Hail fellow well met (w/apologies to Swift)

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Eclectic Odd Fellows located Here, originally uploaded by (nz)dave.


This is old news to readers of David Wiley’s weblog, and to my Twitter friends, but in the coming weeks readers of this weblog will see some fairly significant changes here. As of next month I will be taking on a half-time research fellowship with Utah State’s Center for Open and Sustainable Learning.

My first act as an employee of UBC in early 2002 was a trip to Utah for a conference that was featuring David as a speaker, and I took the opportunity to take him aside and grill him about his work. Right away, he impressed me not only with his obvious intellect and erudition, but with his generous spirit and infectious enthusiasm. We’ve crossed paths all too sporadically ever since. I’ve had the chance to spend more time with him and his colleague Brandon Muramatsu in recent weeks, and the amount I’ve learned from these guys has me stoked for more of the same. I hope I’ve made my esteem for COSL clear already, and I’m sincerely humbled to be working with these people for an cause I feel strongly about. From what I understand, the objective of this project is to explore the actual effectiveness of web 2.0 technologies for learning and todemonstrate what works and doesn’t work with solid empirical evidence. I am all too aware of the need for this type of inquiry.

I have to thank the Office of Learning Technology’s Director Michelle Lamberson for her unflinching support in making this opportunity happen. Part of the appeal of this fellowship is that I do not have to leave the awesome job I have now, a job that has been very good to me. I honestly think UBC is poised to make some even more amazing things happen in the coming year, and I want to be here for them. And I do not have to uproot my family (who have also been most supportive) from a city and neighborhood we have come to love.

With every opportunity comes challenges, and this one is chock full. There will be more travel, and that has already complicated life on the home front. I will be expected to do a lot of things I’ve never done before, as a researcher and as a technologist. So you can expect the themes on this blog to shift, and if I start posting cries for help on learning PHP or Ruby or programming bots this is why. This fellowship is one of the biggest and frankly most terrifying challenges I’ve ever taken on. I very much hope I can reward the confidence that has been invested in me.

16 thoughts on “Hail fellow well met (w/apologies to Swift)

  1. Congratulations! You’re gonna knock ’em dead in Utah and keep knocking ’em dead at UBC. Wishing you the best from down South.

  2. I’m thrilled for you, and even more deeply thrilled for us. Every investment I’ve ever made in you has paid off so heavily it’s a wonder the SEC hasn’t investigated. That’s the story of my “insider trading” with you, my friend. I’d call that a bargain.

    Godspeed and keep the reports comin’.

  3. Almost forgot to mention that my dad was an Odd Fellow. True story. He tried to teach me the secret handshake, but it was too subtle for a kid to learn….

  4. Ohhh nice opportunity Brian -and well deserved. Great honour to work with David Wiley – I look forward to what you folks will come up with – help drive open learning!

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