Teaching philosophy is one of the required documents by all the universities which seek to hire a new professor. Although there are general guidelines to write it down, it is really important to avoid buzzwords and cliches. To this end, here are 4 practical recommendations adopted from :
- Discuss what students learn from your class after a semester. How is it beneficial to them? and the world? It is good to extend this discussion in terms of acquiring new knowledge and skills, separately.
- Most likely you will be teaching two types of courses: service courses offered by the department, and those courses related to your research expertise. It is a good idea to distinguish between the two which require different objectives and approaches.
- Tell a personal story. Walk the readers through your past teaching experience and show them that enlightening moment in the class, or a particular failure which led you to develop a novel teaching methodology.
- Acknowledge the inspiring teaching resources: your former beloved teacher, a great book, etc.
Finally, make sure to address these critical questions in your teaching statement: What do you want students to learn? What methods do you employ to help students achieve these objectives? How do you evaluate student learning? Why do you care about teaching?