B.Sc., M.Sc., Ed.D.

Instructor, Geography, CFA Professional Affairs Officer
School of Social Sciences
Geography
Faculty of Arts and Sciences

604.984.1780 ext. 1780
Fir Building, room FR501c
cgratham@capilanou.ca

Education

Ed.D., Educational Studies, University of British Columbia, 2016.

M.Sc., Atmospheric Science, University of British Columbia, 1991.

B.Sc., Atmospheric Science, University of British Columbia, 1989.

Bio

Christopher Gratham (Ed.D., University of British Columbia, 2016) is a geographer with a diverse academic and professional background.

Receiving his first degrees in atmospheric science and researching storm dynamics in the Pacific Ocean, Gratham worked as a meteorologist for Environment Canada in the Yukon Territory. Moving to Capilano University in the early 1990s, he spent the next few years focusing on teaching physical geography courses. As digital technologies were beginning to play an increasingly important role in higher education around this time, Gratham was tapped to lead CapU's efforts as Manager of the Educational Technology Centre for the next decade. This team initiated the University's use of Learning Management Systems (currently Moodle) by training and supporting faculty members in all their uses of technology.

Additionally, this team was heavily involved in the research and development of the Open Educational Resources as Capilano University became the first Canadian institution in the Open CourseWare initiative. Desiring a return to his roots in teaching, Gratham has spent most of the past decade studying education, re-thinking the goals of teaching geography and applying these ideas in the various geography courses he teaches.

My teaching philosophy has changed substantially over the past decade. As my career began, I taught the same way that I was taught with the focus being on "what" people knew. I became unsatisfied with this approach but didn't know how to do things any differently. After spending over five years in the Faculty of Educational Studies at the University of British Columbia, I developed a new perspective on what I wanted to accomplish with my teaching philosophy that helped evolve my practice. Instead of "what" people know, I am now far more focused on encouraging students to examine and articulate "why" and "how" we know these things. I am constantly experimenting with new practices and activities to work with students to co-construct our knowledge of geography.

My early research focused on the structure of North Pacific storms and weather prediction and both my work in graduate school and for Environment Canada led to published research in these areas.

As Manager of Educational Technologies at Capilano University, my research interest shifted more towards Open Educational Resources (OER) as I participated in provincial and UN sponsored research in OER.

My current research interests are centered around the conflicting tensions surrounding faculty members use of educational technologies.