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Lu-Anne McFarlane, MSc, BSc

Associate Professor, Associate Chair

Rehabilitation Medicine

Communication Sciences and Disorders

About Me

Teaching Scholarship and Teaching Leadership

Committee Member – Teaching Focus: Renaissance Committee, University of Alberta (2014)

  • Provided perspectives and expertise as a teaching intensive faculty member
  • Generated recommendations to support teaching scholarship, development, recognition, and evaluation

Chair: Teaching and Learning Committee, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (current)

  • Supported development of practical exams in three terms of the program
  • Supporting sessional instructors
  • Developing student review and support structures

Chair: Curriculum Review/Revision, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (current)

  • Leading extensive review of current curriculum and guiding revision to increase integration across courses
  • Ensuring a data-based, collaborative, scholarly approach to curriculum modifications
  • Refining and implementing a competency-based approach to graduate education
  • Integrating “graduate attributes” into curricular development
  • Piloted “integration weeks” and block schedules to assess effectiveness of alternate curricular strategies
  • Obtaining and analyzing formal feedback throughout revision process
  • Exploring assessment methods to assess student growth across courses and across the curriculum in addition to within courses.  

Steering Committee – Teaching Interest Group (TIG), Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine (current)

  • Collaborating with colleagues within Rehabilitation Medicine and other Health Science Faculties to provide monthly information/discussion sessions focused on teaching and learning
  • Supporting development and implementation of a Peer Observation of Teaching program within TIG

Principal Investigator – TLEF Teaching Scholarship Project (current)

  • Coordinating an interprofessional teaching scholarship initiative
  • Examining work readiness in health science graduates
  • Developing evidence-based teaching modules to address work readiness gaps

Honors and Awards

  • University of Alberta Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching, 2016
  • Rehabilitation Medicine Student’s Association Excellence in Teaching Award, 2014
  • Graduate Student’s Association: Academic Staff Award, 2012
  • Alberta Rehabilitation Coordinating Council – Jim Vargo Leadership and Mentoring Award, 2003
  • Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine – Teaching Excellence Award, 2001
  • Canadian Association of Speech-Language Pathologists & Audiologists – Association Honors Award, 1997
  • Speech, Language and Hearing Association of Alberta - Association Honors Award, 1995
  • University of Alberta Graduate Student Teaching Award, 1992
  • Canadian Association of Speech Language Pathologists and Audiologists Student Excellence Award, 1992

Administrative Roles

  • Chair, Curriculum Committee
  • Chair, Teaching and Learning Strategies and Supports Committee

Areas of Interest
  • Interprofessional education
  • Clinical supervisory process
  • Phonological disorders


Professor McFarlane's research interests include phonological disorders, phonemic awareness and clinical education.  She is currently working with colleagues on two research projects funded by the Teaching and Learning Enhancement Fund, "Work Readiness in Health Science Students" and "Building Capacity for Best Practices in Assessment".  


My work as an academic is in the context of a graduate professional health science program. I work with gifted, motivated and focused graduate students, all of whom have a solid track record of academic excellence. My teaching is supported and inspired by interaction with exceptional colleagues within and outside of Health Sciences. I have the unique and enviable opportunity to teach students in the classroom and to follow that learning directly and immediately into the clinic. I also mentor students as they complete their Capstone Research Project and provide continuing professional education to clinicians across Canada. This context and “full circle” of teaching opportunities has refined my philosophy of education and shaped my role as a teacher.  

Teaching Philosophy

Education is a rich collaborative and scholarly activity in which all those involved create and disseminate meaning. Education supports development of  core skills or competencies that allow students to solve problems and confidently interact in situations of doubt or confusion. Education is a process of not only obtaining information, but more importantly, reflecting on that information and evaluating it in light of previous experiences, individual beliefs and styles of interaction. As an instructor, it requires me to think beyond the disciplinary content of the course(s) I teach, and support development of graduate attributes across our program of study, preparing students to succeed in their discipline but also contribute as citizens.