Faculty & Research

Recreation and Leisure Studies at Brock is home to a diverse faculty complement with varied areas of expertise across the recreation and leisure fields and subfields.

Our researcher’s academic work connect us to communities, non-profits, governments and other organizations in the Niagara community and beyond.

As we contribute to the knowledge in the leisure studies field through critical thinking, research and scholarship, we also integrate this research into what is being taught in our classrooms.

We are advancing research in three main areas:

Community Recreation emphasizes a community development approach, which means that our focus is on how to use recreation to build and develop the whole community or address broader community issues, rather than viewing recreation as solely a business or service.

Research in this area has an emphasis on community development and responsiveness to diversity, particularly of youth and groups that are marginalized.

This research takes place in settings such as municipal recreation services, non-profit organizations, and private enterprises.

Outdoor recreation focuses on leadership in the natural environment and fosters critical thinking about peoples’ relationships with nature and relationships with others.

Research in this area explores how outdoor recreation encourages social and environmental change in the world.

At Brock, our research examines socially and environmentally focused ethical frameworks, risk management, Leave No Trace principles, outdoor education, outdoor adventure, park management, sense of community, sense of place, and more.

This research takes place in outdoor field settings, with recreation organizations, environmental and wilderness agencies and educational institutions.

Therapeutic Recreation is an allied health profession in which the primary purpose of practice is to enable individuals living with illnesses and disabilities to achieve well-being and quality of life through meaningful engagement in recreation and leisure opportunities.

Leisure is seen to be central in creating a life of meaning and in living well with disability or illness.

Brock Research in this area looks at ways to improve one’s quality of life by strengthening personal capacities for full and optimal involvement in life and by working to reduce functional and activity limitations.

This research takes place in settings such as hospitals, long-term care homes, day programs, community-based programs and mental health centres.

Research News

Recreation & Leisure Research

Interested in the research being conducted by our faculty members?

Brock research

We have a heart for community and a head for innovation.

Contact us


Deborah O’Leary
Associate Dean, Research and Graduate Studies
Office: STH 437
905 688 5550 x4339


Communications and Media
905-688-5550 x5353