I seek to find the best way to engage a student and pique his or her interest in a subject whether it be from thought-provoking examples or exciting future uses for particular knowledge. From my experience this is immensely helpful for developing and actually retaining mastery of a topic. Every student learns best in a different way and it is my goal to find what works best for helping a particular student and tailor my teaching method around that.
My first teaching experience was instructing undergraduates while pursuing my master's at UCR. It was a very enjoyable experience in which I was able to help students broaden their knowledge and skills to succeed in the class and their future classes. This in and of itself was very rewarding, but it also allowed me to continue improving my understanding of the subject area as I searched for new ways to challenge them and analyzed different ways they approached those challenges. Thus, I am looking forward to continuing to teach students whenever I have the time.
Education & Certification
Undergraduate Degree: University of Advancing Technology - Bachelors, Computer Science
Graduate Degree: University of California-Riverside - Masters, Computer Science
Drawing, Soccer, Gaming, Karate, Running
Q & A
What is your teaching philosophy?
The best way to develop and retain a deep understanding for a subject is to be genuinely interested in it. My teaching method revolves around finding the best way to spark a student's natural interest in a subject, and continuing to encourage it by showing them intriguing applications for what they are learning.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I would first briefly try to get to know the student and their reasons for seeking out tutoring on the subject in question. This would increase our overall rapport, which I feel is very important for comfortable and affecting learning. Additionally, it would allow me to have some idea what kind of things interest them in general, and I could begin to develop specific examples and questions that would best engage them. I would then spend time discovering their existing knowledge in the area and asking them what concepts they are having the most trouble with and what style of teaching they normally best respond to. Once that is out of the way, I would jump into some initial questions and explanations on the subject, and afterwards have them attempt to solve a problem in the subject area while I ask questions about why they are using the strategy they picked or doing specific steps to make sure they understand how to transfer what they recently learned to other or more complicated problems. Then, depending on time, I would ask them how they now felt about what we talked about and if they had any questions or suggestions on things I could do to better assist them.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Fostering genuine interest in a subject is the best way for a student to go out and learn independently. I attempt to find the best way to spark and then nurture a student's interest in a subject, and then teach them how best to search out solutions to future problems they might need to solve.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
By continuing to challenge them and asking them questions that I think would be most likely to genuinely interest them and that they would want to learn how to solve.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
This depends a lot on the specific example in question and what we had already discussed, but in general I would find and attempt different ways of explaining the concept. Oftentimes a visual depiction or real-life example of the question or concept can be of great assistance. If after this the student is still struggling, I would break the skill or concept into as many smaller pieces as possible and slowly step through each part to find and then focus on which part is causing the most issue.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I would provide as much essential information as possible in verbal and video-based mediums in addition to the written one. I would then, when possible, provide them ways to demonstrate their knowledge in the subject area that do not overly tax their current level of reading comprehension, e.g. having some visual-based tasks and questions instead of mainly traditional literary assignments.