Learning Adventures – Teaching through storytelling
During my formal education, my favorite teachers were the ones who shared knowledge and answered questions through personal experiences and real-life stories. Many of these stories, and the lessons behind them, I fondly remember today.
In fact, many anthropologists would agree that teaching and learning through storytelling is how knowledge was passed down in traditional human societies before recorded history.
As a professional academic, I do my best to teach through sharing personal experiences. I have also found success in developing my courses and stories through online photo journals, video, and other multimedia.
I developed online courses and the Learning Adventures series in order to address digital transformations in education, and to visually support my university presentations and public talks. The text, photos, and videos on these pages provide an accessible multimedia platform for students to follow and explore on their mobile devices, such as laptop computers, tablets, and smart phones.
For example, when teaching a course in Eastern Civilizations, I often share my personal experiences and stories from the Silk Road, Pakistan, Tibet and the Great Wall, and students can follow topics through the photos, maps, and links for each Learning Adventure. If teaching Environmental Studies, I may share personal experiences from the Amazon Rainforest, Galapagos Islands, or an environmental issue encountered at a particular international surfing destination.
Other courses I have enjoyed teaching
Interviews with students and class music videos
Anna Nilsson | International Studies | University Filmworks
KK | Hospitality and Tourism | University Filmworks
Indonesian Music and Dance | University Filmworks
Burmese Cultural Arts | University Filmworks
How I began teaching in Phuket, Thailand
After graduating with my Master of Arts from National Chengchi University (NCCU) in Taiwan in 2006, I moved to Phuket, Thailand, and joined the International MBA program in Hospitality and Tourism Management at Prince of Songkla University.
Doing a degree in tourism made sense to me; I had deep experience working in tourism, and had been a tourist in forty countries. In addition, I had visited the resort island of Phuket in 2005 and discovered an burgeoning surf tourism industry and uncrowded waves on the island's beaches and reefs. I was keen to return to the island and explore other areas for surfing on Thailand's Andaman Coast.
FIS was opening a new course called Introduction to Interdisciplinary Study, and it seemed like a great opportunity get teaching experience abroad. It was also an important opportunity to earn a salary, considering the international student tuition costs I had been paying.
I immediately said, “Yes,” and began teaching the next day.
After completing my MBA in 2010, I stayed on at FIS, accepting new and challenging courses to teach, including Chinese Philosophy, Research Methodology, Thai Geography, Eastern Civilization and Southeast Asian Civilization.
After completing my Ph.D. dissertation in 2013, the Faculty of International Studies requested I develop a new course in Environmental Studies for the social science programs at the Phuket campus. I believe this course is particularly important for students, and emphasis is placed on personal responsibility and participation in addressing environmental issues.
To date, I have been teaching at FIS for 10 years and earned tenure in 2013.
Please take a moment to explore the my portfolio of course pages in this section of my website.