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Philosophy of Education
We all know of that age when the kids constantly ask “why?”, however years have passed and the questioning part of my mind has not ceased. That inquisitive view of the world has made my whole career an enjoyable and interesting learning experience. As a result, now as a professor, I base my philosophy of education in transmitting my curiosity and love for learning to my students.
In order to achieve this goal, my enthusiasm is certainly not enough. First, I need to capture the attention of the students, by presenting the material clearly; successfully conveying key concepts and making connections between the subject and their personal lives. Once the students are interested in the subject, their curiosity will naturally develop, and their positive disposition towards learning will enhance the retention of the material. When the students reach this level of engagement, they will take full advantage of the learning process as an opportunity for personal growth. At that point my role will be that of a guide, showing them the different paths and tools needed to reach their goals and become successful professionals in their field.
Specifically in the area of Mathematics and Statistics, my classes are based on critical thinking and problem solving skills rather than the memorization of facts. I include the struggle by the student as an integral part of the solution process, instead of immediately presenting the correct methods; their struggle increases their sense of ownership of their learning process and allows them to feel the satisfaction of discovery.
In addition, I constantly try to refer to real world problems rather than doing mechanical exercises. Although the methods in Mathematics and Statistics are very important, I believe the essence is a full understanding of the problems and what questions we seek to answer. Once we devise and carry out a plan to answer this questions, it cannot be overemphasized the importance of analyzing and interpreting the results in the given context.
Finally, I find it important to acknowledge and to take advantage of the changes in our environment. Technology has changed our lives, and it could change positively the way we approach education as well. In that matter I try to benefit from tools like MyMathLab, WebAssign, Blackboard and D2L; I find these elements to be a great resource for the delivery of information as well as to provide feedback in a timely manner.