But I am also an Adult Educator, and that brings considerable depth and context to what might otherwise be just another business school prof doing organization behaviour - especially since Valence Theory is, at its heart, fundamentally subversive to the foundations of conventional business schools. On the other hand, it is ideal for other faculties (e.g., public administration, workplace learning in faculties of education) that might be looking for a contemporary approach to organization theory. But I digress.
One of the key considerations these days in professorial hiring is one's teaching philosophy. I call mine, An Adult Educator's Manifesto (make sure you click on the full-screen toggle button at the top right of the linked page). Here's a taste:
I respect my students’ abilities to become actively engaged and committed to their own process of knowledge-building, bringing Marshall McLuhan’s sensibility to the learning environment that, as an educator, “I don’t want them to believe me; I just want them to think.”You can download my Manifesto-cum-Statement-of-Teaching-Philosophy in its entirety here.
Therefore, adhering to the credo that “education is what remains after you’ve forgotten everything you’ve been taught,” I incorporate five guiding principles into my teaching, whether situated as formal, informal, or non-formal learning.
1. People will learn when they are ready to learn, and thus will acquire their lessons in the places in which they will learn most effectively. These places and circumstances are most often not a classroom. Therefore, it is incumbent on educators to invite our learners’ experiences, circumstances, histories, contexts, and cultures into our classrooms in combination with our sources and syllabi to enable the collaborative construction and emergence of complex and diverse knowledge.
This means that:
2. Learning should concentrate on context and process; specific content – as important and relevant as it might be to any particular undertaking or discipline – is, nonetheless, indifferent to the credo of education. In a time of unprecedented complexity, enabling adaptable and continual learners ultimately serves the as-yet unanticipated and unknown future needs of our contemporary world.
And if you happen to know of an appropriate department - perhaps even your own - anywhere in North America that is hiring, please pass my name along. Much obliged!
(Thanks, Anne Urbancic, for inspiring me to write this.)
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