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TAing Intermediate and Advanced lab courses

The following lab courses are required for Physics majors:

  • PHYS 105 -- Intermediate Physics Laboratory I:  Analog Electronics.
  • PHYS 107* -- Intermediate Physics Laboratory II:  Experimental Techniques and Data Analysis.   Current topic:  lasers, modern optics.
  • PHYS 108 -- Advanced Physics Laboratory Project.  Current topic:  low temperature condensed matter physics.

A teaching assistantship for these courses is a 25% appointment.   As a TA you will spend 10 hours per week averaged over the quarter on the TA responsibilities listed below.

PHYS 105: 7 or 8 weekly labs followed by a 2- to 3-week design project.

  • Lead one section of up to eight students for two 2.5-hour sections per week.
  • Grade up to eight weekly lab reports and occasional problem sets.
  • Write problem set solutions (taking turns with other TAs) once or twice during the quarter.
  • Perform the lab yourself prior to the lab section.
  • Attend weekly course staff meeting.
  • During the final 3 weeks of the quarter, assist students in a final design project.  No lab reports are due during this time, so additional lab hours are scheduled.
  • Grade final design project reports.

PHYS 107:  4 two-week labs.  This course satisfies the "Writing in the Major" requirement for Physics majors*. Reports are written in the format of a Physical Review Lettersjournal paper.

  • Lead one section of up to six students for two 2.5-hour sections per week.
  • Grade four lab reports; for two of the four reports, students revise the report based on initial TA feedback and resubmit for the final grading.
  • Perform the lab yourself prior to the lab section.
  • Attend weekly course staff meeting.
  • Coach students on writing in up to four bi-weekly one-on-one meetings.*
*Since PHYS 107 is a "Writing in the Major" course, TAs for PHYS 107 receive an additional stipend of ~$700 for the additional time required to coach students on writing.

PHYS 108: Students design, build, instrument and execute one experiment in low temperature physics during the quarter.

  • Lead one section of 4-5 students.
  • Schedule and lead twice-weekly meetings with one section.
  • Guide students without actually doing the work for them, but making sure they don't get into trouble -- i.e., role of TA is similar to that of a research advisor.
  • Be available during the last three weeks of the quarter for up to three cool-downs of your group's apparatus using LN2 and LHe.