New Teaching Assistant Training and Evaluation Program (TATEP)

Purpose of TATEP

The program is intended to improve TA Trainingundergraduate teaching, enhance the classroom experiences of Graduate Teaching Assistants (TA), and respond to the need for more systematic preparation and evaluation of TAs. For international TAs, it will supplement programs already in place to evaluate and promote English language competency.

Current Components of TATEP

University-Level TA Training

New TAs’ attendance at the Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE) Teaching Assistant Institute (TAI) is mandatory. TAs whose first teaching assignment is for the new academic year and TAs who have not previously completed TA training are required to attend the TA Institute on the date assigned to their college by the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies. The TA Institute is offered twice a year, once each fall and spring semester. Following the twelfth class day in the fall and spring semesters, departments will send a list of new TAs employed by their department to the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies. Records will be compared with the list of students who attended the TA Institute. Departments will be notified by the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies of students who are out of compliance. Departments wishing to offer training through their department-level TA training program equivalent to the TAI may apply for a “Request for Teaching Assistant Institute Waiver”. Approval for waivers is granted by the CTE for a three-year period. Departments must reapply for a waiver every three years.  Departments are required to submit a syllabus outlining the departmental training program for new TAs, as well as copies of training materials for new TAs.  For more information on the training of TAs, including training dates and requirements, please contact ogaps-tatep@tamu.edu.

Discipline Specific TA Training

Discipline-specific training for new TAs will be provided at the college/ department level. The nature of this training, while varying widely across different disciplines, will complement university-level training and will address the unique and specific needs of graduate students serving as TAs within their disciplines. Discipline-specific training will expose new TAs to the specific patterns of behavior, systematic methods, classroom management, and/or instructional practices associated with successful teaching within their disciplines.

Reporting TA Training Compliance

Departments or programs will provide a yearly report to their Graduate Operations Council (GOC) Dean stating evidence of their compliance with the University-Level TA Training and Discipline-Specific TA Training tenets for new TAs.  At minimum, these reports include:

  1. A list of all new TAs from the summer semester and through the current spring semester, indicating whether or not each individual has completed a) the University-level TA training (Teaching Assistant Institute) and b) the Discipline-Specific TA training.

  2. A one-page description of the nature of the departmental TA training program. Specifically, this document a) addresses the learning outcomes of the program and how those learning outcomes are assessed and b) includes a description of the method of training for international TAs.

Using the departments/programs reports, the GOC Deans will provide a college-level report of compliance to the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies by the last week in June each year. (Note: CTE will make a compliance report to the Associate Provost and Dean of Faculties by the twelfth class day each Fall and Spring semester with regards to university-level TA Training.)

CTE Best Practices Resources

The CTE will periodically publish a list of best practices for preparing graduate students for their assignments as new TAs for distribution to or access by each of the departments or programs.  In addition, CTE will maintain a list of resources available for departmental TA training to encourage excellence in the TA training programs. The Best Practice Resources also include ideal practices gleaned from the annual college-level reports submitted to the OGAPS.


TA Evaluation

Each academic department employing TAs shall develop an appropriate set of procedures and evaluation instruments to employ in monitoring the performance of TAs each semester. The CTE shall receive copies of these procedures and instruments for review by the first day of the week preceding fall classes.

Reports