Successful teaching does not happen by accident. It is not due to a natural aptitude. Successful teaching is a product of engagement with course material and careful planning coupled with a willingness to adapt on the fly.
My approach to teaching has three major features:
- Student engagement. One of the most important tasks for a teacher is to encourage and maintain each students’ engagement with the course material.
- Practical applicability. I want each student to learn something that they find useful for some aspect of their lives outside of the course. Much of this goal is achieved by emphasizing argument analysis in all of my courses. Such tangible evidence of the transferability of the course material makes students more willing to engage in careful philosophical criticism—especially if they are not philosophy majors or minors.
- Accessibility and adaptability. It is important to me that my courses are accessible to all students. I use the technology that is available to me to the greatest extent possible. I use online delivery platforms in all of my courses as a centralized location for all course-related information. I value diversity, both in course material and class participation.
The success that I have enjoyed by following this approach to teaching has revealed to me my greatest strength for teaching: consistency. I know that whatever course I teach, I will bring a consistently excellent level of quality in terms of both philosophical content and student satisfaction. I recognize that successful teaching requires constant hard work, and act accordingly.