I fulfilled the responsibilities of my full-time tenured appointment by teaching each year a one-term (Winter) graduate and senior undergraduate course entitled Fisheries Oceanography. I also contributed to Biological Oceanography lectures and contributed to and coordinated Tools and Concepts in the Ocean Sciences Degree programme. I also provided lectures to Marine Science and Technology, a core-course taken by Master of Marine Management candidates in the Marine Affairs Programme. In addition, I regularly contributed guest lectures for other courses at Dalhousie and elsewhere.
Teaching Philosophy and Methods:
My teaching is more or less Socratic – “the oldest, and still the most powerful, teaching tactic for fostering critical thinking“. Through stimulating questioning, with the aid of relevant information (existing theory, empirical relationships, known functions and processes etc.) detailed or summarized graphically, students are better able to grasp concepts and gain new insights that they are less likely to forget nor to easily dismiss. This works because students are motivated to make the effort to arrive at the concepts and/or reach conclusions themselves. I see my role primarily as motivational and secondarily as guide and constructive critic. This kind of teaching is not necessarily appreciated by all students. For lecture material I draw primarily on quantitative examples from the literature that are provided online; each of which are examined and critically evaluated in lectures. I supplement some lectures with teaching-videos on specific topics or through guest lecturers who have an expertise relevant to the lecture topic or series. I also encourage graduate student Teaching Assistants to provide one or two lectures, generally in the area that is mutually relevant to the course content and the TA’s research area. This serves to provide the TA with lecturing experience and allows the students to gain insights into the realm of graduate research.