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Ali

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My teaching approach is to facilitate the learning process for others to help make well-informed and meaningful health decisions. Thus, my role is to provide guidance towards the pursuit of knowledge and encourage those to experience (through application) of what they have learned. I strongly believe that we all have experienced the feeling of wanting to establish meaning in their lives - equating to living a productive and fruitful life. The individuals I have met generally have a life goal they hope to accomplish, and to do so they would want to be in good health.
I do have a critical view on one aspect of the learning process that there is a distinction between knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge can be easily achieved from reading, studying, or listening. However, knowledge alone is worthless, if not dangerous without wisdom. Having knowledge alone equates to an individual able to memorize and regurgitate information without truly understanding the significance of what was just gained. However, combined with wisdom, knowledge can be powerful. Wisdom is gained through application of collected knowledge. Thus, a knowledge seeker will retain what was learned longer and be more appreciative once they are able to experience how it can be applied for themselves or others.
Philosophy: Respect the learning process of others and how those processes affect their outlook. This is important when discussing/assessing one's health and the pursuit of health change.
Goals:
1. Facilitate the learning process.
Method: Through exploratory techniques, I would encourage the acts of critical thinking and raising questions, as answers should not have to be the end of a discussion. This will also require discussing potential strategies/approaches to address a health topic. Then, allowing one to implement a strategy and discuss the experience/outcome.
2. Drive the message of progress not perfection.
Method: Set health goals for long-term and celebrate small victories along the way.
3. Have others translate their learning experiences to help those they are in contact with on a daily basis.
Method: Provide evidence-based information to make health changes, share the progress they have made, and provide an outline to guide others. By disseminate strategies/approaches that have and have not worked for an individual, they would be better adept to making meaningful suggestions to those who they are in contact with.

Ali’s Qualifications

Education & Certification

Undergraduate Degree: University of Florida - Bachelors, Microbiology

Graduate Degree: University of Florida - PHD, Nutritional Sciences

Hobbies

Hiking, Biking, Rock Climbing, reading and enjoying a day out at the park,


Q & A

What is your teaching philosophy?

As a researcher and instructor who promotes health, my philosophy is to facilitate the learning process for others to help make well informed and meaningful health decisions. Thus, my role is to provide guidance towards the pursuit of knowledge and encourage those to experience (through application) of what they have learned. I strongly believe that we all have experienced the feeling of wanting to establish meaning in our lives - equating to living a productive and fruitful life. The individuals I have met generally have a life goal they hope to accomplish, and to do so they would want to be in good health. I do have a critical view on one aspect of the learning process-- that there is a distinction between knowledge and wisdom. Knowledge can be easily achieved from reading, studying, or listening. However, knowledge alone is worthless, if not dangerous without wisdom. Having knowledge alone equates to an individual able to memorize and regurgitate information without truly understanding the significance of what was just gained. However, combined with wisdom, knowledge can be powerful. Wisdom is gained through application of collected knowledge. Thus, a knowledge seeker will retain what was learned longer and be more appreciative once they are able to experience how it can be applied for themselves or others. Philosophy: Respect the learning process of others and how those processes affect their outlook. This is important when discussing/assessing one's health and the pursuit of health change. Goals: 1. Facilitate the learning process. Method: Through exploratory techniques, I would encourage the acts of critical thinking and raising questions, as answers should not have to be the end of a discussion. This will also require discussing potential strategies/approaches to address a health topic. Then, allowing one to implement a strategy and discuss the experience/outcome. 2. Drive the message of progress not perfection. Method: Set health goals for long-term and celebrate small victories along the way. 3. Have others translate their learning experiences to help those they are in contact with on a daily basis. Method: Provide evidence-based information to make health changes, share the progress they have made, and provide an outline to guide others. By disseminate strategies/approaches that have and have not worked for an individual, they would be better adept to making meaningful suggestions to those who they are in contact with.

What might you do in a typical first session with a student?

I like to assess where the student is in their learning/understanding of the subject matter. This can be easily done by looking at past homework, quizzes, and tests to see what they are understanding or where they are having challenges.

How can you help a student become an independent learner?

By teaching them proper study habits and also using examples that are relevant to their work (e.g., their interests), and to tie that in with the material.

How would you help a student stay motivated?

I live by the philosophy: "shoot for progress and not perfection." As a former student who struggled with staying motivated, I found that setting 15-20 minutes per day (starting at 2-3x per week) and slowly building from there helped. That way, a student would not feel overburdened. Also, it's important to set clear goals and track that progress.

If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?

It depends on the subject matter. For example, if it's a science based class, I like to present relevant case studies or real-life world events that I could tie into the learning. I would also encourage using other resources to address the same question.

How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?

I encourage them to read daily (15-20 minutes). Trust me, it helped me, and I had challenges in middle school with reading comprehension. It wasn’t until I began reading outside of school (various topics) that I noticed my comprehension improve. This was also true with a couple of my former students.

What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?

Daily practice and review after a session (15 minutes). Doing practice problems from websites. Flashcards.

How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?

It's all about relating the subject matter to their interests, initially. Having them acknowledge that mistakes made (if effort was put in) can be an opportunity to improve.