The past few days had been rather fun. After returning from Malaysia, I had to squat over at my friend's place for a few days. Then, I had to quickly get all the registration stuff done. And then, move over to my new apartment. Before I could actually enjoy the comforts of my new apartment, I had to go for three days of teaching assistantship (TA) orientation.
There was some fairly interesting issues that were covered during the orientation. For instance, what a TA should do when a student comes with a personal problem, how to grade fairly and consistently and also how to plan your lesson so that it is both informative and engaging at the same time. Most of those things are pretty much common sense. But the tips on how to deal with diversity and sensitive issues in class was rather useful for me. Moreover, lunch was provided as well so that was nice.
We even had an international TA orientation to familiarize incoming international students on how the classrooms work in college here. Interesting issues such as interpreting American slang and how to actually talk to your students in a non-invasive manner were presented.
All in all, I am glad that the university decided to spend so much time on TA orientation. It really helps first time TAs become more confident with teaching. And it also helps everyone see the importance of teaching.Tweet
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