Students and Teachers
This is a document under development to express some ideas I have gathered from many sources. Please be patient with me as I add to it from time to time. There is much more to a formal philosophy for learning than is indicated here now...but this is a start...
College is a Learning Environment
As a student moves through elementary and high school, there is a progession of responsibility that shifts from the teacher toward the student. While American school starts as a teaching environment, it progresses toward a learning environment. It is critical for both professor and student to realize this shift and to complete the process in college.
In college, the focus should be on learning, not so much on teaching. This is because the goal is for the student to become a life-long learner. S/he will need to find the resources necessary to continue the learning process well beyond commencement. There will be many teachers down the student's road in life, but it is the learner who must know how to find and use those teachers. Our goal, then, as members of the academy is to empower our students to recognize and utilize resources to assist their own learning.
It is important that we assist our students in taking responsibility for their own learning, in providing exercises in facing uncertainty, and in affirming the kind of behavior that leads to life-long learning.
What makes a good student? A successful student...
- is responsible for her/his own learning and takes an active part in classes
- has a real goal in attending college for life-long learning
- is not afraid to ask many questions
- uses the professor as a partner in the learning process
- sits in the front of the room to avoid distractions and to get the most out of classes
- takes excellent notes, outlines book chapters, keeps good lab records, etc.
- keeps motivated to learn and avoids burnout by seeking that which excites them about every subject
- works and talks with classmates and the professor, because using the vocabulary builds confidence and ability in communicating in the subject
- studies progressively throughout the semester and never crams for an exam, realizing that being alert is half of the battle
- knows how to manage her/his time so that s/he is in control, not a victim, of life
What makes a good teacher? A successful teacher...
- organizes and focuses the pathway to learning in the discipline
- continually upgrades and updates experiences for students
- fosters discovery, collaboration, problem solving, and risk taking
- provides experiences for every student to succeed
- opens pathways of communication between him/herself and students and between students
- affirms success at each step in the learning process
- see him/herself as "guide on the side" rather than "sage on the stage"
- evaluates both student and faculty performance
This page © Ross E. Koning 1994.
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Send comments and bug reports to Ross Koning at koningre∂gmail⋅com.