Summarizing the discussion of this characteristic from Chapter 2, effective teachers:
Understand and can help students learn and understand the general principles of their discipline (e.g., the processes and limits of the scientific method).
Provide students with an overview of the whole domain of the discipline.
Possess sufficient knowledge and understanding of their own and related subdisciplines that they can answer most students’ questions or know how to help students find appropriate information.
Keep their knowledge about a field of study current through an active research program or through scholarly reading and other types of professional engagement with others in their immediate and related disciplines (e.g., participation in professional meetings and workshops).
Are genuinely interested in—and passionate about—the course materials they are teaching. Practicing scientists, mathematicians, and engineers understand and appreciate the infectious enthusiasm that accompanies original discovery, application of theory, and design of new products and processes. Conveying that sense of excitement is equally important in helping students appreciate more fully the subject matter being taught.
The following questions might be posed for evaluation for this characteristic:
Does the instructor exhibit an appropriate depth and breadth of knowledge?
Is the instructor’s information current and relevant?
Does the instructor show continuous growth in the field?
Data sources and forms of evaluation for this characteristic are shown in Table 6-1.
Summarizing the discussion of this characteristic in Chapter 2, effective teachers:
Have knowledge of and select and use a range of strategies that offer opportunities for students with different learning styles to achieve.