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Katy Harms

Katy Harms

about the teacher

I entered the doors of Flathead Valley Community College as a 16-year-old, homeschooled student. After my first Calculus course, I became so passionate about mathematics that I decided I wanted to teach it. When I transferred to Montana Tech, I continued to study mathematics and expanded my extracurricular involvement through tutoring in the math learning center and leading supplemental instruction sessions. After completing a B.S. in Mathematics, I attended graduate school at Washington State University which allowed me to gain teaching experience and knowledge of best practices in mathematics education.

After graduating with a M.S. in Mathematics, I was hired by the engineering department at Washington State University to run a grant program funded by the National Science Foundation where I taught a course emphasizing the fundamentals of mathematics through engineering contexts and a course emphasizing study and professional skills for first-year engineering students. This program was designed to support a small cohort of 30 students each year. Getting to know these students was the best part of my job. My responsibilities were later expanded to teach the introductory engineering course for the college which included a complete curriculum overhaul and joint management of over 350 students each school year.

I have enjoyed working with college freshman as they are in an unique transitional period in their lives. They come to me essentially as high school seniors, and it has been my privilege to help them develop into college students. I am looking forward to working with high school students and passing on the knowledge that I have gained from working at the collegiate level.

I currently live in Moscow, Idaho with my husband, Matt. My hobbies include reading, writing, cooking, baking, and spending time with Matt.

Teaching Philosophy

I believe that every student should be treated with respect. I expect a high level of academic performance from my students, so I take care to make sure my expectations are clear to them. I believe that the classroom, while not immediately reflective of the environment of a job, should demonstrate principles of professional behavior.

I believe in the Socratic method, so throughout the lecture, I ask questions of the student to guide their thinking. I want the student to realize that the prior knowledge that they possess equips them to make deductions about what comes next (e.g. “If a vector is comprised of a magnitude and a direction, what might it mean to add two vectors together?).

I seek to create an environment that is conducive to building confidence, growing in knowledge, and creating professional habits. My students are continually practicing and learning. Alongside them, I am continually learning and modifying my teaching practices to best serve the student.

Statement of Faith

When I was seven years old, my Nana shared the Gospel with me. She led me in a simple prayer that changed the course of my life. I asked Jesus to forgive my sins and to be my Savior and the Lord of my life. Currently, I attend Trinity Reformed Church in Moscow, Idaho.

I believe that the Bible is the Word of God and that God convicts and instructs Christians through His word (2 Timothy 3:16-17). I believe it is important to read and study God’s word regularly (Matthew 4:4, Psalm 1:2) and to memorize scripture (Proverbs 6:21). I believe that when I am unsure of what I should do, I should search the Bible for answers (James 1:5). I believe the Holy Spirit prompts me to do this.

I believe in regular confession of sin and in the forgiveness of sins (1 John 1:9). In my experience, unconfessed sin in my life leads to more sin. I remember attending a talk during my college years where a pastor described confessing sins like washing dishes. When you wash the dish, the dish is clean. When you confess the sin and ask for forgiveness, the sin is forgiven.

I believe that Christianity is a ministry of reconciliation (2 Corinthians 5:16-21). Christ reconciled me to God. I no longer live for myself, but for God. I can consider others better than myself and look to their interests (Philippians 2:3-4). Lastly, I believe that the work that God started in me at seven years old is continuing today and will continue until Jesus returns (Philippians 1:6). I am a sinner, but because of God’s saving grace, I am reconciled to Him through Jesus Christ’s death on the cross.

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Publications

The Redshirt in Engineering Consortium
Progress and Early Insights
Riskin, E. A., & Milford, J., & Callahan, J., & Cosman, P., & Schneider, J. B., & Pitts, K., & Knaphus-Soran, E., & Llewellyn, D. C., & Delaney, A. E., & Myers, B. A., & Tetrick, K. C., & Cunningham, S., & Ennis, T. D., & O'Connor, K., & Ferrez, M., & Pan, T. D., & Baldis, J. (2018, June), Board 105: Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Work in Progress
Institutional Context and the Implementation of the Redshirt in Engineering Model at Six Universities
Knaphus-Soran, E., & Delaney, A., & Tetrick, K. C., & Cunningham, S., & Cosman, P., & Ennis, T. D., & Myers, B. A., & Milford, J., & Llewellyn, D. C., & Riskin, E. A., & Callahan, J., & Pitts, K., & Ferrez, M. (2018, June), Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Redshirt in Engineering
A Model for Improving Equity and Inclusion
Myers, B. A., & Knaphus-Soran, E., & Llewellyn, D. C., & Delaney, A., & Cunningham, S., & Cosman, P., & Ennis, T. D., & Tetrick, K. C., & Riskin, E. A., & Callahan, J., & Pitts, K. (2018, April), Redshirt in Engineering: Paper presented at 2018 CoNECD - The Collaborative Network for Engineering and Computing Diversity Conference, Crystal City, Virginia.
Implementation and Assessment of the Washington STate Academic RedShirt (STARS) Program
None
Tetrick, K. C., & Riskin, E. A., & Schneider, J. B., & Cunningham, S. (2016, June), Paper presented at 2016 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, New Orleans, Louisiana. 10.18260/p.25556

Education

M.S.
2015
Mathematics - Teaching Emphasis
B.S.
2013
Mathematics - Minor in Statistics