Katherine Ritchie  |  Associate Professor of Philosophy, University of California, Irvine

Teaching Statement

The best courses I took as a student were those that demanded collaborative exploration. I use this insight in my own teaching by combining lecture with discussion in an exploratory atmosphere. Students participate, engage, and learn more when the classroom presents a variety of opportunities to demonstrate conceptual competence. By using lectures, asking concrete questions, and providing space for open discussion, I engage a diverse range of students in class, provide a platform for students to find their voices and agency in their education, and instill in them an appreciation of the complexity and versatility of philosophy.

I encourage students to use philosophical thinking out of the classroom by emphasizing the relevance of philosophy and the skill set its study develops to their everyday lives. Whether students are arguing for a political position, designing a business plan, proposing an interpretation of a poem, or developing an experiment to test a hypothesis, philosophy is especially well-suited to learning how to reason clearly and communicate effectively. As children we push boundaries in order to determine what the rules are and to understand how things work. Philosophy allows us to recapture and strengthen this curiosity.


Recent and Upcoming Courses

University of California, Irvine

Seminar: Structures and Stereotypes (Philosophy of Psychology)

Feminist Philosophy

Social Ontology

Seminar: The Nature of (Representations of) Social Kinds

Introduction to Philosophy

City College and the CUNY Graduate Center

Essentializing Language (CUNY Graduate Center)

Philosophy of Language

Feminist Philosophy

Social Ontology

Logic Seminar (CUNY Graduate Center)

Honors Rational Animal

Introduction to Philosophy

Introduction to Logic

Metaphysics and Epistemology

Philosophy of Mind