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What qualifies as teaching experience?


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#21 tocs1

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 05:06 AM

I do not believe being a TA would count as teching experience for these purposes. This is not based on anything solid, though.
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#22 TakeruK

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 05:33 AM

Woundering if anyone can answer this question. So are there ever instances where a grad student would teach their own course while they are in their program? I'm going into an MA program, there is no PhD program in the department, and curious what might happen. Have read elsewhere on the boards that grad students do teach their own courses. Also, anyone know what the deal is with summer courses? Can you get to teach those in an MA?


At my current school, grad students can be employed as "Teaching Fellows" and are paid a standard rate to teach a course (~$7800 per 12-week course) instead of an hourly rate like TAs. TFs are responsible for planning and delivering a course to undergraduates, but they may be supervised/guided by a faculty member. For example, there may be a faculty member in charge of Course 101 and 3 graduate students employed as TFs to teach 3 sections. TFs may also be assigned other graduate students as TAs for the course. TFs would definitely count as strong "teaching experience" because you work almost like a sessional lecturer (i.e. preparing your own lectures and syllabus). However, TFs are much more common in the humanities and social sciences here -- my department (physics) has no TFs.

I think TA experience would be helpful, but it's not going to be as good as something like the above, and with only TA experience, you will probably not be as competitive amongst other applicants who did not go to grad school and went for a career in teaching instead. But, TA experience isn't worthless, you should be sure to describe your roles clearly and let them decide if they will count it as teaching experience or not.

However, if you are serious about a career in teaching, consider volunteering in your free time (ha) to get more experience. In my home province, in order to get into the B. Education program, applicants need to have 2 solid cases of working with youths in a teaching capacity (e.g. Scout leader, teach Sunday school, etc.) If you are competing with people who are/were in the Education stream, they would have lots of experience like this and you should try to get some too!
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#23 Dal PhDer

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Posted 30 May 2012 - 12:49 PM

Teaching fellows sounds like a great experience...it bridges the gap of going from a TA to a course instructor. I wish my department had this!
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