TA Days

The next session of this workshop series will begin in February 2021. Registration will open in January.

Although roles and responsibilities for teaching assistants may vary departmentally across MIT, there are many aspects TAs that are common we have organized TA Days to address many of the common roles, responsibilities, and concerns of MIT teaching assistants. 

We encourage you to register for the workshops that are most relevant and interesting to you. 

Please note that while the Teaching + Learning Lab does not require TAs to attend any particular sessions, your department might.

Workshop Descriptions

Leading a Problem-solving Recitation

This 2-part session will provide you with a basic outline for a lecture or recitation session, examples of techniques that you can use to actively engage students in the STEM classroom, and the research-based rationale for including those elements. This session is geared towards leaders of recitation sections that focus on problem solving, but all are welcome.

Techniques to Get Students Talking and Leading a Class Discussion

Conducting a discussion section presents unique challenges as instructors must balance their own preparation with interpersonal skills and be open to improvisation while still fulfilling learning goals. This 2-part session will provide you with a generalized outline for leading an active class discussion and specific strategies to get students engaged. This session is geared toward discussion sections, particularly in humanities and social science subjects, but all are welcome.

Giving Feedback on Reports, Proposals, and Essays

Feedback on writing assignments can be challenging and often time-consuming activity as a TA. In this workshop, you will learn how to formulate helpful feedback for your students, while balancing your feedback between style and content. We will also discuss ways to grade writing more efficiently and effectively.

Although this session is designed for writing assignments typical in the social sciences and humanities, it is open to anyone who wants to learn to give better feedback on non-technical writing assignments.

Facilitating Office Hours & Tutorials

In this workshop, you will learn how to better assess where students are in their thinking, use questioning techniques to encourage students to explain their thinking and help students enhance their learning by connecting solution steps to course concepts. This workshop will also present research on effective tutoring.

Experienced TA Panels

3 panels of experienced TAs from different courses and schools will share the most important things they learned about being effective TAs and answer questions from the audience about how to get started as a new TA. 

Presenting a Class Session

The thought of leading a class session can be intimidating. This session will present useful strategies for communicating with your audience, both visually and verbally.

Supporting Student Wellbeing as a TA

In this workshop, led by Student Support Services (S3), you will learn how to recognize the signs of distress, as well as ways to support your students and peers. S3 is part of the Division of Student Life, providing advice and advocacy for students and acting as a hub of resources, referrals, and information across the MIT community. S3 staff are integrated with other resources, including Student Disability Services, to provide comprehensive academic and personal support to undergraduates.