Author Biographies

Whitney Blaisdell is a former public-school teacher and award-winning PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina. She has a research interest in play. Her arts-based doctoral research involves working with children to co-imagine and create reconceptualized, ecocritical child-friendliness in urban centres. Her master’s thesis, (Re)Claiming Play: An Individual and Community Movement Towards Playfulness, informed the co-creation of the community-based organization Project Play YQR.

Jessica Madiratta is a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina. Her research explores teacher professional development in culturally responsive teaching. Jessica completed her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction at the University of Regina. She has also completed a B.A. with a major in Indigenous Studies at First Nations University of Canada and a B.Ed. at SUNTEP (Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program). Jessica works as an Indigenous Advocate teacher and has 14 years of teaching experience.

Avery Matthews is an M.Ed. candidate in the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina. His current research explores professors’ perceptions of generative artificial intelligence in higher academic institutions and the implications for policymakers and assessment methods. Avery Matthews completed his Bachelor of Arts (Honors) in Psychology at the University of Guelph where he undertook a major research project examining the testing effect and distribution-based bifurcation model. His experience in knowledge mobilization across various disciplines provides him with a distinctive viewpoint on inclusive education research.

Dr. Chioma A. I. Olumide-Ajibola is a graduate student in the Teaching, Learning and Leadership Master’s program at the Faculty of Education, University of Regina. She holds multiple degrees in Law (a Bachelor’s, a Master’s, and a PhD) and is called to the Nigerian bar. Her graduate and postgraduate research projects were in International Law, African women and their rights to literacy and education. Chioma has taught as a university lecturer in Nigeria, and describes being drawn to supporting the education of women specifically and the rights of women in general. Her current research at the University of Regina draws on postcolonial and critical frameworks to explore the experiences of African women in Saskatchewan.

Ashlee Sandiford, a Master’s student at the University of Regina, is passionately engaged in examining pedagogy through an anti-racist and anti-oppressive perspective. With extensive teaching experience spanning high school and middle years, Ashlee is committed to challenging social constructs within education. Outside of her academic pursuits, Ashlee embraces an active lifestyle and contributes as an assistant coach for the University of Regina Cougars women's volleyball team.

Hui (Shelley) Xu is a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina. Her research explores the intricate dynamics of social interaction and integration of international students in Canada, with a goal of cultivating inclusive learning environments. Hui possesses a rich academic background, having completed a Master’s Degree in Applied Linguistics at Northwest University in China and an MEd at Queen’s University in Canada. This foundation, together with many years of experience teaching English language learners, gives her a unique research perspective.