Socrates is Not Dead! The Role of the Teacher in Higher Education Now and for the Next Ten Years
AbstractThis paper addresses the ongoing transformation in academe from traditional tutorial teaching methods to the use of new technology tools that enable a modern university to compete successfully with the increasing popularity of distance learning programs, sometimes known as the 'electronic classroom." In particular, the paper maintains that teaching techniques must be expanded to include interactive methods that bring students into a more participat role. From the examples provided by the Greek philosopher and teacher Socrates 2,400 years ago, higher education has an excellent role model from which to develop these skills. Based on the comments of concerned authors, the paper holds that the transformation must be accomplished within the next ten years. Among the challenges to successfully learning Socratic teaching methods, the paper cites several, including knowing how to ask the right questions in the classroom, how to ask those questions the right way, and how to select the students to ask without seemingly "picking on" someone. Additionally, the paper discusses the major challenge that confronts the teacher when dealing with the wrong answers that students provide.