Author: Editor Ed News

Faculty Spotlight: Dr. Alayne Armstrong

Faculty Spotlight! Meet Dr. Alayne Armstrong, our new Associate Dean of Faculty Development and Human Resources. Dr. Armstrong is also Associate Professor of Mathematics Education and has worked with our Faculty since 2016.

Dr. Armstrong is passionate about teaching her students that mathematics is truly “for everyone because it can be approached in so many ways. And it’s never too late to build someone’s mathematical understanding.”

For her research, Dr. Alayne Armstrong is “interested in how students come to learn and understand mathematics through drawing on their own experiences and interests, even those that at first may not seem particularly mathematical. Some of my current projects involve exploring how small groups ‘think’ when they’re doing mathematics and investigating how students with mathematics learning disabilities can use technology to support their mathematical learning.”

As advice for Education students, Dr. Armstrong says, “During your education, keep your future students in mind – how you’re going to help them learn, and how you’re going to make a difference in their lives. Some of your courses will be practical, and some will seem quite theoretical, but they all have an important part to play in starting you on your journey as a teacher. Keep and open mind and an open heart.”

If you are interested in taking a course with Dr. Armstrong, she teaches EMTH 310 (Teaching Mathematics in Elementary Schools), EMTH 200 (Implementation and Assessment of Problem Solving in Mathematics), and EMTH 326 (Spatial Reasoning for the Elementary School Mathematics Teacher).

Dr. Armstrong says EMTH 326 is a course that might really interest you: “Recent research has shown how important the development of spatial reasoning is for children’s understanding of *all* mathematical areas, even those that don’t seem to be related to shape and space (geometry). In EMTH 326, we are really on the cutting edge of ideas about mathematical teaching and learning!”

New Black Teachers Matter Scholarship

Donors to the U of R share in the University’s commitment to creating and promoting a more equitable system that fosters diversity and inclusion.

By University Advancement and Communications Posted: September 13, 2021

“This commitment to well-being and belonging was no more evident than in the $25,000 donated by Agnes Stephanson-Cooke to endow the Black Teachers Matter Scholarship in 2020 – an award that will support a Black undergraduate student in pursuing a degree in the Faculty of Education in their final year.

“It’s a huge commitment by Agnes to trust us and our Faculty and our University to carry forward this gift with her name,” said Dr. Jerome Cranston, Dean of the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina. “It brings me tremendous joy to know that there are people like Agnes out there. Her foresight and her willingness to have her name associated with this gift is huge.”

Dr. Cranston was quick to give credit to his Faculty of Education colleague Stephen Davis, who came up with the concept and name of the award. “I felt that this was needed to recognize the important role of Black educators in Saskatchewan and celebrate the brilliant and gifted educators that we have at the University of Regina,” Davis said. Both Dr. Cranston and Davis recognize the enormous impact that the award will have.

“Representation matters. We don’t only need Black teachers for Black students, we need Black teachers for white students,” Dr. Cranston said. “This award is going to support changing the teaching workforce and it’s going to do it in a way that even further identifies the U of R as a place where we are inclusive, and we are respectful.”

Read the full story on the U of R Front Page

If you would like to help a student in need, visit our donor page and consider supporting one of our Faculty’s funding priorities:

Funding award – Association des Collegés et Universités de la Francophonie Canadienne

Dr. Fadila Boutouchent

Congratulations to Dr. Fadila Boutouchent, professeure agrégée – Programme du baccalauréat en éducation, on obtaining Association des Colléges et Universités de la Francophonie Canadienne (ACUFC) funding for her project entitled, “Comment l’absence de cours de sciences en Français affecte-t-elle la préparation des futurs #enseignants à l’enseignement des #STIM en Français en #Saskatchewan ?” in the amount of $28,785.

New faculty member – Coordinator of Field Education and Clinical Instructor

Donna Nikiforuk, B.Ed., M.Ed.

Donna Nikiforuk recently joined the Faculty of Education as the new Coordinator of Field Education and Clinical Instructor. Ms. Nikiforuk attended the University of Regina (U of R) for both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Education. She has 30 years of K – 12 experiences in Regina Public Schools as a teacher, arts education specialist, vice principal and principal, and she has taught as a sessional instructor at the U of R for the last 10 years. In addition, Ms. Nikiforuk is a certified Response Ability Pathways trainer bringing this skillset to her new role. Director of Professional Development and Field Experience, Dr. Kathryn Ricketts, says, “Donna brings a wonderful combination of in-school experience, credibility and leadership. Her familiarity with both the school system and university procedures will make her a valuable member of our faculty. We are looking forward to harnessing her expertise and passion in supporting our students in combination with our important field partners.”


New faculty member – Eduational Leadership and Education Core Studies

Donna Swapp, PhD candidate

Donna Swapp recently accepted a full-time, tenure-track position of Lecturer in Educational Leadership and Education Core Studies (ECS). Ms. Swapp is nearing completion of her PhD in the Critical Policy, Equity, and Leadership Studies cohort in the Faculty of Education at Western University in London, Ontario. Ms. Swapp  has taught undergraduate and graduate courses, and designed pedagogy and content for bachelor’s and master’s classes. She holds a master’s in educational studies from Western University in London, Ontario; and a bachelor’s in educational administration from the University of West Indies in Grenada/Barbados. Prior to pursuing her graduate and post-graduate studies in Canada, Ms. Swapp taught secondary school for 11 years in her native Grenada. She has received several academic and research awards including the Daphne Lord Memorial Scholarship, an Ontario Graduate Scholarship, the Robert MacMillan Graduate Award in Educational Leadership, and the TA Townshend Gold Medal in Education. As a research assistant, she also collaborated with lead investigators  on projects funded by SSHRC, Ontario Principals Council, and the Ontario Ministry of Education among others.


New faculty member – Secondary English Education (High School)

Brittany Tomin, PhD candidate

Brittany Tomin recently accepted the full-time, tenure track position of Lecturer – Secondary English Education (High School). Ms. Tomin is nearing completion of a PhD program in the Faculty of Education at York University in Toronto, Ontario. Her dissertation explores science fiction, creative world building, and radical democracy through collaborative digital storytelling with secondary students and teacher candidates. Ms. Tomin holds an MEd (2017) from York University, a BEd (2015) from Queen’s University, and a concurrent BA (Honours, 2014) from Trent University. Among other awards, she received the Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships for both her master’s studies and her doctoral studies, and a Mitacs research training award for a study on professional development, digital storytelling, and world building titled “Speculative World Building and Professional Development in Secondary School Contexts.”

In this video, Tomin outlines her doctoral research:

New faculty member – Digital Pedagogy and Literacies

Dr. Ehsan Akbari

Dr. Ehsan Akbari recently accepted the position of Lecturer and Coordinator of Digital Pedagogy and Literacies. Dr. Akbari completed a PhD in Art Education at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec in November 2020. His dissertation explored, “Collective and Spatial Learning through Mobile Sensory Photography and Creative Cartography.” Dr. Akbari says his research “is anchored in the question of how technology can be used in classrooms to enrich teaching, learning, human interactions and environmental awareness.” He has a strong belief in the positive potential of technologies: “I believe strongly that the creative and thoughtful integration of digital, online, and mobile technologies can positively impact learning provided that educators understand that these tools serve people and not the other way around.” Dr. Akbari has developed creative and arts-based approaches that integrate technology, including collective online sensory mapping, smartphone photography, and soundscape composition. “My research has convinced me of the immense value of creative uses of technology for connecting learners to their surroundings, and sharing one’s unique perspectives and identities amongst peers. I embolden educators to think about ways of using tools to enrich human connections to places and to others,” says Dr. Akbari. To listen to and view some of Dr. Akbari’s art visit his website:


Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation – Funding Award

Dr. Nathalie Reid

Congratulations to Dr. Nathalie Reid, Director of the Child Trauma Research Centre at the University of Regina, on receiving a Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF) Research Connection Grant of $7,500 to study “Neuroscience, Play, Art, and Narrative (PAN) Woven Resilience-Enhancement Toolkits for Children.”

In 2020, Dr. Reid was also a recipient of a SHRF Research Connections Grant of $10,000 for the project “Creating a Digital Connections Hub to Support Children in Care in Saskatchewan During COVID-19 and Beyond.”

Education admin team welcome students to campus and to the fall 2021 term

Students, in this video, our Administrative Team (Dean, Associate Deans, and Faculty Administrator) welcomes you (back) to campus and (back) to the Fall 2021 term, which begins Monday, August 30. We are committed to ensuring your safety on campus. The student services office (Ed355) is open and ready to receive students. We look forward to seeing you, whether in person or online