Qualities of a Successful Educator? Here’s One Good Answer

Interview with Robert Stacey, new Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Washington (my alma mater). Last question, he’s asked what are the essential traits of a successful dean. His answer, I think, describes not only deans but all successful educators—especially teachers: believe passionately in the importance of your institution…

John Henry Newman on Education

Meditations on education borrowed from Owen Chadwick’s book Newman (which is a brief biographical sketch of John Henry Newman): What a university (and, by extension, I’ll translate that to mean a college) is not: A college is not a research institute. The primary purpose of a school is education. Advancing one’s subject matter is fine…

Semiotic Ghosts in the Educational Machine

Rebecca Cox opens her book, College Fear Factor: How Students and Professors Misunderstand One Another (Harvard Univ. Press, 2009), by explaining that a certain image of college, illustrated in films like Legally Blond & Good Will Hunting, dominates people’s perceptions of what it’s like to go to college (1). Furthermore, that image is also traced…

Am I a Teacher or a Learner?

Somewhere along the way—I don’t remember where or when but it was during the past couple of years—I heard or read someone explain that many teachers become teachers because they enjoy learning. That’s certainly true with me: I enjoyed being a student & I especially enjoyed many of my undergraduate & graduate courses in college.…