I have been passionate about teaching students ever since my first teaching assistant duty as a first year student. I sought out opportunities to teach my own class since my second year of graduate school.
I strongly believe that education should be rewarding and enjoyable, beyond simply teaching theory or solving problems in the classroom. As a faculty member, I do not consider student learning as a distraction that stands in the way of doing research, but as central to the work I do. Throughout my classes, I aim to make economics approachable and relevant to students' daily lives and experiences. My students do not simply memorize facts. They get to learn how to critically apply their knowledge of economics in the real world.
As a graduate student, I taught introductory economics to economics majors, business students, and other non-majors who took economics as a degree requirement or elective. I have instructor experience in both Introductory Micro and Macro. As a graduate instructor, I had considerable freedom in creating my class. All textbook assignments, exams, grading rubrics, and class policies were set by me with little restriction from my Department. My students generally enjoy my courses.
Additionally, I have had the opportunity to be a TA in the Intermediate Microeconomics major's only course. I engaged students beyond the principles level. This was my first real experience in teaching higher level consumer and producer theory beyond principles. As a TA, I was tasked with solving homework problems for my advisor's class. Beyond just solving the problems on the board, I made sure that students understood the theory behind them.
As part of my training in setting up and running economics experiments, I assisted in my Department's Experimental Economics course. Experiments can be used in other economics classes as a teaching tool. Once I am done talking about supply and demand in an introductory course, I can load up an experiment and allow my students to observe a moving market first-hand. Economics can be a "hands-on" class!
I'm a firm believer in making my class accessible to all students. I utilize classroom technology when appropriate to create interactive lessons. I use a writing tablet to take notes and solve problems on the projector screen. I then export those notes and make them available for students to use when studying. This allows my material to be more accessible to students.
Classes I have taught as an Instructor:
- Econ 202: Principles of Microeconomics (8 semesters)
- Econ 203: Principles of Macroeconomics (11 semesters)
Classes I have assisted in as a Teaching Assistant:
- Econ 398: Intermediate Microeconomics (4 semesters)
- Econ 324: Experimental Economics (3 semesters)
I have consistently received ratings above 4/5 on all the sections I taught. Sample student comments on my evaluations:
- "He really enjoys teaching about economics and is enthusiastic while teaching."
- "Amazing teacher!! Wants to help his students learn, always available for questions. A cool guy."
- "Alex is personable and very willing to make sure students understand key economic concepts. "
- "Great teacher somehow made a tough subject somewhat enjoyable to learn in class while doing great job being a good teacher and person."
- "Only negative is that there isn't more teachers like him."
- "Alex is awesome! He is super enthusiastic and explains the material in detail. He walks you through the reasoning which makes it easier to understand the concepts."
I have some experience with course advising and financial aid. I have worked with the Summer College for High School Students program, during which I assisted prospect undergraduates to choose and register for their college classes. Some of those students kept contact with me and reached out for advice for their undergraduate majors. During my work for the SCHS program, I assisted the director with making financial aid decisions by evaluating student applications. I got to work with a diverse range of students, including students who would go on to become their family's first college graduate.