The Teaching Fellows Program is designed to provide a structured teaching apprenticeship as an integral part of the Applied Mathematics and Statistics Department’s program. It is intended to benefit both graduate students and undergraduate students, by providing progressively responsible teaching experience and improving the quality of instruction. The program will provide source material on teaching and curriculum issues, mentoring by faculty and experienced Teaching Assistants, a network of support, regular meetings, and classroom experience.
Each student teacher will be given one of the following four titles, listed in order of increasing level of responsibility:
Apprentice Teaching Fellow
The following four lists describe duties that may be assigned to student teachers with the given title. A student teacher with a given title may be assigned duties of any title with lower responsibilities.
Correct homework and exam papers.
Record homework grades.
Write comments and explanations on papers.
Hold office hours to answer questions from students.
Meet or communicate with lecturer weekly.
Lead section meetings.
Write handouts and problem solutions.
Suggest exam problems.
Conduct extra help/review sessions before exams.
Apprentice Teaching Fellow
Prepare and present some supervised lectures.
Draft homework assignments and exams.
Participate in decisions on course grades.
Prepare and present all lectures in a course.
Prepare course syllabus and lecture schedule.
Supervise Teaching Assistants.
Undergraduate Teaching Assistants should have taken at least one course beyond the course they will be involved in teaching, and have an overall GPA of at least 3.2. Preference will be given to Applied Mathematics and Statistics majors. Most undergraduate students’ teaching assignments will be in 550.111-112, 550.171, and 550.291.
New graduate students will begin as Graders or Teaching Assistants. The appropriate level will be based on the student’s mathematical background and communication skills. An evaluation of spoken English will be made on the basis of an interview conducted by a faculty member. (Students whose native language is not English may need to improve their language skills in order to teach in a manner commensurate with University standards. These students will be required to take one or both of the courses 370.600 Oral Skills for International Teaching Assistants and 370.601 Communication Skills in the American Classroom.)
Progression through the program, from Grader to Teaching Assistant to Apprentice Teaching Fellow and finally to Teaching Fellow, will occur as warranted by improved skills in teaching, communication, organizational skills, and lecturing. Graduate students may gain experience and demonstrate their skill in lecturing by presenting talks in research seminars in the department, and by presenting research papers at professional society meetings and conferences. Students may gain additional experience by obtaining summer positions teaching bright middle school and high school students for the Institute for Academic Advancement of Youth (IAAY).
Promotions to Teaching Assistant or Apprentice Teaching Fellow will be made by faculty vote, typically at annual graduate student review meetings in January, but possibly also at other times. For promotion to Teaching Fellow, the student must provide a curriculum vitae, and the promotion must also be approved by the Dean of the Whiting School of Engineering. Thus, appointment as Teaching Fellow follows the same formal appointment procedure used for an appointment as Lecturer. The formal procedure impresses upon the Teaching Fellows the professional nature and responsibility of their activities.
The Applied Mathematics and Statistics Department recognizes superior teaching performance by awarding the Professor Joel Dean Awards for Excellence in Teaching each year.