Cheryl’s research focuses on enhancing the learning environments within three contexts: organizations, classrooms, and clinical settings. Her projects examine a range of issues concerned with developing and implementing innovative programs within dynamic situations. These issues include how to facilitate organizational (e.g., government ministries, school boards) evidence-based program development, how to provide learners (e.g., pre-service teachers, medical students) with timely access to feedback, and how to engage instructors (e.g., teachers, clinical educators) in innovative instructional developments. Across my projects, I collaborate with graduate students, clinicians, teachers, and academics, implement qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods research designs, and have disseminate research to participants, scholars, and practitioners using a variety of methods (e.g., papers, presentations, and websites). Importantly, my project findings contribute to developments in the fields of mixed method research, program evaluation, qualitative research, and assessment.
Mixed Methods Research
The use of mixed methods as a research vehicle is not new; quantitative and qualitative data have been collected for many decades. The field of mixed methods continues to gain attention and acceptance among researchers has providing access to insights that are inaccessible by either qualitative or quantitative research alone. Cheryl brings to the field of mixed methods expertise in a variety of qualitative and quantitative research methods as well as experience as the mixed methods practitioner for research teams. Currents interests involve advancing integrative mixed methods research practices that are complexity-responsive and maintain methodological coherence among the research elements within dynamic research contexts.
Cheryl is an associate editor for the Journal of Mixed Methods Research (JMMR – IF=1.927 - 2015) and President-elect for the Mixed Methods International Research Association (MMIRA). MMIRA provides individuals from across the world a venue for connecting, interacting, and discussing mixed methods related research and practice issues (see. http://MMIRA.org for more information). She is a member of the topical interest group Mixed Methods Evaluation of the American Evaluation Association and special interest group Mixed Methods Research of the American Educational Research Association and is regular contributor to annual meetings of Mixed Methods Researchers and to the Department of Educational Psychology graduate student Mixed Methods reading group. Cheryl recently guest co-edited two special issues on Mixed Methods Research with Dr. Anthony Onwuegbuzie in the International Journal of Qualitative Methods. Cheryl is currently working on a book under contract with Sage Publications (UK) Mixed methods research: A practical guide.Representative Publications & Presentations
Onwuegbuzie, A., & Poth, C. (2016). Editors' afterword: Toward evidence-based guidelines for reviewing mixed methods research manuscripts submitted to journals. International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 15(1), 1-13. doi:10.1177/1609406916628986
Poth, C., & Onwuegbuzie, A. (2015). Editorial: How Mixed Methods Informs and Enhances Qualitative Research, Special issue on Mixed Methods Research, 14(2), International Journal of Qualitative Methods, 1-4.
Poth, C. (2014). What constitutes effective learning experiences in a mixed methods research course? An examination from the student perspective. International Journal of Multiple Research Approaches, 8 (1), 74-86. doi:10.5172/mra.2014.8.1.74
Poth, C., McCallum, K., & Atkinson, E. (2014, June). Towards Enhanced Online Teacher Professionalism: A mixed methods examination of pre-service teachers’ perspectives, Mixed Methods International Research Association, Boston, MA
Poth, C. (2012). Exploring the role of mixed methods practitioner within educational research teams: A cross case comparison of the research planning process, Special issue of “Mixed Methods Research in Education” International Journal of Multiple Research Approaches, 6, 315-332.
Turner, S. R., White, J., & Poth, C. (2012). Learning the CanMEDS roles in a near-peer shadowing program: A mixed methods randomized control trial, Medical Teacher. 34, 888-892. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2012.716179.
Poth, C. (2011, June). Rethinking how we teach graduate-level methods courses: A progressive framework for mixed methods education. Paper presented at the 7th annual Mixed Methods conference, Leeds, UK.
Poth, C. (2011, February). The unique contribution of the mixed methods researcher. Invited guest lecture. University of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE
Poth, C. (2010). Examining the Contributions of a Mixed Methods Exploratory Sequential Design: A Qualitative Perspective (pp. 525-539). In M. Pourkos & M. Dafermos (Eds.), Qualitative Research into Social Sciences: Epistemological, Methodological and Ethical Issues. Athens: Topos.
Poth, C., Pei, J., Rasmussen, C., & Henneveld, D. (2010, July). Validity in embedded mixed methods designs: Implications for practice. Paper presented at the 6th Mixed Methods International Conference, Baltimore, MN.Program Evaluation:
Developmental evaluation represents a radical shift from traditional evaluation approaches in that conducting evaluative inquiry is not predicated on pre-establishing evaluation goals, time constraints, or a detached role for the evaluator (Patton, 2010). The developmental evaluator is charged with stimulating discussions and using evaluative logic that in turn facilitates data-informed decisions supportive of ongoing organizational and program development. Cheryl’s specific research interest is in the how developmental evaluation can promote evaluation use within dynamic contexts. Organizational theories informed by complexity science provide an innovative framework in which to anchor this research. A recent Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Standard Research Grant has supported work in building an Evaluation capacity network among Early Childhood Stakeholders. Examples of recently completed and ongoing funding for evaluations include: Alberta Mentoring Partnership, Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research, Alberta Education, and Alberta Rural Development Network.
Cheryl is an editorial board member of the Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation (CJPE) and served as the Alberta/NWT chapter representative to the National Council 2011-2013. She is a credentialed evaluator by the Canadian Evaluation Society and member of the Canadian and American professional evaluation organizations and regularly contributes to the annual meetings and publications of the CES and the American Evaluation Association (AEA). Her graduate students have interned at Alberta Innovates, Evaluation and Research Services, and Community and University Partnerships.Representative Publications & Presentations
Poth, C., Pei, J., Atkinson, E., & Hanson, T. (in press). Evaluating system change initiatives: Advancing the need for adapting evaluation practices. Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation, 31
Poth, C., Lamarche, M. K., Yapp, A., Sulla, E., & Chisamore, C. (2014). Towards a definition of evaluation within the Canadian context: Who knew this would be so difficult? Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation, 29,
1-18, doi.10.3138/cjpe.BR Poth 1
Radil, A.I., Williams, J., Cormier, D.C., Pei, J., Poth, C., Seeger, S. & Regher, E. (2014). The Wellness Resiliency and Partnership (WRaP) Project
(pp. 37). Edmonton, Alberta: University of Alberta.
Offrey, L., Leung, W., El Hassar, B., Pei, J., & Poth, C., (2014). Mackenzie network supportive living initiative: Evaluation design.
Edmonton, Alberta: University of Alberta.
Yapp, A., Sulla, E., & Poth, C. (2014, November). Maintaining relevance in a post-secondary educational assessment course through developmental evaluation use
, Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Evaluation Association, Denver, CO.
Atkinson, E. Radil, A., Buhr, E., Tremblay, M., Pei, J., & Poth, C. (2014, October). The Prevention Conversation: Evaluating participant experiences of an FASD prevention initiative
. Paper presented at the Alberta FASD Conference, Edmonton, AB.
Chudnovsky, K., & Poth, C. (2013, June). What constitutes impactful evaluation experiences for building CES competencies within a program evaluation course?
Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Evaluation Society, Toronto, ON.
Poth, C., Brower, K., Yapp, A., & Pei, J. (2013). An Evaluation Framework: In support of ongoing development, improvement, and assessment.
Report for the Alberta Mentoring Partnership, Edmonton, AB.
Poth, C., Howery, K., & Pinto, D. (2012). Addressing the challenges encountered during a developmental evaluation: Implications for evaluation practice, Canadian Journal of Program Evaluation, 26
Poth, C., Pei, J., & ACCERT team (2012). Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) 10-year strategic plan: A summary of the year five evaluation project.
Report for Alberta Centre for Child, Family, and Community Research, Edmonton, AB.
Poth, C. (2011). The untapped potential of developmental evaluation in teacher education programs
. In T. Falkenberg and H. Smits (Eds.) The question of evidence in research in teacher education in the context of teacher education program review in Canada (2 vols.) (pp. 205-214). Winnipeg, MB: Faculty of Education of the University of Manitoba.
Poth, C. (2010, October). Tapping into evaluation’s potential for supporting organizational development and learning. I
nvited keynote address. Annual meeting of the Canadian Evaluation Society, Ontario Chapter, Toronto, ON.
DeLuca, C., Poth, C., & Searle, M. (2009). Evaluation for learning: A cross-case analysis of evaluator strategies. Studies in Educational evaluation, 35,
Poth, C, & Shulha, L (2008). Encouraging stakeholder engagement: A case study of evaluator behaviour. Studies in Educational Evaluation, 34,
Advances in qualitative research involve new procedures for generating and integrating data. Qualitative inquiry continues to demand attention as new approaches emerge and gain credibility. Current interests are focused on enhancing access to practical resources, opportunities for learning about innovative qualitative approaches, and integrating technology into data collection and analysis procedures.
Cheryl is an editorial board member of the International Journal of Qualitative Methods (IJQM, IF=0.769 - 2015) and a member of the advisory board as well as a member scholar of the International Institute for Qualitative Methodology (IIQM). She is a regular contributor to the Thinking Qualitatively workshop series.
Representative Publications & Presentations
Creswell, J., & Poth, C. (forthcoming). Qualitative inquiry & research design (
4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
Poth, C., Pei, J., Job, J., & Wyper, K. (2014). Towards intentional, reflective, and assimilative classroom practices with students with FASD, The Teacher Educator. 49
, 247-264. doi: 10.1080/08878730.2014.933642.
Job, J., Poth, C., Pei, J., Wyper, J., O’Riordan, T., & Taylor, L.. (2014). Combining visual methods with focus groups: An innovative approach for capturing the multifaceted and complex work of FASD prevention specialists. Special issue on International Perspectives on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, International Journal of Alcohol and Drug Research, 3
(1), 71-80. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.7895/ijadr.v3i1.129.
Job, J., Poth, C., Pei, J., Carter-Pasula, B., Brandell, D., & Macnab, J. (2013). Toward better collaboration in the education of students with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: Voices of teachers, administrators, caregivers, and allied professionals. Qualitative Research in Education, 2
(1), 38-64. doi: 10.4471/qre.2013.15
Poth, C., Pei, J., & Job, J.* (2012, May). Towards Collaborative Research Practices: A case study with The Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research
. Paper presented at the 8th International Congress of Qualitative Inquiry, Urbana-Champaign, IL.Classroom Assessment:
Alberta Education (2007) reports the assessment of student learning as one of the most complex responsibilities teachers undertake and requires the application of professional judgments. Many policies seek to embed both assessments for learning (also called formative assessment) along with assessments of learning (also called summative assessment). Together, a more balanced framework can empower students as a partner in their own learning. This shift in practice requires developing knowledge, skills, and attributes for a new classroom assessment approach. Cheryl’s research interests build upon her experiences as a classroom teacher exploring the development of pre-service and beginning teachers’ classroom assessment practices. She is also interested in the relationship between assessment practices that support learning, inform instructional practice, and communicate achievement and student motivation.
Cheryl is a member of Canadian and American professional educational research organizations and regularly contributes to the annual meetings of the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and Canadian Society for Studies in Education (CSSE). Representative Publications & Presentations
Poth, C., McCallum, K., & Tang, W. (in press). Teacher e-professionalism: An examination of western Canadian pre-service teachers’ perceptions, attitudes, and Facebook behaviours. Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 62
Poth, C., Riedel, A., & Luth, R. (2015). Framing student perspectives into the higher education institutional review policy process. Canadian Journal of Higher Education, 45
(4), 361-382. Retrieved from http://ojs.library.ubc.ca.login.ezproxy.library.ualberta.ca/index.php/cjhe/article /view/184831/pdf_47
Pei, J., Job, J., Poth, C., O’Brien-Langer, A., & Tang, W. (2015). Enhancing learning environments for students affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: An exploratory study of Canadian pre-service teacher knowledge and conceptions. Journal of Education and Training Studies, 3(
5), 134-143. doi: 10.11114/jets.v3i5.955
Daniels, L., M., Poth, C., Hutchison, M., & Papile, C. (2014). Validating the conceptions of Assessment-III scale in Canadian pre-service teachers, Educational Assessment Journal, 19
, 139-158. doi.10.1080/10627197.2014.903654
Poth, C. (2013). What assessment knowledge and skills do initial teacher education programs address? A western Canadian perspective, Alberta Journal of Educational Research, 58
Pei, J., Job, J., Poth, C., & Atkinson, E. (2013). Assessment for intervention of children with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders: Perspectives of classroom teachers, administrators, caregivers, and Allied Professionals. Psychology, 4
(3A), 325-334. doi: 10.4236/psych.2013.43A047
Miller, T., Wagner, A., Poth, C., & Daniels, L. (2013, June). Do students choose formative opportunities? A cross-case comparison of two instructional approaches.
Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for Studies in Education, Victoria, BC.
Poth, C. (2013, January). Why are pre-service teachers not prepared for their assessment responsibilities?
Keynote presented at the Education Society in Edmonton, Edmonton, AB.
Poth, C. (2012, August). Enhancing the learning environment in large class, multi-sectional courses: Key features of a team instructional approach
. Workshop presented at the Centre for Teaching and Learning’s Teaching Big Symposium: The Joy of Large Classes, Edmonton, AB.
Luhanga, U., Leighton, L., & Poth, C. (2012, June). Beyond conceptual boundaries: Using student feedback to enhance teaching and learning in higher education.
Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, Montreal, QC.
Reidel, A., Poth, C., & Luhanga, U. (2012, May). A mixed methods design exploring underlying reasons for student assessment preferences.
Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for Studies in Education, Waterloo, ON.
Poth, C., Riedel, A., & Luth, B. (March, 2011). Undergraduate experiences and attitudes related to assessment: The Canadian context.
Paper presented at the Global Learn Asia Pacific annual meeting on Learning and Technology, Melbourne, Australia.
Lejeune, A., Poth, C., Daniels, L. (2010, May). Examining pre-service teachers’ knowledge, skills, attributes, experiences, and goals related to formative and summative classroom assessmen
t. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for the Study of Education / Canadian Educational Research Association, Montreal, QC.
Klinger, D. A., Rogers, W. T., Anderson, J. O., Poth, C., & Calman, R. (2006). Contextual and school factors associated with achievement on a high-stakes examination. Canadian Journal of Educational Research, 29
, 771-797.Health Sciences Education:
Innovative approaches for health science education are constantly emerging. Among the most recent are competency based medical education and inter-professional educational learning opportunities. Specifically, health education has undergone a shift towards competency-based models of education due to calls for greater accountability in the professions. Competency-based medical education approaches physician training by focusing on outcomes, emphasizing abilities, de-emphasizing time-based training, and promoting greater learner-centeredness (Frank, Mungroo, Ahmad, Wang, DeRossi, & Horsley, 2010). Recent research highlights the need for feedback and clinical opportunities related to progress towards achievement of competency as critical for supporting learning (Teztlaff, Dannefer, & Fishleder, 2009).
Dr. Poth is involved in health sciences education innovations as a methodologist and evaluator. Previously she was the principal evaluator for a 3-year inter-professional education initiative at Queen’s University funded by Health Canada. She collaborates with the Department of Family Medicine on the development and implementation of their Competency-Based Achievement System (CBAS). CBAS is an innovative framework that emphasizes assessment for learning in the development of competences for Family Medicine residents. Dr. Poth has also served as a research methodologist with the Health Sciences Council at the University of Alberta in the development of instruments to measure medical communication skills.Representative Publications & Presentations
Hall, M., Poth, C., Manns, P., & Beaupre, L. (2016). An exploration of physiotherapists’ decisions whether to supervise physiotherapy students: Results from a national survey. Physiotherapy Canada, 68
(2), 141-148. doi: 10.3138/ptc.2014-88E
Hall, M., Manns, P., Poth, C., & Beaupre, L. (2016). Examining the need for a new instrument to evaluate Canadian physiotherapy students during clinical education experiences. Physiotherapy Canada, 68
(2), 151-155. doi: 10.3138/ptc.2014-89E
Ross, S., Humphries, P., Poth, C., & Donoff, M. (2013, June). Competency-based education: One program’s experience.
Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Canadian Society for Studies in Education, Victoria, BC.
Turner, S. R., White, J., & Poth, C., (2012). 12 Tips for Developing a Near-Peer Shadowing Program, Medical Teacher, 34
, 792-795. doi. 10.3109/0142159X.2012.684914.
Turner, S. R., White, J., Poth, C., & Rogers. W. T. (2012). Preparing students for clerkship: A resident shadowing program, Academic Medicine, 87,
Ross, S., Poth, C., Donoff, M., Papile, C., Humphries, P., Stasiuk, S., & Georgis, R. (2012). Involving users in the refinement of the competency-based achievement system: An innovative approach to competency-based assessment, Medical Teacher, 34,
e143-e147. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2012.644828.
Ross S., Poth C., Donoff, M., Humphries P., Steiner I., Schipper S., Janke F., & Nichols D. (2011). Program description: The competency-based achievement system (CBAS): Using formative feedback to teach and assess competencies with family medicine residents. Canadian Family Physician, 57
, e323-e330. doi: 10.3109/0142159X.2012.644828.
Broers, T., Poth, C., & Medves, J. (2009). What’s in a word: Understanding “interprofessional collaboration” from the student’s perspective. Journal of Research in Interprofessional Education, 1,