ALAN THOMAS GRADUATE STUDENT PAPER AWARD
In 2001, the CASAE Alan Thomas Student Paper Award was launched in honor of Professor Alan Thomas (1928 – 2009). It is given to the author of the best student paper(s) at the annual CASAE conference.
Alan Thomas was a well loved and well known Canadian adult educator who made many contributions to the field including distinguishing learning from education and thus putting the emphasis on adult learners, rather than institutions. He had a joint appointment between the Extension Department and the Faculty of Education at UBC where he developed the first graduate program in adult education at UBC (which started in 1957). From 1953, he also worked for the Canadian Association for Adult Education (CAAE), becoming the Executive Director in 1961. He was also involved with the development of the Canadian Association of University Continuing Education (CAUCE) and the Association of Community Colleges in Canada (ACCC). In the early 1970s he became Chair of the Department of Adult Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE). In addition to his academic contributions, he was involved with conference organizing, policy development, federal politics as well as broadcasting. Working in collaboration with CBC, he spearheaded the development of a three hour ‘reality’ show called People Talking Back. ‘In 1982 he received the Order of Canada. He was one of the founding directors of The Carold Institute, an organization dedicated to supporting the advancement of democratic citizenship and social change.
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