Cheryl Poth

Professor, Faculty of Education

Pronouns: She, her, hers


Professor, Faculty of Education
(780) 492-1144
6-110B Education Centre - North
8730 - 112 St NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 2G5


Area of Study / Keywords

Education Educational Psychology Mixed Methods Research Qualitative Research Program Evaluation


Cheryl has earned the following academic degrees: BSc (Queen’s University), BEd (Queen’s University), MA (University of Alabama), and PhD (Queen’s University). She joined the University of Alberta in 2008 as a faculty member in the research-intensive Centre for Applied Research in Assessment and Measurement in Education (CRAME) in the Measurement, Evaluation, and Data Science (MEDS) program area in the Faculty of Education. Cheryl conducts research, teaches, and supervises graduate students in the areas of mixed methods research, program evaluation, qualitative research, classroom assessment, and health sciences education.

Cheryl’s career as an educator and evaluator spans more than two decades working with partner communities across diverse contexts both internationally and across Canada. Cheryl taught high school science internationally at the American International School in Quito, Ecuador and with West Island College International aboard the tallship S/V Concordia. She served as director of the Concordia-based International program before returning to teach science and French in the Halton District School Board (Ontario) and is current member in good standing of the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT). She has worked as a program evaluator in a wide array of sectors across Canada and with international development agencies in South America and Africa and holds the Credentialed Evaluator (CE) designation from the Canadian Evaluation Society.

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Much research and evaluation take place under conditions of complexity; yet, too often researchers and evaluators attempt to reduce, control, or simply ignore the effects of complexity rather than revisiting underlying assumptions and adapting their practices. During the past decade at the University of Alberta, Cheryl's collaborations with professional associations, community organizations, students, clinicians, teachers, and academics have examined a range of issues concerned with enhancing capacity for impactful research and evaluation across diverse contexts under conditions of varying complexity. Complex conditions require adaptive responses to changing circumstances. Working under these conditions is challenging because of the lack of predictable outcomes and established pathways for generating solutions. Her work integrates across the disciplines of education, psychology, and health sciences related to four areas of interests: qualitative research, mixed methods research, educational assessment, and program evaluation

Across her projects, she collaborates with graduate students, clinicians, teachers, and academics, implements qualitative, quantitative, and mixed methods research designs, and disseminates research to participants, scholars, and practitioners using a variety of methods (e.g., papers, presentations, and websites). Importantly, her project findings contribute to developments in the fields of mixed method research, program evaluation, qualitative research, and assessment. She currently serves as associate editor of the Journal of Mixed Methods Research (JMMR) and as Past President of the Mixed Methods International Research Association (MMIRA). Students are an integral part of her program of research. Their contributions are recognized in the many publications and presentations that include them in lead and co-author roles.


Cheryl is active in the scholarship of teaching and her approach is continually being shaped by her experiences as a learner and instructor, as well as by her beliefs and research related to what facilitates learning. She views teaching and learning as complex and synergistic processes among the learner, the instructor, the context, and the ideas. She supports learners as they progressively develop competence across diverse areas of professional practice including (but not limited to) teachers, counselors, psychologists, physicians, researchers, and evaluators. Her commitment and efforts were recognized with the University of Alberta Provost’s Award for Early Achievement of Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in 2013 and the McCalla Teaching Professorship 2020-22.

EDPY 604: Mixed Methods Approaches to Educational Research

EDPY 615: Program Evaluation

EDPY 501: Introduction to Methods of Educational Research

EDPY 303: Educational Assessment


If you are interested in pursuing graduate studies, research collaborations and evaluation services please contact me to explore possibilities


EDPY 501 - Introduction to Methods of Educational Research

Priority given to graduate students in the Department of Educational Psychology.

EDPY 604 - Mixed Methods Approaches to Educational Research

Introduction to mixed methods research as a means of conducting educational research. Within each of the major mixed methods designs, the research problems addressed, data collection and analysis strategies, and reporting venues are discussed. Prerequisites: EDPY 501 or equivalent. Additional methods courses in quantitative and qualitative research are recommended.

EDPY 615 - Program Evaluation

This course will introduce students to the theoretical ideas and practical applications of program evaluation. Prerequisites: EDPY 501 or equivalent.

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