Search
  • Andrew Robinson

Teaching Philosophy

Updated: Nov 30, 2020

I was applying for a teaching award last week, and they always want a teaching philosophy statement. Mine has changed over my years of teaching. It used to emphasize students reaching their potential, but gradually I've been moving it to three more fundamental principles:


1) Be Kind

2) Be Trusting

3) Be a Mentor and Developer


Be Kind


The students in my classes have external pressures from family, finances, health, work (both University and external) and relationships. I do not know what these are, but I try to be kind, when a student is in distress, or is unable to complete a work task, or meet a deadline. I am flexible in giving time extensions to work. I would rather that they completed the work, rather than not do it. This is particularly important during the present pandemic, where the students may be facing considerable outside stresses, as well as the pressure of academic

work.


Be Trusting


I trust my students to tell me when they need help and encourage them to trust me when confiding in me. This trust helps me in the role as mentor and developer. One of the central tenets of this is that I trust my students to behave honestly. I do not require medical notes, if a student has time off. I do not use any form of electronic proctoring or surveillance of tests in my courses, and nor will I.


Be a Mentor and Developer


My speciality is teaching large classes, the majority of whom are first year students, managing the transition from High School to Higher Education. They come from a wide range of places and with diverse education and cultural backgrounds. I try to make all students welcome and use a variety of different methods to keep them engaged in class and keep up with their work. I also try to ensure that my course materials are accessible to all,

and that I am accessible to all students. I aim to mentor the students and develop their intellectual and learning skills, time management, and self-directed learning.


If you do these things, you will encourage the students, and put in place the necessary working environment for them to be their best, and achieve their potential.


117 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Once More Unto the Breach, Dear Friends

So, here we are, back for a second semester of emergency online teaching, during a pandemic. And it's difficult. Very difficult. This is a situation nobody asked for, and we all have to get through

Changing to Online Teaching

The modifications of my regular classes for Online Pandemic Teaching. I had a firm design principle never to increase workload by moving to the online format. I was in the fortunate position of being

Stress, Anxiety and Education

I read the Carleton U Reddit a few days ago, and there were lots of obviously distressed students posting about the difficulty of studying during the pandemic. So I decided that, as an instructor, I

©2020 by Precarious Physicist. Proudly created with Wix.com