Jude Spiers, PhD, RN

Associate Professor, Faculty of Nursing


Associate Professor, Faculty of Nursing
(780) 492-9821
4-283 Edmonton Clinic Health Academy
11405 - 87 Ave NW
Edmonton AB
T6G 1C9


Area of Study / Keywords

Chronic illness patient-healthcare professional interaction and communication qualitative research video ethnography interaction analysis


I am a New Zealand born nurse (Diploma of Nursing (Comprehensive) Hawke's Bay Community College, Napier, New Zealand (1986).

After earning my post-RN Bachelor of Social Science degree at Massey University (1990), I left NZ to complete my MN at the University of Alberta (1994). From there, I spent five years at the University of University of California, San Francisco completing my doctoral degree (2000).

A three-year CIHR & Killam (Honorary) postdoctoral fellowship at the International Institute for Qualitative Methodology, University of Alberta (2000-2003) finished my research training. I joined the Faculty of Nursing in 2003.


My research program explores the nature of chronic and invisible illness and how this is constructed and understood in health professional-client interactions. I am interested in exploring communication processes to acknowledge, negotiate and resolve dys-synchrony between clients and health professionals' understanding of what it is like to live daily with chronic illness. My research approaches are primarily qualitative, with a strong interest in the use of visual media, such as video, in understanding life with chronic illness.

I am also interested in how the quality of the clinical work environment impacts how nurses go about offering nursing services and “being with” their clients. Recently, this work has focused on potentially avoidable transfers of frail nursing home residents to the emergency department via 911 call. I have completed projects developing documentation tools and educational modules for LPNs to reduce unnecessary transfers. Presently, I am working with the TREC team to explore the impact of COVID-19 on long term care workers.

I am also interested in nursing education. I have explored the empirical support for the use of Context/Problem Based Learning in undergraduate nursing education and how doctoral students develop as scholars in the context of a remote delivery program.

I am proud to be a Distinguished Scholar for the International Institute of Qualitative Methodology. I am dedicated to helping develop qualitative inquiry capacity and love offering methods workshops. My approach to working with students is very relational with the aim of gradually increasing independence over time as the student gains knowledge and skills. My preference is to work within qualitative research, but I am interested in all kinds of research in my areas of chronic illness, interaction, education, and workplace satisfaction.


I have taught extensively in the undergraduate, graduate and Honors programs. I have taught nursing theory, philosophy, research methods and honors seminar courses. Supervising student research is one of my favourite responsibilities. Students working with me can expect to have fun, challenge and transform their ideas and practices.


NURS 425 - Nursing Leadership in a Focus Area

This leadership experience provides opportunity to consolidate prior learning and develop confidence and competence as students prepare to transition to the role of the Registered Nurse. The focus is on collaboration with interprofessional teams, systems thinking, and healthcare system change. Students evaluate the influence of evidence, policy and legislation on decision-making in complex health systems using a relational practice lens. Students demonstrate and enhance their own relational capacity as leaders and innovators for 21st Century Canadian healthcare. Fieldwork includes 300 clinical hours total. Prerequisites: All courses in the program except NURS 422 and NURS 485. Corequisite: NURS 422.

Fall Term 2021
NURS 687 - Advanced Principles and Practice of Qualitative Inquiry

This course provides an advanced examination of the theoretical reasoning, methods and research strategies of specific approaches within contemporary qualitative inquiry. Students explore the key ontological and epistemological foundations that underlie different theoretical orientations and how different interpretations lead to differences in methods and research strategies. This course cannot be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained in NURS 660 - Adv Princ/Prac of Qual Inquiry

Winter Term 2022

Browse more courses taught by Jude Spiers


Becoming scholars in an online cohort of a PhD in nursing program
Author(s): Paul, P., Olson, J., Spiers, J., Hyde, A
Publication Date: 4/23/2021
Volume: 18
Issue: 1
Page Numbers: 1 - 9
External Link: https://doi.org/10.1515/ijnes-2021-0024
To ring or not to ring: An interpretive description of cancer patients and caregivers existing treatment.
Author(s): Bridarolli, A., Spiers, J., & Pituskin, E.
Publication Date: 9/20/2020
Publication: Canadian Oncology Nursing Journal
Volume: 30
Issue: 1
Page Numbers: 38 - 42
External Link: http://www.canadianoncologynursingjournal.com/index.php/conj/article/viewFile/1035/905
Palliative home care patients’ emergency department visits near end of life: Decision making and outcomes.
Author(s): Pooler, C., Mekechuk, J., Dochartaigh, D.O., Desrochers, C., Spiers, J.
Publication Date: 5/25/2020
Publication: Canadian Journal of Emergency Nursing
Volume: 43
Issue: 2
External Link: https://cjen.ca/index.php/cjen/article/view/57
Exploring the needs of parents with a child with chronic pain: A qualitative secondary analysis.
Author(s): Lefebvre, D., Le, A., Spiers, J., Scott, S.D.
Publication Date: 5/10/2020
Publication: International Journal of Nursing Student Scholarship
Volume: 7
Page Numbers: Art. #44
External Link: https://journalhosting.ucalgary.ca/index.php/ijnss/article/view/70324
Long term healthcare aides’ perceptions of decision-making processes in transferring residents to acute care services
Author(s): Tate, K., Spiers, J.A, El-Bialy, R., Cummings, G.G.
Publication Date: 3/29/2020
Publication: Journal of Applied Gerontology,
Volume: 39
Issue: 854
Page Numbers: 846 - 854
External Link: https://doi.org/10.1177/0733464818779936
Expressing and Negotiating Face in Community Pharmacist-Patient Interactions
Author(s): Murad, M.S., Spiers, J.A., & Guirguis, L.M.
Publication Date: 10/27/2016
Publication: Research in Social & Administrative Pharmacy
Volume: 13
Issue: 6
Page Numbers: 1110 – 1126
External Link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sapharm.2016.10.003
Nurse Leaders’ Perceptions of Influence of Organizational Restructuring on Evidence-Informed Decision-Making.
Author(s): Spiers, J. A., Lo, E., Hofmeyer, A., & Cummings, G. G.
Publication Date: 5/13/2016
Publication: Canadian Journal of Nursing Leadership
Volume: 29
Issue: 2
Page Numbers: 64-81
External Link: https://www.longwoods.com/content/24805/nursing-leadership/nurse-leaders-perceptions-of-influence-of-organizational-restructuring-on-evidence-informed-deci
Decision to Transfer Nursing Home Residents to Emergency Departments: A Scoping Review of Contributing Factors and Staff Perspectives
Author(s): Trahan L, Spiers J, Cummings GG. . 17(11),
Publication Date: 5/6/2016
Publication: Journal of the American Medical Directors Association.
Volume: 17
Issue: 11
Page Numbers: 994-1005
External Link: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jamda.2016.05.012
Opportunities and constraints in disseminating qualitative research in Web 2.0 virtual environments
Author(s): Hays, C., Spiers, J.A, Paterson, B.
Publication Date: 12/12/2015
Publication: Qualitative Health Research
Volume: 25
Issue: 11
Page Numbers: 1576 – 1588.
External Link: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/1049732315580556?casa_token=r04o2n64L7sAAAAA:0LQL8LGGrRekWGb8ZXwsk1I7O_-0KfQODNPFXhAwWH-ScnxsV9squEvv3PildivE4WyMvngVbcTGFQ
Characteristics of patients and families who make early return visits to the pediatric emergency department
Author(s): Logue EP, Ali S, Spiers JA, Newton AS, Lander JA
Publication Date: 2013
Publication: Open Access Emergency Medicine
Volume: 5
Page Numbers: 9-15

Strategies for engaging undergraduate nursing students in reading and using qualitative research
Author(s): Spiers JA, Paul P, Jennings D, Weaver K
Publication Date: 2012
Publication: The Qualitative Report
Volume: 17
Issue: Article 48
Page Numbers: 1-22
External Link: http://www.nova.edu/ssss/QR/QR17/spiers.pdf
The influence of and undergraduate problem/context based learning program on evolving professional nursing graduate practice
Author(s): Williams B, Spiers JA, Fisk A, Richard E, Gibson B, Kabotoff W, McIlwraith D, Sculley A
Publication Date: 2012
Publication: Nurse Education Today
Volume: 32
Page Numbers: 417-421

“But We Can’t Go Back”: The Effect of Raising Expectations Through Organizational Leadership Development and Consequences of Failure to Follow Through
Author(s): Spiers JA, Cummings GG, Langenhoff P, Sharlow J, Bhatti A
Publication Date: 2010
Publication: Journal of Leadership Studies
Volume: 4
Page Numbers: 6-19

Do Learning Approaches Effect Practice-Readiness?
Author(s): Spiers JA, Williams B, Gibson B, Kabotoff W, McIlwraith D, Sculley A, Richard E, Fisk A
Publication Date: 2010
Publication: Alberta RN
Volume: 66
Issue: 2
Page Numbers: 20-22