September 2020 TA Institute

From September 10 – 24, the CTLT Teaching Assistant (TA) Institute includes a collection of workshops designed to support TAs as their roles change along with the move to online summer courses. The week of professional development workshops are open to graduate students and undergraduate TAs.

Schedule of Events (PDF)

Resources from the 2020 Teaching Assistant Institute are available.

Register for sessions below:

Preventing and Responding to Sexualized Violence: Considerations for Digital Classrooms

Thursday, September 10 | 9:30 – 11 a.m. | Blackboard Collaborate

What can we do to support survivors while teaching remotely? How can we create safety from sexualized violence in online teaching spaces? What supports are available remotely? In this session, we’ll explore trauma-informed approaches to preventing and responding to sexualized violence in online learning: content notes, communicating support services, remote responses to disclosures, online prevention, and supports in the remote teaching and learning landscape.
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Frequently Asked Questions about Canvas (for TAs)

Friday, September 11 | 9:30 – 11 a.m. | Zoom

Bring your questions! This session will highlight commonly used tools in Canvas (SpeedGrader, Gradebook) and empower you to find answers to your Canvas questions beyond this workshop. You will be able to pick up some tips and tricks along the way from your peers!
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Leading Synchronous and Asynchronous Discussions Online

Friday, September 11 | 3 – 4:30 p.m. | Zoom

Refresh your perspective on what it means to have a “discussion” online. In this session, we’ll explore the role of online discussions in supporting students’ learning, and discover some best practices and useful tools we can use as TAs to lead effective online discussions in synchronous and asynchronous formats.
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TA’ing Large, Synchronous Classes

Monday, September 14 | 9:30 – 11 a.m. | Zoom

Being a TA for large classes always has unique challenges and advantages. In the shift to online, TAs have been facing new challenges providing support to instructors and learners. In this session, we will brainstorm challenges and solutions to typical roles that TAs may face in large, synchronous, online instruction scenarios. We will additionally address the support that both instructors and TAs need from each other.
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Exploring Zoom

Monday, September 14 | 12 – 1 p.m. | Zoom

Zoom is a web-conferencing application for moderating classes, meetings, or other group collaborations virtually. Join us for this session to learn more about Zoom and best practices in using it for teaching virtual classes.
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Inclusive Classrooms Online

Monday, September 14 | 3 – 4:30 p.m. | Zoom

Inclusivity and diversity can feel complex to navigate as a TA- and perhaps even more so in an online teaching environment. This session will provide the opportunity for TAs to reflect on the unique challenges of supporting an inclusive online teaching environment, and will encourage TAs to examine both the potential and the limitations of our role in promoting inclusion in online teaching.
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Teaching with Collaborate Ultra

Tuesday, September 15 | 12 – 1 p.m. | Blackboard Collaborate Ultra

Collaborate Ultra is a web-conferencing application for moderating classes, meetings, or other group collaborations virtually. Learn about how to set up Collaborate Ultra and teach your classes.
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Time Management for TAs

Tuesday, September 15 | 3 – 4:30 p.m. | Zoom

Do you have trouble balancing your graduate studies and TA responsibilities? Are you unsure of how to set boundaries for your online presence as a TA? Are you a procrastinator? If you answered “yes” to one or more of these questions, then this workshop is for you. We will discuss methods and resources to help you set goals for yourself and organize, schedule, and prioritize your TA tasks and commitments. We will also develop strategies to navigate the often competing expectations that your course instructor, your graduate advisor, your students, your friends and family, and you have of yourself and your time. Participants in this workshop should be prepared to engage in discussion and participate in other learning activities. Please have a writing utensil and some paper handy.
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Strategies to Prevent and Manage Issues Related to Technology

Wednesday, September 16 | 9:30 – 11 a.m. | Zoom

In this session, we will explore common issues TAs face in remote teaching & learning and identify root causes. We will develop strategies to prevent issues and prepare back-ups to manage issues in the moment. During the session we will also address the digital divide faced by both TAs and students and incorporate considerations around the Universal Design for Learning framework for remote teaching.
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Creating and Sharing Instructional Videos

Wednesday, September 16 | 1 – 2 p.m. | Zoom

Join us for this one-hour introduction to recording and sharing videos using Kaltura. Kaltura is a video platform for instructors and students to record and share video content within Canvas.

Whether you want to create short videos to introduce yourself to your students, create lecture videos for your course, or record and share your synchronous Zoom session, this workshop will get you started using Kaltura and explore some of its key functionality.
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Supporting Student Well-being in an Online Learning Environment

Wednesday, September 16 | 3 – 4 p.m. | Zoom

Everyone plays an important role in supporting student mental health and wellbeing. In this session, we will share how student health and wellbeing services are operating in the current online environment, with information on how to connect students to supports they may need during these times. There will also be opportunity to connect with your peers and share ideas for embedding strategies that foster well-being in your work as TAs.
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