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On Teaching ReligionEssays by Jonathan Z. Smith$
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Christopher I. Lehrich

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199944293

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199944293.001.0001

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Approaching the College Classroom

(p.1) Introduction
On Teaching Religion

Jonathan Z. Smith

Christopher I. Lehrich

Oxford University Press

This introductory chapter presents Jonathan Z. Smith's account of his preclassroom “decisions and operations” prior to actually teaching a college course. Among them is using the summer to revise or design courses, and for the necessary reading as background for those courses. With regards to the syllabus, he prefers to begin at the end by trying to imagine a final examination. Not so much the particulars he wants the students to know, but the issues he wants them to confront; the skills he wants them to deploy. With this “end” in mind, the blank pages for each class session begin to be filled by possible road maps to move them there.

Keywords:   Jonathan Z. Smith, teaching preparation, college course, syllabus

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