LFS TA Orientation Day


You are invited to the LFS TA Training Orientation! This event is for new and returning TAs for both Term 1 and Term 2.

If you will be TAing in LFS in any capacity in the 2014/2015 year, the Faculty STRONGLY encourages your attendance. The Orientation Day will also include an informational session run by the TA Union, CUPE 2278, which is mandatory for all UBC teaching assistants.

At the orientation, you will become familiar with:

  • Resources on campus that can be used to build your teaching skills
  • Key people and policies relevant to the TA role
  • The expectations of you as a TA and what you can expect in your position
  • How to best manage or respond to potential challenging classroom situations
  • Strategies for working in a multidisciplinary courses that are group work focused

Date: Tuesday September 9th
and Coffee: 9:30 am
Sessions: 10am – 3:30pm
Where: AGORA CAFE, MacMillan Building (2357 Main Mall)

**Free morning coffee, lunch, and midafternoon refreshments provided.

Register here before Tuesday September 2nd at midnight, for planning and catering purposes.

If you have any questions or are unable to attend, please email schrod10@mail.ubc.ca.

New UBC Publication in T.A. Development


A new paper examining the effectiveness of traditional methods of TA training and development has been published in the Kwantlen teaching and learning e-journal, Transformative Dialogues.

TitleTeaching Assistants Thrive in a Collaborative Team: A TA Development Case Study

Authors: Alice Cassidy, Jaclyn Dee, Vivienne KY Lam, Ashley Welsh, Joanne Fox, University of British Columbia

Abstract: It is time to critically examine how Teaching Assistants (TAs) learn to teach and how they develop as educators. This exploration informs the design of courses to effectively foster TA professional development and deliver the best possible quality of instruction for undergraduates. Here we describe how the collaborative and multi-disciplinary First-year Seminar in Science (SCIE 113) educational team at the University of British Columbia (UBC), composed of graduate students and faculty members who teach the course, and a staff member who coordinates and supports the course, learn from and with each other. Our team approach creates a unique environment for TAs to grow and develop as educators, a higher level than the more common TA training. We describe multiple unique roles that TAs play in this course, showing that as contributing members of a team, they learn about teaching, curriculum development, mentorship, and leadership through observation, practice, collaboration, and reflection. The result of this approach is TAs who are well-prepared for the immediate demands of the classroom, have experienced and contributed to curricular design, have the opportunity to create and reflect on their own teaching philosophies and to apply the skills, knowledge and attitudes honed in SCIE 113 to other teaching endeavours.

(Link to full document)

Graduate Student Instructional Skills Workshop


For Registered UBC Graduate Students Only

Our three day Instructional Skills Workshops (ISWs) are designed for graduate students interested in developing and enhancing their instructional skills. It caters to individuals new at teaching as well as those who wish to refresh and enhance their skills. Due to the interactive nature of this workshop, participants must be comfortable communicating verbally in English. Participants benefit from practicing skills and sharing ideas in a cooperative environment.

You will work closely with peers and trained facilitators (who are themselves UBC graduate students and teaching assistants from across campus). In this supportive atmosphere you will have a chance to begin to develop new teaching skills, to enhance existing skills, and/or to try new and challenging ideas. The workshop consists of teaching practice, theory application, and topical sessions specifically relevant to Teaching Assistants and Graduate Students at UBC. We take a learner-centered approach that may have you looking at your students in a whole new light!

During the workshop you will teach 3 short lessons and receive feedback from your peers. After completing this workshop you will be awarded a Certificate of Completion, and you will receive a “pass” standing in INDS 501 as an entry on your transcript indicating that you have participated in the ISW.  All ISWs run for 3 days, from 8:15am-5:00pm each day.  ISWs require a $60 deposit to confirm your registration. This deposit is refundable only upon completion of the workshop. If you have to cancel before the workshop starts or if you are otherwise unable to complete the workshop once it has started, the deposit cannot be refunded. The deposit cannot be transferred to other dates.

See www.events.ctlt.ubc.ca/series/view/5 for a full schedule of upcoming workshops.