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FAQs for Undergraduate TAs

 

What is the role of Undergraduate TAs?  

The most important thing you will be doing as a TA is mentoring students as they adjust to the college experience and college-level coursework. You will be a role model, demonstrating studentship skills and sharing your college experiences and the strategies you have developed to be a successful Stony Brook student. Students will look to you for guidance and support, and you will make a real difference in their lives as they adjust to life and work on a University campus. 

During the Academy’s 3-week Summer Residency, you will serve as discussion section leaders, helping students to work through the difficult ideas from readings and classes that they are grappling with. In these sessions, you will support students as they think through these concepts. You will model effective strategies for tackling challenging course material. You will also work with students as writing and reading coaches to help them develop skills that will benefit them their entire lives. 

You will also have chaperoning responsibilities, as part of the academy’s residential program. In this capacity, you will help students to adjust to the personal and social challenges of campus life.

For additional information, review the detailed TA position description.

 

What kind of support and training will Undergraduate TAs receive from the Academy of Civic Life? 

The Academy of Civic Life is committed to making sure that TAing is a rewarding and educational experience. So, we have instituted a robust training program to make sure that you feel ready for and excited about your role as a TA. Our Undergraduate TAs are part of the support structure that we have put in place for the high school students in the Academy, but we want to ensure that you are supported as well. 

We are committed to making sure that you have the preparation and experience to feel as comfortable, confident, and effective as possible. During your spring semester, TAs will be responsible for taking GLI 402 in order to prepare you for the content of the course that the high school cohort will be taking. In addition to learning the course content, during Summer Session I 2022, Undergraduate TAs will also receive training about pedagogical strategies and effective teaching approaches. 

 

How do I become an Undergraduate TA?

During the Fall 2021 semester, we will solicit TA applications from current undergraduate students at Stony Brook University who are interested in democracy, civic engagement, and mentoring students from traditionally disenfranchised communities. Remember, undergraduates must be enrolled in GLI 402 in order to be eligible to apply for a TAship ( register for GLI 402). This course offers TAs an opportunity to familiarize yourself with the course content and discussion-based instructional strategies. Selected candidates for the TA position will be invited to interview. Offers will then be extended, and the accepted TAs will be asked to make a written commitment to the Summer 2022 program.

TA training continues beyond the GLI 402 course. TAs will learn about pedagogical strategies for teaching reading and writing during a series of virtual workshops during Stony Brook’s Summer Session I. These workshops will also cover important topics such as leadership, conflict resolution, and mentorship to prepare the TAs for their positions with the Academy of Civic Life. 

 

When are the TA positions? 

TAs need to attend virtual training sessions during Summer Session I. Then, during Summer Session II, the TA positions will formally begin during the Academy's summer program (July 10–29, 2022). During this time, the TAs will need to live on campus. Please note that TAs will need to move onto campus one day before the high school participants, and the TAs will leave one day after the high school participants leave. Therefore, the full extent of the TA residential responsibilities are from July 10–30, 2022. 

 

Still have questions? 

We recorded a virtual information session about GLI 402, The Academy of Civic Life, and Undergraduate Teaching Assistantships. Watch a recording of the info session here

For more information about the application process, please visit our “How to Apply" page.

Review the detailed TA position description for more information.

You can also email us at academyofciviclife@stonybrook.edu