Victoria Lynn Lowell, Ph.D.

Teaching Philosophy

When I first began teaching, I taught because I loved the subject I was teaching. After few years in the classroom, I found that what I really enjoyed went beyond the subject matter. I thoroughly enjoyed the art of teaching, as well as researching better methods to educate students. It was at this time that I returned to school to earn my masters (M.Ed.) in educational technology with a focus on instructional design methods and then my Ph.D. in education, with majors in both higher education research and institutional planning and distance education. While attending these programs, I realized I could make a larger impact on education by working with those who will teach in the classroom as well as researching to improve education. In my classroom, it is my goal to provide a learning environment that encourages my students to think clearly and rationally, communicate clearly and persuasively, and work to develop their skills to become master teachers, researchers, and servant leaders. In addition, it is my objective to remain current on the latest and most effective learning methods and technologies as well as current educational theory and practice to assist my students in becoming exceptional educators.

Like most educators, I want my students to learn the fundamental content of the courses I teach. However, I prefer to go beyond the fundamentals and foster critical thinking, develop problem-solving strategies, and facilitate the acquisition of life-long learning skills to prepare my students to function effectively as educators in an information and technology driven world. Therefore, I do not see myself as a person standing behind a pulpit, rather I see myself as a guide assisting my students in understanding difficult information. I am an expert and my role is to model for them complex ways of thinking so that they can develop the same habits of mind as education professionals.

As my students are aspiring educators and servant leaders, I feel it is important that they understand what it means to be an educator today and how they can best achieve their goals in their education and in their careers after they graduate. Most of our 21st century educators will be using educational technologies in their classrooms and many will be teaching online. Therefore, it is crucial for students to learn to use some technologies. An important part of my role as a professor of education is to provide these opportunities. Technology in education can be as simple as using innovative tools like a classroom Google calendar for assisting students in tracking assignments or completing a WebQuest assignment.

I am not afraid to try something new and ask the students to provide feedback and evaluate the effectiveness of an assignment or activity in helping them understand the content of a course. I believe strongly that active learning and student-centered learning are effective methods to assist students in understanding course material as well as understanding how to use these skills when they leave my course and graduate from their program. Ultimately, I believe that teaching is an art which can be completed effectively when educators use their skills, creativity, and all the tools in their toolbox to inspire and encourage their students to learn, grow, and become servant leaders.

Victoria Lynn Lowell, Ph.D.
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