Teaching philosophy

How to develop and maintain good teaching in genetics in the age of “factory” universities?

Good teaching is getting most students to use the higher cognitive level processes that the more academic students use spontaneously. Good teaching narrows the gap” (Biggs 1999)

My teaching philosophy concerns how to develop and maintain good teaching in genetics, with the student in focus, in a society and academia where academic values may lose in the race for getting a degree and producing study points, respectively. I discuss this issue and identify possible ways to ensure my teaching standards based on pedagogical theory and practical approaches. For my future teaching, I believe that combining components from a didactic relational model with alignment theory will provide an optimal approach for fulfilling a developing teaching environment. Some of the major components include:

  • Provide a detailed teaching plan to allow for flexibility throughout the courses
  • Provide clear and well-defined teaching goals and clearly communicate these to the students
  • Implement assessment of students at an early stage of courses to ensure that the appropriate skills have been acquired to comprehend more advanced genetics
  • Make frequent use of well-chosen examples, that provide the cognitive connection between abstract genetic theory and real-life situations
  • Use of in-class concept questions (maybe with clickers) to provide a more student-centered classroom situation
  • Implement student peer-evaluation via group discussions, where I should play an active role as a moderator and provider of the definitive answer
  • Ensure the use of practical laboratory and field exercises to demonstrate genetic theory
  • Introduce a component of student and peer-evaluation of me and the content in the lectures
  • Ensure alignment of expectations, performance and evaluation

A full protected version of my teaching philosophy is available here: My teaching philosophy