Kevin Spencer is a teaching artist, researcher, speaker, consultant, and award-winning film producer as well as faculty in the Special Education program at Carlow University (PA) where he teaches a course on the intersection of the arts for special populations. He is also a world-renowned illusionist with dozens of accolades to his credit. He and his wife, Cindy, were the recipients of the Merlin Award for International Magicians of the Year (2009) and six-time recipients of Performing Arts Entertainer of the Year. Most recently, the Milbourne Christopher Foundation honored them as Illusionists of the Year (2015) for their unique contributions to the art of magic.
Spencer is considered the leading authority on the educational and therapeutic benefits of magic tricks in the classroom. His work has taken him around the world where he has conducted professional development training for educators and interactive classroom activities for students. He is a regular speaker at international education conferences and believes in the power of the arts to bring transformative educational experiences to students of all abilities.
Spencer is the creator of the Hocus Focus project (an arts-based multidisciplinary curriculum) and holds a Certification in Autism Studies. His groundbreaking research on the educational benefits of integrating magic tricks into the classroom for all students, including those with developmental and intellectual disabilities, has been published in the Journal of the International Association of Special Education and the Journal of the International Society for Teacher Education. In 2015/2016, he was the lead investigator in the development of an assessment instrument designed to measure student outcomes using an arts-integrated teaching approach. The paper, The Development and Psychometric Investigation of an Assessment Instrument for Educators, was accepted for publication and presentation at the 2017 American Educational Research Association conference.
Spencer has presented his research at numerous education conferences world-wide including the Council for Exceptional Children (St. Louis, 2016), Division of International Special Education and Services (Ireland 2011, Tobago 2013, and Portugal 2014), the East Asian International Conference on Teacher Education Research (Hong Kong), the International Society for Teacher Education Seminar (Norway), the International Scientific Conference on Rehabilitation and Education (Belarus), and the International Association for Special Education (Namibia 2012 and Vancouver 2014). He is scheduled as a featured presenter at the First World Congress for Persons with Disabilities in Russia (2017).