Suggested Readings

In this course, we have deemphasized any extensive perusal of the pedagogy literature, arguing that this is not the primary goal of a 300-level course. However, that does not mean we can be ignorant of what has been discussed in this literature; ideas and examples of effective teaching can be useful in developing your own teaching approach and philosophy. Also, sometimes it is nice to have an alternative viewpoint.

Below is a list of suggested readings, organized by topic. If you come across an article that you enjoyed, please add it to the list!

Shorthand for books:

  • McKeachie : McKeachie Teaching Tips by McKeachie and Svinicki.
  • Slater : Learner-Centered Astronomy Teaching by Slater and Adams.
  • Redish : Teaching Physics using the Physics Suite by Redish.

Syllabus Writing

  • Slater, Chapter 4, “Designing an Effective Syllabus”
  • McKeachie, Chapter 2, “Countdown for Course Preparation”
  • Teaching Guide page from the GSI Resource Center at UC Berkeley

Effective Group Work Technique

Lesson Plans

Feedback and Assessment

Learning Styles

Active Learning

The Problems With Traditional Courses

  • They're Not Dumb, They're Different by Tobias. This study argues that the low retention rates in introductory physics courses is not from difficulty and lack of preparation but instead the discouraging environment of such courses, typically lead by professors who believe that their students are as dedicated to physics and as scientifically-minded as themselves.

General Course Design