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Christy Thomas, EdD, MEd, BEd

Assistant Professor in Education
Office Location
RE148
Phone number
+1 (403) 410-2000 ext. 6921

Biography

I am an educator and lifelong learner. I started teaching in K-12 education in 1998 after completing my bachelor’s degree. I completed my master’s degree in 2011 at the University of Alberta.  In Summer 2012, I enrolled in doctoral studies at the University of Calgary and completed my Doctorate in Education in March 2016.  Since 2016, I’ve been a sessional instructor in the undergraduate and graduate programs at the Werklund School of Education at the University of Calgary and am also currently an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Werklund School of Education. I joined Ambrose University in Fall 2019 and was a sessional instructor for both the fall and winter terms before taking on my new role as Assistant Professor in the School of Education. I teach graduate courses in leadership and a variety of undergraduate courses in curriculum and learning. My research centers on leadership, professional learning, collaboration, group work, and instructional design while utilizing mixed methods, design-based research, and action research. I am married to Justin and enjoy exercising, music, traveling, food and spending time with family and friends.

Current Research

My research interests and current projects focused on leadership, professional learning, collaboration, group work, and instructional design while utilizing mixed methods, design-based research, and action research.  As a co-investigator in a recent Scholarship of Teaching and Learning Grant (SOTL, 2017-2019), this project explored instructional designs for improving the student learning experience in group work and has led and has resulted in a number of knowledge mobilization opportunities and publications.  This research project also led to a current SHHRC Grant where I am the co-investigator for the project titled: Exploring Online Pedagogies for Social Connectedness and Advancing Professional Collaboration. I am also the principal investigator for an Alberta Education Research Partnership Grant examining the effectiveness of collaborative professional learning model in addressing Alberta’s Leadership Quality Standard.  The findings from this research have implications for leadership development and district practices for supporting this work. Additionally, I am a principal investigator for a University of Calgary Partner Research Project partnering with YouthLink Calgary to explore the impact of their crime prevention and education program.

Scholarly & Professional Activity

Speaking & Consulting

My research interests and teaching background have given me the opportunity to speak and consult on topics related to leadership, professional learning, collaboration, group work, and instructional design. I have presented at conferences, led workshops, and consulted with community partners. In my recent role as instructional design consultant at Ambrose University (May to June 2020), I had the opportunity to support and collaborate with Faculty in building capacity for online teaching and learning.

Please contact me if you are interested in me partnering with you to support the work you are doing. I am passionate about bridging theory and practice and bringing together academics and practitioners.

Recent Conference Presentations and Proceedings

  • Martens, S. & Thomas, C. (2022). Combatting Moral Distress: Participating in a Professional Community of Care. uLead Conference, April 10-12, 2022, Banff, AB.
  • Thomas, C., Marler, R., & Jorgensen-Adam, S. (2022). Leadership Professional Learning. uLead Conference, April 10-12, 2022, Banff, AB.
  • Thomas, C. & Hartwell, A. (2022). Building Faculty Capacity for Online Teaching and Learning. (Presentation). Ambrose Research Conference: Adjacent Possibilities: Research that Makes Room for What's Possible. March 30, 2022, Calgary, AB.
  • Martens, S. & Thomas, C. (2021). Connecting School Leadership in an Ethic of Care Community. Educational Leadership, Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE), Nov 28-Dec. 2 2021, Hybrid Online & RMIT City Campus, Melbourne, Australia.
  • Thomas, C., Turner, J., Marler, R., & Jorgenson-Adam, S. (2021). Collaborative Professional Learning for Leadership. Educational Leadership, Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE), Nov 28-Dec. 2, 2021, Hybrid Online & RMIT City Campus, Melbourne, Australia.
  • Brown, B. & Thomas, C. (2021). Improving Student Learning in Group Assignments. Teacher Education and Research Innovation, Australian Association for Research in Education (AARE), Nov 28-Dec. 2 2021, Hybrid Online & RMIT City Campus, Melbourne, Australia.
  • Hill, J., Crawford, K., Martens, S., Pelletier, C., Thomas, C., & Wong, A. (2021). Journey to create an ethical space to include and promote Indigenous ways of being, teaching, and learning in teacher education. Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), May 29 – June 3, University of Alberta, Columbia, Edmonton, AB.
  • Turner, J. & Thomas, C. (2021). Developing Leadership through Collaborative Professional Learning. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), May 29 – June 3, University of Alberta, Columbia, Edmonton, AB.
  • Thomas, C. & Brown, B. (2021). Online Assessment of Group Work in Undergraduate Teacher Education. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), May 29 – June 3, 2021, University of Alberta, Columbia, Edmonton, AB.
  • Hill, J., Thomas, C., & Robb-Hagg, A. (2021). Decolonizing Teacher Education: Seeking to include Indigenous Knowledge in an Online Learning Environment. Teaching & Learning Virtual Conference, May 18-19, Mount Royal University, Calgary, AB.
  • Thomas, C. Turner, J., Jorgensen-Adam, S., & Marler, R. (2021). Addressing Alberta's New Leadership Quality Standard through High Quality Collaborative Professional Learning. Alberta Research Network, December 17, 2021, online.
  • Jorgenson-Adam, S., Marler, R., and Thomas, C. (Spring 2021).  Resilience in research: Continuing our learning journey. Alberta Research Network, Alberta Education. 
  • Thomas, C., Jorgenson-Adam, S., Brandon, J., Marler, R., Turner, J. & Friesen, S. (2020). Leading collaborative professional learning for school systems. In S. Friesen, J. Brandon, & M. Jacobsen (Eds.). Selected Proceedings of the IDEAS Conference: Transforming Pedagogies, pp. 51-56. Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary.  Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1880/111767.
  • Thomas, C., Brown, B., & Hill, J. (2020). Improving student learning in Group Assignments through Instructional Design. In S. Friesen, J. Brandon, & M. Jacobsen (Eds.). Selected Proceedings of the IDEAS Conference: Transforming Pedagogies, pp. 31-37. Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1880/111767
  • Francis, K., Bolger, P., Burns, A., Chapman, O., Dodsworth, D., Harter, C., Preciado Babb, A. P., Rothschuh, S., Thomas, C., & Turner, J. (2019). Strategies for Effective Group Work and Knowledge Building in Experiential STEM Learning. Conference on Postsecondary Learning and Teaching: Exploring Experiential Learning. University of Calgary, April 30-May 1, Calgary, AB.
  • Thomas, C., Brown, B., & Hill, J. (2019). Technology for Pre-service Teacher Collaboration. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), June 2-5, University of British Columbia, BC.
  • Brown, B., Egizii, R., Thomas, C., Friesen, S., & Brandon, J. (2019). Examining research-practice partnerships through a complex adaptive systems lens. Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), June 2-5, University of British Columbia, BC.
  • Marler, R., Jorgensen-Adam, S., Thomas, C., & Brandon, J. (2019). Implementing the Leadership Quality Standard (LQS)Through High Quality Collaborative Professional Learning. uLead Conference, May 12-14, 2019 Banff, AB.
  • Brown, B., Thomas, C., Hill, J., Alonso-Yanez, G. (2019). Fostering collaborative learning in an undergraduate interdisciplinary education course. Teaching and Teacher Education, Division K – Section 5, American Educational Research Association (AERA), April 5-9, 2019, Toronto, ON.
  • Delanoy, N., Koh, K., Bene, R., Thomas, C., & Chapman, O. (2019). Instructors’ Enactment of Problem-Based Learning to Develop Preservice Teachers’ Assessment Literacy. Teaching and Teacher Education, Division K – Section 5, American Educational Research Association (AERA), April 5-9, 2019, Toronto, ON.
  • Brown, B., Egizii, R., Thomas, C., Friesen, S., & Brandon, J. (2019). Research-Practice Partnerships: First Cohort of Projects in Alberta. School/University Collaborative Research, American Educational Research Association (AERA), April 5-9, 2019, Toronto, ON.
  • Hill, J., Thomas, C., Brown, B. & Alonso-Yanez, G. (2018). Hacking for collaboration towards redesigning group work. Conference on Postsecondary Learning and Teaching: Students as Creators, Drivers, Innovators and Collaborators. University of Calgary, May 1-2, 2018, Calgary, AB.

Education

EdD (University of Calgary)
MEd (University of Alberta)
BEd (University of Calgary)

Select Publications

Thomas, C. & Brown, B. (2021). Formative assessment strategies to support group work. Education in the North, 28(2), 134-155.
Brown, B. & Thomas, C. (2020). Technology used to support learning in groups. International Journal of E-learning & Distance Education, 35(1), 1-34.
Thomas, C. & Brown, B. (2019). Developing pre-service teachers’ leadership capacity through group work. International studies in Educational Administration, 47(2), 37-57.
Hill, J., Thomas, C., & Brown, B. (2019). Research assistant as partner: Collective leadership to facilitate co-production. International Journal for Students as Partners, 3(2), 129-138.
Jorgenson-Adam, S., Marler, R., Thomas, C., & Brandon, J. (Spring, 2019). Implementing the LQS through collaborative professional learning. CASS Connection, (14)3.
Brown, B., Thomas, C., & Roy, S. (2019). Partner Research Schools: Conversations about research partnerships. Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary. [pp. 1-8].
Brown, B., Hartwell, A., & Thomas, C. (2018). Interdisciplinary design teams of pre-service and in-service teachers: Issues with collaboration. Canadian Journal of Action Research, 19(1), 14-32.
Thomas, C., Turner, J., Brandon, J., & Friesen, S. (2018). Building Leadership Capacity through High Quality Professional Learning. Report prepared for Battle River School Division.
Brown, B., Thomas, C., Delanoy, N. & Brandon, J. (2018). Quality Teaching: A Literature Review for Northern Gateway Public Schools. Report prepared for Northern Gateway Public Schools.