I have been teaching undergraduate and less often, graduate students since 1999. Professors are generally expected to have a pedagogical statement when they begin their career in academia. Mine is simple: formulation, implementation, evaluation and revision.
In teaching, like in writing much of the work comes from revising and updating your knowledge, your objectives, your formatting, and your implementation. I use the scientific approach in teaching like in research. I need to know what my students already understand at the outset of the semester. A baseline evaluation provides a framework to scaffold further information, introduce new ways to think about existing and newly introduced information. Real learning does not come from rote memorization of facts and dates but in thinking about information in an applied, meaningful way, in a critical way.
I start each class I teach with a comprehensive exam, essentially the final exam that includes all of the information I hope students will take away from the semester. This provides a baseline of information, where they are at the start of the semester. Over the course of the semester, I introduce learning assessments (traditional exams), self-evaluations and class ratings, to see where my students are at all times during the semester and if my pedagogy is effective. At the end of the semester, students provide course and instructor ratings as well. These tools provide a basis for how I might frame subsequent courses, how I might improve my course work, and what learning methods (e.g., case studies, group exercises, laboratories, and lectures) were effective.
My lectures and sometimes my classes are not always a success. But in the classroom, like in writing, research and life, we formulate, implement, evaluate, and revise, revise, revise.
Here are a list of classes I teach at Pacific University:
PSY 150 – Introductory to Psychology
PSY 348 – Behavioral Research Methods with Laboratory (PSY 349)
PSY 252 – Introduction to Behavioral Neuroscience with Laboratory
PSY 352 – Introduction to Sensation and Perception with Laboratory
PSY 452 – Introduction to Behavioral Endocrinology
PSY 420 – Special Topics: Psychopharmacology
PSY 420 – Special Topics: Evolutionary Psychology