Teaching Philosophy - Gezinus J. Hidding, Ph.D.
Here are a few points that summarize some of my fundamental views:
- The idea of a course is to stimulate learning, which is an activity
performed by you (the student). My (i.e., the instructor's)
primary function is not teaching, but facilitating your learning. "I can
lead a horse to water, but I can't make it drink."
- My main purpose is to have you think. Thinking is more than memorizing and regurgitating. Thinking
is being able to compare, contrast, critique, generate new insights, ...
- The course is a two-way street:
- I come to class prepared: I have studied the prereadings, have
prepared class exercises or discussions, and am ready to (try and) answer
your questions. You come to class prepared: You have studied the
prereadings, are ready for class exercises or discussions, and are
prepared to ask questions.
- You make mistakes; I make mistakes; We're human.
- I want the course to be worthwhile and valuable to you. And so do
- You learn from me. I learn from you. "All of us know more than each of us."
- I care more when you care more.
- My professional background is management consulting, where high quality (e.g., of interaction,
respect for others, deliverables) is expected, always. I expect the same in my courses.
- Any process should contain within itself the seeds of improvement.
Consequently, constructive feedback is most appreciated, particularly in
the form of: "This course would be more valuable to me if ..."
- Let's have fun.