Graduate Assistants and Teaching Assistants are paid their stipend to participate in the Teacher Training Program. Graduate Assistants in their first year serve as tutors in the University Writing Center and are paired with a faculty member as a Research Assistant. The Writing Center allows First year Graduate Assistants to conduct tutorials with individual students. These tutorials offer a unique opportunity to work one-on-one with an undergraduate student, coaching a student to better writing and argumentation. Students will report directly to the Director of the Writing Center and work six hours per week in the Writing Center.
In their second year, students serve as an assistant to a Philosophy professor in one course of the student’s choosing. Teaching assistants at this level comment on drafts of papers, hold regular office hours, facilitate study sessions, and teach for one or two weeks each semester. Ideally, the professor and the TA will meet regularly to discuss pedagogy, course content, and preparations for the student’s teaching experience.
Teaching Assistants in their third year are responsible for one section each semester of a large lecture presentation of Introduction to Philosophy. They teach the weekly recitation sections and are primarily responsible for the all of the students’ needs for the course. TAs will hold regular office hours, comment on drafts of papers, arrange study sessions, and assign grades. Throughout the third year, the graduate teaching assistants meet regularly with the faculty member teaching the large lecture as well as the faculty member coordinating the Teacher Training Program. The professor of the large lecture Intro. course should observe the teachers in training and offer written and verbal feedback at least twice each term; undergraduate students also offer feedback through the standard institutional student evaluation forms. Please see the 3rd and 4th year Memo on Teacher Training for more of the content of the training seminars and sessions. During the spring semester, students will also choose a mentor who will advise the individual student on pedagogical issues and assist in course and syllabus preparation.
In their fourth year, on the condition that they have completed all the requirements for the M.A., graduate students are assigned one course each semester. The student may choose to teach Introduction to Philosophy, Ethics, Logic, or Core Humanities. The graduate student’s faculty mentor will continue to advise the new teacher and serves as a resource for academic and pedagogical issues. The student will receive feedback through student evaluations at the end of each term and through in class observations by the TA’s mentor or another faculty member. In class evaluations include a written report that may be used as part of a teaching portfolio during placement.
Students in their 5th year and beyond will be eligible to teach as many as two courses in each semester compensated at the rate of pay for Instructors who have completed the terminal (Ph.D.) degree. Students may ask to teach Introduction to Philosophy, Ethics, Logic, and Core Humanities. Students who have made significant advancement on their dissertations are also eligible to apply for a Special Topics course or a Competitive course to acknowledge innovation in teaching. The student will receive feedback through student evaluations at the end of each term and through in class observations by the TA’s mentor or another faculty member. In class evaluations include a written report that may be used as part of a teaching portfolio during placement.