Undergraduate Teaching Assistants (UTAs) are highly qualified
undergraduate students who are given an opportunity to teach in a Program in Biology course. UTAs are responsible for leading discussion sections or labs and participating in all aspects of the teaching process. UTAs are usually assigned one section to teach and can receive credit or a stipend for the semester, depending on their previous teaching experience. UTAs benefit from the experience by deepening their understanding of biology concepts and the process of science, while gaining valuable leadership experience and improving their confidence.
UTAs are selected for designated fall and winter term courses, and applications are accepted twice per year (in October for winter term and in March for fall). Applicants should be Juniors or Seniors with a 3.3 GPA or better.
- Online applications are opened (see the Program in Biology website) and the availability of positions is publicized to students (via emails and hardcopy flyers).
- Student applicants provide data regarding: (1) course preference, (2) experience with subject matter, (3) teaching experience, and (4) reasons for wanting to participate. They also upload resumes, transcripts, and any other supplementary data they would like to include.
- Once the applications close, applicant information is forwarded to the relevant instructors who make decisions for their courses and communicate these to the Undergraduate Office. (Instructors/coordinators may contact applicants for additional information and/or interviews.)
- Chosen UTAs are contacted by the Undergraduate Office to discuss paperwork, training and/or pay (see below).
First-time UTAs receive college (non-major) credit for their participation. Each first-time UTA registers for a credit-based course (EEB 302 or MCDB 412) associated with the instructor of the course they will be teaching. Some UTAs may be encouraged or required to participate in a pedagogy course specifically geared toward UTAs (as available). Returning UTAs may be paid a stipend, which will be arranged through the Undergraduate Office (Some returning UTAs are also asked to participate in continued training.)
UTA duties include attending lectures and weekly prep sessions or meetings. UTAs may run a discussion or lab section (administering quizzes, leading discussions/labs, etc.) and may be involved in grading quizzes, reports, and/or exam questions. UTAs are supervised by the instructor, coordinator, and/or graduate student mentor of the course.
The point of contact for the program is the Program Manager in the Program in Biology Student Services Office.