principal Fellow.  Susan was awarded an AdvanceHE National Teaching Fellow in 2010 and  won an AdvanceHE  Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence (CATE) in 2020.

Susan has served on a number of Boards and committees in the sector. She was an OFS TEF 2 Panel Member and she chaired the Arts Subject TEF Pilot for two years. Susan is currently leading a review of blended learning for the OFS.

Susan’s published research centres on creative education with a focus on studio based pedagogy in art and design. She co-authored Art and Design Pedagogy in Higher-Education: Knowledge, Values and Ambiguity (published by Routledge) and has written a range of articles on assessment and creative practice education.

Susan has presented her research in the UK and internationally. She edits the international journal ‘Art, Design and Communication in Higher Education’ and chairs the European League of Institute of Arts Teachers’ Academy.

Susan is a Trustee of the York Museums Trust and a volunteer at Urban Kitchen (a soup kitchen in Hackney).  

In her spare time Susan loves to hike. She has hiked the Pennine Way, the Coast to Coast and is 420 miles into the 630 miles of the South Coastal Path! 

You can contact Susan Orr directly by emailing or through her PA by emailing Kathryn Williams: