Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Learning From My Students

For the past 10 years, I've taught a variety of technical topics in classroom settings. The subjects I've covered include XML, XML Schema, XPath, XSLT, XSL FO, SAX, DOM, XQuery, and S1000D. The participants are usually professionals who are looking to upgrade their skills. It’s gratifying to read an e-mail from a student saying how a course I’ve taught has helped them be more productive in their work or pass a certification exam.

It’s always a pleasure to share my knowledge and experience with people, but also to learn from them. When you teach a class, you must master the topic because you can't afford to always respond to students questions by saying that you will do some research and get back to them later with an answer. While preparing for the class, you need to find examples and real life scenarios to explain complex concepts to them. During the class itself, by listening to students’ questions and comments and trying to answer them, you actually discover some aspects or applications of the topic that you have not thought about before.

As the saying goes "the best way to learn is to teach".

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