I believe students learn most when they engage in hands-on, semi-directed, learner-centered exploration that leads to the discovery of new knowledge. I use this approach in all my educational activities, from designing online content for blended learning and leading seminars for education professionals, to classroom instruction and research supervision. As an instructor, I work to foster opportunities for discovery-driven learning by creating a dynamic and engaging learning environment and by inviting learners to share ownership of an activity through the decentralization of assessments and use of self-directed projects.
These approaches serve my overall goal of improving scientific literacy by teaching students how scientists work to discover knowledge and effectively communicate it to others. Courses that I've designed also emphasize the role of science in modern culture, from the politics of teaching evolution to deconstructing Facebook posts on GMOs and vaccines. I strongly believe that building these connections between students and current scientific issues has the potential to impact students' critical thinking abilities long after the semester ends, regardless of their future career plans.