• University of Malaya logo

How to Develop a Personal Teaching Philosophy in Higher Education

Connect concepts from world philosophy, educational philosophy, and educational psychology to inform your teaching practice.

608 enrolled on this course

How to Develop a Personal Teaching Philosophy in Higher Education

608 enrolled on this course

  • 3 weeks

  • 2 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

Find out more about how to join this course

Instil a sense of wonder in your learners

When delivering complex concepts and theories in higher education, it is vital to develop a sense of wonder around the subject, creating and maintaining interest in your learners.

On this three-week course, you’ll investigate the notion of ‘wonder’ in teaching contexts, using world philosophies and educational philosophy and psychology to underpin your new approach to teaching and learning.

Explore the four main world philosophies, from idealism to pragmatism

Beginning with an introduction to philosophy, you’ll delve into the concepts of idealism, realism, pragmatism, and existentialism, assessing their impact on educational practice.

You’ll then discuss the application or relevance of each theory in educational settings.

Examine the fundamentals of educational philosophy and educational psychology

Building on your knowledge of world philosophies, you’ll move on to educational philosophical theories including perennialism, essentialism, progressivism, and reconstructionism.

You’ll then explore the link between educational philosophy and psychology and discuss how you can use the theories to inform your teaching practices to develop engaging, awe-inspiring content for your learners.

Develop your personal teaching philosophy

Bringing together your learning from previous weeks, you’ll finish this course by exploring how to use the tools of philosophy to help inform your own personal teaching philosophy and embed a sense of wonder throughout your learning design.

By the end of this course, you’ll have an understanding of the main philosophies and psychological concepts that inform teaching practice today. With this knowledge, you’ll be able to view and deliver knowledge through a new lens and instil wonder in your learners whatever your taught subject.


  • Week 1

    World Philosophies

    • Getting Started

      What comes to mind when you hear the word Philosophy? Bearded men who express abstract thought, logic and reasoning? How these thoughts are related to Education and the subjects taught will be explored in this course.

    • Philosophical Thoughts

      This section will introduce the four main World Philosophies, namely Idealism, Realism, Pragmatism and Existentialism. Big terms with in-depth meanings. Let's begin our exploration.

    • Weekly Wrap up

      Certainly, the terms idealism, realism, pragmatism and existentialism must be spinning in your heads. A brief summary is timely at this point.

  • Week 2

    Educational Philosophies

    • Philosophical Thoughts in Education

      Connecting Philosophy and Education - The ends of education are the ends of philosophy i.e., wisdom; and the means of philosophy is the means of education i.e. inquiry, which alone can lead to wisdom" (Saragih, 2012, p.2)

    • Educational Psychology Theories

      From Educational Philosophical thought, came Educational Psychological thought and the derivation of numerous learning theories which are central to teaching and learning.

    • Weekly Wrap up

      We have dwelt upon three big areas, world philosophies, educational philosophies and educational psychology. How can we connect all three? In this wrap up session we shall look at this.

  • Week 3

    Components / Tools of Philosophers

    • Identifying Components / Tools of Philosophers

      Each philosophy has three main components, ontology (metaphysics), epistemology and axiology (or four, if you add logic). These components are also labelled as 'Tools of Philosophers'.

    • My Teaching Philosophy

      After taking you through world philosophies, educational philosophies, related Educational Psychological Learning theories, and the Tools of Philosophers, you are now going to craft your own teaching philosophy.

    • Weekly Wrap up

      From ancient world philosophies which influenced educational philosophies and educational psychologies, the journey through this course has uncovered the Tools of Philosophers for you to create your own Teaching Philosophy.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Compare the attributes of the main world philosophies and educational philosophies and their contribution to education.
  • Explain the relation of philosophical tools of ontology, epistemology, and axiology to the development of knowledge.
  • Describe personal education philosophical positions.
  • Describe the role of 'wonder' in the discovery of knowledge.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for educators working in higher education institutions, who want to explore philosophical theories in connection with teaching and learning.

Who will you learn with?

Educating a learner is a fascinating process. It never becomes static or rigid, but is a ever changing journey, as every learner is unique.

Who developed the course?

Universiti Malaya

Universiti Malaya is the premier research university in Malaysia, committed to advancing knowledge and learning through quality research and education for the nation and for humanity.

  • Established

  • Location

    Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • World ranking

    Top 60Source: QS World University Rankings 2021

Ways to learn

Subscribe & save

Buy this course

Limited access

Choose the best way to learn for you!

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

$44/one-off payment


Develop skills to further your careerFulfill your current learning needSample the course materials
Access to this courseticktick

Access expires 4 Aug 2024

Access to 1,000+ coursestickcrosscross
Learn at your own paceticktickcross
Discuss your learning in commentstickticktick
Certificate when you're eligibleDigital onlyPrinted and digitalcross
Continue & Upgrade

Cancel for free anytime

Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Buy this course

$44/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Subscribe & save

$349.99 for one year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Limited access


Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 4 Aug 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

Get a taste of this course

Find out what this course is like by previewing some of the course steps before you join:

Do you know someone who'd love this course? Tell them about it...