My Opportunity for Teaching

I remembered when I was a bachelor; I always thought how I may teach the courses those I took. I was trying to simulate the class environments for my courses. So, I can say that I taught all courses that I took in my bachelor. I tried to find a better way for teaching courses. But I had not the opportunity to teach any course until after my master.

After my master, my supervisor suggested me to help her by teaching a graduate course. The course was Bio-instrumentation for master students who were in the second semester. At the fist perception, I was happy but I was a concern after a few days because I needed to find an appropriate way to teaching. That was my first experience and I needed to do my best performance. I knew if I could teach reasonably, I might teach next semester as well.

I brought together all my thoughts to create an innovative method of teaching. I summarized it here.

First, I searched for scientific journals and resources to find the most recent knowledge about Bio-instrumentation. Because my advisor used an old book as her reference since 20 years ago and I believed that I need to find an updated version of this knowledge. So, I found another book and introduced to the students as the reference. I also edited the syllabus based on the new reference. I was pretty sure that one reference could not be enough for a graduate course. So, I gathered several scientific papers. I distributed the total credit of the course into some portions.  The student needed to gather their grades through the semester. I remember that I removed the final exam and I considered several quizzes (I personally hated the final exams because I had felt so stressful during exams days).  I asked students to read 11 papers and write a report related to those papers. I selected review papers for this task, and then they could learn a background of devices for bio-instrumentation. After that, I designed three experiments in the laboratory using the most recent sensors and devices. The students formed their own groups and performed the experiments. This task helped them to learn team-working though some members of groups had some problems with other members. As the last assignment, I asked them to design and perform an applied project regarding biomedical engineering. They needed to collect the data from the patients in the hospitals and clinics. I taught them some topics related to instrumentation and asked them to apply this knowledge to their data collection.  In the end, they presented their projects to other students.

I asked the students to fill out the evaluation form beyond official one from the university. They stated that this way could improve their understanding regarding Bio-instrumentation because they used the knowledge practically. This experience helped me to develop my own method of teaching and test it in a real condition. Although the students were satisfied with my method, I think that it had a major problem. I did not use a standard method for grading, so it was a little confusing for the students. Of course, I graded generously because I did not want to hurt the students and I knew that this is my first experience, therefore it might have some problems.

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4 Responses to My Opportunity for Teaching

  1. Homero says:

    Thanks for sharing!

    I wonder what strategies do you use that are not content related. It seems that this class is a very technical one. How do you manage to get students engage and involved in the classes?


  2. A. Nelson says:

    Thanks for sharing your course re-design! It’s so interesting to read about how you provide scaffolding, sequenced assignments, and different learning modalities in a technical field like yours.

  3. Aakash says:

    Thank you for the post! I loved reading how you had re-designed the course. And also like the fact that you had used your experience as a student to design a better class.

    Have you now thought of a better way to grade students?

  4. Milad says:

    I also hate final exams :). I like the way you choose to teach. I had the same problem with the assessment in one of my courses. The instructor changed the syllabus several times and it is really confusing.

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