The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.

-Aristotle

Philosophy

My teaching philosophy reflects the belief that the student always, under any circumstance, comes first. It is imperative that the student has the opportunity to practice learning in real-world learning simulation projects through the use of hands-on activities. Projects where the student incorporates audio, video, image, and text are abundant. Because the student is using computer equipment, there is much evidence of tactile function in the learning environment. The student’s learning style is incorporated into learning activities. For example, students produce a hand-coded HTML website incorporating text, graphics, audio, and/or video. Because digital media is so encompassing, it is easy to reach multiple learning styles. Learning styles vary from visual, auditory, and tactile at the minimum. Incorporating as many learning styles into a lesson as possible enables most students’ learning styles to be reached. Students learn differently. Therefore, I am sure to create learning activities that vary the learning styles of the students. For example, it is difficult to include bodily-kinesthetic activity in digital media classes because the student is sitting behind a computer. But, an exercise such as writing pieces of HTML code on note cards and asking the students to work together to piece together the code in the proper sequence can reach not only bodily-kinesthetic learners but also interpersonal learners as well as logical thinkers.

By allowing the student to have some control over the topics of their projects, real-world experience comes to life in the learning environment. The student should have some say in their own learning, such as picking their own topic for a project or the like. By students having some say to in their own learning, their interests, and passions, as well as their career discipline subject matter, may be included in their work—even in non-degree specific courses. Also, the student will likely approach the project in a more positive manner if their interests are peaked. For example, if the student chooses a website, he/she would like to develop rather than being assigned a specific site, he or she will be more vested in the project’s success and more interested and motivated to put forth the maximum effort. It is important for students to select projects which allow connection to current industry standards so that students stay abreast of the ever-changing demands of the website development field.

I believe students need the opportunity to strengthen weaknesses identified through course activities. For example, students face challenges with identifying the target audience for projects. As a result, I have been studying ways to incorporate learning activities into the classroom lessons to address this challenge. I believe it is my duty to help students overcome and master topics that otherwise are a challenge.

Student engagement in lessons is very important in this educator's environment. Rather than the instructor giving long-winded lectures, the class discussion would engage the learners more. A variety of learning activities to engage students should be implemented. Variety helps to keep the learner’s attention on the task and the more the learner is on task, the more likely he/she is to learn the information that the instructor intends for the learners to master. For example, rather than delivering a lecture on the problems of a specific website, this instructor may generate class discussion by having the student identify problems and discuss them as a group.

Additionally, the instructor needs to stay current on industry trends so that these trends may be shared with the student in a learning environment. Attending professional conferences and/or training along with the advice of industry professionals/advisory board members help this instructor stay current with modern industry standards. By staying current, you can peak the student’s interest and let the student know that the instructor is current in his/her field. Students are able to learn from class discussions and projects about the current standards as these projects are modified to include new standards as the industry evolves. Technology is constantly changing and keeping up with the times, it helps ensure that students will always have access to the most current and relevant information.