CNIE 2019 Leadership Recipient

Marti Cleveland-Innes is Professor and Program Director (MEd) at Athabasca University. Her commitment to open and distance learning is rooted in the perspective that education must be accessible, affordable, and of high quality for everyone, anywhere. In her eighteen years as an academic at Athabasca University, Marti has been involved in numerous funded research projects on open and distance learning and has taught, supervised and supported hundreds of graduate students working in the same area of education.
Evidence-based practice with sound theory is a main driver in her scholarly work. She is a principal researcher on the Community of Inquiry framework for online and blended learning (, and co-author of a book on the topic with Drs. N. Vaughan and D.R. Garrison: Teaching in Blended Learning Environments: Creating and Sustaining Communities of Inquiry (
From 2012-2018 Martha was a Guest Professor at The Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden, where she remains an Adjunct Professor. Her work there is part of a campus redesign toward blended learning. With PhD student Stefan Stenbom, she participated in the development of a theoretical model called Relationships of Inquiry for open and distance learning and is the co-lead of a campus-wide project to integrate evidenced-based practice into the running of the institution called Practitioner-Research in Engineering Education.