Sandra Davidson, Ph.D., MSN, BN

Dean & Professor, Faculty of Nursing
University of Calgary

PF 2268, 2500 University Drive, NW
Calgary, Alberta, CANADA T2N 1N4
Phone: 403-220-6332

LinkedIn profile: 
Twitter: @sandra_davidson


  • PhD (Leadership Studies), Gonzaga University (2011)
  • MSN (Nurse Educator Track), Gonzaga University (2001)
  • BN, University of Lethbridge (1996)
  • Diploma in Nursing, Lethbridge Community College (1994)

Sandra is currently the Dean for Faculty of Nursing at the University of Calgary.
Previously she was Assistant Dean and professor for the Undergraduate Programs and Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Nursing, University of Alberta. Prior to  that appointment, she served as Dean of Nursing and then Chief Academic Officer for Carrington College based in Phoenix, Arizona. Dr. Davidson is originally from Lethbridge Alberta, although she lived and worked in the United States from 2005-2013. 

 Dr. Davidson has also served as the Organizational Development and Clinical Education Specialist for Cancer Treatment Centers of America (CTCA) in Goodyear, Arizona. In this position she worked with the Vice-president of Patient Care Services and nursing staff to implement and evaluate an innovative acuity adaptable care delivery model on the inpatient oncology unit. 

 Sandra has an extensive background in the art and science of healthcare innovation. She was one of the developers of the Master of Healthcare Innovation degree program (MHI) at Arizona State University’s College of Nursing & Health Innovation. She taught widely within this curriculum and also served as the program’s director. The MHI is an interdisciplinary degree that prepares students to design, implement and lead transformation in health care. 

 Sandra has 15 years of experience as an evidence-based practice mentor and has facilitated workshops and projects with healthcare practitioners aimed at developing their knowledge, skills and ability to become change agents and EBP champions. 

 She is lead author/editor of the book “Leadership for Evidence-Based Innovation in Nursing and Health Professions” published by Jones & Bartlett (2016). 

 Dr. Davidson’s clinical practice has focused on Chronic Disease and Gerontology and she has worked in roles such as clinical educator, clinical nurse specialist and clinical education coordinator. In a nutshell, her clinical practice has focused on assisting clients to live well and age well. 


 Dr. Davidson’s research interests and projects include:
Teaching & Learning 
 Transitions of New Faculty (Faculty Navigator Role) 
 Game-based Learning 
 Relational Learning (view the YouTube Channel for the Relational Learning Project and the Relational Learning Project Google+ Page) 

 Innovation in Healthcare & Education
 Innovative Care Delivery Models (e.g., Acuity Adaptable Units) 
 Social Processes of Innovation in Organizations 
 Emerging 21st Century Learning Theories 

 Mindfulness Practices in Nursing Education 
 Communities of Practice 
 Appreciative Practices 

Leadership & Organizational Development 
 Leading Healthcare Innovation 
 Complexity in Organizations 
 The Organization as “Conversation” (Complex, Relational Perspective) 
 Power Dynamics in Organizations 

Evidence-based Practice 
 Teaching Evidence-based Practice 
 Evidence-based Innovation 
 Evidence-based Education 
 Practice-based Evidence and the Social Construction of EBP 

Modes of Inquiry 
 Complexity Informed Narrative Inquiry 
 Social Constructionist Approaches (PAR, Appreciative Inquiry) 
 Qualitative Systematic Review 
 Arts-based Inquiry 
 Qualitative Methods (Generally) 

 Dr. Davidson has taught nursing and healthcare related subjects throughout the continuum; from certificate and undergraduate levels to the doctoral level. 

 She is a passionate practitioner of student centered learning. 

She has expertise in the use of:

  • context-based learning
  • “flipped” learning
  • online learning
  • game-based learning (mastery learning)
  • simulation
  • relational learning

She also has experience in program and curriculum development, curriculum mapping, program evaluation and faculty development.

Sandra Davidson, Ph.D. Dissertation