Graduate Assistant FAQ

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What will I teach?

Most entering Teaching Assistants teach in the first-year program. TAs with more experience and TAs who have taught in the first-year program for a year normally move into the second-year program where TAs are expected to take additional responsibility for instruction. The Department's goal for TAs is to provide numerous opportunities for professional development. Graduate students who remain within the teaching program can expect to develop skills in instructional management, testing, technology, and curriculum planning at all levels.

Is there an orientation session?

Yes, there is a week-long orientation session that takes place the week before classes start in the fall.

Can I use technology in my teaching?

Yes! The University of Iowa is well-known for its cutting edge use of technology in second language teaching. Most first- and second-year classes are taught in fully-equipped, web-connected technology classrooms and the use of technology is part of the curriculum.

What kind of help can I expect with my teaching?

First, there is a week-long orientation session each fall which helps inexperienced teachers to get ready for the classroom. Second, each TA works with a course supervisor who is a faculty member. The course supervisor is responsible for setting up the general parameters of the course and for helping TAs develop their instructional knowledge and skills. Third, each TA takes a graduate-level course in second language pedagogy taught by a faculty member with expertise in the field.

Where can I get further information?

Contact: Roxanna Curto and Emilie Destruel-Johnson.