My Statement of Teaching Philosophy

I believe that an instructor’s role in a class is to lead his or her students’ through knowledge as a tour guide through the materials. To be an effective tour guide, one must be thoroughly prepared. Before each class that I teach, I want at least three hours of preparation for every hour that I teach. To prepare, I reexamine the material and make a determination on the best way to present the information to my students. Sometimes, this is in the form of a lecture. Most of the time, I try to use a series of interactions to allow the students to become a part of the in-class learning experience. It has been my understanding that lectures, when used repeatedly, can lose the students’ attention and can make them disinterested in the material. I try to avoid full lecture classes whenever possible.

I also believe in my class that students should have a minor capstone experience. To this end, I normally assign a few small projects that led to a final project. The smaller projects are typically designed to reinforce ideals that were taught in class. Also, they will be the foundation to the final project. For example, during the “Broadcasting” course that I taught, I had the students first record their voices to hear how they sounded. Then, I gave them a section of text to read into a tape recorder for the purpose of evaluation. The student and I would discuss the tape and I would offer suggestions on how to improve their performance. The next step would be an exercise in how to turn raw news feed into a story that can be broadcasted over the air. The final project is a group news production, with each member of the group read several stories “over-the-air”. I believe that these experiences enrich a student’s collegiate career.

There is one selfish reason that I teach, I enjoy teaching. I love coming into a classroom or a lab and working with the students to increase their knowledge. I live for that look of understanding when I student finally “gets it”. I look forward to when student come into my office to discuss whatever is on their minds. I believe that teaching is how I can serve humanity.