A Teaching Philosophy
Teaching style is driven by the students' learning styles. Nursing is an engaged profession and for a student to be successful
in the profession of nursing, engaged student centered learning demands the attention of both teacher and learner. Focusing
on student centered/engaged learning, the research and background in teaching of Dr. Richard M. Felder, the Hechst Celanese
Professor Emeritus of Chemical Engineer at North Carolina State University has captured my attention He has written
several books, has contributed to over 200 publications to the fields of science and engineering education and shares much
of what he has learned in monthly informational commentary such as his publication called "Random Thoughts".
Because engaged learning, active learning and collaborative teaching strategies along with lecture are used in the classes
I teach, I enjoy reading informational literature which applies the principles of these teaching strategies and learning styles.
Dr. Felder "gets it" that students do not like engaged learning. "The teacher made us do all of the work!"
"The teacher gets paid to teach us!" "I paid for an education that I am not getting!" According
to Dr. Felder, faculty who have delivered content to be learned via the lecture method and switched to engaged learning may
have found a drop in their student ratings (Felder, 2011).
Engineering and nursing are much alike owning to their operational styles. If the faculty is to facilitate the learning environment
of the student through engaged/active and collaborative learning, much of the burden of learning will shift to the student.
The student quickly realizes this and this fact generates much resentment from the students (Felder 2011).
I think of an analogy of purchasing a gym membership to paying tuition.
The payment is separate from the work required for results. If achieving the benefits of using a gym could be attained merely
from the purchase of that membership the process of toning the body and losing weight would be fairly simple and easy. The
fact is, it is not. The student does have to be involved in his/her learning; the student would need to be motivated
to learn, willing to invest the time in the learning process as well as possess an educational work ethic.
I believe learning is social, occurs in different ways and at different rates
yet it needs to take place in a safe, supportive and stimulating environment. Learning is the formulation and building
of knowledge allowing the learner to become involved in making meaningful connections in the profession through engaged/active
learning. Research shows that learning by doing enhances retention over spans of time as opposed to straight lecture of large
volumes of information; the attention span of the students continues to "fall off" after the first fifteen minutes
of the lecture (Stuart and Rutherford, 1978).
in varying the delivery of content to be learned with lecture and active/engaged learning; I believe all students can learn.
I believe teaching effectively is a matter of matching teaching styles with the learning styles of students. I believe in
effective teaching; I believe in education.
R. (2011). Hang in There! Retrieved from http://www4.ncsu.edu/unity/lockers/users/f/felder/public/Columns
Stuart, J. & Rutherford, R.J. (1978). Medical students concentration during
medical lectures. Lancet 2: 514-516.