Teaching and Learning in a Net-Centric World

Academic Hat Trick

For those non Canadians reading this, a hat trick results in hockey (and I learn from Wikipedia, in other sports) when one scores three goals in one game. Well, the academic game lasts considerably longer than three periods, but I was both delighted and surprised to score a hat trick this week.

The week started with a call from Chere Gibson (emeritus professor from Univ. of Wisconsin) saying that I was to be awarded the “Wedemeyer Award for Excellence in Distance Education Practice. This award will be presented to the practitioner(s) who most exemplifies excellence in practice in distance education in North America”. The award will be presented at the 26th annual Distance Teaching and Learning conference in Madison, Wisconsin.

The next day, after insuring my head hadn’t swelled beyond the size of my bike helmet, I pedaled to work to receive an email from Canadian Network for Innovation in Education president Ray Whitley, that I was to be presented with the CNIE annual award for leadership at thr CNIE conference in St John this May. International awards are very nice, but recognized by one’s peers at home is especially gratifying.

The final goal was notification that myself and Bruno Poellhuber from the University of Montreal had won a Canadian Social Sciences and Humanities  Research Grant for $140,000 over 3 years to study social networking interventions in self-paced distance education programming. Now the amount of this grant may not seem much (especially when spread between 3 institutions over three years,) but those knowledgeable about Canadian funding for ed tech research programs know that we are in an extreme political drought and that any funds for research is rain from heaven!! Actually Bruno and I failed in our first two tries at this competition, the second time because reviewers found that we had not not provided justification for conducting this research in French and English – can you believe we live in Canada??

Anyways, weeks like this come very infrequently in academic, and I hope you will forgive the self promotional flavour of this post.


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  1. April 2, 2010    

    Not self-promoting but sharing of your joy. You deserve it and congratulations from my heart.

  2. April 2, 2010    

    Congratulations Terry, you’re an inspiration to those of us who are just starting out.

  3. julie levi julie levi
    April 3, 2010    

    Hearty congratulations Terry on your awards and grant! Any one of those would have been great in so many ways, but all three…priceless!

  4. April 3, 2010    

    Hi Terry – congrats on a great week!! I don’t think it’s self promotional at all – your contributions are simply being recognized by your peers.

    Special congrats on the SSHRC grant. Once funding agencies begin to recognize social networked software, our discipline has crossed a bridge of sorts. It’s a fascinating time to be in the ed-tech space.


  5. April 3, 2010    

    Fantastic! Well-deserved.

  6. Gerry Paille Gerry Paille
    April 3, 2010    

    That was quite a week Terry, and everything so well deserved I might add. Congratulations.

  7. April 3, 2010    

    Couldn’t happen to a better Canuck…


  8. Scott leslie Scott leslie
    April 3, 2010    

    Well done Terry, well deserved on all fronts.

  9. Rory McGreal Rory McGreal
    April 3, 2010    

    Congratulations Terry,
    It is more than a hat-trick if you count your Canada Research Chair and the University and College Extension Association (UCEA) Wedemeyer, you received for your open access book last year.
    All the best.

  10. April 3, 2010    

    Congratulations for the well deserved awards!
    Keep inspiring us! 🙂

    All the best.

  11. David Wiley David Wiley
    April 3, 2010    

    Congrats!!! Well deserved, indeed!

  12. April 3, 2010    

    Congratulations, well-deserved, as anyone in the field well recognizes.

  13. Teresa Gagne Teresa Gagne
    April 4, 2010    

    Congratulations on your well-deserved honours.

  14. Sharleen Thornberry Sharleen Thornberry
    April 4, 2010    

    Congratulations Terry! We are so proud of you but truly wish those “smart” genes had been passed on to our family!

  15. April 6, 2010    


  16. Gayle Robinson Gayle Robinson
    April 27, 2010    

    Hi Terry,
    WOW…congratulations! It is wonderful to see you celebrated and awarded and appreciated like this…twice a pioneer, hey, and this last such a new frontier when you started.
    I couldn’t help but think how proud Grandad Spillett would be…and your Dad, too. But for sure I know I am proud of you.
    Bravo, Bravissimo!!!

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