Teaching Statement

My teaching goals do not ultimately focus on the gain of more knowledge but rather in the ability to perform further with such knowledge. Teaching should not merely be a matter of uploading content in the student's brain but rather the opportunity to make an apprentice a professional. An excellent example of this instructional goal is when I include students in the scholarly dialogue of any given topic. I take my students' capabilities very seriously as I expect them to engage and to contribute in any given theory, debate, and dialogue as if they were experts ready to address any given problem. Knowledge acquisition is widely available via the Internet, and countless resources, but not everyone can create new products, gather new data, and propose new theories.


My expertise as a teacher does not correspond with my expertise as a scholar. Teaching for me is not to expose my expert theory or argument but rather to oversee students become the experts. I am merely a guide to presenting unexplored paths in their reasoning process, adding hidden data in their claims, and questioning their current paradigms and potentially hidden bias. The collaborative piece is of ultimate importance to me. If I am successful in making them participate in discussions, joining me as we construct and organize frameworks, and disseminate arguments with me for the sake of furthering scholarship, then they are successfully becoming scholars. 


In my teaching experience, one of the most rewarding moments is to see students presenting insightful interpretations of theological and philosophical texts, and critiques to expert's analysis by pointing out potentially false premises, unsound arguments, implicit biases, and gaps in contextualization. These moments often happen when there is a two-way interaction between my students and me. In this two-way interaction, I receive feedback on how well my students comprehend my instructions and whether there is a correspondence between my goals as an instructor and the actual learning outcome from the students.


Finally, I firmly believe in designing my courses with attainable goals, critical and hands-on methodologies, robust and technological-friendly materials, and transparent assessment.  These criteria are all focus on making the most out of my students' learning experience and their professional success.

 

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