Welcome to TeachPhilosophy101 (TΦ101)
This site presents strategies and resources for faculty members and graduate assistants who teach philosophy courses, especially at the introductory level; it also includes material of interest to college faculty generally. The mission of TΦ101 is to provide free, user-friendly resources to the academic community. All of the materials are provided on an open source license. You may also print as many copies as you wish. I am deeply indebted to Villanova University for all of the support that has made this project possible.
John Immerwahr, Professor of Philosophy, Villanova University, Email
"One of the most comprehensive, well-researched, and accessible guides for teachers that I have ever seen."
James Lang, Chronicle of Higher Education (read Lang's review of TΦ101)
NOTE: As I approach my scheduled retirement in August 2015, I am focusing my energies in areas other than ideas about teaching and learning. As a result, I am not actively maintaining or updating this site. I hope you will still find it of some use. If you find broken links, however, please notify me and I will try to fix them. However, I do have to mention one new thing. My freshman students for fall 2014 have developed a new website: www.boethius101.org, a fascinating introduction to Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy. Check it out.
Overview of the site:
- The random highlights page gives a flavor for some of the topics on TΦ101.
- The crash course gives you the eight most essential pages, in the order that you might need them.
- Suggested use. Recommended uses for graduate assistants, new faculty, experienced faculty, and for those who are organizing teacher training programs.
- Challenges and obstacles. Many of us who teach philosophy were among those rare students who loved the discipline from the start. Most of our students, however, have different motivations and interests. This section discusses some of the challenges that make teaching both difficult and exciting.
- Preparing your course. Tips on specific issues such as developing a syllabus, choosing materials, understanding copyright law, and preventing problems such as plagiarism.
- Lectures, discussion, group work. Strategies for enhancing class discussions, giving effective lectures, using group discussion techniques, and helping students engage with reading assignments.
- Tests, papers, assignments. Samples and resources for creating tests, various approaches to assigning and giving feedback on papers, and strategies for creating reading assignments.
- Change-of-pace exercises. Interesting, one-of-a-kind exercises that provide variety to your classes.
- Non-traditional resources. Many philosophy professors have had great success with material outside of the standard canon and with films, technology, humor and other non-standard sources.
- Resources. Books, journals, associations, blogs and websites that can enrich your teaching.
- "What's New on TΦ101?" allows you to check what has been added recently or you may subscribe to our blog for updates.
Update: December 11, 2014