Renoir’s “The Reading” illustrates my teaching style and philosophy. Both people appear quite engaged and thoughtful. In fact it is difficult to tell which girl is the teacher, except the dark-haired girl’s arm around the blonde’s indicates a supportive role. Like this girl, I prefer a shoulder-to- shoulder teaching posture to a traditional behind-the- lectern pose. This scene doesn’t look like a formal education setting at all, yet I presume the book was selected to extend the student’s knowledge and enrich her understanding. I like to imagine they are taking time to ponder because the teacher has just asked a question, partly to assess the student’s skills and partly to weigh the possible answers herself. The teacher has created a learning environment in which the student is equipped to synthesize information into new ideas and develop applications.
Blissful as this scene appears, I know the teacher has devoted much time and effort to make it so. While there is an art to teaching, there is also a science. My interest in theories of learning began in graduate school when I realized that teaching adults is not simply teaching grown-up children. My teaching experience and scholarship has, thus far, resulted in a few core values:
  1. Create an Environment of Respect and Engagement
  2. Know the Student’s Perspective and Goals
  3. Extend and Enrich the Student’s Knowledge
I find each of these values symbolized in the painting by Renoir. Evidence of them in my teaching is found in various lessons and assessments. I’ve grateful for the lessons I’ve learned from my own teachers, mentors, colleagues, and students. -updated July 2016

2015 Bender Teaching Award Recipient

click on link for class syllabus

Undergraduate Courses:

SPHR 1011 Voice and Diction

SPHR 2104 Introduction to Speech and Language Disorders

Graduate Courses:

SPHR 6210 Research Methods

    SPHR 6222 Neuromotor Speech Disorders

SPHR 6260 Voice Disorders