Teaching Philosophy


The best learning comes from within; the best teachers are those who inspire in their students a desire to learn more.


Not everyone learns in exactly the same fashion, and for this reason I have collected as many methods as possible of explaining mathematical (and scientific) principles and/or techniques. In trying to clarify a difficult point for a student, I will usually offer three or four different ways to look at a problem, telling them to pick one they are comfortable with. I also encourage students to work together, as teamwork is essential for their success in life.

As much as possible, I try to point out interesting consequences of the principles I am teaching, or interesting {\em unsolved\/} problems; I feel it is important for everyone to realize that no branch of knowledge is complete.

Moreover, I try to emphasize that no branch of knowledge exists in isolation; I often point out the links between the various branches of knowledge, showing that they are all part of a great, interconnected whole. For this, I draw upon my broad background in both the sciences and the humanities.


The computerization of everyday life is a fact that educators, particularly in mathematics, must deal with. I feel there are "computer things", which computers do well (such as determining averages and standard deviations), and "people things", which people do well (such as determining whether or not a particular mean is significant). It is my philosophy that while people should know the principles behind ``computer things'', human beings should not compete with a computer, but rather try to emphasize those things that only a human mind can accomplish.

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