Learning Assistant Program
LAs (Learning Assistants) - are undergraduate students who recently completed the course, are intended to work directly with students and the faculty member in a particular section. In essence, when a faculty member applies for an LA they are signing on to shift their course to a more student-centered model. Both LAs and their mentor faculty are invited to an orientation at the start of each semester.
Please see the LA Newsletter for information each semester.
1. Team teaching/Practice: This is based on the judgment of your faculty member. Our recommendation is for the LA to work through the problems before the meeting, speak with the faculty mentor about the important aspects of the problem/class session, then mostly observe the interactions for the first class period. Again, these are just recommendations and your involvement will always be up to the faculty member. LAs do not grade, keeping judgment and evaluation completely out of their relationship with students. They can give formative feedback to the instructor but no points.
2. Content/Weekly Faculty Meetings: Then LAs meet weekly with the instructor to discuss upcoming activities and how the LA will be involved in the classroom. Establish a regular meeting time. We recommend you get and work the problems for the upcoming week before your meeting so that you come ready to talk about the facilitation and with any questions you have. Your faculty mentor will give guidance on what is important about the problem and what role LAs should play in the facilitation of the problem.
3. Pedagogy Class: All new LAs are required to attend all of the class sessions. LAs take a 2-credit pedagogy course on interactive teaching techniques the first semester that they serve. This course is designed to help them learn how to effectively interact with students and facilitate learning (i.e. not give answers but elicit student thinking to move them forward).
4. Office Hours: Aside from being active during class time, LAs typically have ~2 office hours each week as they and their mentor faculty think may be necessary, offering additional help.