Teaching Associate Program

Program Information

Teacher Associate Application Form [pdf]

General Position Description

These positions are intended to provide financial support and supervised teaching experience for outstanding graduate students. Teaching Associates are part of the instructional staff of the University who provide support for instruction or, under faculty supervision, may be assigned as the instructor of record for a course.

Required Qualifications:

  • Be enrolled as a classified graduate student in French or Spanish. (Classified status implies fulfillment of the written English requirement, completion of any preconditions and passing the classification examination in the target language.)
  • Awareness of and sensitivity to the educational goals of a multicultural population as, for instance, might have been gained in cross-cultural study, training, teaching or other comparable experience.
  • Maintain a GPA of at least 3.3 in the subject (coursework with graduate credit).
  • Make satisfactory progress toward the degree, which in the Department of Foreign Languages is defined as completing at least two graduate seminars applicable to the MA degree per year, including thesis work.
  • Be enrolled in at least 3 units of coursework each semester of their TA appointment, unless they have fewer units remaining for the completion of the degree.
  • Demonstrate superior language skills in the target language.
  • Demonstrate excellent communication skills in English.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Teaching experience, experience as a tutor or instructional aide, coursework in instructional design or education, other relevant leadership experiences.

Application

The position of Teaching Associate shall be advertised at least bi-annually; application procedures and annual deadlines will be announced. All University policies regarding equal opportunity will be followed in recruiting and selecting applicants. Students who have served as TA's in previous semesters need only write a letter to the department chair asking for a continuation of the appointment.

The Following Materials Should be Included with Each Application:

  • Application form with all pertinent information about the applicant
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • 2 letters of recommendation
  • Official transcripts
  • Written statement in the target language stating the reasons for requesting the appointment and describing career/professional goals and teaching philosophy.

Selection

Selection of Teaching Associates will be conducted by the Department, although final appointments are made by the Dean of Humanities and the Arts. Applicants will submit the completed application and supporting materials (vitae, transcripts, written statement) to the office of the Department of Foreign Languages (CL 421) prior to the published deadline. Applications will be reviewed by a four-member screening committee. The following faculty members will serve on the committee: the graduate advisor for French or Spanish, the coordinator of the French or Spanish sections, the designated TA supervisor for French or Spanish and the Department Chair. After the initial screening, promising candidates may be asked to give a brief teaching demonstration.

Assignments

In the department of Foreign Languages, Teaching Associates may be appointed to teach an elementary language course. Typically, these assignments take the form of a five-unit French/Spanish 1A or 1B section per semester. In no case may a TA assignment exceed six WTUs of lecture or discussion sections or eight WTUs of laboratory sections. Teaching Associates may not serve more than a total of four semesters. Teaching Associates may not be employed by the university for more than 20 hours per week in any combination of assignments as TA, GA, RA or other campus employment during regular session.

Salary

Teaching Associates are appointed at the rank of TA. In the letter of appointment, the Dean specifies the salary placement within the TA range. TAs will be paid in five monthly installments per semester, on the same disbursement schedule as regular faculty.

Rights

As part of the instructional staff of the University, Teaching Associates hold a status similar to paraprofessionals or colleagues in training, and deserve to be acknowledged appropriately in that role. However, TAs are not faculty members and do not enjoy all the prerogatives and privileges that traditionally accompany faculty status. Teaching Associates have the right to receive adequate training and supervision to perform their instructional assignments. They have the right to receive feedback from the department chair and/or the faculty supervisor on their performance as a Teaching Associate.

Teaching Associates do not have voting rights in departmental governance. As students, not as employees, they may be granted voting privileges on certain departmental committees, as permitted by policy. Teaching Associates are not included in a collective bargaining unit, but they are protected by all state and federal regulations regarding working conditions and fair employment practice. They have the right to fair and equitable treatment and due process in the review of any complaints filed by them or against them. They have the right of access to their personnel records and the right of privacy in personnel matters.
If a Teaching Associate has questions about these rights, he or she should consult the TA supervisor, the department chair, the Dean, or the Office of Faculty Affairs.

Responsibilities

  • Address the needs of a student population of great diversity - in age, cultural background, ethnicity, primary language and academic preparation - through course materials, teaching strategies and advisement.
  • Follow all university policies related to the responsibilities of instructional staff. For example, TAs should be familiar with the University policies governing sexual harassment, equal opportunity and nondiscrimination, accommodation of disabilities, emergency preparedness, lab safety, and the instructional obligations of faculty.
  • Attend all scheduled training and orientation programs, some of which may be prior to the beginning of the semester of the appointment.
  • Attend all scheduled staff meetings and participate in professional development activities assigned by the supervisor.
  • Collect SOTE scores for each section taught.
  • Collect additional student evaluation data as required by the TA supervisor.
  • Cooperate in arranging for the required class observation visits by the TA supervisor or other faculty members.

Termination of Appointment

Eligibility in terms of grade point average, enrollment in sufficient number of units, and progress toward the degree shall be monitored each semester by the graduate adviser. Teaching Associates who fail to meet the eligibility requirements for appointment must not be reappointed by their departments.

Teaching Associates may be terminated by the Department for failing to adequately perform their assignments. Whenever possible, the department chair will give written and oral warnings regarding unsatisfactory performance prior to termination and will make every reasonable effort to assist the TA in meeting the department's expectations. However, when the safety or welfare of students is at risk or when the TA is failing to meet basic instructional obligations or is failing to adhere to relevant University policies, a TA may be reassigned or terminated at the Dean's discretion.