Teaching & Pedagogy

Teaching Philosophy:

I am excited about teaching, and endorse it as one of the most important part of my work as a historian. As a firm believer in critical pedagogy, the history of everyday life, and creativity, I favor inquiry-based and hands-on learning. My classroom is an interactive space and intellectual community for critical thinking as I highlight, above all, that history is an argument about the past. Students learn how to frame and substantiate their own narratives and arguments, based on primary sources, existing interpretations, and continuing inquiry. Apart from drawing on diverse materials including literature and movies, I also incorporate oral history and more innovative ways to convey content. By using popular culture and making the past relevant I aim to connect to students’ lives. Throughout all of this I use content as a vehicle to teach skills. I thus emphasize reading, writing, as well as analytical and critical thinking skills, so elements useful well beyond a history education. My overall efforts and objectives are tied to exposing injustices, fostering moral courage, and empowering students to become global and critical citizens.

Teaching Experience:

Bridgewater College (two-year rotation):

  • HIST 110: World History since 1500 (each semester)
  • HIST 285: Holocaust Memorials, Monuments, and Museums (maybe May-term 2019)
  • HIST 311: Europe, 1492-1798 (next: fall 2018)
  • HIST 321: Europe since 1789 (next: fall 2017)
  • HIST 370: Genocide (next: spring 2018)
  • HIST 420: Modern Germany and Its Empires (next: spring 2019)
  • HIST 470: Internship (continually upon request, and based on available options)

Northern Arizona University:

  • HIS 102: World History II (also online)
  • HIS 240: The Development of Europe to 1650 (also online)
  • HIS 241: The Development of Europe since 1650 (also online)
  • HIS 300W: Intensive Writing Seminar: Rebels Without a Cause? Young People in Post-WWII Europe
  • HIS 300W: Intensive Writing Seminar: Our Place in the Sun? Europe’s Scrambles for Africa
  • HIS 344: Recent Europe
  • HIS 360: Modern Germany
  • HIS 366: The Holocaust
  • HIS 376: Modern Britain
  • HIS 460: Studies in World History: European Imperialism
  • HIS 497: Independent Study: German Resistance in Nazi Germany
  • HIS 497: Independent Study (multiple students): The Bedzin Ghetto and the Holocaust
  • HIS 497: Independent Study (multiple students): Public History, Memory, and the Holocaust
  • HIS 497: Independent Study (multiple students): Digital History Project: The Bedzin Ghetto
  • HIS 497: Independent Study (multiple students): War and Genocide in Twentieth Century Europe
  • HIS 498C: Senior Capstone: A Great Seminal Catastrophe: Europe’s Great War, 1914-1918

Teaching in the Digital Age: 

The dramatic shift due to the digital age influences my teaching on numerous levels, and ties to my objective to provide hands-on learning experiences for my students. As a result, I incorporate digital elements into all my classes. Apart from providing online space for discussions, timelines, or wikis I also allow students to create websites tied to content and discussions. In my course on Recent Europe at Northern Arizona University in spring 2013, for example, students created a Digital Travel Log on traveling through recent European history based on Geert Mak’s volume In Europe. I also utilize podcasts or digital stories in combination with oral history to provide similar hands-on experiences. Such tasks expose students to programs like Zotero, Prism, Mapbox, or Tiki-Toki and ultimately help them organize their research and teaching, or provide them with avenues for sharing and visualizing their work. A variety of possibilities exist in this context, nicely outlined by The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, at George Mason University. Apart from such tools conversations also evolve around what it means to be a historian in the digital age. We thus regularly discuss new approaches, methods, and possibilities available for scholars, and how such have shaped and changed our discipline.

Professional Development and Teaching Workshops:

  • C0-Facilitator, Annual Pedagogy Project, “Engaging Students in the Classroom and Beyond,” Bridgewater College, 2016/17;
  • Participant/ Presenter, “Digital History & Interdisciplinary Learning,” Teaching Day, Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, AZ, Jan. 2015;
  • Participant/ Presenter, “The Future of Holocaust Education,” German Studies conference, Kansas City, MO, Sept. 2014;
  • Organizer/ Presenter, “Teaching the Holocaust: A Conversation,” Teaching American History Grant, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ, Feb. 2014;
  • Participant/ Presenter, “Experiential Teaching & Learning In and Out of the Classroom,” Teaching Day, Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, AZ, Jan. 2014;
  • Participant, “Exploring the Future of Holocaust Education,” Arizona Education Summit, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Phoenix, AZ, Nov. 2013;
  • Participant, “Intersections of Culture and Learning,” Learning Community, Northern Arizona University, Fall 2012 to Spring 2013;
  • Participant, “Teaching about the Holocaust through Eyewitness Testimony,” Jack and Anita Hess Seminar for Faculty, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Washington D.C., Jan. 2011;