Simone also studied Educational Sciences and worked as an educationist at Radboud University. 'I think it is important as an education expert to inform people about how education works. It's also then nice if you have experience with it yourself.' Subsequently, Simone started teaching alongside her work as an educationalist. 'I think practical experience in teaching is super important. Especially at university where most teachers have a scientific background and yet a large proportion of our students do not go into science.'
The courses Simone teaches are almost all practically oriented. 'I particularly enjoy getting to work with students and engaging with the content rather than just imparting knowledge. Students are cognitively very strong and engage a lot in the analytical and theoretical, but translating to practice is just as important! It's also extra fun when you see the pennies drop in students when everything comes together.'
Sparring on topics together and working towards something is what I enjoy most
In addition to the courses Simone teaches, she is also an internship supervisor. 'I ask students the question of what they learnt during the course, and that turns out to be a tricky question. But when you talk to students about it, they turn out to have learnt a lot more than they had thought.' Supervising is something Simone gets very excited about; 'Sparring on topics together and working towards something is what I enjoy most.'
A challenge for Simone is the link between giving guidance combined with nudges in the right direction and the free space students need to figure out what they themselves need and where they want to end up later. 'Sometimes we as teachers or as a university have a good idea of what would be best for the student, but ultimately they have to make the choice themselves and find out what makes them happy.'