Teaching Assistant Training and Evaluation Program (TATEP)
The Teaching Assistant Training and Evaluation Program (TATEP) is intended to improve undergraduate teaching, enhance the classroom experiences of Graduate Teaching Assistants (TA), and respond to the need for more systematic preparation and evaluation of TAs. For international TAs, it will supplement programs already in place to evaluate and promote English language competency.
TATEP at Texas A&M University
Texas A&M University’s talented Graduate Teaching Assistants (TAs) are a major strength of our university and contribute to achieving the strategic goal of excellence in graduate education. As such, equipping TAs with the skills and resources they need to excel in their teaching positions is a top priority.
Purpose of TATEP
TATEP exists to support graduate teaching assistants and ensure they meet Texas A&M’s high standards of excellence in teaching. Key objectives include improving undergraduate teaching, enhancing the classroom experiences of Graduate Teaching Assistants (TA), and responding to the need for more systematic preparation and evaluation of TAs.
University-Level TA Training
New TAs’ attendance at the Center for Teaching Excellence (CTE) Teaching Assistant Institute (TAI) is mandatory. TAs whose first teaching assignment is for the new academic year and TAs who have not previously completed TA training are required to attend the TAI. TAI is offered every year at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters and is required for new TAs who serve as graduate teaching assistants, recitation leaders, laboratory instructors, and/or full responsibility lecturers. This one-day training program also includes ethical and legal responsibilities information and provides new TAs with the opportunity to clarify, question, apply and organize knowledge comprising foundational principles in teaching and learning.
Teaching Assistant Institute
The Teaching Assistant Institute (TAI), hosted by the Graduate and Professional School and the Center for Teaching Excellence, is a university-mandated Institute designed to prepare graduate students for college classroom teaching. TAI is a component of the Teaching Assistant Training and Evaluation Program (TATEP).Teaching Assistant Institute
Discipline-Specific TA Training
Discipline-specific training for new TAs will be provided at the college/ department level. The nature of this training, while varying widely across different disciplines, will complement university-level training and will address the unique and specific needs of graduate students serving as TAs within their disciplines. Discipline-specific training will expose new TAs to the specific patterns of behavior, systematic methods, classroom management, and/or instructional practices associated with successful teaching within their disciplines.
Reporting TA Training Compliance
Departments or programs will provide a yearly report to their Graduate Operations Council (GOC) Dean stating evidence of their compliance with the University-Level TA Training and Discipline-Specific TA Training tenets for new TAs. Departmental users of the TATEP system will have access to the Departmental Report Template. Departments will share the number and percentage of TAs in compliance with the completion of the TAI, the format, learning outcomes, and duration of the discipline-specific training, and include evaluation and feedback practices to help TAs improve in their role.
Using the departments/programs reports, the GOC Deans will provide a college-level report of compliance to the Graduate and Professional School.
Each academic department employing TAs shall develop an appropriate set of procedures and evaluation instruments to employ in monitoring the performance of TAs each semester. Departments will share their evaluation and feedback process in their departmental reports each year.
Maintaining Excellence in Graduate Teaching
Texas A&M believes in transparency and efficiency. TATEP includes procedures for holding all parties accountable to the high bar set for graduate teaching assistants.
Center for Teaching Excellence Best Practices Resources
The CTE will periodically publish a list of best practices for preparing graduate students for their assignments as new TAs for distribution to or access by each of the departments or programs. In addition, CTE will maintain a list of resources available for departmental TA training to encourage excellence in the TA training programs. The Best Practice Resources also include ideal practices gleaned from the annual college-level reports submitted to the Grad School.