Teaching

TEACHING PHILOSOPHY: INTERDISCIPLINARITY AND FIELD EXPERIENCES

The two pillars of my teaching philosophy are interdisciplinarity and experiential learning through case analysis and field experiences.

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Learning about social-ecological systems requires students to think from multiple disciplines. Thus my teaching philosophy emphasizes paradox and tension rather than right-wrong answers and universal truths. As a common-pool resource scholar studying fisheries, I work in interdisciplinary spaces. From collaborative projects combining ecology, anthropology, institutional analysis, common-pool resource theory, behavioral economics, and social-ecological modeling (i.e., NSF Coupled Natural-Human Systems project on Mexican fisheries; National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, SESYNC, project on international trade and global fisheries; Duke University and World Wildlife Fund project on social and ecological evidence gaps in tropical ocean conservation research), I have compelling real-world cases with which to teach students about interdisciplinarity in studying food production and the environment. I plan to use my experiences and a variety of other cases drawn from international literature and local research to develop critical reasoning and synthesis of diverse fields in my students.

Field experiences will be a dominant tool of my teaching. Field experiences provide learner-centric opportunities for students to connect theory to methods, evidence, and conclusions. And, field experience is invaluable for students to begin to understand complex and uncertain social-ecological systems operating at multiple scales (global, national, local). For example, food security and food systems are often presented as global statistics. Interviewing local producers can help students understand the very local food systems that aggregate into global food production issues. Hidden in global statistics of food security are daily decisions made by harvesters and producers, embedded in their historical eco-socio-cultural context: the local story of food security that students can study through field experiences. Does international demand drive individuals’ decisions to overharvest – why or why not?

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TEACHING EXPERIENCE

 

MENTORING EXPERIENCE

 

COMMITMENT TO TEACHING AND MENTORING DIVERSE LEARNERS

I am committed to supporting diversity in the classroom, the office, and the field. Specifically, I am committed to continue to seek trainings and experiences that make me a better teacher and mentor for diverse students, and to combat racism, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia.