My Philosophy

Preface

The chief goal in my classes is to foster an inclusive and welcoming environment. Learning math is important, and is (of course) the main desired learning outcome, but my first priority in the classroom is making sure that every student feels comfortable and poised for success. In short, I am extremely dedicated to facilitating an environment and culture that is conducive to learning. Mathematics is for everyone, and I want my classrooms to be reflective and encouraging of that. I invite students to come to me with any concerns related to courses I'm involved in, and in particular about any things they feel I could individually be doing better. I have an undying commitment to constantly improving as an educator and I do work extremely hard at that craft. I make note of criticisms (and praises) students have given me, and each time I teach or interact with students I make an active effort to refine my practices.

Philosophy of Teaching

You can read my extended Teaching Philosophy Statement here, but I will also write an abstract in this space.

Mathematics is fundamentally concerned with conceptualizing and solving difficult problems through a formal analysis. I see it as only natural that the focus of instruction in math should be on the thinking strategies and concepts that one would employ to tackle these kinds of problems, as opposed to the messy details and formalisms. To me, the details and rigor are important, but they should be presented with sufficient context and motivation to make their content clear. At least in my experience, this approach is what was most effective for me as a student.

Regarding practices, I am a believer in collaboration and discussion as a means of learning. As much as possible, I will try to make instruction focused on the students and their thoughts concerning the material at hand. My desire is to have lectures tend to every student's needs, regardless of their level of experience, and to provide as much external help outside of the classroom as possible.

Commitment to Promoting Diversity

As with the above, you can read my extended Diversity Statement here, and I will write an abstract below.

As I mentioned in the preface, it is my strong belief that mathematics is for everyone. I believe that diversity is a key part of a healthy educational environment, and as such I am dedicated to promoting diversity in my classrooms, and in education in general. This means that all students are welcome in my classes, and that I especially encourage members of historically underrepresented groups to participate and to pursue math as a primary field of study. My intent while a graduate student at UT is to educate myself more on the various barriers and problems that exist for many students to gain entry to the field, and to pursue initiatives that help to eliminate them.