Before I became Director of Allied Health my career was as Medical Assistant, Nurse and then Educator.
As an Educator I found Teaching exhilarating. I never feel more energized than after a class that has gone well, it is my goal to see the look of acknowledgement on my students face. As a teacher, I aim to perpetuate knowledge and inspire learning. I seek a balance in my courses between lecturing to students and asking them to make discoveries. I encourage students to engage with the topic at hand, with me, and with each other in the belief that good teaching depends upon intellectual exchange.
I love teaching when the learning in my classroom is palpable: When I can sense it in the quickening pace of discussion or a student’s visible delight in using newly learned clinical skills or medical jargon; when I can hear the excitement in students’ testimonials about mastering skills that “made a difference” or theories that transformed practices and perspectives. I count these as teaching successes and make it a habit to reflect on their origins so that I can recreate the conditions for their occurrence again and again. My philosophy of teaching is informed by the material I teach, relevant scholarship, and the lessons I have learned from personal teaching successes and failures.
My approach to student assessment reflects my two goals. First, the student is expected to master a body of knowledge by demonstrating on exams a familiarity with those clinical skills, competencies and concepts studied in the course.
Second, students are given the opportunity to reflect upon the material that emphasizes the skills of critical thinking and demonstrating skills acquired throughout the semester. While my standards are high, I help the students to meet expectations by providing office hours, review sessions and open lab for additional hands on clinical skills.
I believe that W.B. Yeats captured the exhilaration of teaching when he wrote: “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” My goal as a ‘teacher of teachers’ is to ignite in my learners a passion to create an institutional teaching and learning environment that fosters a conflagration of educational experimentation and innovation.
In summary, the learning process is enhanced by
· a collegial relationship between teacher and learner
· evident pride in scholarship by the teacher
· challenge of the learner’s knowledge
· elucidation of underlying structure by the teacher
· active connection between critical thinking and hands on clinical skills by the learner