Junior Faculty Teaching Fellow Spotlight: Lijun Song
Each month, the CFT Newsletter highlights the work of our Junior Faculty Teaching Fellows. This month, Lijun Song, Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology and the Center for Medicine, Health, and Society talks about her teaching philosophy and interests.
“Social interaction between teachers and students must be reciprocal and cooperative. A teacher should identify with both the teaching role and the learning role.”
The teaching role is challenging, demanding, and enlightening for instructors. Interest is the best teacher. A sociology instructor should encourage and develop students’ curiosity and enthusiasm in “sociological imagination.” Knowledge acquisition is the basic goal of teaching. An instructor should teach in a systematic and effective way. The full value of knowledge is not realized until it is used. “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”.
An instructor should motivate students to independently apply what they have learned to their research, to current social phenomena, and to their own life. Social interaction between teachers and students must be reciprocal and cooperative. A teacher should identify with both the teaching role and the learning role. A teacher is expected to enthusiastically impart knowledge, to continue learning new knowledge to prepare for students’ questions, and to learn new knowledge from students who offer “fresh blood” through their questions and insights.