Laura Killam is an innovative nurse educator who is committed to “empowering students to learn their own way.” She uses creativity and technology to engage diverse learners in active and authentic learning opportunities. Laura strives to be an educator who students feel connected to and comfortable with – inclusive, flexible, available, approachable, supportive, empathetic, honest, trustworthy, and fair.
She is currently focusing her PhD studies at Queen’s University on the use of Virtual Online Simulation in nursing education and advocating for educators to adopt practices consistent with Critical Caring Pedagogy and Universal Design for Learning. She is working with Dr. Marian Luctkar-Flude and the Canadian Alliance of Nurse Educators using Simulation (CAN-Sim) research interest group to improve her use of simulation and engagement in impactful research.
As a nurse, Laura specializes in student-centred education. She has experience in acute, community and long-term care. Her research has focused on student perceptions of their learning, with the underlying aim of improving their experiences. A commitment to innovation and student success drives her teaching approaches. As Cambrian’s Innovation Champion Laura focused on evaluating simulation, gamification and radical assessment approaches. She has used that work to inform the direction of her PhD studies and developing a program of research in approaches to improve caring and learner engagement in education.
Empowering Students to Learn Their Own Way
Students have appreciated Laura’s use of live sessions, choices for how they engage in and represent their learning, as well as supportive reminders that learning happens when students go outside of their comfort zone (but not too far). Laura has created opportunities and assisted students to experiment with creative uses of: PowerPoint, game creation, H5P technology, media (including memes), video creation, and more in both online and in-person classrooms. Students particularly value the way Laura personalizes and humanizes learning through regular video feedback on assignments and instruction. Laura is committed to the ongoing improvement of her teaching practice and service. She has been instrumental in helping distance students collaborate and achieve recognition within student government and program decision-making.
Passionate about accessible on-demand learning, YouTube was a natural fit. Laura started the NurseKillam YouTube channel in 2010 as a way to provide people worldwide with free access to clear answers to their questions at any time of day or night. This resource has since helped countless students understand complex topics in a variety of disciplines. With over 5 million views, she receives and thanks from students across the world, mostly at a Masters or PhD level. Her expertise in videography in a variety of teaching contexts continues to evolve. She provides an example and inspiration to nurse educator colleagues for her use of technology in teaching and learning. You can find her tweeting from @NurseKillam about improving inclusive education.
Laura also enjoys sharing open reflection on her blog. Blogging has become an important part of how Laura engages in the scholarship of teaching and learning. Sharing insights into her daily practice and thoughts about professional development opportunities publicly has deepened her learning. It has also provided opportunities for in-person dicourse about posts with colleagues who have read the reflections.
In her free time, Laura loves to spend time creating videos, camping and working on do-it-yourself projects with her husband and four children. Being outside helps her feel refreshed.
|2020 – present||PhD in Nursing program at Queen’s University (in progress)
|2007 – 2010||Master of Science in Nursing, Laurentian University |
Killam, L. A. (2010). Exploring the Nature of Clinical Safety in Undergraduate Nursing Education: A Q methodology study (Master’s thesis). Sudbury, Ontario: Laurentian University.
|2003 – 2007||Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Cum laude, Laurentian University|
|2021||Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching, Nipissing University (click here for more information)|
|2020||The Thomas J. Zakos Graduate Award in Nursing|
|2019||Technology Enabled Seminar and Showcase Inspiration Award (for the moderation of the panel presentation “Creating a culture of empowered online learners” click here for more information)|
|2019||Award of Excellence – Instructional Design (click here for more information)|
|2018 – 2020||Innovation Champion|
|2017 – 2019||OE Fellowship with eCampusOntario |
(click here for more information)
|2013||Nursing Faculty of the Year|
|2007||Research Award for the Graduating BScN Class|
|2004 – 2007||Millennium Bursary|
|2003 – 2006||Laurentian University In-course (Need/Merit) Scholarship|
|2006||Laurentian Karate Club Bursary|
|2005||Ken Dryden/Sudbury District Law Association Bursary|
|2017 – Present||Part Time Faculty, Nipissing University|
|2015 – 2018||Registered Nurse, Plan A|
|2009 – 2011||Support and Housing Project/Research Assistant, Laurentian University|
|2008 – Present||Professor, Cambrian College|
|2008 – 2012||Year I Clinical Instructor, Cambrian College|
|2008||Registered Nurse, Bayshore|
|2007 – 2008||Registered Nurse, Extendicare York|
|2007||Graduate Teaching Assistant, Laurentian University|
|2007||Registered Nurse, Cardiology unit, Sudbury Regional Hospital|
|2006 – 2008||Hydration Project/Research Assistant, Laurentian University|
|2006||Research Assistant, Elsevier (Laurentian University)|
|2005 – 2007||Tutor, Laurentian University|