North Island College’s Dr. Michael Catchpole, a 35-year veteran psychology instructor at the Port Alberni campus, was recently honoured by his peers on the Instructional Technology Council (ITC) with a Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to building and improving the field of distance learning.
The Washington DC-based ITC is affiliated with the American Association of Community Colleges and has more than 300 college, university and corporate members. The organization specializes in keeping its members abreast of the latest developments in online and other forms of distance education.
Catchpole was recognized both for this many years of service to the ITC and for his pioneering roles in teaching and promoting mental health through the use of technology.
In addition to classroom teaching and, until recently, private practice, Catchpole’s achievements include: ground breaking work teaching via satellite and video conference; leading international initiatives in distance education involving post-secondary institutions in Canada, the United States and Mexico; leading seminars and workshops on distance education teaching for faculty in Canada, Europe, the United States and Australia; and, consulting on six 26-episode American telecourses. The award was presented at the ITC’s 2014 eLearning Conference in Orlando, Florida.
Catchpole is the past recipient of the BC Psychological Association’s Donald Sampson Master Teacher award (1988) for his pioneering work in educational television and public education in the field of psychology and the Parke O. Davidson Award (2011) for significant and substantive contributions to the practice and profession of psychology.
In 2004 he was also awarded the Adjudicators’ Award from the British Columbia Innovations in Educational Technology Group for long term career achievement in the application of educational technology in educational delivery.
As an instructor with North Island College, Catchpole has piloted, implemented and provided training in a wide range of video and on-line technologies designed to increase students’ and the public’s access to psychological knowledge. He was the first instructor to teach live classes on BC’s Knowledge Network and had a following of approximately 18,000 viewers and over 300 students each semester during his eight years on the network. He was also the original instructor for NIC’s ITV videoconferencing system 19 years ago and continues to teach courses via this technology, now joined by a large number of NIC faculty.
Catchpole has also been very active within the profession of psychology. He is a frequent speaker on a variety of psychological topics and has recently been assisting the non-profit organization AnxietyBC with their goal of increasing public access to evidence-based psychological knowledge.
Overall, Catchpole has been involved in the distribution of evidence-based psychological knowledge, both nationally and internationally, for 36 years and continues to be unwaveringly active in this process. North Island College and its students are fortunate to be an integral part of Catchpole’s diverse and successful career.