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At its core, nursing research strives for improved models of care delivery and improved outcomes for patients. In the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Calgary, our vibrant research community is made up of scholars who are achieving this in a number of key areas. Through their work, faculty members are demonstrating the multiple ways that research makes a difference.

Research is integrated throughout our educational programs. We encourage both our undergraduate and graduate students to experience research through collaboration with faculty members and active engagement in our defined research foci. There are many funding opportunities for graduate students at the faculty level as well as campus-wide initiatives. As well, undergraduate students have the opportunity to explore research through collaborative studentships. All offer the chance to help shape the nursing profession as well as the health care system.

About Karen Benzies, Associate Dean (Research)

Professor Karen Benzies RN PhD specializes in early childhood development and leads a program of research in early parent-child relationships with a focus on children at social and biological risk for developmental delays.

Her most satisfying accomplishments come from creating linkages among researchers, clinicians and policymakers to design and evaluate interventions to improve resiliency in young children and their families.  In addition to multiple projects conducted by her graduate students and post-doctoral fellows, Benzies' projects include:

Welcome to Parenthood – Alberta, funded by the Ministry of Human Services, provides a baby box, neuroscience-based education and mentorship for 1500 vulnerable expectant families and their mentors.

Family Integrated Care (FICARE) in level II NICUs evaluates the effects of involving parents in the care of their premature newborn starting at admission to neonatal intensive care units across Alberta. 

Benzies also works with the Calgary Urban Projects Society (CUPS), Health, Education and Housing Centres on follow up of vulnerable children since 2001. Despite intensive early childhood intervention and family support at CUPS, compared to immigrant boys, Aboriginal children and others, immigrant girls lag behind in language skill at age 10 years. Benzies is also an Adjunct Research Professor, Department of Paediatrics, Cumming School of Medicine, and member of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute.