Career & Tools

UCSB's Instructional Development team is offering a variety of workshops for Teaching Assistants this Spring Quarter. Read on for a full list of these events, and also be sure to connect with Instructional Development on Shoreline for more information and to register for events.

By Graduate Division Staff
Monday, April 4th, 2022 - 11:46am

UCSB's Instructional Development team is offering a variety of workshops for Teaching Assistants this Spring Quarter. Read on for a full list of these events, and also be sure to connect with Instructional Development on Shoreline for more information and to register for events.

Pillars of Teaching Assistantship Workshop Series

Complete all Pillars workshops to earn a certificate

Pillar 1: Creating Supportive Learning Environments

Fostering Belonging and Community in the Classroom

With Dr. Mindy Colin

When: Thurs, Mar 31, 3-4:14pm @ Zoom

Description: Come learn about the diversity of UCSB's undergraduate students and how to support them from a perspective of inclusivity. In this workshop, you will explore communication and classroom strategies that promote community, and reflect on how your life experiences affect your interactions with undergraduates.

Register for Pillar 1 here.


Pillar 2: Engaging Students in their Learning

2A. Active learning: What, why and how?

With Alyssa Lawson

When: Fri, April 8, 12-1:15pm @ 1128 Kerr

Description: Students learn better when they are actively participating in the learning process rather than passively listening. In this workshop, you will differentiate between active learning and passive listening, identify elements that foster active learning, and apply a variety of instructional methods.

Register for Pillar 2A here.


2B. Creating Engaging Lessons

With Jazmine Exford

When: Wed, Apr 20, 10-11:15 am @ Zoom

Description: Creating lessons is essential, but how can we ensure those lessons are engaging for our students? In this workshop, you will use learning objective taxonomies and a lesson planning framework to design active, student-centered classes.

Register for Pillar 2B here.


Pillar 3: Assessing Student Learning

3A. Effective Questioning and Classroom Assessment Techniques

With Evan Murnane

When: Wed, Apr 6, 2-3:15 pm@ 1128 Kerr

Description: Much of a TA's role during section is to formulate generative questions, structure activities that check student understanding, and give effective feedback. In this workshop, you will explore several classroom-based assessment and questioning techniques that are based on the principles of giving effective feedback.

Register for Pillar 3A here.


3B. Designing and Grading Assessments

With Evan Murnane

When: Wed, Apr 13, 2-3:15pm @ Zoom

Description: TAs are responsible for creating, implementing, and evaluating assessments. But what makes a good assessment? How can we use assessment to support learning? And what are some reasonable ways to grade student work? In this workshop, you will use principles from evidence-centered design to make assessments more focused and impactful, and help you with practical grading strategies.

Register for Pillar 3B here.


Pillar 4: TA Professional Growth and Development

Improving Teaching through Feedback and Reflection

With Dr. Lisa Berry

When: Fri, May 13, 9:30am-10:45am @ Zoom

Description: How well are your teaching strategies working? How can you get useful, real-time feedback on your teaching? How will you respond when students have widely different perceptions of your teaching? In this workshop, you will evaluate different ways of reflecting on your teaching that help you grow as a TA.

Register for Pillar 4 here.

Specialty Workshops

How to Save Hours Each Week by Creating a Classroom Community

With Kavitta from the Nectir team

When: Wed, Mar 30, Noon-1pm on Zoom

Description: The easiest way to turn your students into active knowledge creators is through a virtual community in the classroom. Nectir allows you to auto-create a chat space for your class and auto-add your students right from inside your LMS.

RSVP here on the Nectir Workshops site


Preparing Your CCUT Portfolio

With Dr. Lisa Berry

When: Wed, April 6, 10-11:00am @ Zoom

Description: The session will provide tips on writing the CCUT teaching portfolio, including ways of presenting teaching materials, documenting student ratings, meeting the technology requirement, tone of the portfolio narration, and more. Participants need to have completed at least two of the CCUT requirements. Please note that if you are completing your doctorate degree in the Summer Quarter, the final date that you may submit your CCUT portfolio is Friday April 29th. Register for Preparing Your CCUT here.


Responding to Distressed and Distressing Students

With Armando J. Flores

When: Wed, April 6, 3:00-4:15pm @ Zoom

Description: Working with students who are in distress and/or potentially distressing to others can add a significant amount of time and energy to an already busy role of being a TA. In this workshop, you will learn how to partner with campus resources to create a safety net of support for students who may be significantly struggling with academics, financial concerns, health/wellness issues, and interpersonal difficulties. Come learn how to recognize common signs of a student in distress/student distressing others, how to respond, and how to refer to the appropriate campus resources .

Register for Responding to Distressed and Distressing Students here.


Instructional Design for Effective Learning

With Alyssa Lawson

When: Mon, April 11th, 2-3:15pm @ Kerr 1128 (in person)

Description: Part of your responsibility as a TA is to provide material to your students in a way that can benefit their learning. However, this can be more difficult than it seems. This workshop will provide you with the fundamental principles that guide learning and demonstrate how we can use those principles to create effective learning material.

Register for Instructional Design here.


Crafting your Teaching Philosophy Statement

With Drs. Lisa Berry and Mindy Colin

When: Fri, April 15, 10:00-11:15am @ Zoom (Lisa)

Wed, May 18, 3-4:15pm @ Zoom (Mindy)

Description: Writing a Teaching Philosophy Statement can be a challenge, and is required for most teaching positions and awards. At the same time, examining and articulating your teaching philosophy can help you to become a more effective instructor. As a participant in this workshop, you will work through a series of exercises to help you reflect on your teaching, and by workshop end you will have a draft outline of your teaching philosophy statement.

Register for Crafting your Teaching Philosophy here (April 15) and here (May 18).


Navigating Conflict in the Classroom

With Lisa Berry (ID) and Armando J. Flores (SMCS)

When: Fri, April 22, 1:00-2:15pm @ Zoom

Description: During this roundtable discussion, TAs will be invited to reflect on situations where they had to, or may need to, navigate conflict in the classroom, such as challenges to TA authority, tension while discussing sensitive topics and dealing with unacceptable behavior. We'll explore different ways to navigate conflict with insights from campus experts and experienced TAs.

Register for Navigating Conflict in the Classroom here.


Information Session for the Certificate in College and University Teaching (CCUT)

With Anudhi Munasingh

When: Tues, April 26th, 4-5:00pm @ Zoom

Zoom url:

Description: UCSB's Certificate in College and University Teaching (CCUT) program is designed for doctoral students who wish to demonstrate superior competence and experience in preparation for teaching at the university or college level. Official CCUT certificates are issued by the Office of the Registrar and are noted on the student's transcript. Come to learn about the program, its requirements and ask questions. Please note that the CCUT certificate can only be awarded in conjunction with a PhD or MFA degree.

No registration is required for this information session.