Brief Statement of Teaching Philosophy
“I tell my students, ‘when you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power, then your job is to empower somebody else. This is not just a grab-bag candy game” – Toni Morrison
My overarching goal in teaching mirrors the goals I have for research and advising. I want my students to think critically about and develop an understanding of the nature of the social world they live in so that they can use that knowledge to hopefully create changes that leave the world better off than they found it. This aim guides the way that I teach every class, whether it be an 8-person graduate seminar on research methodology or a 120-person undergraduate lecture course on theories of persuasion and social influence. One overarching lesson I try to convey to my students is that regardless of their long-term goals, learning fundamental principles of social scientific theory and methodology can provide them with insights about human behavior, which they can apply in their everyday lives. Accomplishing this teaching goal requires (a) learning about students’ aspirations and integrating them into course material to maximize relevance and thus the amount that they learn, (b) highlighting the gaps between their folk wisdom and scientific evidence to underscore the utility of the social scientific approach for learning about the world and how to intervene in it, and (c) providing opportunities to translate their new knowledge into action to reinforce the lessons they have learned in my classes so that the lessons stay with them after they leave Cornell. This article shares an example of how I do this in my classrooms.
I am currently teaching my graduate seminar on Quantitative Research Methods (COMM 6820). The syllabus for the course is available here: https://osf.io/pdjq4
My tentative teaching schedule is outlined below.
Spring 2023: Persuasion and Social Influence (COMM 2760)
Previous Teaching Experience:
Fall 2021: COMM 6770: Attitudes and Social Judgment. Syllabus: https://osf.io/j9pw2/
Fall 2020: COMM 6820: Quantitative Research Methods. Syllabus: https://osf.io/bh7tz/
Spring 2020: COMM 2760: Persuasion and Social Influence. Syllabus: https://osf.io/ucxyt/
Spring 2020: COMM/INFO 4800: Behavioral Science Interventions. Syllabus: https://osf.io/gczjw/
Fall 2019: COMM 6770: Attitudes and Social Judgment. Syllabus: https://osf.io/hzr6v/
Spring 2019: COMM 2760: Persuasion and Social Influence. Syllabus: https://osf.io/u6mp3/
Fall 2018: COMM 6820: Methods of Communication Research. Syllabus: https://osf.io/kj9hq/
Spring 2018: Co-Instructor (COMM 2760): Persuasion and Social Influence, Cornell University.
Winter 2017: Primary Instructor (BA 101): Preparation Initiative Professional Development Seminar, University of Michigan.
Fall 2016: Primary Instructor (BA 101): Preparation Initiative Professional Development Seminar, University of Michigan.
Winter 2015: Primary Instructor (PSYCH 211 & PSYCH 306): Project Outreach, University of Michigan.
Teaching and Mentoring Awards:
2021: Junior Faculty Champion Award for fostering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Graduate and Professional Education, Cornell Graduate School.
2021: J. Frank Yates PI Advocate Award for fostering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Undergraduate Education, University of Michigan.
2017: Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor, Department of Psychology, University of Michigan.
Teaching Workshops Facilitated or Served as Panelist:
Fall 2015: New Graduate Student Instructor Training (Panelist), Department of Psychology, University of Michigan.
Fall 2014: Facilitating Classroom Discussions (Workshop Facilitator), Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, University of Michigan.
Teaching Certification & Training:
Spring 2016: Preparing Future Faculty Seminar, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching, University of Michigan
Fall 2013: Teaching Certificate in Multicultural Classroom Facilitation, Center for Research on Learning and Teaching & Program on Intergroup Relations, University of Michigan