Description of Experience:
At the University of Oklahoma, I had the pleasure of serving as a co-instructor for the graduate methods sequence in the Political Science department. For this course, I helped develop the syllabus, with a particular focus on assigning published journal articles which implement the techniques taught in the course. I was generally responsible for teaching the 3-hour lab session in which students applied the statistical methods taught in the open-source, open-access statistical programming software R. I was also instrumental in transitioning the course materials from D2L to Canvas, and had significant responsibility in managing the course through both course management software systems. As a part of my duties, I helped develop a set of lab exercises, updated the open-source textbook developed specifically for the course, as well as helped transition most of this material to a github repo above.
In general, I have a passion for creating a welcoming teaching environment that encourages critical thinking and provides students with marketable skills. I am dedicated to the open-access paradigm and am excited to continue developing the materials found on the github repository to make them flexible and accessible to use for others.
At East Tennessee State University, my primary teaching appointment will be in the undergraduate political science program, introducing students to Research Methods and American Government. In these courses, I incorporate frequent feedback from students through surveys and other methods to continually improve my skills as an instructor. In Research Methods, in particular, I rely on active learning techniques which engage students in the processes of data analysis during the course time. This improves confidence in what can be intimidating material for social science students accustomed to avoiding math and statistics. At ETSU, I will also teach Core MPA courses such as Policy Analysis and Introduction to Public Administration.
From Graduate Research Methods:
Both Dr. Ripberger and Wesley Wehde invite students to ask questions and are attentive to make sure difficult or confusing material is well understood.
Wesley contributes to our ability to understand as well. The lab portions are very helpful and the amount we work in R, is very helpful. I was concerned with learning how to use R and be able to produce working code– but as the semester has progressed, Dr. Ripberger and Wesley are very good at helping us problem solve.
Dr. Ripberger and Wesley, personally, do a great job. They are able to answer a variety of questions. They are able to create a positive working environment.
Wesley is able to teach us so much! He needs to remain confident in his ability! Going through readings on Wednesday were great. We were able to understand real applications of what we were learning in class. That is so great!
Dr. Ripberger and Wesley Wehde were both very informative, engaging, helpful, and professional. It’s clear that they care about students and the subject matter; I can’t think of anything specific that needs improving.