It’s in the story: I spark my students’ curiosity in the subject/lecture by providing them with personal and real-world examples that answer the question, “Why do I need to learn this?” Once the students understand this question, they become self-motivated and more engaged during the lectures. For example, I found most students in my marketing research courses were familiar with the oil & gas industry. By describing specific marketing problems related to supply chain, new product development and sales, I found an increase in my students’ interest in the theories and techniques covered during the course.
Learning by doing: In my opinion, students do not always understand something until they have had a chance to implement it themselves and see it in action. Students can, for example, read about running a marathon, or study statistical methods for data analysis, or watch their professor solve for an optimal pricing strategy. But until they do it themselves, they will not know and understand the nuances of the subject at hand. I believe that the learning experience is enhanced when concepts taught in lectures are then implemented by students.
The “wow” moment: Once students have synthesized and evaluated the theory, for me the most satisfying part of teaching is when I see them have a “wow” moment. This is when they see that the information learned actually works. For example, in my experience this usually happens during the end of the semester while students are working on their final group project. They see how correct analysis and calculation of their product’s market share and efficient allocation of their resources to the appropriate consumer segments boost sales.
In conclusion, I have found that my personality and temperament forces me to learn constantly by studying, researching and collaborating with my peers. I take my love for learning to another level when teaching by engaging the curious minds of my students to find their own love in the world of marketing analytics.