The work of a TA is complex and involves many roles, from teacher and mentor to administrator and employee. Each of these roles can present unique dilemmas and difficult situations, from unanswerable questions and lack of student engagement to time constraints and contractual limitations.
This workshop will address some of the challenges that Teaching Assistants confront on the job. We will begin by discussing general sources and themes of these challenges, with an emphasis on graduate teachers’ intersecting roles as students and teaching assistants. Participants will also have the opportunity to engage in a series of case studies in order to identify, articulate, and troubleshoot potential problems on the ground.
By the end of this session, participants will be able to: articulate current or anticipated teaching challenges; devise and share strategies for addressing common challenges and dilemmas; and use a variety of tools and resources (teaching methods, institutional supports, etc.) to troubleshoot future challenges.
This is the first of two workshops on “Troubleshooting TA Challenges.” Participants are encouraged (but not required) to attend both workshops. The first is more content-focused; the second is more discussion-driven and will provide a sustained opportunity to share personal teaching challenges and troubleshoot specific scenarios that TAs have encountered.