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As a graduate student in the sociology program, you will learn that excellence in teaching and learning requires that you focus on teaching and learning processes. Excellent teachers constantly look for feedback, keep track of what has worked, what hasn’t worked, and try to do it better next time.

There are many simple communication techniques you can use to foster student development and learning in the classroom setting.  For example, writing students’ own words on the blackboard is a great way to encourage students to participate in class.  Write out exactly what a student says, in the words they used, rather than paraphrasing the answer in your own words. Using the students’ words validates their voices and shows them that their contributions are being taken seriously.

Teaching involves a feedback loop, from instructor to students and back again.  Excellent teachers modify their teaching in response to student feedback. As a graduate student instructor, you will discover how to obtain better feedback from your students. In turn, you will discover how to use that feedback to improve your teaching.


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