Philosophy of Teaching: A Summary
The goal of teaching, at its most fundamental level, is to help students learn. Learning, however, is not static or concrete, but fluid and contextual. Each student enters a classroom with a specific set of prior experiences and background knowledge. Students are motivated to learn in unique and individual ways. Teaching, then, must fully acknowledge and embrace this idea that, when provided relevant and real-world opportunities, all students are capable of learning.
My philosophy of teaching is better described as a philosophy of designing and of facilitation. In order for me to be an effective teacher, I must be willing to rethink traditional teaching beliefs and practices. I must approach instruction as a designer of high-quality, meaningful opportunities for students to make connections to course material and build their own understanding, while contributing to the classroom body of knowledge. Educational design work includes encouraging student input and using that input to drive all instructional decisions. Inviting student input provides students with buy-in and ownership of their education.
Likewise, it behooves me (and all teachers) to utilize research to make instructional decisions based on evidence of effectiveness. Research is an important part of teaching, whether it be conducting empirical research at the university level to contribute to the current body of knowledge or using more informal teacher-researcher methods to better understand a given classroom or context.
Awards and Honors
Professional Development and Guest Lectures