Research chairs

Research chairs play a vital role in enhancing Athabasca University’s research enterprise, trainee development, and in attracting and retaining other exceptional researchers. This leads to the development of new areas of research excellence and enhanced student learning experiences.

Athabasca University currently benefits from the expertise of the following research chairs:

Canada Research Chairs

The Canada Research Chairs program aims to achieve research excellence in:

  • Engineering and the natural sciences;
  • Health sciences;
  • Humanities; and
  • Social sciences.

Dr. Scott Ketcheson, Faculty of Science and Technology

Canada Research Chair in Hydrological Sustainability

As a field hydrologist, Dr. Ketcheson studies the movement of water between forests, wetlands, and streams in northern Alberta. His research program uses both traditional hydrological techniques and innovative sensor networks to gain a direct process-based understanding of the hydrological function and importance of headwater catchments for generating freshwater in tributary river networks within the Athabasca River Basin. Additional information on Dr. Ketcheson's hydrology research can be found on his website: AU Hydrology.

Learn more about Dr. Ketcheson

Dr. Mickey Vallee, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

Canada Research Chair in Sound Studies

Dr. Vallee's interdisciplinary research focuses on innovation in sound-based technologies and how new local and global research communities can be built around these innovations. By building an understanding of the personal and collective experiences that people have with emerging sound technologies, Vallee will investigate how the sciences, social sciences, arts, and humanities engage with technological innovation.

Learn more about Dr. Vallee

Athabasca University chairs

Dr. Rory McGreal, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

UNESCO/ICDE Chairholder in Open Educational Resources (OER)

Dr. McGreal is responsible for promoting the use and reuse of free, openly licensed educational content institutionally, nationally, and internationally, with a particular focus on developing countries. Both UNESCO and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) support the use of open educational resources (OER) as being essential for the achievement of the UNESCO Sustainable Development Goal 4: Education for All. He has delivered OER seminars, keynote presentations or conducted workshops in more than 60 countries.

Learn more about Dr. McGreal

Dr. Mohamed Ally, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

Commonwealth of Learning Chairholder in Emerging Technologies in Open and Distance Learning

Dr. Ally is conducting research that will impact both developed and developing countries. He is currently a Canadian expert on information technology for learning, education, and training (ISO/IEC JTC 1/SC 36) (Information technology for learning, education, and training) to set international standards for mobile learning, online learning, virtual reality, and augmented reality. Professor Ally has edited/co-edited 15 books on the use of emerging technologies in education and presented speeches at many national and international conferences. He is a founding director of the International Mobile Learning Association and the International Association for Blended Learning.

Learn more about Dr. Ally

Updated September 12, 2023 by Digital & Web Operations (