How I Teach
The three basic elements of quality teaching are:
1. Good instructor – it may seem obvious, but it is important for the instructor to be knowledgeable and have a firm grasp of the topic at hand. Even if the material only covers the basics, the instructor should have a thorough understanding in order to allow for optimal teaching. He needs to have good communication skills and other soft skills of a teacher like patience. A person who is knowledgeable in a topic, is not necessarily a good instructor of that topic.
2. Quality Technical content of the course – information should be presented in a comprehensive manner, and should progress from definitions and basics to more complex concepts.
3. Good presentation materials – the instructor should use all the capabilities if the available technologies (e.g. PowerPoint©) to transfer better and quicker the knowledge in the course time. He needs to be familiar with info-graphics and data visualization techniques.
QUALITY TECHNICAL CONTENT
When I am designing a course for professionals, I have this in mind that working professionals do not have a lot of time to devote to learning. They prefer to see the below “knowledge transfer media”:
- bulleted texts,
- diagrams, schematics, and pictures
- decision-making trees,
- equations, or rule of thumbs
rather than a “pure text”
• I believe organization is incredibly important— I know science is an organized structure of the information. A well-organized information can more easily be applied to new situations and problems to predict new results.
• The structure and organization of the course is not necessarily what is used in university and college text book. That structure was built for students. For working professionals a different specific structure should be designed.
• When I design a course I constantly check the coherency and the depth of the material to make sure I am not deviating only because I fell in love of one specific topic.
• When I design a course, I dump every bit of information relevant to the topic into the course material, then I “prune” so I am left with only the information relevant to the course and have high quality content.
• I don’t waste time on long lists of hypothetical situations—if it can be generalized, then I will do it. Generalizations allow me to cater to a wider range of professionals while giving the individuals the opportunity to apply the knowledge to their own specific situations or gain a better understanding of past situations.
• I believe people have different options to learn: Studying book, technical magazines, contributing in real or cyper conversations are some of them. They come to my course because of its special features. A course is (and should be) a flexible way of learning which gives opportunity to everyone in the class to learn. It can and should be updated frequently based of new trends and innovations in industry. If my course fails to show such attributes, people will prefer to use less expensive options for learning.
• And last not least, I know, a good course for practicing professionals will build “a sense of experience” by providing parameter spectrums that can be expected in any given situation, and offering rule of thumbs developed through experiences. Rule of thumbs may aid in short-listing options, determining the best option or double-checking calculations.
AESTHETICISTS OF THE COURSE MATERIAL
• When draw something for my course, I always thinking if the participants in my course can grab what I am supposed to transfer to them by very sight on this thing or not.
• When I am using Microsoft Powerpoint, I won’t treat it as a hanging notebook— I use its unique features to convey the concepts through pictures, animations, sounds, etc. as well as text.