Sample Teaching Statement

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SAMPLE TEACHING STATEMENT

I believe that at the core of all successful teaching in [biology or write your field] is the ability to convey the excitement of the subject to students in the classroom and the field, instilling in students a desire to learn more about nature. This requires an emphasis on the biological systems about which we still have an incredible amount to learn. In this context, necessary skills and principles in biology are taught as tools to address problems scientifically and critically assess the existing state of knowledge, rather than as part of a final set of facts that students are merely expected to memorize only for the grades.  I think this approach is essential for attracting majors to the science and developing non-majors a greater awareness and appreciation of the biological phenomena.

The most effective teachers engage students by asking questions in the classroom, incorporating innovative labs and challenging problem-solving projects, encouraging peer-to-peer interaction through group work and study, and including a wealth of real-world examples of the principles being discussed.  I recognize the central importance of the teacher’s approachability and accessibility crucial to developing an environment that emphasizes discussion about science and becomes a mutual learning experience rather than a distant monologue.  This requires a vital time commitment outside the classroom to meet and interact with students who need extra assistance and exceptional students who could benefit significantly from potential research opportunities.  My teaching perspective has been strongly influenced by my interactions with outstanding teachers at both the grad and undergrad departments [name of college/university], where I obtained my [BS/MS] degrees. Similarly, the progressive teaching environment influenced my academic aptitude in the large and diverse graduate research program in biological sciences at the [name of university], where I received my Ph.D.

I am looking forward to implementing successful educational strategies in the classroom and the field that I have observed and studied and developing new approaches of my own.  During teaching assistantships in two biology courses, “Evolution” and “Genetics”, I lectured and conducted labs and was honored with the outstanding biology teaching assistant award for both courses.  I have also been fortunate to participate in an education research program through the [name of fellowship/program etc.].  Through this program, I have studied [molecular genetics] related to biology at the university level and conducted my biology research project.  I feel that this experience has provided me with exceptional tools and resources for teaching and developing science courses in various situations, including large lectures for non-majors, small upper-level major classes, and labs or field courses.  For my final research project, I am probing the benefits of combining science learning with writing by analyzing student work in a writing course I designed and taught based on scientific content and questions.  As a result of my experience as a teacher, student, and researcher, I feel qualified to teach courses that range from introductory to advanced, targeted at students from undergraduate through graduate levels.  These classes include introductory biology and molecular genetics [write name of the courses].

 

Through participation in outreach activities, I have had the opportunity to act as a role model to young women and men in minority groups.  I have participated in the annual [Program at university name] for [number of] years and the [name of program] for [number of] years and have developed and presented various hands-on workshops.  These experiences have taught me how to interact with and inspire young students to enjoy and pursue science careers. I feel that such programs and other community outreach projects I have participated in are extremely influential in attracting students, especially young women, to biology. Likewise, similar programs during my secondary school and undergraduate years had a substantial impact on my decision to become a biologist.

In summary, I am looking forward to the challenges of teaching and advising students.  Based on my recent experiences with [undergraduates/graduates] in the classroom and education outreach activities, I feel that I can have a significant impact on increasing numbers of young students who are considering careers in biological sciences but still have relatively few mentors and role models.  In the past, I have benefited tremendously from dedicated teachers who have nurtured my interest in biology.  In the future, I intend to apply what I have learned and effectively use classes, field trips, and research to develop in students an appreciation for biology as the nature in which we live.

 

Sincerely,

 

[your name here]

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Dr. Abdullah Farhan-ul-Haque Saeed

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