"By employing and utilizing an assets-based approach to education, we as educators can help uncover and tap into the many strengths our students bring to the classroom every day. One of the greatest rewards as an educator is providing students with the opportunities to tap into their strengths, acquire and create knowledge both inside and outside of the classroom."
Cosecha Voices Project
"I am very fortunate indeed to be able to work with UT students for a living. Helping students to learn and retain useful ideas is more fulfilling than I can express. There is no job at any rate of compensation that I would prefer to teaching at the University of Texas."
"I am only teaching when someone is learning. So, I often use in-class exercises and informal contact with small groups outside of lecture to determine whether students are engaged and whether I have given them a sufficient framework to learn on their own. I love biology, how things work and the way everything fits together, so it is gratifying when I see students come to understand mechanisms and the big picture."
UT Austin faculty homepage
“My goal in teaching management is to be sure that students learn enough about management that they will never be the subject of a Dilbert cartoon. Another educator once said that ‘Experience is mandatory. Learning is optional.’ To that end, I work very hard to be sure that students are self-directed and critically reflective about their own learning. I also believe learning should be active and students should have opportunities to be of service to their community as they learn.”
"When I began my career at UT I was excited to pass on to my students as much of my knowledge about my subject area as possible. But, as I look back over the past fourteen years I now realize how much my students have taught me about teaching and about differing viewpoints on Educational Psychology."
"I believe that teaching is always a dynamic experience, and keeping the experience interesting for both the student and the teacher is essential. By requiring every student to try out new technically demanding techniques I am able to keep classes up to date and to allow experimentation with the same tools that are emerging within the industry. Whatever ideas I am currently exploring in my own work, I bring into the classroom to make sure the material evolves from semester to semester. Showing the students that the field is ever changing hopefully keeps them excited and encourages them to continue learning throughout their careers."
"It’s rewarding to create a learning environment that facilitates students assuming responsibility for their learning. Learning is not always a “fun” process. But through participating in the process and reflecting on their experiences, students demonstrate learning and how they’re going to apply that learning in future classes and in the real world."
"Some of the best moments in the classroom happen when I’m not "teaching." When a seminar becomes a conversation among equals, or when a student introduces me to a new movie or book while explaining how it relates to what we are discussing in class, now that is exciting."
"One of my greatest challenges as a chemistry teacher is increasing the number of students who succeed in the course. Each semester I teach three large lecture sections of General Chemistry I, II, and Organic Chemistry, and although most students find these courses to be very challenging, my goal is to help students discover how rewarding an understanding of science can be."
"As a result of my teaching experience, particularly in the beginning years, I continually work at instilling in each student a desire and an enthusiasm, guiding them to find their own process. In this way, they will continue to grow long after they have left school."
"My teaching experience has run the gamut from teaching high school students, college students and even retired veterans. Every time I teach a class, I find new ways to convey mathematics concepts and ideas. I have strived to create and supplement the traditional lectures with online materials and online assessments to improve student’s learning outcomes."
“Having spent my entire adult life as an advocate for education both as a public school teacher and a teacher of future teachers, I have dedicated my professional career to helping students of all ages reach their goals and fulfill their potential. My commitment is to be a model and exemplify the behaviors I want my students to value by instilling a passion in my students for the field of education and an understanding of how each teacher impacts the lives of countless students. I strongly believe, in the old saying, ‘Teaching is leaving a vestige of oneself in the development of another’ and who better to invest in than the future teachers of our children.”
"William Butler Yeats observed that 'education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.' I get such joy from seeing my pre-service teachers take the strategies that we've modeled in class and adapt these ideas for their own secondary students. I am constantly dazzled by the insights and creativity of these novice educators. Every day they teach me far more than I teach them."
"I love math, and I love teaching it — I guess that helps! Every student is different, and I try to explain things in several different ways, so at least one can take hold. I also remember what it feels like to struggle to understand; learning can only start after fear subsides."
Parent’s view of the Metroplex Math Circle
"Students need to ‘see’ what they are to learn and then practice applying the concepts to business problems while still in class. Questions are answered, misunderstandings cleared up and everyone (teacher included) senses accomplishment and success."
"I see my responsibility in higher education as helping to create, foster, and facilitate critical, independent learners. In essence, I would like to see students learn the skills and tools to improve upon the current economic, political, and social structures, but also be willing and able to transform them as advocates of altruism and justice."
Department of English First Year Composition
Student documentaries created in Varela's class:
ADA: A Determined American