Pandemic Education

Research Team-Lead: Natasha Hubbard Murdoch

COVID-19 caused a rapid transition of higher education programs to online delivery. Healthcare education programs are of particular concern due to gross shortages of health professionals. Online delivery/remote learning revisits the increased academic challenge for students impacted by social determinants of health. This is the ‘digital divide.’ Online learning should prepare students for the future of work, yet online platforms hindered the ability to individualize teaching and to effectively support student emotional and educational needs as they become professionals. This research seeks the faculty experience of transitioning and the impacts to health profession education for the future of education, healthcare, and society.


Hubbard Murdoch, N., Anderson, A., Ali, S.*, Ahlquist, E., & Chambers-Richards, T. (2022). Pandemic transition to online for healthcare profession education: A webscrape seeking perspectives of innovation and digital equity. Journal of Innovation in Polytechnic Education, 4(1). Available from:

🥇 Results of this mixed methods study were recently presented at the University of Saskatchewan RISE 2022 virtual conference where Mr. Sibtain Ali was the winner of the Faculty Development RISE Award for his plenary address.

Ali, S., Hubbard Murdoch, N., Ahlquist, E., Chambers-Richards, T., & Anderson, A. (2022, June). Health Profession Educator’s Experiences amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic and Digital Equity Concerns. Oral presentation at Research Innovation and Scholarship in Education (RISE), virtual event University of Saskatchewan.,-2022.pdf


Meet the team…



Sibtain Ali

University of Saskatchewan

Sibtain Ali is a 4th year undergraduate student, completing his final year at the University of Saskatchewan. Sibtain studies Physiology and Pharmacology and hopes to pursue a career in health care. He primarily has experience in lipid metabolism research, however, hopes to contribute and learn new skills in an interprofessional environment revolving around education. As a student he hopes to provide a unique perspective when researching education and educator experiences. 





Tamara Chambers-Richards  PhD, MPH, BSc, MT

College of New Caledonia

Tamara Chambers-Richards has over twenty years of experience as an educator in both the secondary and postsecondary education systems. A Medical Laboratory Technologist, she holds a PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Saskatchewan, and has been an academic administrator of health science programs for the last 15 years.

Tamara is currently Dean of Health Sciences at the College of New Caledonia in British Columbia, BC. Her research interests include life satisfaction among patients with neurological conditions, factors that contribute to academic success and mentorship in a teaching and learning environment.


Erin Langman MLIS, MA

Saskatchewan Polytechnic

Erin Langman is the Reference and Information Services Librarian and the Nursing Liaison Librarian at Saskatchewan Polytechnic. She holds an MLIS (Dalhousie University) and MA (University of Essex). Her current research interests include librarian involvement and support of knowledge synthesis projects. Erin has lived in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and England before moving to Saskatchewan in 2010, where she now lives with her husband and two sons.



Eli Ahlquist  EdD, MPA, BScN, RN

President and CEO, North West College

Dr. Eli Ahlquist has extensive academic leadership experience in healthcare education. Professionally, he is a Registered Nurse, and was previously an Emergency Medical Technician. He completed a Doctor of Education from Bethel University (St. Paul, Minnesota), Graduate Certificate in Online Teaching from Boise State University (Boise, Idaho), Masters in Public Administration from the University of Regina, and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Saskatchewan/Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST).

His primary area of research interest centers on the utilization of educational technology, specifically virtual reality-based simulation to enhance learning. He has also guided the conversion of multiple programs to online delivery and led the development of various online curriculum enhancements (i.e. mobile applications) to support student success.


Aileen Anderson BScN, CCCI, CCNE, CCSNE, RN

Saskatchewan Polytechnic


Aileen Anderson is a Registered Nurse with over 35 years’ experience in the field of healthcare.  I hold a BScN (University of Saskatchewan) and CCCI, CCNE and CCSNE (CASN).  My research interests include nursing education and simulation.  I have lived most of my life in Saskatoon and live with partner with a blended family that includes a son, daughter and grandson.