Undergraduate Teaching Assistantships

Recognizing that teaching is a valuable component of learning, faculty members offer undergraduate teaching practica to permit qualified undergraduates to participate under faculty supervision in teaching courses. These teaching practica are intended to enhance the liberal education of the participating students by introducing them, under the guidance of faculty, to some of the aspects of successful teaching. Students receive academic credit for the learning and experience they acquire in undergraduate teaching practica.

Undergraduate teaching assistants must be juniors or seniors (U3 or U4 status). They must have demonstrated mastery of the subject matter by having completed and excelled in the course in which they will be assisting or in a similar but more advanced version of that course.

Undergraduate teaching assistants must not grade any work that contributes to the final course grade, although they may be assigned to read and criticize drafts of work that have already been graded. All evaluations of student performance that contribute to the final course grade are the exclusive responsibility of faculty and cannot be delegated to undergraduate teaching assistants. Undergraduate teaching assistants must not see any version of any quiz, test, or examination nor must they proctor an examination in the course in which they are assisting. Exceptions to this rule may be made only by special permission of the Office of the Dean and College Curriculum Committee.

To receive credit for working as undergraduate teaching assistants, students enroll in a department’s teaching practicum, numbered 475 or 476. These practica are designed to broaden the students’ knowledge of the subject matter of the course and to instruct them in techniques of teaching and evaluation. Students may not be given credit for independent reading or research for teaching assistance nor may they register in the course in which they are assisting. (Upon discovery of the awarding of such credit—at any time—it will be removed from the student’s record.) Only Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory grades are recorded in 475 and 476 courses.

Faculty members with either graduate or undergraduate teaching assistants must inform the students in their classes of the status of each teaching assistant.

Students may earn three credits in a department’s course for undergraduate teaching assistants numbered 475. They may later enroll in a 476 course in the same department, if available, or in a second 475 course in a different department. No more than six credits earned through teaching practica may apply toward the bachelor’s degree.