The President’s Teaching Academy has announced a series of three workshops for graduate students who are teaching or have plans to teach.
“Principles of Learning and Articulating a Teaching Philosophy,” is scheduled for Jan. 18.  “Lecturing Effectively: The Pros and Cons of PowerPoint,” is set for Feb. 15.
“From Lecture to Discussion: Online collaborative Spaces, Partner Work, etc.,” is scheduled for March 21. All workshops will noon-2 p.m. and will be available on WHETS videoconferencing. More information, including locations on the Pullman campus, will be available on the Graduate School website early next semester.
Rachel Halverson, associate professor of German and a member of the teaching academy, said the spring workshops incorporate feedback from the fall workshops, both in terms of their structure and content.
In general, she said, participants preferred noontime brown-bag gatherings rather than full-day programs. Also, participants wanted the opportunity to talk about their teaching philosophy in anticipation of future job searches.
Being able to articulate a teaching philosophy is useful in interviews, Halverson said, but it is also useful, even necessary, for anyone who is teaching at whatever level.
“If you can’t articulate it, chances are you don’t know what you are doing,” she said.
Articulating what is often unspoken about teaching is a big part of what the President’s Teaching Academy is attempting to do.
“I’m still trying out new things,” said Halverson, who has been teaching 18 years. “I think if you take teaching seriously it is an evolving process. It is not static.”
But, she said, people don’t often have time to talk about teaching.
Michael Delahoyd, another member of the teaching academy, said participants in the fall workshops seemed to really appreciate the wide-ranging discussions.
“It was clear people were happy to be talking about teaching,” he said.