Joseph Rogers
Joseph Rogers
(Photo by Mark McClendon)

UTSA Spotlight: Joseph Rogers ranks sixth nationally in Top 10

By Kris Rodriguez
Public Affairs Specialist

(Dec. 11, 2008)--For the second consecutive year, MtvU-owned issued its Top 10 List of Top Rated Professors, and this year, UTSA's own Joseph Rogers finished sixth in the nation. A lecturer in the College of Liberal and Fine Arts field of religious studies, Rogers' Top-10 listing was based on rankings submitted by his students over the last two-and-a-half years.

The Web site received more than 7.5 million student submissions ranking more than 1 million professors around the country.

A lecturer at UTSA since 2005, Rogers said he is honored to be ranked among the top professors in the country based on student rankings. He credits his passion for teaching as the key to success in the classroom.

"If it's toaster repair or wall painting, you have to be passionate about it, and I think the students will pick up on that," said Rogers. "If you're passionate about it, they will get passionate about it, and that is the challenge, when you've done these courses year after year."

Rogers classes are usually filled to capacity with 80 to 100 students in each classroom. His favorite class to teach is World Religions because of the fascination expressed by students in the classroom.

"They hear and read the news in the Middle East about the debate between politics and religion, and they want to know what it's all about," said Rogers. "I'm a firm believer in cultural literacy and that you can't be literate in these issues if you don't have a background on what these people believe."

Raised in a military family, Rogers was able to experience living in a variety of cultures with stops along the way in Latin America, Puerto Rico, Ecuador, Dominican Republic and Panama.

As for the future, Rogers is excited about a new minor in religious studies will begin this spring.

"I think it's great that UTSA is on track to have a minor in religious studies, especially if we're looking at premier research university status," said Rogers. "Most major secular state universities have religious studies programs, and I think it's a really good thing that UTSA is moving in that direction."

To learn more about the minor in religious studies, visit the UTSA Department of Philosophy and Classics Web site.


What students are saying about Joseph Rogers

"He is so amazingly open and clear about what he wants you to learn but always encourages individuality."

"I would take any class from this guy because he allows a lot of class discussions, is funny, interesting and engaging."

"He is very open to class discussions and plays devil's advocate to encourage looking at things from other points of view."

"Very fun and interesting. Makes the class and subject appealing to all."

"Best teacher at UTSA that I've ever taken. It's worth waking up and getting to class at 8 a.m.

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