Center for Teaching, Learning and Technology
Illinois State University
Jump over the College navigation bar.

2009 Outstanding University Teacher Award Winner Category II

Jennifer McDade, M.S.

  • M.S. in Communication from Illinois State University (2004)
  • Coordinator, Center for Teaching, Learning & Technology; Instructor, School of Communication

Teaching philosophy

My role as an instructor is to lay the groundwork for an authentic learning process that is active and engaging and involves shared instructor-student responsibility for ongoing reflection and evaluation of how individual progress measures against learning goals.

Three most valuable approaches that I bring to my teaching practice

I am an active and engaging teacher who believes students function best as active learners in classrooms without walls.

Best compliments from students

“Works well with all student and helps us feel good about being here.”

“100% interested in helping students succeed.”

“It’s not just about the grade but learning these skills for life.”

Most important influence on my teaching career

My work with the American Democracy Project as a committee member on campus and participant and presenter at national meetings fuels my passion for civic engagement and guides me to best practices that shape my pedagogy. My goal is to facilitate student learning by challenging and empowering students to gain and utilize knowledge as a tool for understanding and analyzing the root causes of problems to solve them.

My professional motivation comes from

My ISU colleagues Cheri Simonds and Steve Hunt who introduced me to teaching as a graduate student and are now teaching mentors, collaborators, and close friends.

Jennifer McDade, M. S.
"I've learned that covering material does not always equal teaching and teaching does not always equal learning. In other words, I must focus on student learning first and foremost, and then help students connect this learning to their lives to make it meaningful."
2017-07-20T13:27:59.931-05:00 2017