If you have questions, please contact the Associate Dean for Graduate Education.
Policy Purpose and Description
All departments and schools in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences are required to provide a TA orientation during the three-day period preceding the beginning of fall 2023 classes that does not conflict with the Graduate College orientation. We encourage you to schedule your departmental orientation on the afternoon of Thursday, August 17, 2023, or on Friday, August 18, 2023, rather than on Wednesday, August 16, 2023, or the morning of Thursday, August 17, 2023, as those days and times are reserved for the Graduate College Orientation and Center for Teaching New TA Orientation respectively. This orientation should include preparatory instructional training in the discipline. Some larger units may wish to divide the teaching assistants into smaller groups according to specialization, while smaller departments may wish to work with other departments in offering annual TA orientation. All TA supervisors must observe the teaching of new TAs by the eighth week of the semester and provide written feedback to all TAs on their overall performance of duties at the end of each semester using an instrument separate from the ACE teaching evaluation. CLAS departments and schools are further urged to observe all TAs at least once a semester using a mentored observation framework that is treated separately from the required end-of-semester TA performance evaluation.
An effective TA orientation should include review of the following:
- Information about FERPA and Harassment Prevention Education
- Mental health and crisis response resources
- Required content of the course syllabus
- Creating a coherent lesson plan for each class period
- Using the ICON site
- Instructor guidelines for meeting classes, holding office hours, and covering absences (including departmental policies for securing substitutes)
- Meeting deadlines for class lists, student attendance, and submission of grades
- Policies regarding student absences, student workload, student accommodations, final examinations, and textbooks and teaching materials
- Cultivating a welcoming and professional classroom atmosphere
- The timely and effective grading of student work
- Handling academic misconduct. CLAS requires that reports about academic misconduct be submitted using the form found on the link below.
- Required ACE course evaluations
- Resources and Support available through the Center for Teaching
Frequently Asked Questions