Teaching and Emotions

Here’s a post from Faculty Focus that just touches the tip of the iceberg, The Emotions That Fuel Our Teaching. Maryellen Weimer asks a great question, “How do our feelings about the content, students, and our department affect our instructional decision-making?”

One study she cites concludes that instructors who are more focused on “transmitting knowledge” experience more anxiety and nervousness, while those who are more focused on “what the student is doing and experiencing” report feelings of pride and motivation. That makes sense.

But there’s so much more complexity to be explored. What patterns can we identify in our own emotional experiences and teaching (dis)satisfactions from year to year? What might be productive about uncomfortable feelings in the classroom — for us or for our students? What can we learn from apparent disconnects, like the class that seemed disgruntled but gave good evaluations, or the class that seemed satisfied but complained on evaluations?

Wouldn’t this make an interesting Faculty Center Fellowship or SoTL project for an upcoming year? (hint, hint)




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