I think of teaching philosophy as consisting of two closely related tasks: teaching students about philosophy, and teaching students how to do philosophy. Teaching students about philosophy means introducing them to key ideas, arguments, and debates in a way that is accessible and engaging. Teaching students how to do philosophy means teaching them how to reason critically, how to write effectively, and how to engage constructively in debate with others.
Comments from Students
"I truly believe he helped me improve as a writer and his lectures challenged me intellectually. He introduced me to several new viewpoints that helped me understand alternative perspectives and ideas from another stance. My favorite thing about his class was his feedback on all writing assignments. It made me clearly understand my mistakes, be able to learn from them, and improve on future assignments."
"Aaron was a great professor for logic -- very clear, precise, and organized, all of which are very important for this type of class."
"Mr. Ancell is a truly engaging instructor and made the, at times, difficult material easy to understand."
"He's very well prepared and engages the class in discussion well, he pushes and makes us consider all sides of each argument."
"Was very impressed with the instructor's ability to explain often confusing concepts. Was very good at coming up with examples, and scenarios to clarify certain topics as well as to force us to see new perspectives of a problem. Also, very good at staying neutral, and endorsing both sides of a potential argument to not sway our thoughts on way or another, allowing us to form our own opinions."
"Readings were very well chosen and I enjoyed the integration of other sources such as Youtube Videos and TED talks."
"I enjoyed this class very much. Liked the content that was discussed, very thought provoking. Also felt like there was a good classroom environment."
"Mr. Ancell was my favorite teacher this year."
"I enjoyed the class immensely and would recommend it to any student. Aaron made the entire course very accessible to someone not familiar with philosophy and was very open to student input during discussions. Grades helpfully and fairly."