3 thoughts on “How would graduate students and institutions benefit if training for Teaching Assistantships was a standard part of graduate programs?

  1. Graduate students would graduate with a firmer grasp of how to teach, which is helpful for those who are interested in teaching. Departments would benefit by having instructors that actually know what they are doing. I don’t think this should be a required part of graduate programs, but it should certainly be available. My university has a small professional development series, but it’s mostly focused on professors and discusses topics like FERPA and Smart Classroom technology not pedagogy. I and several of my peers would love the opportunity to become better teachers.

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    • I think it ought to be essential and required if grad students are going to be put into the classroom while they are still students. We demand training in the ethical conduct of research (which includes ethics of leading or being in a work team) but do no always take the ethical obligation to be an effective teacher as seriously — and we should.

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      • I agree that graduate students who serve as teaching assistants should be required to get training. The primary reason is that this would promote higher quality teaching than we get by just throwing grad students into this role untrained. As a secondary reason, it would also contribute to graduate students’ career/skills development.

        For similar reasons, I also believe that professors who mentor graduate students should be required to get training for the mentorship role.

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