Thanks for visiting the ‘Virtual Canuck’Terry color casual image

When I began the setup for this blog in 2005, I had forgotten that I needed to give it a name, and, on the spot, jumped onto the phrase “Virtual Canuck”.  A Canuck is a term that Canadians call each other – often affectionately as in “I met an another Canuck in Copenhagen and we hung out together”. The virtual, of course, comes with many meanings related to the online world. So, I am a “Canuck” but I’m real! – Terry Anderson.

I spent 15 years as a back-to-the land farmer and woodworker in the Lesser Slave Lake region of  Northern Alberta, Canada from 1971.  Well there I learned to work with my hands, bungled through many learning curves and am proud to say was the founder and coordinator for 5 years of the North Country Fair – An annual solstice Folk Festival that still runs annually on a large chunk of land purchased for the community in the Driftpile Valley.

I have been online for over 35 years, and 10 years with this blog. My one (and only) Net claim to fame is that I think I organized the first ever ‘virtual conference‘. This ran on UseNet, Bit Net and various listservs for the International Council for Distance Education in 1993. I also taught the first Internet course at the University of Calgary. Ironically when students completed the course in 1992, there was no way that a personal could purchase Internet access. Thus, my course was pretty popular, as it came with six month access to the net!

Currently, I am a Professor Emeritus and former Canada Research Chair in Distance Education at Athabasca University – Canada’s Open University. I used to teach educational technology courses in the Masters of Education and Research Methods courses in the Doctor of Education program. I was also the founding director of the Canadian Institute for Distance Education Research CIDER.

My current research interests relate to social software use in distance education. You can find more about me including a long and somewhat boring CV and some of my recent published articles and presentations at my profile on the Athabasca Landing (Athabasca’s boutique social network).You can check out my Google Scholar Research Profile.

I was also the Editor for 10 years and am currently Editor Emeritus of the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL). IRRODL is the most widely read and most highly cited journal in our field. It has always been an open access journal and we welcome contributions, reviewers and subscribers- all free of charge.

I continue on the “keynote” circuit – having done over 50 keynotes in the last 12 years – on every continent except Antarctic!. You can check out some of the slides from these presentations on Slideshare

Since retiring from Athabasca in August 2015, I have been working on a number of part-time contracts notably with the School of Business, at the University of Alberta and Contact North/Contact Nord. I also regularly examine graduate student theses and do guest talks at distance education courses globally. I’ve open a Little Free Library in our front yard, playing more music and am spending time in my wood-working shop.

I live in Edmonton Alberta Canada  in the community of Riverdale with my wife Susan.

You can contact me at