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Debra Ballard: 2007 TLC Technology Grant Report


Excerpt:

Teaching Uncovered

What are Best Teaching Practices and why should we care? I believe most of us teach at Otis because we genuinely care about the students and their learning (and I can say from experience that is not true of all colleges). However, as faculty we come with many different backgrounds and levels of preparation. I distinctly recall the very first time I walked into my own class (18 years ago, when I was mere 16). I was excited and intimidated. It was then I realized teaching was both an art and a science and became interested in pedagogy, or "the art or science of being a teacher, generally refer[ring] to strategies of instruction or a style of instruction." Up until then I must confess that I assumed if you knew your content, you could watch others do it, use them as a model, and then call upon some teaching gene and perform effortlessly. Though my evals were good and the students seemed to learn, I felt like a fraud, albeit one clever at disguising my inexperience. This was the first time I had the "teaching naked" dream (and in my 18 years of teaching. I’ve become quite the exhibitionist, usually just before the semester begins).

--Debra Ballard
Chair, Liberal Arts and Sciences

View full blog post [originally posted on the O Teaching Matters Blog]