Week 4: The ethics of teaching with Integrity

When I was studying for a Masters in Urban Planning, I was fortunate to met a Professor who I can only describe as a trusted professional who demonstrated true integrity and honor as a teacher. My experience with him was one of, teaching and mentorship. As an active community leader and scholar, he created and fostered a classroom that enabled learning, inquiry, rigor and academic freedom. He demonstrated a high degree of honesty and care for his students; genuinely respected and encouraged all points of view during class sessions.

He was the classical example of Cahn’s four elements of the responsibility of a teacher – motivation, organization, clarification and generalization. I like that have an example of a dedicated teachers who is devoted to students success that I want to emulate. To develop and sustain the characteristics that epitomize a good teacher, and to become an honest and reasonable teacher. One who can communicate expectations in a clear and explicit manner, and explain to students how the a course or content is related to their interests, career goals, and/or the real-world (Jone, 2009).

Drawing from the Jone’s (2009) article, I think academic motivation, expectancy and self-efficacy, and your motivating style are key elements of a good teacher. I think a student-centric approach to teaching and learning my help teachers to become better at educating and teaching. Providing the right opportunities for students to not only express their opinions and rationale for learning, but to engage in activities that show the usefulness of the content, of the material they are learning in the real world and/or to their future career. As Jones (2009) noted, teachers should carefully listen to and consider the opinions of students and demonstrate to students the usefulness of the content for achieving their goals. Overall, the ethics of teaching and teaching with integrity requires professors or instructors to foster and sustain a caring climate (including attitude) and to ensure that students achieve success by developing the right competencies.