TATP - Teaching Assistant Training Program

Online TATP Handbook

Contact information for services on campus that all graduate students should know about!

Introduction

Since 1994, the TA Training program has provided hundreds of TAs with training, encouragement, and practical experience related to teaching in a university classroom.

The Teaching Assistant Training Program is a hands-on, two-and-a-half- day session taught by current Teaching Assistants (TAs) and designed for new TAs embarking on their teaching careers. Learn about fair grading practices, diversity in the classroom, lecturing, and giving students feedback on written work. Choose from concurrent sessions designed to meet your specific discipline-related teaching needs. Get real-time, hands-on teaching experience in our unique micro-teaching sessions, where you can try out your teaching skills and techniques with a small group of your peers and receive helpful, constructive feedback. At the end of the session, you’ll receive a certificate as evidence of your commitment to the development of your knowledge and skill as a teacher.

Upcoming Sessions

August & September 2017

Two-and-a-half day programs: Day 1: 12:30 pm – 5:00 pm, Day 2: 9:15 am – 4:30 pm, Day 3: 9:15 am – 4:30 pm
Location: Teaching Support Centre (TSC) Room 121.

First, login to the registration system using your Western student username. Then, use the link below to select the session you wish to attend.

A refundable deposit ($20) is due one week before the start of your program.

How do I sign up?

  1. Login to the registration system using your Western student username and register on the waitlist for the session you wish to attend. Everyone will be on the waitlist until they bring in their depost.
  2. Bring in your $20 deposit (cash or cheque) at least 7 days in advance of the start of your session to the front desk at the Teaching Support Centre, Room 122, Weldon Library between 8:30am to 4:30pm, Monday to Friday. If you are unable to bring in a deposit, please email tsc@uwo.ca to make alternate arrangements.
  3. Once we receive your deposit, you will be moved on to the registration list and will receive a confirmation email.
  4. A few days before the start date, you will receive an email with detailed information about the program.

Due to high demand, spaces in this program are limited. Please bring in your deposit as soon as possible to secure your spot in the session.

What if I need to cancel my session?

  • Login in to the registration system and go to the Event Registration tab on the Dashboard to view your current registrations. Select the session and then click on the Cancel Registration button. If it is more than 72 hours in advance of the start of the session, please return to the front desk of the Teaching Support Centre to retrieve your deposit. Given that space is limited due to high demand, we are unable to return your depost if you cancel less than 72 hours in advance. Please contact us by email if you have questions about this policy.
  • If you need to switch sessions, please contact tsc@uwo.ca.  We need to be contacted at least 72 hours before the beginning of your session.
  • If you do not attend your session and we do not receive an email from you 72 hours in advance, you may NOT sign up for a future session.

How does it work?

  • The seminar is free. We collect a $20.00 refundable deposit, which will be returned to you after you complete your session.
  • All sessions are held on campus.
  • Lunches are provided.
  • Graduates of the program receive a Western University - Teaching Assistant Training Program certificate.
  • A few days before the session, we will email you a package of information about the session (location, detailed schedule, etc.).
  • If you are unable to attend or need to switch sessions you must contact tsc@uwo.ca at least 72 hours before the session starts. Without this notice, we will not be able to return your deposit. 

What are the benefits?

  • Looks great on a CV or as part of a teaching dossier
  • Improved skills for presentations, seminars, etc.
  • Increased confidence
  • Improved orientation to the job
  • Increased student learning as a result of you improved teaching
  • Meeting other TAs and sharing ideas

What's involved?

Fall TATP sessions normally take place on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday but sometimes we also run a session over three weekdays. The schedule for all TATP sessions is as follows:

  • Day 1 - 12:30pm to 5:00pm
  • Day 2 - 9:15am to 4:30pm
  • Day 3 - 9:15am to 4:30pm

Both instruction and practical training are provided.

Instructional Topics

  • Preparing engaging lectures
  • Providing effective feedback
  • Grading fairly and consistently
  • Communicating with students and dealing with difficult situations
  • Teaching in an intercultural classroom 
  • Incorporating active learning into labs and tutorials

Practical Training

  • Each TA teaches two brief practice lessons in groups of 4 - 6 TAs. See here for more information on microteaching!
  • Each lesson receives detailed feedback from the instructor and the group.

Who are the instructors?

TA Training Program Coordinators

  • Adriana Soto-Corominas - Hispanic Studies
  • Kate Traill - English

TA Training Program Instructors

  • Danielle Brewer - Anatomy & Cell Biology
  • Carolyn Cadogan - Physics and Astronomy
  • Ryan Clutterbuck - Kinesiology
  • Lisette Farias Vera - Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
  • David Huebert - English
  • Alicia Lapointe - Education
  • Kemi Oola - Computer Science
  • Jantina Toxopeus - Biology 

All instructors are experienced TAs with excellent teaching and communication skills.

Most are graduates of Teaching Support Centre programming, have won teaching awards, or have formal teaching education.

All instructors have completed the TA Training Program.

Is this program for international students too?

Yes, international students are welcome!

For information on language and communication courses for International Students, please see the Communication in the Canadian Classroom and Language of Teaching web pages and/or contact Aisha Haque.

Comments from past participants

"The TA Training Program helped greatly with my confidence/comfort level in front of groups of people."

"It is a very helpful session! The microteaching session is especially useful."

"I would recommend it to other TAs."

"All of you are wonderful instructors - great variety of lectures, experiential and case study learning methods. Excellent program."

"I especially liked the microteaching section."

"All the instructors were very friendly, helpful, and informative. Thanks!"

"This is a really timely program for TAs. This is extremely helpful giving TAs knowledge, practical experience, and sufficient courage to continue his/her duty as a TA. I appreciate coordinators and other persons involved. I am really overwhelmed with the assistance and performance of trainers."

"I thought the instructors were all great: very positive, supportive and understanding. The atmosphere all weekend was great...people in good spirits, meeting each other, enjoying each others' talks. Thanks for providing this resource."

"In general, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the instructors for creating a very pleasant environment for participation, I think I speak on behalf of a lot of people when I say that even the shy students felt more confident in speaking and communicating their ideas."

"I would just like to say thank you for helping us and guiding us to become better TA's. Your teaching skills have given me a lot of tips and advice on how to deal with certain situations and to improve on my weaknesses."

"I hope the program keeps going! It's one of the most valuable programs any university can offer."

Useful links and Services

Equity and Human Rights Services
Indigenous Services
TAs and Postdocs Union - PSAC Local 610
Health and Dental Insurance Plan for Graduate Students
International and Exchange Student Centre
Learning Skills Services
Office of the Ombudsperson
Parking and Visitor Services
Psychological Services
School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
Services for Students with Disabilities
Society of Graduate Students (SOGS)
Student Health Services
Thesis Regulation Guide
Writing Support Centre


Contact

TATP Co-ordinator
Email: tatp@uwo.ca