I am opposed to memorization. I want my students actually to understand what they are doing. For example, instead of having them memorize the distance formula, I want them to understand that the distance they are trying to find is just the hypotenuse of a slope triangle. I want them to realize, then, that the distance formula is just an application of the Pythagorean Theorem, which any higher level math student know is just a squared + b squared = c squared. Beyond memorizing, I want students to understand why they're doing what they're doing.
I taught many subjects at the college level for 20+ years. I also worked at one of the most successful honors colleges in the country, teaching and advising numerous students who would go on to become Rhodes, Marshall, Fulbright, etc. Scholars. I have spent the last 3 years teaching general mathematics, pre-algebra, algebra, geometry at the secondary level.
University of Pittsburgh (PA):
Ph.D. Philosophy of Religion (2006)
Ph.D. Certificate in Cultural Studies
Miami University (OH): Wabash College (IN):
M.A. Philosophy (1994) B.A. (1988) majors: Psychology,
M.A. Religion (1992) Religion
Teaching Certification: Secondary Math; Secondary Social Studies (Teach Now 2016)
St. Francis School: Math Teacher (2016-2019)
University of Tennessee: (2014-2016)
Lecturer, Department of English
Tutor: I was a writing tutor for athletes at the University of Tennessee academic support center.
Lincoln Memorial University: (2012-2014)
Director, Honors Program
Director and Assistant Professor, Philosophy-Religion Program
University of Pittsburgh: (1996-2012)
Director of Academic Affairs, University Honors College (2007-2012)
Academic Advisor, University Honors College (2001- 2012)
Academic Advisor, College of Arts and Sciences (1996-2001)
Papers and Publications:
Religious Truth and Religious Diversity. Peter Lang (New York: 2009).
Conference Papers and other Publications:
“Cognitive Dissonance and the Will to Believe.” Fudan Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences, volume. 10, number. 1, 2017.
“Cognitive Dissonance and the Will to Believe.” Paper presented at the American Academy of Religion Southeast Regional Conference, 2014.
“Prospects for Objectivity in the Humanities.” Paper presented at the Humanities and Fine Arts Symposium, Lincoln Memorial University, 2012.
“Extra Breadth and Depth in Undergraduate Education: The Institutional Impact of an Interdisciplinary Honors Research Fellowship,” article co-authored with Jaclyn Bankert, in the Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, Fall/Winter 2011.
“Is Originality an Appropriate Requirement for Undergraduate Publication?” in honors in practice, volume 6, 2010.
“Dealing with Subjective and Objective Issues in Honors Education,” article co-authored with Mike Giazzoni in the Journal of the National Collegiate Honors Council, volume 10, number 1, Spring/Summer 2009.
Book Review of Infinitely Demanding. Critchley, Simon. (London: Verso, 2007) in the Journal of Cultural and Religious Theory, volume 9, number 3, Fall, 2008.
“Moral Development and Ethics: Do they have a place in higher education?” Invited panelist at the Annual Symposium on Undergraduate Advising at The University of Pittsburgh, 2007.
“Can God Half-exist? Religious and Philosophical Implications of Wittgenstein’s Theological Non-realism.” Paper presented at the American Academy of Religion Midwest Regional Conference, 2001.
“What is the Object of the Study of Religion?” Paper presented at the American Academy of Religion Midwest Regional Conference, 1998.
“An Apprentice’s Struggle with Professional Self-Identity.” Paper presented at the Religion and Culture Symposium, University of Pittsburgh, 1998.
Book review of Moral Politics. Lakoff, George. (Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1996) in Review of Religious Research, volume 38, number 4, June 1997.
Book review of Moral Imagination. Johnson, Mark. (Chicago and London: The University of Chicago Press, 1993) in Review of Religious Research, volume 37, number 1, September 1995.
“‘Woman’ as Nonprototypical Moral Object.” Paper presented at the University of Pittsburgh Cultural Studies Colloquium, 1994.
“Pluralism and Normative Ethical Theory.” Paper presented at the American Academy of Religion Midwest Regional Conference, 1992.
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