The Center for Teaching & Faculty Development (CTFD) recognizes that Teaching Assistants play an important role in teaching and learning at the University, and have developed a range of resources to assist these important members of our community.
Graduate Students Teaching Studio
The Teaching Studio offers an informal and quiet space where graduate students can focus on their teaching responsibilities and professional development. Offered once a month every semester, it allows participants to work quietly among their colleagues. Graduate students are encouraged to work on grading, lesson planning, documenting their teaching, or anything else that will help them in their careers as instructors. A CTFD consultant is available (9 AM to 3 PM) to talk about teaching, review teaching statements and other teaching documentation materials, and offer resources. In addition, mini-workshops on day-to-day teaching practices and strategies (grading, providing feedback, facilitating discussions, etc.) may be offered within the Teaching Studio if there is interest. Refreshments will be available. Specific date and location details for the Teaching Studio are listed in our calendar. Registration is not required for this event. For more information, contact .
Teaching Assistant Orientation
Each year, the Center for Teaching & Faculty Development (CTFD), in coordination with the Provost’s Office and the Graduate School, offers the campus-wide Teaching Assistant Orientation (TAO), which provides graduate students an opportunity to meet senior TAs, gain important basic teaching skills, and begin to feel a sense of membership in the larger University of Massachusetts community of scholars. While some departments may schedule their own orientations, the highly-rated campus-wide TA Orientation is the only comprehensive orientation opportunity available to all teaching assistants. The program includes a general overview of teaching at the University of Massachusetts, including workshops on fundamental teaching skills from distinguished faculty members.
The 2013 TA Orientation will occur on Friday, August 30 from 8:45 AM to 12:30 PM in the Campus Center lower level. Click here to view the preliminary day program. To register, please click here. If you have any questions, contact .
Teaching Documentation Program
The Teaching Documentation Program (TDP) is designed to help graduate students develop teaching skills and to allow them to document their teaching development efforts in three key areas: introduction to theory, teaching assessment and teaching improvement. Self-paced and flexible, the TDP is a program that can be completed over the course of a graduate student’s studies. At the conclusion of the TDP, participants receive a formal letter of documentation from the CTFD, which inventories and describes their teaching development efforts. Participants also will have organized a collection of materials that document their teaching development efforts, which will be useful preparation when seeking a position with teaching responsibilities, in preparing a formal teaching portfolio, and for articulating future development goals.
For more information, or to enroll in the program, contact the .
Teaching Tuesdays: Workshop Series on Presenting Your Teaching on the Academic Job Market
These practical workshops are designed to familiarize graduate students with the materials most often requested in academic job applications -- teaching statements, documentation of teaching effectiveness, and teaching portfolios. More than a mark on a checklist, these documents help graduate students prepare to discuss teaching in a focused way during job interviews or informal networking situations. In this workshop series, graduate students learn about the uses and elements of a teaching portfolio, and have the opportunity to begin crafting and organizing parts of their own portfolios, including teaching statements. Graduate students also participate in peer review sessions, receiving both constructive feedback and an opportunity to have a sustained conversation about teaching. Registration is required for these workshops, which are announced to all graduate students via email. For a calendar of upcoming workshops, see here. For more information, contact .
Thinking Teaching: A Blog for Graduate Students’ Professional Development as Teachers
The Thinking Teaching Blog is a place for graduate students interested in developing their teaching and documenting this development for academic job applications. Students can visit the blog to see and share examples of teaching statements, portfolios, and CVs. The comments sections of the blog can be used to ask questions, request feedback, or share ideas. The GIFTs (Great Ideas for Teaching) section of the blog offers a growing database of classroom activities, assignments, and practices that contribute to graduate students’ continuous development as educators. Submission of articles, ideas, suggestions, and samples are welcomed. Visit the blog here and contact with questions or comments.
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