Faculty & Staff
Office location: Outdoor Leadership Department
Areas of Expertise
Kevin Kiers is an assistant professor and chair of the Outdoor Leadership Department. He has served the Seventh-day Adventist Church as Youth Ministries Director for 10 years and as a multi-grade and junior high teacher for 12 years in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. He began and led the Alberta Conference Outdoor School for 20 years with a focus on curriculum-based outdoor learning for grade 5 and 6 students. As well, with over 300 back-country trip leads, he has placed a great amount of focus on leadership development through outdoor education programs.
Now, as an instructor in the Outdoor Leadership Department since 2018, Kevin continues to promote leadership development with a fundamental understanding that experiences are key to learning. John Dewey (1938), an iconic educational philosopher, suggests that, “. . . in order to accomplish its ends, both for the individual learner and for society, [learning] must be based upon experiences - which is always the actual life-experience of some individual” (p. 89). He is clear and concise: experiences should be integral to the educational curriculum. Degrees in the Outdoor Leadership Department do just that – use carefully planned experiences to develop leadership experiences that prepare students for meaningful employment.
Kevin is also a full-time Ph.D. student at the University of Alberta, through the School of Education. The topic of his research is: School-based outdoor learning in Alberta: Examining K-9 teachers’ success through mixed methods research. His research aims to examine factors that contribute to successful outdoor learning experiences among teachers. Methodologically, an explanatory sequential mixed methods research design will be used which involves collecting quantitative data first and then explaining the quantitative results with in-depth qualitative data. In the first quantitative phase of the study, an online questionnaire will collect data from K-9 teachers in Alberta. The second qualitative phase will be conducted using semi-structured interviews to help explain, in more depth, the experiences of teachers with outdoor learning.
Additionally, Kevin is a founding member of the Burman Ministry Centre and serves as an Executive Director. The aim is to establish a Seventh-day Adventist Church in Canada Centre to support research, student learning, innovative evangelistic strategies, and action-based ministry resources. This will be done through a ministry internship program, research initiatives, youth and young adult ministry support, and by creating digital resources for church ministries.
Dewey, John. (1938). Experience and education. New York: The Macmillan Co.