Eileen O'Connor
Eileen O'Connor
Associate Professor

Post doctorate (Health Sciences), University of Ottawa
PhD (History), University of Ottawa
MA (History), Université Laval
BA, Trent University

MNT 362
613-562-5800 ext. 2443


Eileen O’Connor is an Associate Professor in the School of Human Kinetics. She obtained her PhD in History, and was a postdoctoral fellow in Health Sciences, University of Ottawa (2004).

Dr. O’Connor was interim-Director of the Research Centre for Sport in Canadian Society (RCSCS) at uOttawa 2014-2015, and is member of several research groups on the history of health, sport or gender studies.  She was recently appointed to the Ontario Women’s Health Scholars Awards Selection Committee by the Council of Ontario Universities. Her research has been funded by CIHR, CRTI, FQRSC, Associated Medical Services, and Health Canada, and is published in journals such as the Canadian Bulletin of Medical History, JOLT: Journal of Online Learning and Teaching; Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine; Journal of Emergency Management; and the American Journal of Disaster Medicine. Eileen is a member of various scholarly associations including the Canadian Society for the History of Medicine, International Society for the History of Physical Education and Sport, North American Association for Kinesiology in Higher Education, and the Canadian Association for Community Service Learning.  She is an engaged scholar in the field of experiential learning and sits on the academic advisory committee of the Centre Michaëlle Jean for Global and Community Engagement at uOttawa, as well as the advisory board of the Work-Integrated Learning toolkit supported by the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO). Dr. O’Connor was an invited participant to the UNESCO Mobile Learning conference in Paris, and to a recent FSS-led workshop to develop a Certificate in Community Mobilization for Syrian Refugees.

Eileen is recipient of an Excellence in Teaching Award from the Faculty of Health Sciences in 2007; the uOttawa Community Service Learning, Outstanding Achievement, Professor of the Year Award in 2009; an OCRI National Capital Educator’s Award in 2010 and a uOttawa Excellence in Education Prize in 2016.

Research interests

  • Research interests

  • History of medicine, sport
  • Experiential and work-integrated learning.

Ongoing research

Dr. O’Connor’s research focuses on socio-historical analyses of health, sport, gender and leisure.   Current research in the history of sport in Canada include projects on swimming pool safety legislation; and development of therapeutic aquatic rehabilitation. She is also collaborating to create a French-language video on Canadian women’s sport history. A second focus of research includes the collaborative development of tools to provide training for students prior to experiential learning in the community.


  • Valentino, K., O’Connor, E. Private Pool Bylaw Enclosure Compliance in Ottawa, Canada. Refereed contribution in conference book, 6th International Conference on Pool Safety and Hygiene, Amsterdam, March 2015.
  • Nzindukiyimana, O., O’Connor, E. Les corps en baignade: contextualiser les bains publics à Ottawa, 1924. Recorde: Revista de História do Esporte, 6(1), 2-30, 2013.
  • O’Connor, E., Assessing the Potential of ePortfolios and Pre-Service Surveys to Enhance Learning and Student Engagement of Undergraduate Students involved in CSL Placements. Edulearn 12 (ISBN 978846953491-5) 4360-4363, 2012.
  • O’Connor, E., ‘Bathing and Swimming by Design: Toronto & Montreal Public Baths 1880 – 1924’, in Avradimis, S. (ed), International Aquatic History, Fort Lauderdale: ISHOF publication, 193-195, 2012.
  • Bashir, K., O’Connor, E., An Environmental Scan of Sun Safety Messaging in the Canadian Context. International Journal of Civic and Political Studies, 7 (2) 1-12, 2013.
  • O’Connor, E. & Vertinsky, P., Negotiating the Terrain of Sport, Medicine and Health in Historical Context, Canadian Bulletin of Medical History, 28 (2) 2011.
  • Chun, K. O’Connor, E. Framing Lymphoedema Following Breast Cancer Surgery: Women’s Experiences and Perceptions of Body Image, QoL and Support. International Journal of Interdisciplinary Social Sciences. Vol 5 (2), Winter 2011
  • Amaratunga, C., Phillips, K. P., O’Connor, E., O’Sullivan, T., Boscoe, M., Lemyre, L., Krewski, D., The Need for Healthcare Worker Sex and Gender-Sensitive Supports During Infectious Disease Outbreaks, in M. G. Tyshenko and C. Paterson (eds), SARS Unmasked:  Risk Communication of Pandemics and Influenza in Canada (McGill-Queen’s University Press, Montreal) chapter 7:172-187, 2010.
  •  Ellis, D., O’Connor, E., The Matchless Six : Highlighting Canadian Women Track Athletes at the 1928 Olympic Games. Thirdspace: A Journal of Feminist Theory and Culture, Review, vol.9 (2) 2010.
  •  Eileen O'Connor, Tracey O'Sullivan, Carol Amaratunga, Patricia Thille, Karen Phillips, Michelle Carter, Louise Lemyre , Risk communication with nurses during infectious disease outbreaks: Learning from SARS, Journal of Emergency Management, 7(5): 48-56, 2009.
  • Eileen O’Connor, Explorations in the social history of medicine, Canadian Medical Association Journal, doi: 10.1503/cmaj.091706 Print issue: 27 October 2009, Volume 181, Issue 9.
  • O'Sullivan, TL., Amaratunga, CA., Phillips, KP., Corneil, W., O'Connor, E., Lemyre, L., & Dow, D.  If Schools Are Closed, Who Will Watch Our Kids?  Family Caregiving and Other Sources of Role Conflict Among Nurses During Large Scale Outbreaks. Prehospital and Disaster Medicine, vol. 24(4), 2009
  • Carol Amaratunga, Tracey O’Sullivan, Eileen O’Connor , The Gendered Dimension of Globalization and Infectious Disease: A Case Study of SARS in Canada. Gender, Globalization & Health: The Research-Policy Interface, Center for Research in Women’s Health (CRWH) and Institute of Gender and Health CIHR.
  • Eileen O’Connor, Constructing Medical Social Authority on Dress in Victorian Canada, Canadian Bulletin of Medical History, Volume 25 (2), pp.391-406, 2008.
  • Amaratunga, C., Thille, P., O'Sullivan, T., Carter, M., O'Connor, E., Phillips, K. & Lemyre, L. Risk Communication. Report submitted to the CRTI Secretariat, Project 03-0009RD (Module 4.2), Canadian Federal Government, 2008.
  • Eileen O'Connor, KP Phillips,  Developing a Public Health Web Game to Complement Traditional Education Methods in the Classroom, JOLT: Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 2007, Volume 3 (3), pp 257-264.
  • Amaratunga, C.A., O’Sullivan, T.L., Phillips, K.P., Lemyre, L., O'Connor, E., Corneil, W., & Dow, D.  Ready, aye ready? Support mechanisms for health care workers in emergency planning: A critical gap analysis of three hospital emergency plans, Journal of Emergency Management, July/August 2007, Volume 5 (4), pp. 23-38.
  • Eileen O’Connor  Reflections on the Relationship between Medicine and Women’s Leisure, The Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine, Summer 2007.
  • Amaratunga, C.A., O’Sullivan, T.L., Phillips, K.P., Lemyre, L., O'Connor, E., Corneil, W., & Dow, D.  Ready, aye ready? Support mechanisms for health care workers in emergency planning: A critical gap analysis of three hospital emergency plans,  reprinted by request in: American Journal of Disaster Medicine, July/August 2007; Volume 2 (4), pp. 195-210.

Conferences and presentations

  • O’Connor, E., Thifault, MC., Valentino, K., Ashton, A., Identifying and Challenging Presuppositions in a Pre-CSL Training Module for uOttawa Students Working with Local Vulnerable Communities. Canadian Alliance for Community Service Learning Conference, MRU, Calgary, May 2016.
  • Valentino, K., O’Connor, E., Towards a Social History of Residential Pool ByLaw Legislation in Canada during the 20th Century, Canadian Association History of Medicine, Congress, Ottawa, May 2015.
  • Valentino E., O’Connor, E., Private Pool Bylaw Enclosure Compliance in Ottawa, Canada. 6th International Conference on Pool Safety and Hygiene, Amsterdam, March 2015.
  • Nzindukiyimana, O., O’Connor, E., Colour Blind: Race, Ex/Inclusion in Canadian Aquatic Sports 1900-1960s, American Culture Association, stream Race and Sport; Chicago, April 2014.
  • O’Connor, E., University of Ottawa Library Speaker’s Series, Invited panelist: Women in Sport, Audience: alumni, professors, students, librarians, public. August 2013.
  • O’Connor, E., Nzindukiyimana, O. Health, Hygiene and Safety Promotion in Canada’s Public Pools, 1880-1950s,  National Institute of Health/Università di Roma Foro Italico, Rome, Italy, April 2013, 5th International Conference on Swimming Pool Safety.
  • O’Connor, E.,   Enhancing student engagement in the modern classroom through e-portfolios and community service learning programs in the Human Kinetics classrooom and beyond. Fort Lauderdale, January 2013, NAKHE Congress: National Association of Kinesiology in Higher Education.
  • O’Connor, E.,   Assessing the potential of e-portfolios and pre-service surveys to enhance learning and student engagement of students involved in community service learning experiences. Barcelona, 2-4 July, 2012. EduLearn 12 : 4th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies.
  • CBC media Les femmes, le loisir et la médicine au 19ième siècle, Radio Canada, Emission: Les années lumières ; suite à la présentation à l’ACFAS -O’Connor, E., Le loisir, le corps et la femme en péril: analyse des discours médicaux du 19ieme au 20ieme siècles. May 2009.
  • O’Connor, E. Un bref aperçu de l'histoire du sport féminin au Canada. Invited lecture, Canadian Federation of University Women (Diplomatic Group), April 2009.