College of Nursing

Faculty & Staff

Arlene Kent-Wilkinson
Associate Professor

Office: E4242 Health Sciences, Saskatoon
Phone: (306) 966-6897
Fax: (306) 966-6621
Skype: Arlene.KW
Introduction: View Video


  • Research Interests
    • Mentally disordered offenders
    • Aboriginal health education
    • Forensic nursing education
    • International collaborations and policies
    • Mental health
  • Methodology
    • Qualitative
    • Mixed methods

Hello, my name is Arlene Kent-Wilkinson RN, PhD

I am a tenured Associate Professor here at the College of Nursing since 2002.

I would like to take a few moments to talk about my research interests and to tell you about my background in order to let students know who have similar interest and are looking for committee members, so-supervisors or supervisors for their masters or doctoral work.

My three focus areas of research are: (1) Forensic mental health, (2)Aboriginal health and (3) International collaborative and comparative research

First I will tell a bit about my clinical background and how my research interests grew from those experiences.

Clinical Experience
Much of my career has been spent in clinical practice: 8 years in emergency nursing, 3 years in correctional nursing, 18 years in forensic psychiatric nursing. I also have causal part time experience in addictions, acute care psych, and individual/family counseling in mental health.

Teaching Experience/ Online course Development
In the mid 1990's along with teaching sessional I started developing forensic courses for class room and online because there were not any at the time. Here at the University of Saskatchewan I have developed and teach two online courses in Aboriginal Health, N483.3 at the undergraduate level and N814.3 at the graduate level.

Doctoral Dissertation
Because I had developed a lot of the early forensic nursing courses – that was what I picked for my doctoral dissertation. I interviewed other forensic nurses educators that like me had developed and taught some of the earliest forensic nursing courses.

My PhD dissertation was a mixed methods (predominantly qualitative) study of forensic nursing education. The purpose of the study was to explore forensic nursing knowledge as a specialty area of study and factors influencing educational development from the perspective of nurse educators (purposive sample) who wrote and taught the initial programs in their areas. A thematic analysis of the data was interpreted from a constructivist worldview and compared to the relevant literature. Outcomes of the study were constructed definitions of forensic nursing, a differentiation and a demarcation of forensic nursing concepts that were similar and different from nursing in general and from other forensic disciplines. In addition, findings from the study filled in gaps in the literature of the social influences of why forensic nursing developed when it did and why educational development did not occur sooner. An interprofessional practice model, a suggested meta theory on social justice for forensic specialty development, and a taxonomy of concepts to include were also outcomes that began further needed discussion and research in this specialty area.

1. Forensic Mental Health
I am a member of a new interprofessional research team here at the University of Saskatchewan, called the Forensic Mental Health Research Group. We will be putting in grants with a focus on service delivery to offenders in the areas of mental health, Aboriginal, aging, addictions, and national/international comparative research.

2. Aboriginal Health & Education
My online course development in the specialty areas of Aboriginal health has led me to collaborate with other researchers on studies related to Aboriginal health research and policy development.

3. International Collaborative/ Comparative Research
I was instrumental in acquiring a 5 year agreement and MOU with Flinders University of South Australia to collaborate in areas of student exchange and research collaboration for comparative studies. I currently have an Adjunct Appointment with Flinders University of South Australia. Therefore my current and future research proposals will be in relation to comparative policy and health indicators between Canada and Australia.

I welcome inquiries from students in the graduate programs who are interested in these areas.

Good luck in your studies.

Arlene K-W

Research Area

  • Forensic Psychiatric/Correctional Nursing;
  • Forensic Nursing (general);
  • Psych Mental Health Nursing,
  • Addictions;
  • Aboriginal Health Education;
  • Online Education;
  • International;


Donnelly, G., Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Rush, A. (accepted). "Just another drunk": The binge drinking patient: A need for culturally competent nursing care. MedSurg Nursing: Journal of Adult Health, 23(2).

Springer, R. A., Kent-Wilkinson, A., Ewashen, C., & Ali, R. (2013). Making time for reflexive dialogue in philosophical group discussion: Extending the debate on the militarization of nursing. Advances in Nursing Science, 36(1), 18-25. doi: 10.1097/ANS.0b013e3182807780. Retrieved from

Springer, R. A., Kent-Wilkinson, A., Ewashen, C., & Ali, R. (2013). Making time for dialogue. [Featured Articles: Posted on March 10, 2013bypeggychinn]. ANS: Advances in Nursing Science Blog. Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins. Retrieved from

Donnelly, G., Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Rush, A. (2012). The alcohol dependent patient in hospital: Challenges for nursing. MEDSURG Nursing: The Journal of Adult Health, 21(1),9-15.

Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Sanders, S. L., Mela, M., Peternelj-Taylor, C., Adelugba, O, Luther, G., Woods, P., Olver, M., & Wormith, J. S. (2012). Needs assessment of forensic mental health services and programs for offenders in Saskatchewan. Executive summary. Conducted byForensic Interdisciplinary Research: Saskatchewan Team (FIRST Centre for Forensic Behavioural Sciences and Justice Studies, Saskatoon, SK: University of Saskatchewan. Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A., Sanders, L., Mela, M., Peternelj-Taylor, C., Adelugba, O., Luther, G., Woods, P., & Wormith, S. (2012, November). Needs assessment of forensic services and program for mentally disordered offenders in Saskatchewan (Condensed version Final Report). Centre for Forensic Behavioural Sciences and Justice Studies, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2011). Forensic nursing educational development: An integrated review of the literature. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 18(3), 236-246. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2850.2010.01667.x. Epub 2010 Nov 22. Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2011). Forensic nursing education. In V. Lynch with J. Barber (Eds.). Forensic nursing science (2nd ed., Chapter 3, 20-31) St. Louis, MO: Elsevier, Mosby.

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2010). Cultural contextual aspects of mental health care. In W. Austin & M. A. Boyd (Eds.), Psychiatric nursing for Canadian practice (2nd ed., Chapter 3, 29-44). Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins.

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2010). Psychiatric mental health forensic nursing: Responding to social need. Issues in Mental Health Nursing, 31, 425-431. DOI: 10.3109/01612840903506444

Kent-Wilkinson, A., Starr, L., Dumanski, S., Fleck, J., Lefebvre, A., & Child, A. (2010). International Nursing student exchange: Rural and remote clinical experiences in Australia. Journal of Agromedicine, 15(1), 58-65. DOI: 10.1080/10599240903389672. Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2009). Forensic nursing education in North America: An exploratory study. Germany: Lap Lambert Academic Publishing AG & Co. Project number 834, ISBN 978-3-8383-0812-8.

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2009). Forensic nursing education in North America: Constructed definitions of forensic nursing. Journal of Forensic Nursing, 5(4), 201-211. DOI: 10.1111/j.1939-3938.2009.01055.x

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2009). The unique knowledge of forensic nursing: Implications for interprofessional education. International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Science, 4(7). Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2009). Forensic nursing education in North America: Social factors influencing educational development. Journal of Forensic Nursing, 5(2), 76-88. Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2008). Forensic nursing education in North America: An exploratory study [doctorial dissertation]. Department of Educational Administration, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK. Retrieved from

Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Boyd, M. A. (2008). Contextual aspects of mental health care. In W. Austin (Ed.) Canadian Version of M.A. Boyd, Psychiatric Nursing Contemporary Practice, (chapter 3, pp. 27-38). Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins. [NB text is 2008, available in bookstores June 2006).


Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Peternelj-Taylor, C. (2011). Research connections grant. 12th Biennial Custody & Caring International Conference. Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF). Matching Funds $10,000. Submitted June 21, 2011. July 15, 2011, awarded $10,000 until November 30, 2011.

Luther, G., Mela, M., Wormith, S., & Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2011). Therapeutic Justice and Problem Solving Courts: An idea whose time has come to Saskatchewan. Forensic Behavioural Sciences and Justice Studies Initiative Faculty Research Grant Program (Supported by Correctional Service Canada) Submitted February 28, 2011. March 1, 2011 awarded $11,000.

Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Peternelj-Taylor, C. (2011). CIHR Meetings, Planning and Dissemination Grant: Planning Grants for the 2011 Custody & Caring 12th Biennial International Conference on the Nurse's Role in the Criminal Justice System ($24,500). Canadian Institute of Health Research, CIHR Knowledge Translation Branch. Submitted February 15, 2011. Awarded $24,500 for I year on May 30, 2011.

Kent-Wilkinson, A. (PI), Mela, M. (co-PI), Wormith, J. S. (co-PI), FIRST & Sanders, S. L.(RA). (2010). Periodic environmental scanning and needs assessment of forensic mental health services and programming in Saskatchewan, 2010. Forensic Interdisciplinary Research: Saskatchewan Team (FIRST). [Study design & research coordinator S. Lee Sanders BAHon, MA, PhD student]. Commissioned by the Forensic Behavioural Sciences and Justice Studies (FBSJS) Initiative. Saskatoon, SK: University of Saskatchewan. $35,000.

Ferguson. L. (PI), Berry, L., Fowler-Kerry, S., Kent-Wilkinson, A., Wall, P., Spurr, S., Besse, C., Hewson, K., Evans, R., & Bowen, A. (2010). Enhancing student learning through online lecture capture. Research Grant Award of Western Region Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (WRCASN), May, 2010, $5000.

Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Peternelj-Taylor, C. (2007, July). Conference Funding for Custody and Caring Conference, 2007, ($10,000). Canadian Institute of Health Research (CHIR) Workshop/Symposia Support to the Knowledge Translation Branch.

Avis, K., & Kent-Wilkinson, A. (2007). Grant for Custody and Caring Conference 2007, $7,000, Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation (SHRF).

Peternelj-Taylor, C., & Kent-Wilkinson, A., & Woods, P. (2007). Funding for Keynote Speaker (Richard Byrt) at Custody and Caring Conference (September 26-28, 2007), $1,000, University of Saskatchewan Visiting Lecture Fund.