Departmental TA Meetings Overview
When you are a TA, it becomes all the more important to plug in to a teaching community with whom you can regularly interact and get feedback about immediate challenges and issues that will inevitably arise. Don't overlook your fellow TAs at this time.
In large courses with a number of TAs, there'll often be regular meetings at which you can talk through course issues and teaching strategies. If not, don't hesitate to start your own informal discussions. For example, have all the TAs get together for coffee after a course lecture each week.
If you are not part of a larger group of TAs, reach out to TAs from other courses in your department. You can also get together with TAs from other departments at Eat.Talk.Teach.Run!, a quarterly event with 4-minute flashtalks from other grad students on teaching.
Guide the Conversation
What might you talk about at these meetings? Consider:
- What are makes a discussion section run well?
- What are best strategies for integrating lecture material into your section?
- What are common student questions that are coming up at office hours - and how have you answered them?
- How can we grade problem sets, exams, essays, lab reports, etc... most efficiently and fairly?
- How can I get more feedback from my students and use it to improve my teaching?