AGSEM Teaching Assistant Training

Offered biannually in January and September, these workshops provide opportunities for you to develop your teaching skills, connect with your peers, and enhance your experience as a Teaching Assistant. Workshops cover a range of topics, such as teaching strategies, maintaining positive learning environments for your students, supporting student engagement in learning, grading and assessment, and more!

NOTE: Only first-time TAs will be paid for participating in the following training sessions and are eligible for a maximum of 3 hours of paid training.

myCourses Essentials for Teaching Assistants
All Teaching Assistants should now have access to myCourses Essentials. Log in to myCourses to access myCourses Essentials, a new online resource for TAs. If you do not have access, please complete the following form.  

Resources for Teaching Assistants: Important links and information [PDF]

Description

Date/Time

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Info Session for Teaching Assistants

Note: this part of the training is unpaid

Whether you're a new or returning TA, join representatives of AGSEM, the Office of the Dean of Students, and Teaching and Learning Services for a panel discussion about being a TA at McGill, with particular emphasis on the remote delivery context.

September 15
12:30-2:00 
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Engaging Students with Zoom as a TA

In this interactive webinar, new and experienced teaching assistants alike will become familiar with how they can use Zoom, the web conferencing tool used for remote teaching at McGill. We will review how to use Zoom’s various features as a teaching assistant and focus on interactive strategies to create engaging remote learning environments.

September 16
10:00-11:00
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Fostering Equity Centered Classroom
Environments

By participating in this interactive session, teaching assistants will cultivate a greater understanding of anti-oppression, anti-racism and how these systems operate within learning institutions. Participants will be encouraged to reflect on their relationships with positionality and power and how they may leverage these in service of removing barriers to equitable classroom participation. Teaching Assistants will also practice bias interventions and engage in action planning to make their remote classroom environments and the campus, more inclusive.

September 16
2:00-4:00

September 17
12:00-2:00

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Planning/leading effective conferences/discussions

With this session participants will improve their facilitation of groups discussions, leadership, presentations and communication skills. Successfully learning to lead and guide student discussions requires a range of fairly sophisticated communication skills; many people employ strategies using trial and error as they have never been trained to facilitate discussions. Facilitation allows everyone to express themselves, keeps discussions moving and maintains a safe, respectful group environment. It also gives a practical insight into the hidden curriculum of class or group dynamics.

September 17
10:00-11:30

September 23
1:00-2:30

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Designing and delivering effective lectures

Participants will be able to apply learning-centered principles when designing and delivering both online and in-person lectures or tutorials. Additionally, they will learn a range of teaching strategies for improved remote learning experience and they will plan how to use some of these strategies. Zoom will be taken as an exemplary platform for the exercises in this workshop.

September 18
11:00-12:30

September 27
2:00-3:30

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Register

Grading in the Humanities and Social Sciences

In this interactive webinar, participants will learn about the role of assessment in courses, the importance of feedback for student learning, how to develop criteria and standards for assessing written assignments, and strategies for dealing with plagiarism.

September 20
10:00-11:30

October 1
4:00-5:30

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Examining the Classroom: Attending to Microaggressions Before, During, and After they Occur

Microaggressions hurt student and instructor welfare and negatively impact classroom learning. Using role play and other creative methods, educators will learn how to attune to common power dynamics and intense emotions resulting from microaggressions in their classrooms.

By attending this workshop, TAs will be able to:

  • To understand different forms of microaggression
  • To identify important tensions present post-microaggression
  • To begin developing frameworks that support addressing microaggressions

September 21

10:00-12:00

October 1

10:00-12:00

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Grading in the Sciences

In this online workshop, we will discuss the importance of student assessment in higher education. Participants will dissect and analyze rubrics and provide constructive feedback to students in collaborative scenarios. Participants will also discuss how academic integrity will be challenged in the remote learning setting.

September 21
3:30-5:00

September 27
9:30-11:00

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Teaching in Science Labs

In this online workshop we will discuss the role of the TA in complex remote lab scenarios. Participants will learn how to meet the conceptual and procedural challenges of remote labs, and will understand how to create equitable and interactive student-centered environments that promote deep learning.

September 22
9:30-11:00

September 28
3:30-5:00

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Promoting Student Engagement

In this workshop, participants will learn about effective facilitation practices, including the creation and application of ground rules in the online and/or in-person classroom. Additionally, participants will explore strategies to encourage student engagement, as well as model active learning strategies to their classroom. At the end of this workshop, participants will be equipped to design and deliver interactive and engaging content in lecture, tutorial and lab settings.

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Promote ground rules
  2. Apply tools to engage students in group work in both in-person and online settings.
  3. Model teaching strategies that promote positive group dynamics

September 24
9:30-11:00

September 29
3:30-5:00

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Register

Accessibility in the Classroom: How to be
an inclusive TA

This workshop offers practical tips for increasing accessibility in teaching that TAs can implement in the courses they support. The session is designed to increase participants’ awareness of barriers that students with disabilities experience in the classroom, and show how TAs can facilitate and promote equitable access to learning. Participants will also learn from the Accessibility Advisor about the resources available to them, as employees, to manage their own access needs in their work.

By attending this workshop, TAs will be able to:

  • Identify barriers that students with disabilities experience in various instructional settings (e.g. lectures, conference, discussions, exams)
  • Analyze sample case studies, and identify opportunities to enhance accessibility
  • Locate available tools and resources to support accessibility at McGill.

September 29

9:30-11:30

Register

Frequently Asked Questions

AGSEM Collective Agreement Stipulations on TA Training

Payment Information: TA Training was identified as a necessity by TAs during negotiations for the new Collective Agreement. New TAs are eligible for a maximum of 3 hours of paid training. Returning TAs are not eligible for paid training but are still welcome to attend. We hope all TAs will consider registering for these sessions. For accurate and detailed information on Orientation and Training, please see (Section 13.06.02) of the TA Collective Agreement (2011-2014) here.

Resources

Open discussion

Designing and Delivering Effective Lectures

Grading in the Humanities and Social Sciences

Grading in the Sciences

Interacting with Students and Course Supervisors

Planning and Leading Effective Conference Discussions

Strategies on Supporting Student Mental Health

Teaching and Learning in Science Labs

Additional Resources

Building your teaching portfolio

    Educational Technologies : MyCourses & Beyond

    Engaging Students Using Active Learning Strategies

    Giving Effective Face-to-Face Feedback

    Improvisation & Fun: From Old School Teaching to Co-Creating Knowledge

    Teaching in One’s Second or Other Language

    Universal Design for Learning

    As a McGill student, your participation in activities such as training workshops and volunteering are tracked on your Co-Curricular Record (CCR)! Having your co-curricular activities listed in one document can help you revise your CV or cover letter, prepare for interviews, and explore career options. Learn how to leverage this important document through myInvolvement, and make your training count!
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