As stated in my teaching philosophy, I adopt an evidence-based mindset to my teaching. Specifically, I keep updated on the latest research in higher education, particularly management education, in order to keep abreast of latest developments and empirically supported approaches to teaching and learning.
One notion that has gained interest in higher education teaching is learning styles. Learning styles suggest that each individual has a preferred learning style that is typically categorized as visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. The idea that lessons should be tailored to certain learning styles is actually just that – an idea. Hypothetically, this idea seems intuitive. But, the reality is that using learning styles in teaching is actually nonsense and studies show that catering to learning styles has no effect on students’ performance on assessments.
With no evidence to support the use of learning styles, I refuse to teach according to students’ preferred learning style. Doing so would contradict my teaching philosophy of relying on sound evidence in my teaching practice. Moreover, there are also potential ethical issues in using said learning styles to determine my teaching methods.
Instead of relying on popular practices that do not work, I prefer to rely on teaching practices that are scientifically supported. Therefore, I use practice tests, peer teaching, and class discussions to work through problems. I also use examples that help students better connect to the subject matter, by soliciting their own work and personal experiences and then linking those experiences to the topic. One additional approach that I will use more in the future is micro-teaching. Micro-teaching is a teacher development approach in which a teaching session is video-recorded and then constructively evaluated by colleagues and/or students.