Teaching Assistant Handbook

Compiled by Prof. Gary E. Ford, September 1999
Revised by Prof. Richard R. Spencer, July, 2000

TA Evaluations

At the end of each quarter, your performance as a TA will be evaluated by both the students and the faculty in charge. You are encouraged to review your student evaluations as a means for improvement and to become a more effective teacher. It is important to read these evaluations with a positive attitude and use this information constructively. Do not take any criticism personally; rather, review the forms objectively. Even the most seasoned professors receive comments that can foster improvement.

Student Evaluations

The department requires instructors to administer instructional evaluations of the teaching assistants by the students. The evaluation forms contain the following statement:

"Please rate the teaching assistants for this course on the basis of their overall effectiveness, particularly in terms of their knowledge of the subject matter, helpfulness and ability to give clear explanations. In making your recommendation, keep in mind that the TA's have been instructed not to solve the problems you encounter in lab, but rather to help you learn to solve them yourself."

Students are asked to rate each TA in the course on a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is indicated as an "exceptionally negative evaluation" and 10 is an "exceptionally positive evaluation." Students are asked to add any comments that they feel would be helpful in evaluating the teaching assistants.

Faculty Evaluations

The instructor in charge will evaluate your performance. Faculty evaluation of TA performance is generally expressed verbally with the Teaching Assistant and also by completing the "Instructor's Evaluation of Teaching Assistants" form. You are encouraged to discuss your performance with the instructor in charge.

Availability of Evaluations

After the grades have been filed for the course for which you have served as the TA, you may review the evaluations by contacting the undergraduate student affairs officer, in ECE Main Office.

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