Last year I was introduced to the wonderful book The Joy of Teaching (Peter Filene) through the recommendation of fellow blogger Pat McCullough. It is short, often cleverly anecdotal, and full of practical advice for novices in the higher academic teaching world.
Filene starts in the right place by setting out key qualities of a good higher-ed teacher
-enthusiasm for the subject matter
-clarity of presentation of ideas
-organization skills for facilitating such clarity
-stimulating the students to take a personal interest in the subject matter
-care for students (in a cautious, but friendly way)
What other qualities mark a good teacher? Are there particular qualities that should be distinctive for a Christian lecturer and/or a lecturer at a Christian institution? I might add:
-academic and personal humility
-model for moral living (also called personal holiness) – in my (secular undergrad), it was “cool” for a professor to be morally questionable. They would use foul language in class to be edgy and shocking; the campus newspaper often reported affairs and indiscretions. No academic role model or leader should ignore the impact their values have on impressionable students.
-simplicity – this means that the lecturer can and does break down esoteric and lofty books and ideas and helps students of all levels to understand them. Of course, this may be categorized under clarity.
Are there others?