Dr. Papagiannidis' Philosophy of Teaching Statement
My aim as teacher is to promote a learner-cantered environment that promotes self-sufficient learners. I see teaching as more than just the road to knowledge and understanding. I see teaching as the vehicle to appreciation of one's ability to think for one's self. The vehicle is not a mechanistic transmission and reception of factual information. It is an adventure, full of discoveries and countless opportunities for exploration. At the same time, it is a continuous re-evaluation of one's norms and paradigms.
Self-sufficient learners are effectively life-long learners, who are well-equipped to go through the long journey of life constantly expanding their horizons. It is not though the destination that matters, but the journey itself. The destination, i.e. knowledge, is waiting patiently to reward the travellers for their courage to embark on the journey, even if, by the time they reach it, they have been rewarded by the countless experiences gained and skills acquired. The riches of knowledge were what the learners sought after and every moment and every step made them wealthier. The sheer excitement of the discoveries though along their path and the passion for pushing their limits further will keep their spirits high and see them through the journey.
But the journey is not without pitfalls. Learners have to constantly monitor and evaluate the journey's direction, if they are to stay on course. For me, knowing what you know is equally important to the knowledge itself, which is why I put a lot of effort in assessing my students in the most effective way. Most importantly, I strive to help them achieve this for themselves. The moment learners can evaluate their selves properly and adequately, that very moment they will be discovering a new source of internal motivation. Knowing you can improve yourself fuels your willingness to address any gaps and shortcomings and correct your journey's course.