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David Nicholas

David Nicholas, associate professor, Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary

Refereed publications from 2008-present

Nicholas, D.B., Zwaigenbaum, L., Muskat, B., Craig, W.R., Newton, A.S., Cohen-Silver, J., Sharon, R.F., Greenblatt, A., & Kilmer, C. (2016). Toward practice advancement in emergency care for children with autism spectrum disorder: The perspectives of parents and health care providers. Pediatrics, 137(s205). doi: 10.1542/peds.2015-2851S

Zwaigenbaum, L., Nicholas, D.B., Muskat, B., Kilmer, C., Newton, A.S., Craig, W.R., Ratnaplan, S., Cohen-Silver, J., Greenblatt, A., Roberts, W., & Sharon, R. (2016). Perspectives of health care providers regarding emergency department care of children and youth with autism spectrum disorder, Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1007/s10803-016-2703-y

Badone, E., Roberts, W., Nicholas, D.B., & Quinlan, J. (2016). Asperger's Syndrome, Subjectivity and the Senses. Culture, Medicine, and Psychiatry. Advanced online publication. doi: 10.1007/s11013-016-9484-9

Nicholas, D.B., Zwaigenbaum, L., Ing, S., MacCulloch, R., Roberts, W., McKeever, P., & McMorris, C. (2015). "Live it to understand it": The experiences of mothers of children with autism spectrum disorder. Qualitative Health Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1049732315616622

Dudley, C., Nicholas, D.B., & Zwicker, J.D. (2015). What do we know about improving employment outcomes for individuals with autism spectrum disorder? SPP Research Papers, 8(32), 1-35. Retrieved from

Hodgetts, S., Zwaigenbaum, L., & Nicholas, D.  (Aug. 2015). Profile and predictors of service needs for families of children with autism spectrum disorders. Autism, 19(6), 673-683. doi:10.1177/1362361314543531

Ip, A.W.S., Zwaigenbaum, L., Nicholas, D., & Sharon, R. (2015). Factors influencing autism spectrum disorder screening by community paediatricians. Paediatrics &Child Health, 20(5), e20-e24. Retrieved from

Kreitzer, L., McLaughlin, A.M., Elliot, G., & Nicholas, D. (2015). Qualitative examination of rural service provision to persons with concurrent developmental and mental health challenges. European Journal of Social Work, 19(1), 46-61. doi: 10.1080/13691457.2015.1022859

Muskat, B., Burnham Riosa, P., Nicholas, D.B., Roberts, W., Stoddart,  K.P., & Zwaigenbaum, L. (2015). Autism comes to the hospital: The experiences of patients with autism spectrum disorder, their parents and health-care providers at two Canadian paediatric hospitals. Autism, 19(4), 482-490. doi: 10.1177/1362361314531341

Nicholas, D.B., Newton, A.S., Calhoun, A., Dong, K., deJong-Berg, M.A., Hamilton, F., Kilmer, C., McLaughlin, A.M., & Shankar, J. (2015). The experiences and perceptions of street-involved youth regarding emergency department services. Qualitative Health Research. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/1049732315577605

Kelly, E., Ivers, N., Zawi, R., Barnieh, L., Manns, B., Lorenzetti, D.L., Nicholas, D., Tonelli, M., Hemmelgarn, B., Lewanczuk, R., Edwards, A., Braun, T., & McBrien, K.A. (2015). Patient navigators for people with chronic disease: protocol for a systematic review and meta-analysis. Systematic Review, 4(28). doi:10.1186/s13643-015-0019-1

Nicholas, D.B., Attridge, M., Zwaigenbaum, L., & Clarke, M.  (2015). Vocational support approaches in autism spectrum disorder: A synthesis review of the literature. Autism, 19(2), 1-11.
Hendson, L., Reis, M.  D., Nicholas, D.  B. (2015). Health care providers’ perspectives of providing culturally competent care in the NICU.  Journal of Obstetric, Gynecologic, & Neonatal Nursing, 44(1), 17-27. doi: 10.1111/1552-6909.12524 

Graham, J.R., Shier, M.L., & Nicholas, D. (2015). Workplace congruence and occupational outcomes among social service workers. British Journal of Social Work. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1093/bjsw/bcu153

Nicholas, D.B., Roberts, W., & Macintosh, C. (2014). Advancing vocational opportunities for adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Proceedings from the 1st annual Canadian ASD Vocational Conference. Currents: Scholarship in Human Services, 13(1), 1-19.

Lowe, K., Dudley, C., Dutton, D.J., Zwicker, D.J., McMorris, C., Emery, H., Nicholas, D.B., & Clarke, M. (2014). Laying the foundation for policy: Measuring local prevalence for autism spectrum disorder. University of Calgary School of Public Policy Research Papers, 7(28). Retrieved from

Gentles, S.J., Jack, S.M., Nicholas, D.B., & McKibbon, K.A. (2014). A critical approach to reflexivity in grounded theory. The Qualitative Report, 19(25), 1-14. Retrieved from

Shankar, J., Liu, L., Nicholas, D., Warren, S., Lai, D., Tan, S., Zulla, R., Couture, J., & Sears, A. (2014).  Employers’ perspectives on hiring and accommodating workers with mental illness. Sage Open, 1-13. doi: 10.1177/2158244014547880

Jivraj, J., Sacrey, L. A., Newton, A., Nicholas, D., & Zwaigenbaum, L.  (2014). Assessing the influence of research-partnered involvement on the process and outcomes of participatory research in autism spectrum disorder and neurodevelopmental disorders: A scoping review.  Autism, 18(7), 782-793.

Anthony, S.  J., Nicholas, D.  B., & West, L.  J. (2014).  A struggle to survive:  The experience of awaiting pediatric heart transplantation. Pediatric Transplantation, 18(8), 868-874.
Mackie, A.  S., Islam, S., Magill-Evans, J., Rankin, K.  N., R.obert, C., Schuh, M., Nicholas, D., Vonder Muhil, I., McCrindle, B.  W., Yasui, Y., Rempel, G.  R.  (2014).  Healthcare transition for youth with heart disease:  A clinical trial.  Heart, 100(14), 1113-1118.

Racine, E., Bell, E., Yan, A., Andrew, G., Bell, L.  E., Clarke, M., Dubljevic, V., Goldowitz, D., Janiver, A., McLachlan, K., Muhajarine, N., Nicholas, D., Oskoui, M., Rasmussen, L.  A., Roberts, W., Shevell, M., Wade, L., & Yager, J.  Y.  (2014).  Ethics challenges of transition from paediatric to health care services for young adults with neurodevelopmental disabilities.  Paediatrics & Child Health, 19(2), 65-8.

McNeill, T., Nicholas, D.  B., Beaton, J., Montgomery, G., MacCulloch, R., Gearing, R., & Selkirk, E.  (2014). The co-construction of couples’ roles in parenting children with a chronic health condition.  Qualitative Health Research, 24, 1114-1125.

Rempel, G.  R., Ballantyne, R.  T., Magill-Evans, J., Nicholas, D.  B., & Mackie, A.  S.  (2014).  Texting teens in transition:  The use of text messages in clinical intervention research.  JMIR Mhealth Uhealth, 2(4), e45. doi: 10.2196/mhealth.3232.

Ng, V., Nicholas, D., Dhawan, A., Yazigi, N., Ee, L., Storman, M., Gilmour, S., Schreiber, R., Taylor, R., & Otley, A.  (2014). Development and validation of the pediatric liver transplantation quality of life:  A disease-specific quality of life measure for pediatric liver transplant recipients.  The Journal of Pediatrics, 165(3), 547-555.

Nicholas, D. B., Hendson, L., Reis, M.  D. (2014).  Connection versus disconnection: Examining culturally competent care in the neonatal intensive care unit.  Social Work in Health Care, 53(2), 135-155. doi: 10.1080/00981389.2013.864377.

Hodgetts, S., McConnell, D., Zwaigenbaum, L., & Nicholas, D.  (2014). The impact of autism services on mothers’ occupational balance and participation.  OTJR: Occupation, Participation and Health, 34(2), 81-93.

Nicholas, D.B., Thompson, A.H., Lyseng, O., Shand, T., Sutherland, S., Hutchinson, C., Carr, A., Springer, S., Skariah, D., Bucknor, T., Demay, P., & Skariah, S. (2013). Evaluation of a mental health research database for stakeholders. Journal of Community Medicine and Health Education, 3(7), doi: 10.4172/2161-0711.1000257.

Nicholas, D.B., Paterson, B. & Gutwin, C. (2013).  Examining preferences for website support to parents of adolescents with diabetes. Social Work in Health Care, 52(9), 862-879. doi: 10.1080/00981389.2013.827144.

Tiemens, K., Nicholas, D.B., & Forrest, C.  (2013). Living with difference: Experiences of adolescent girls with cleft lip and palate.  The Cleft Palate-Craniofacial Journal, 50(2), e27-e34.doi: 10.1597/10-278.

Nicholas, D.B., Clarke, M. & Emery, H. (2013). Enabling the workplace: Enhancing integration for persons with disabilities. Policy: Canadian Politics and Public Policy, 1(1), 26-28.
Hodgetts, S., Nicholas, D.B., Zwaigenbaum, L. & McConnell, D. (2013). Families’ and professionals’ perceptions of family-centered care for children with autism across service sectors. Social Science & Medicine, 96, 138-146. doi: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2013.07.012.

Hodgetts, S., Nicholas, D.B., & Zwaigenbaum (2013). Home Sweet Home? Families’ experiences with aggression in children with autism spectrum disorders.  Focus on Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities, 28(3), 166-174. doi: 10.1177/1088357612472932.

Barrera, M., Granek, L., Shaheed, J., Nicholas, D.B., Beaune, L., D’Agostino, N.M., Bouffet, E., & Antle, B. (2013).  The tenacity and tenuousness of hope:  Parental experiences of hope when their child has a poor cancer prognosis. Cancer Nursing, 36(5), 1-9. doi: 10.1097/NCC.0b013e318291ba7d.

Granek, L., Barrera, M., Shaheed, J., Nicholas, D.B., Beaune, L., D’Agostino, N., Bouffet, Antle, B. (2013). Trajectory of parental hope when a child has difficult-to-treat cancer: A prospective qualitative study. Psycho-Oncology, 22(11), 2436-2444. doi: 10.1002/pon 3305.

Adams, S., Cohen, E., Mahant, S., Friedman, J.  N., MacCulloch, R., & Nicholas, D.B.  (2013). Exploring the usefulness of comprehensive care plans for children with medical complexity (CMC): A qualitative study.  BMC Pediatrics, 13, 10.  doi: 10.1186/1471-2431-13-10.

Nicholas, D.B., Fellner, K.  D., Frank, M., Small, M., Hetherington, R., Slater, R., Daneman, D.    (2012). Evaluation of an online education and support intervention for adolescents with diabetes.  Social Work in Health Care, 51(9), 815-827.  doi: 10.1080/00981389.2012.699507.

McNeill, T., & Nicholas, D.B.  (2012). Strategies for research development in hospital social work: A case study.  Research on Social Work Practice, 22(6), 672-679.  doi: 10.1177/1049731512450214.

Nicholas, D.B., Chahauver, A., Brownstone, D., Hetherington, R., McNeill, T., & Bouffet, E.  (2012). Evaluation of an online peer support network for fathers of a child with a brain tumour.  Social Work in Health Care, 51(3). 232-245. Doi: 10.1080/00981389.2011.631696.

Beaune, L., Nicholas, D.B, & Hocken, J.  (2012). Lessons learned for pediatric pandemic planning in palliative care: A case study.  Journal of Palliative Care & Medicine, 2(5). doi:10.4172/2165-7386.1000120.

Clarke, M., Emery, H., Kneebone, R., & Nicholas, D.B. (2012, May).  A basic annual income for the neuro-developmentally disabled in Canada.  Policy Option/Options Politiques, 3(5), 56-61.Retrieved from

Mulligan, J., MacCulloch, R., Good, B., & Nicholas, D.B.  (2012). Transparency, hope and empowerment: A model for partnering with parents of a child with autism spectrum disorder at diagnosis and beyond.  Social Work in Mental Health, 10(4), 311-330.  doi: 10.1080/15332985.2012.664487. 

Christie, D., Romano, G., Barnes, B. Madge, N., Nicholas, D.B., Koot, H. M., Armstrong, D.F., Shevlin, M., Kantaris, X., Khatun, H., & Sutcliffe, A. G.  (2012).  Exploring views on satisfaction with life in young children with chronic illness: An innovative approach to the collection of self-report quality of life data from children under 11. Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 17(1), 5-15. doi: 10.1177/1359104510392309.

Rifat, A., Barrera, M., Alam, R., Mammone D’ Agostino, N., Nicholas, D.B., & Schneiderman, G. (2012). Bereavement experiences of mothers and fathers over time after the death of a child due to cancer.  Death Studies, 36(1), 1-22. doi: 10.1080/07481187.2011.553312.

Mackie, A. S., Rempel, G. R., Rankin, K.N., Nicholas, D.B., & Magill-Evans, J. (2012). Risk factors for loss to follow-up among children and young adults with congenital heart disease.  Cardiology in the Young, 22(3), 307-315.  doi: 10.1017/S104795111100148X.

Zwaigenbaum, L., Scherer, S., Szatmari, P., Fombonne, E., Bryson, S.E., Hyde, K., Anognostou, E., Brian, J., Eccans, A., Hall, G., Nicholas, D.B., Roberts, W., Smith, I., Vailancourt, T., & Volden, J. (2011). The NeuroDevNet autism spectrum disorders demonstration project.  Seminars in Pediatric Neurology, 40-48. doi: 10.1016/j.spen.2011.02.003.

Nicholas, D.B., Fellner, K.D., Koller, D., Fontana Chow, K., & Brister, L. (2011). Evaluation of videophone communication for families of hospitalized children.  Social Work in Health Care, 50(3), 215-29. doi: 10.1080/00981389.2010.531998.

Mahant, S., Pastor, A.C., DeOliveira, L., Nicholas, D.B., & Langer, J.C. (2011).  Well-being of children with neurologic impairment after fundoplication and gastrojejunostomy tube feeding. Pediatrics, 128(2), e395-403. doi: 10.1542/peds.2010-1253.

Nicholas, D.B., Otley, A.R., Taylor, R., Dhawan, A., Gilmore, S., Ng, V.L. (2010). Experiences and barriers to health-related quality of life following liver transplantation: A qualitative analysis of the perspectives of pediatric patients and their parents. Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 8, 150. doi:  10.1186/1477-7525-8-150.

Nicholas, D.B., Picone, G., & Selkirk, E.K. (2010). The lived experiences of children and adolescents with End Stage Renal Disease. Qualitative Health Research, 21(2), 162-173. doi: 10.1177/1049732310382789.

Koller, D., Nicholas, D.B., Gearing, R.E., & Kalfa, O. (2010).  Paediatric pandemic planning: Children's perspectives and recommendations. Health and Social Care in the Community, 18(4), 369-377. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2524.2009.00907.

Kenaszchuk, C., Reeves, S., Nicholas, D.B., & Zwarenstein, M. (2010).  Validity and reliability of a multiple-group measurement scale for interprofessional collaboration.  BMC Health Services Research, 10(83). Retrieved from

MacCulloch, R., Nyhof-Young, J., Nicholas, D.B., Donaldson, S. and Wright, J.G. (2010). Development of an online information and support resource for adolescent idiopathic scoliosis patients considering surgery:  Perspectives of health care providers.  Scoliosis and Spinal Disorders, 5(13). Retrieved from

Nicholas, D.B., Lach, L., King, G., Scott, M. Boydell, K., Sawatzky, B.J., Reisman, J., Schippel, E., & Young, N.L. (2010).  Contrasting internet and face-to-face focus groups for children with chronic health conditions: Outcomes and participant experiences.  International Journal of Qualitative Methodology, 9(1), 105-121.

Nicholas, D.B.,Fleming-Carroll, B., & Keatings, M. (2010). Examining organizational context and a developmental framework in advancing interprofessional collaboration: A case study. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 24(3), 319-322. doi: 10.3109/13561820903163892.

Mulligan, J., Steel, L. MacCulloch, R., & Nicholas, D.B. (2010). Evaluation of an information resource for parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Autism: International Journal of Research and Practice, 14(2), 113-126. doi: 10.1177/1362361309342570.

Nicholas, D.B., Patershuk, C., Koller, D., Bruce-Barrett, C., Lach, L., Zlotnik-Shaul, R., & Matlow, A. (2010). Pandemic planning in pediatric care: A website policy review and national survey data.  Health Policy, 96(2), 134-142. doi: 10.1016/j.healthpol.2010.01.007.

MacCulloch, R., Donaldson, S., Nicholas, D., Nyhof-Young, J., Hetherington, R., Lupea, D., & Wright, J.G. (2009). Towards an understanding of the information and support needs of surgical adolescent idiopathic scoliosis patients: A qualitative analysis. Scoliosis and Spinal Disorders, 4(12). Retreived from

Nicholas, D.B., Gearing, R.E., McNeill, T., Fung, K., Lucchetta, S., & Selkirk, E. (2009). Experiences and resistance strategies utilized by fathers of children with cancer. Social Work and Health Care, 48(3), 260-275. doi: 10.1080/00981380802591734.

Nicholas, D.B., Dell, S.D., Fleming-Carroll, B., & Selkirk, E. (2009). An evaluation of pediatric asthma resources. Social Work in Health Care, 48(4), 450-461. doi: 10.1080/00981380802589936.

Nicholas, D.B., Williams, M. & MacLusky, I.B. (2009). Evaluating groupwork within a summer camp intervention for children and adolescents with asthma. Social Work with Groups, 32(3), 209-221. doi: 10.1080/01609510802527425.

Barrera, M., O’Connor, K., D’Agostino, N., Spencer, L., Nicholas, D.B., Jovcevska, V., Tallett, S., & Schneiderman, G. (2009). Early parental adjustment and bereavement after childhood cancer death. Death Studies, 33(6), 497-520. doi: 10.1080/07481180902961153.

Young, N., Varni, J., Snider, L., McCormick, A., Sawatzky, B., King, G., Hetherington, R., Sears, E., Nicholas, D.B.  (2009). The Internet is valid and reliable for child-report: An example using the ASK and PedsQL.   Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 62(3), 314-320. doi: 10.1016/j.jclinepi.2008.06.011

Gearing, R. E., Mian, I., Sholonsky, A., Barber, J., Nicholas, D.B., Lewis, R., Solomon, L., Williams, C., Lightbody, S., Steele, M., Davidson, B., Manchanda, R., Joseph, L., Handelman, K. & Ickowicz, A.  (2009). Developing a risk-model of time to first-relapse for children and adolescents diagnosed with a psychotic disorder. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 197(1), 6-14. doi:10.1097/NMD.0b013e31819251d8.

Nicholas, D.B., Picone, G., Vigneux, A., McCormick, K., Mantulak, A., McClure, M., & MacCulloch, R. (2009). Evaluation of an online peer support network for adolescents with chronic kidney disease. Journal of Technology in Human Services, 27(1), 1-11. doi: 10.1080/15228830802462063.

Nicholas, D.B., Swan, S., Gerstle, J.T, Allan, T., Griffiths, A. (2008). Struggles, Strengths and Strategies: An ethnographic study exploring the experiences of adolescents living with an ostomy. Health and Quality of Life Outcomes, 6(114). Retrieved from

Nicholas, D.B., Gearing, R.E., Koller, D., Salter, R. & Selkirk, E.  (2008). Pediatric epidemic crisis: Lessons for policy and practice development.  Health Policy, 88(2-3), 200-208. doi:10.1016/j.healthpol.2007.11.006.

Cohen, E., Rosenbaum, P. & Nicholas, D.B.  (2008). A home for medically complex children: The role of hospital programs.  Journal for Healthcare Quality, 30 (3), 7-15.



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