Throughout the teaching and learning process, I incorporate multiple choices and pathways through the learning materials. I encourage students to engage in open-ended formative and summative evaluation of the course (what’s working, what’s not). I also ask students to self-evaluate individual progress. Finally, my course design includes a data-driven evaluation component, which focuses on systematic outcomes and results, that are clearly tied to course goals and objectives. I follow these principles in teaching: being enthusiastic for each class and letting it show; learning about the students in the course; organizing each class well; using a presentation style that maximizes student interest; and using a variety of teaching methods to present the material. I use humour in my presentations to spark student interest and make my presentations engaging. I vary my teaching techniques in class (cases, discussion groups, lecture, etc.). I extensively utilize e-learning platforms (Moodle), PowerPoint software and all elements of multimedia (documents, music CDs, videos, web sites, etc). These forms are also used to structure the students into class teams. I keep these forms on file so I can be available to the students as a reference.
The constancy of change in contemporary teaching and learning environments behooves one to think critically about a teaching philosophy. In the 21st century, a new literacy has emerged—the ability to use appropriate technological tools in an Information society. For example, the personal computer and associated technological innovations, e.g., the Internet and E-mail, have become commonplace.
Alvin Toffler, futurist, and author of the classic Future Shock , puts it best, when he says: “The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn“. Faculty must critically examine and re-examine teaching philosophies, as the environments in which teaching and learning become increasingly diverse and varied.
To measure student learning, I provide multiple assessments. Over my 8 years of teaching experience, these assessments have included:
- Collaborative research projects
- Formal scholarly research papers
- Portfolios Presentations (Speaking, Multimedia)
- Quizzes Review activities
- Student written newsletters
- Non- Traditional exams
- Writing Activities
- Written concept summaries