Paweł Charasz


Teaching Philosophy

The primary goal of my teaching is to equip my students with a set of analytical tools for understanding and making sense of the world around them. I transcend traditional disciplinary boundaries because I believe that learning requires a diverse set of perspectives. Imposing arbitrary categorizations that restrict it to the bounds of a single discipline deprives students of insights that reflect the breadth and complexity of the reality outside of university walls.

I view teaching as a learning opportunity both for the students and myself. Conveying ideas in the most approachable way forces one to develop a much deeper understanding of these ideas. But to me, it goes furtherI cherish teaching because I get to learn from my students. I therefore treat them as "partners" on an educational adventure and value their contributions and ideas. I strive to create an environment that allows students to express their opinions freely and respectfully, with the goal of exposing them to diverse viewpoints and allowing them to learn from the diversity of personal experiences of their peers.

Throughout my interactions with students, both in and out of the classroom, I nudge and nurture their development of critical thinking, analytical, and communication skills. I see these as universal skills that students will be able to apply readily in real life, but also ones that will enable them to become independent in acquiring, applying, and conveying knowledge. To foster this, I devise a threefold strategy:

  • students are encouraged to actively participate in class discussion, which in seminar classes is additionally facilitated by having them prepare discussion questions in advance and being asked to lead class discussion on a selected day;

  • written assignments where students have the flexibility to choose their own topic and apply concepts learned in class to other contexts;

  • reading assignments that present different, sometimes conflicting, perspectives on a related topic, allowing students to assess the relative merits of arguments and evidence critically.

Teaching Experience

Lab Instructor

POLSCI631L: Deductive & Analytical Approaches to Political Phenomena (Duke University, Spring 2021)

  • Instructor: Bahar Leventoglu

  • Level: Masters and PhD

POLSCI631L: Deductive & Analytical Approaches to Political Phenomena (Duke University, Spring 2019)

  • Instructor: Bahar Leventoglu

  • Level: Masters and PhD

Teaching Assistant

POLSCI468S: Wealth and Poverty of Nations: Prosperity and Distribution in the Long Run (Duke University, Fall 2020)

  • Instructor: Pablo Beramendi

  • Level: Undergraduate

POLSCI224: Inequality and Politics (Duke University, Fall 2018)

  • Instructor: Pablo Beramendi

  • Level: Undergraduate

ECON345/554: Urban Economics (Duke University, Spring 2015)

  • Instructor: Charles Becker

  • Level: Undergraduate and Masters

Pedagogical Training