I’m passionate about what I teach and research — and I hope to inspire that same enthusiasm in my students! At face-value, a teacher’s job is to help a student develop and improve their academic knowledge and performance. But a teacher can also help define a student’s entire educational experience. This experience should be inspiring, meaningful, practical – and Fun!
I believe it’s important to create courses that are challenging (not going to lie, my courses aren’t “easy”!). But I also try to keep them interesting and relevant, so that students are eager to learn, apply and extend their knowledge. It’s great to see students start to believe in themselves and their abilities, through a commitment to hard work and excellence. Not everyone will develop interest in a subject (sometimes discovering non-interest in a subject can be just as valuable!) but I hope all students complete a course feeling they learned something worthwhile.
The most important things learned in University are not the content, facts and figures from lectures and text books – those can easily be looked up if forgotten. But communication, critical thinking, problem solving, building an argument, effective information gathering – you can’t look those up on Google or Wikipedia.
I promote high standards for oral and written work, with the belief that any research or academic work is only as good as your ability to communicate it to others. I try to challenge students to think independently, to take ideas and connect them to prior knowledge and extend them to create knew knowledge. You’ll gain the confidence to participate, appreciating the value of being challenged and risking incorrect answers. Rather than simply accepting information, the value of always asking and trying to understand “why” cannot be underestimated. It’s so important for you to gain the confidence to formulate and defend your own ideas and opinions, even in the face of challenges. You’ll develop a greater capacity for independent thought, making a personal investment in your learning and taking more ownership of your newly acquired knowledge.
As a teacher I can impact I can a student’s life and their learning experiences. I love watching students progress and evolve as people, from the first months of undergraduate uncertainty progressing towards graduation, or from a first time researcher to a confident graduate student, and knowing that I’ve helped inspire something within. I hope to positively impact and inspire many students’ lives over the course of my teaching career.
“Teaching is more than imparting knowledge, it is inspiring change.
Learning is more than absorbing facts, it is acquiring understanding.”
– William Arthur Ward