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Interested in supporting students in a Biology course you’ve taken previously? Being a teaching assistant is a great opportunity to work alongside faculty members, build supportive relationships with students in the classroom, and further solidify your own knowledge in a course!
‘When one teaches, two learn.’ ~ Robert Heinlein
Many MSU Denver Biology faculty members utilize the support of teaching assistants (TAs) in their classes. Biology teaching assistants, under the direct supervision of an instructor, participate in classroom/laboratory activities to support student learning in a Biology course; specific duties may vary between courses.
To learn more about what teaching assistant opportunities may be available in the Biology department, students are encouraged to reach out to and to initiate a conversation with faculty members with whom they have taken classes to determine what opportunities (if any) exist for students to serve as teaching assistants in their classes. Students will only be considered for a TA position once they have successfully completed the course for which they hope to provide support. If a Biology faculty member invites you to join their course as a TA, students may earn upper division Biology credits by registering for BIO 3990: Teaching Assistant in Biology.
Once a student has identified a faculty member who has either invited or agreed to have the student serve as a teaching assistant for their course, they should discuss whether signing up for BIO 3990 is appropriate. If the student will earn credit for serving as a TA, the faculty mentor will then inform the Biology department chair, who will provide an override so the student can register for BIO 3990.
Please note that a student may only register for 1-2 credits of TA in Biology in a single semester and that a maximum of 4 credits of independent study/internships/practicum/undergraduate research (or any combination of these) may be applied toward a major or minor in Biology. Students should also be aware that the number of credits is typically based on the time commitment associated with the teaching assistantship.
For 1 credit, students will need to complete a minimum of 45 hours over the course of the semester. For 2 credits, students will need to complete a minimum of 90 hours over the course of the semester. You will not be permitted to register for more than 2 credits of BIO 3990 in a semester.