Baylor profs pen new book on Christianity’s impact on teaching
The mission of Baylor University is to educate men and women for worldwide leadership and service by integrating academic excellence and Christian commitment within a caring community.
With a mission like that, it’s no surprise that a book analyzing the impact of the Christian faith on teaching came out of Baylor. Baylor School of Education faculty members Perry Glanzer (MA ’91) and Nathan Alleman have recently published The Outrageous Idea of Christian Teaching. It focuses on the challenges and opportunities Christian professors face when intersecting their two identities as Christian and professor.
In preparation for the book, Drs. Glanzer and Alleman spent years surveying some 2,300 Christian professors at 48 different institutions in North America. The big question they sought to answer: How does being a Christian change one’s teaching? And should it?
“The way I approach my teaching is I look at my students as made in the image of God,” one survey respondent said. It’s an approach that Glanzer says he himself endorses.
“The relationship of brothers and sisters in Christ surpasses the simple professor-student relationship,” says Glanzer. “There is a whole range of ways that Christianity influences teaching. I hope that Christian professors, even if they have been teaching a while, will get new ideas from the book.”
In the end, the book works to answer two main questions: How does being a Christian change one’s teaching, and how should being a Christian change one’s teaching?
“I’m hoping we can affirm for faculty that their whole identity, including their Christian faith, is appropriately an integrated part of their identity as a teacher, whether on a Christian or pluralistic campus,” says Alleman.
Sic ’em, Drs. Glanzer and Alleman!