Time Expectations

Teaching assistants who have a 50% time appointment are expected to work 20 hours per week. If there is no grading involved in any given week, however, you will be working much less than this, averaging perhaps 10-15 hours a week. Bank your hours on lighter weeks so as to handle heavier grading weeks down the road. Keep a record of how many hours you work per week, specifying what you did for each hour. Here are guidelines for the distribution of your workload:

  • Lecture time: 2 hours
  • Assistance with class administration: 1 hour
  • Recitation time: 3 hours
  • Preparation for recitation time: 3 hours
  • Office hours: 2 hours
  • Meeting time with instructor: 1 hour
  • Grading: 8 hours

TOTAL: 20 hours

Note that a TA with a 33% appointment is expected to work 12 hours per week. If you have a 33% appointment, you can derive an approximate workload distribution  by halving the above time estimates. 

Lecture Expectations

  1. Attend each lecture and take good notes so that you can go over the lecture material in detail in recitation. Be sure to take good notes even if you know the material, so that you can remember what was discussed and create a good recitation hour. If for some reason you must miss lecture, be sure to let the instructor know; you will need to go over the lecture notes with a fellow TA before your recitation. You must read all of the required readings before coming to lecture.
  2. The instructor might ask you to come up with a few questions for quizzes and exams. If you are asked to submit questions, you must do so. You must also test-run or proofread exams as requested.

Recitation Expectations

  1. In recitation, go over the keywords and concepts presented in the lecture.
  2. Look over the syllabus at the beginning of each week to see the outlines of what you will need to accomplish in recitation. You should pick up the necessary materials from the instructor in your weekly meeting so that you can make appropriate copies for your recitation.
  3. If required to do so by the instructor, create a presentation of lecture concepts or other relevant materials of own choosing to present to each recitation. Your presentation should reinforce the keywords and concepts from each lecture. Each recitation section should view the same presentation.
  4. Track the attendance and participation of each student for the ‘recitation grade’.
  5. Use the full 50-minute session each week. Do not cancel your or let your recitation out early, unless all of the TAs have been given that instruction by the instructor.
  6. If you have to miss a recitation or switch recitations with another TA for any reason, you must notify the instructor in advance. 

Grading Expectations

  1. You are responsible for the grades of all of your recitation students. But also be sure to keep a copy of all of the grades offline, in case D2L loses data for some reason (this has reportedly happened in the past).
  2. You are responsible for entering grades on D2L in a timely fashion and for returning graded assignments in a timely fashion, as defined by the instructor.
  3.  Guidelines for grading need to be as consistent as possible across sections.
  4. You must grade everything you are asked to grade.
  5. Do not make ‘deals’ with students regarding late assignments, extra credit, grades, etc. Students who have concerns about these matters should be directed to speak with the instructor. 

General Expectations

  1. The instructor expects you to be positive and enthusiastic with your students about the course, the readings, and the lecture material presented in class. If you disagree with what was said in lecture or how the instructor taught a particular linguistic or cultural issue, discuss these disagreements with the instructor, not your students or other TAs. If there is an issue that cannot be resolved with the instructor, talk with the Department chair or course supervisor about it.
  2. It is fine for you to establish a nice rapport with your students, but it is not appropriate for you to try to be your students’ best friend. Never sacrifice the integrity of the grading scheme or alter deadlines in order to win the approval of your students.
  3. Professional and respectful behavior is expected at all times. 

TAs who are consistently found to be in violation of these policies may lose teaching support.