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AHC Gamechangers: Robert Porter

Robert Porter, Ph.D., is a clinical professor in the University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine

Known throughout the College of Veterinary Medicine by students and faculty alike for his innovative and creative teaching techniques, clinical professor of systemic pathology Robert Porter, Ph.D., is this week’s AHC Gamechanger.

Utilizing unusual techniques like decorating cookies, making models out of clay and writing poetry, Porter finds interesting ways to connect his students with the details of systemic pathology.

The end goal is both a cooperative learning environment and a higher level of lesson retention for students.

“If the students are bored, they aren’t learning, and you’re not getting anywhere,” said Porter about how he developed his teaching methods.

And it looks like his techniques are working: Porter was recently selected by veterinary students to receive the Pfizer Distinguished Teacher Award, the College of Vet Med’s most prestigious faculty teaching award.

It doesn’t stop there. Porter says his biggest motivation to continue improving current teaching methods and increase student learning here at the University of Minnesota has actually been the University of Minnesota.

“Throughout all levels – my department, the College and the University as a whole – I have been impressed with the openness to try alternative teaching techniques and the drive to take teaching to another, better level,” said Porter.

For more Academic Health Center Gamechangers, visit the Health Talk blog every Friday.

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