Facilitating Transformational Learning Through Student Participation in Research

FIU NSSLHA Officers and McComas
FIU NSSLHA Officers and McComas

On September 27, 2013, Karen McComas was the keynote speaker in the Health Sciences Distinguished Speaker Series in the College of Nursing and Health Sciences at Florida International University.


Transformations from students to ethical practitioners occur when students participate in integrated, educative experiences (Palmer & Zajonc, 2010)[1].  Inviting students to participate in communities of practice, where they work along side faculty mentors and experience being members of a disciplinary community, is one way to provide transformative experiences.  In this presentation, McComas will explore the constructs of participation and communities of practice.  Furthermore, she will share a model of one kind of community – a community of research practice – and what that community has learned over the last five years.


Karen L. McComas, Ed. D., CCC-S/A, is the Assistant Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Marshall University in Huntington, WV.  A founding member of a community of research practice (CoRP), she leads a collaborative ethnographic research project into the faculty/student community.  Additional research interests include narratives studies about identity development in women researchers, the experiences and live lives of caregivers and disabled persons in Appalachia, and Appalachian discourse.

[1] Palmer, P. J., & Zajonc, A. (2010).  The heart of higher education:  A call to renewal.  San Francisco, CA:  Jossey-Bass.