Tag Archives: TAs

TAPD mini-modules week 6: Responding to the poll

This semester, we’ve carved out time from the Teaching Assistants’ normal duties—a half-hour per week—to use for professional development activities. This post series tracks our weekly goals and activities. The slides are just right. The timing is on lock. This time, this time, I’m going to nail that description of the First Law of Thermodynamics. The […]

TAPD mini-modules week 4: But, are students really learning?

This semester, we’ve carved out time from the Teaching Assistants’ normal duties—a half-hour per week—to use for professional development activities. This post series tracks our weekly goals and activities. “We’re going to derive this, but I need your help with it.” This was my lead-in to the set of clicker questions we used to derive […]

TAPD mini-modules week 3: “Does F=ma in real life or only in physics?”

This semester, we’ve carved out time from the Teaching Assistants’ normal duties—a half-hour per week—to use for professional development activities. This post series tracks our weekly goals and activities. “Does F=ma in real life or only in physics?” Students say the darnedest things. Over my years as a TA and instructor, I’ve had many interactions […]

Proactive instructors boost student engagement

To initiate conversations or wait for students to come to you? In the physics classroom, this is a question that many inexperienced (and probably some experienced) instructors wrestle with. In a new paper Ido Roll and myself show that the answer is that you should initiate conversations. By observing Teaching Assistants (TAs) and students in a first-year physics lab, we show […]

What TAs don’t realize they can do to help students in the classroom

Recently, I gave a talk to graduate students about a physics education project I worked on with Ido Roll. (Slides embedded in Appendix I below.) Briefly, the idea for the project was to evaluate which teaching assistant (TA) behaviours could be used to predict student engagement and learning in a first-year physics lab. Our main result was […]