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Teaching Philosophy Example 1

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Teaching Philosophy Example 1 Page 3
Teaching Philosophy Example 1
Sample Teaching Statement (Music)
McDougal Graduate Teaching Center (2006)
Statement of teaching PhiloSoPhy
As a teacher, I aim to perpetuate knowledge and inspire learning. More specifically, as a musicologist I in-
troduce students to a canon of musical works and ask them to articulate their reactions, not only presenting
a repertoire but also teaching independent critical listening and thinking. To this end, I seek a balance in my
courses between lecturing to students and asking them to make discoveries. I encourage students to engage
with the topic at hand, with me, and with each other in the belief that good teaching depends upon intel-
lectual exchange.
My approach to student assessment reflects my two goals. First, the student is expected to master a body of
knowledge by demonstrating on exams a familiarity with those composers, pieces, terms, and concepts stud-
ied in the course. Second, students are given the opportunity to reflect upon the material at greater leisure in
written assignments that emphasize the skills of critical think ng and listening acquired during the semester.
While my standards are high, I help the students to meet expectations by providing office hours, review ses-
sions, and the chance to submit draft papers and revisions.
I believe in a flexible manner of instruction, responsive to the unique atmosphere of a given class. In conduct-
ing either a large lecture or small seminar, I am aware of students’ different experiences and temperaments in
hopes of developing their strengths while ameliorating their weaknesses. Every student, regardless of back-
ground, can improve his or her ability to listen to and understand a piece of music. In lectures, discussions,
and assignments, I show that music responds to various modes of inquiry: analytic , hermeneutic, cultural,
and historical; thus, students are equipped to explore the possibilities of each perspective and emboldened
to push beyond their own experience to expand their skills. In the end, I have enriched a students ability to
think about, discuss, and listen to music with a new awareness of its aesthetic and humanistic significance.
Teaching Philosophy Example 1