T. A. Manual

Practical Matters for TFs and TAs

  • Please review the TA Orientation outline before you begin your TA Assignment.

  • See T.A. Evaluations by Students for sample evaluation forms and for answers to frequently asked questions about evaluations.

  • Psychology Course Reserves
    Faculty may place materials on course reserve using procedures described on the Course Reserves web page. Books will generally be placed on reserve in the Science and Engineering Library of the new Northwest Corner Building. DVDs, videotapes, and other materials are more conveniently placed on reserve in the Geology Library on the 6th floor of Schermerhorn. If you have questions, contact reserves supervisor Jim Crocamo, <jc2120> or 212-854-6769.

  • Multimedia Labs and Classrooms
    Before you begin your TAship in the Psych. Dept., you will need to learn how to operate the equipment in your lab or electronic classroom, and to arrange for training. Please read carefully the online guides to the psychology teaching labs -- 200B and C Schermerhorn -- and schedule a brief training session with Peter Tripp or one of the lab assistants before you use them.

    You will also find the online descriptions and instructions for the multimedia classrooms helpful in learning to operate the "epodiums" in 501, 558, or 614 Schermerhorn. If your class will be meeting in one of these rooms, or another electronic classroom, you should complete the online tutorial and then practice in the classroom with every device, computer application, and kind of media that will be used. If you need additional training, submit a training request form at least two days in advance. 614 TAs should also arrange with Kathe Blydenburgh for microphone and closet access before classroom training. The equipment changes every year, so even if you have been previously trained, you may need practice.

    Macs in all electronic classrooms have been upgraded to OS X. Podium keys are not required; users will login to use the epodium. Instructors may bring their own laptops or just bring their files on a CD or a flash drive, or use file sharing or ftp.

  • For emergency assistance in 501, 558, or 614 Sch contact:




    via email: erooms-pager@columbia.edu

  • TA Office Hours
    All TAs are expected to hold two scheduled office hours per week and should actively encourage students to attend them. If there is a computer component to your course, i.e., if students will be running extra-credit experiments, preparing PowerPoint presentations, or just using email or accessing course web pages, then you should plan on holding some or all of your TA office hours in a computer-equipped office or lab. The TA Office 354 is available for this purpose.

    You may use an online reservation form to request weekly TA Office hours either in 354 or in one of the Psychology Instructional Labs (200b and c). In either case, please provide the course number and your name, as in "Abby W2280 Office Hrs." and indicate that it is a Course Related event.

  • Scheduling Review Sessions
    To reserve 405, first check the current Week-at-a-Glance schedule to find a free time, then contact the dept. office to reserve the room for that time. If you would like to reserve 200b or 200c for a review session, check the calendar to see if a room is free and then use the "Add an Event " button on the top right to request a time. Try to choose a time when there are no other activities scheduled there. You may also reserve 614 or 501 Schermerhorn. Please submit your room reservation at least two weeks in advance.

  • Course Web Sites
    Every lecture course should have a current syllabus posted on the web. Starting in fall 2012, all faculty will be using New CourseWorks [aka "Sakai"] for course management. Graduate TAs will be assisting in setting up these sites. See the TA Special Privileges page for tips on how to get access to the course web site and how to learn to use New CourseWorks.
  • Discussion Boards
    Using New CourseWorks, it is now quite easy to establish a Web-based discussion board for your class. Once it has been set up, all students enrolled in the class will automatically be able to read and post messages.

  • Class rosters
    Instructors have access to rosters for their classes through SSOL. These rosters are updated daily, and provide student IDs and email addresses. They can be downloaded as tab-delimited text files, and then opened in MS Excel or Word. The New CourseWorks roster may lag the Registrar's list by a day or two. At the beginning of the term it may be necessary to manually add new students to the New CourseWorks roster.

  • Posting grades
    According to University counsel, no portion of a student's social security number may be used in public postings of grades. Rather, you may use either the student's CUID (available via SSOL), or a private code provided by the student. New CourseWorks has a convenient way of controlling access to posted grades that by-passes these difficulties. There are other significant advantages to using the New CourseWorks gradebook, including the ability to upload as well as download grades.

  • Please see the Orientation Outline for other practical matters.



Last modified by keb2208 on February 23, 2016

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