This summary starts with a discussion on my understanding of the ethics and student rights in higher education, then is followed by a reflection on what I have learnt from this pedagogical course, and ends up with some of my thinking for teaching in the future.
Although our university has the ethical guideline for supervision (Ethical Guidelines UiT), I did not know this guideline before I took the pedagogical course. Comparing with what I have actually done to the guideline, I think I have followed these two points mostly: competence and responsibility. I think these two moral principles should be considered whether we teach courses or supervise students.
As a teacher, I think first we should be knowledgeable and skilled in the field where we are teaching or supervising. We should keep us updated on the new progress in the field. It is hard to imagine a non-confident teacher can deliver good quality teaching. I think only when we are familiar and confident with what we are teaching, we know how to adjust teaching methods and activities accordingly. Second, I think we should be responsible. We should provide students appropriate information, immediate and construct feedbacks, necessary suggestions and adequate supports. In addition, there are many international students in classes, we should be aware of the multicultural teaching environment and be non-discrimination with regard to race, gender and religion. Finally, I think we should contribute to the positive images of our colleagues, institute and university, avoid discussing negatively with students about them.
Concerning student rights, I think the most importance is to provide student freedom. We should never overwhelm our own ideas and approaches over those of students. As discussed by Young (1974), “colleges and universities have an inherent authority to maintain order and freedom on campus” and “individual freedom is indeed the cornerstone of a free society”.
I think I have learned a lot by taking this pedagogical course. First, I have learned theories to guide the teaching practices that I have taken previously. Although I have in fact implemented some of the teaching theories in my teaching, for example active learning, informative assessments, flip class, peer evaluation and so on, I had no exact theories in my mind before. By taking the course, I have read many literatures on these theories, which will definitely give me insights on teaching philosophy, methods and activities.
Second, the course provided the opportunities to learn from other colleagues. These opportunities were not just limited to learning from the peer observations, but also included learning from all the colleagues taking the course. I think it was quite good that we had different group members in each section of the course and had a lot of presentations and discussions in the entire course. I learnt from the colleagues what and how different teaching methods, activities, techniques had been implemented in the different disciplines and how I could borrow these practices to my teaching.
Third, by taking the course, I strengthened my philosophies of “teach students knowledge and skills they can use in their carrier”, “get students motivated and engaged”, and “more informative evaluation than summative evaluation”. Both from the literature and the discussion within the colleagues, I realized they are general good directions taken in the modern education . Therefore, in the future, I will try to improve my teaching in these aspects.
More concretely, as what I have discussed in my teaching philosophy, I will strengthen problem-based learning in Applied Price Analysis course and use different teaching methods, which include think-pair-share technique, presentation, group project and peer review in both Applied Price Analysis and Entrepreneurial Financial Management to enhance students’ motivation and engagement in their learning process. In addition, I think I have to learn how to use the new technology in teaching and how to combine using different teaching tools to make teaching interesting. Students nowadays like using facebook, youtube and other social media for group work and discussion, thus how to use these tools to meet students’ interest in delivering information, communication and feedback becomes important. At the same time, teaching has changed from an old fashion of “chalk and blackboard” or even PowerPoint to a combination of different teaching tools including film, role-play, etc. Therefore, I have to think by myself and learn from my colleagues how to use different teaching tools efficiently in teachings, which is definitely helpful to build up an active learning classroom.
This teaching portfolio is a documentation and presentation of the outcomes of the course named “basic pedagogical competence for higher education”. The attached files are three documents issued after we fulfilled the course.
Young, D. P. (1974). Student right and discipline in higher education. Peabody Journal of Education, 52(1), pp: 58-64.