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Philosophy Department: Instructional Services

This guide provides resources to support teaching and research for the department of Philosophy at Carnegie Mellon University.

Teaching Philosophy

I am strong believer in the Learning Cycle approach to teaching, where students Engage, Explore, Explain, Extend and Evaluate.  This method is based in inquiry and was created primarily for science teaching; however, it has been used successfully in humanities as well  If you are interested in this approach, Deborah Hanuscin, from the University of Illinois, wrote a great article on using this approach.

To do this successfully in a 50 minute library instruction, I focus the class time on interactive participation and problem solving by ensuring that the students have already begin the learning cycle before my instruction and that they continue it after.  Please use the form on the right to request instruction.

What this means for the instructor:

  • Plan early:  Discuss when and how to best integrate research instruction in your syllabus.
  • Think Process not Product:  Students will learn about the research process, not one specific source.  Since most students will use multiple information sources, it is important that they are able to understand the process of information gathering.
  • Consider The embedded Librarian (see The Basics); this can be a good way to provide students with an opportunity to participate in their learning cycle.

What this means for the students:

  • Students will be expected to participate in individual and group learning cycles.
  • Students will be expected to produce (and defend) results in their research area.
  • Students will be expected to take charge of their own learning needs.

Instruction Request

Request Library Instruction

Request Library Instruction

(i.e. MM/DD/YY hh:mm a.m./p.m.)

(i.e. MM/DD/YY hh:mm a.m./p.m.)

(i.e. Assignment Description;
Class Topic; Skill Set Focus)