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Expectations of a TA

When you sign up to TA for the Physics department:

  1. You are confirming that you will be available during the entire quarter, including the final-exam grading period.
  2. You will attend all TA meetings, sections, office hours, etc., and will complete all tasks associated with your TAship.
  3. You may have to grade problem sets and administer and/or grade exams on weekends.

What your students expect from you, their section or lab TA (Large Intro Courses may be different):

  1. You, the TA, will be present and on time at every section.  Note:  on time means getting to the room where your section meets at least 5 minutes before section starts.  For discussion section TAs, this allows you to make sure the room is ready to go, working markers are available for both you and your students, and demonstrations, if any, are set up.  For lab TAs, this allows you to make sure the equipment is working.

  2. If you absolutely must miss a section due to an unexpected emergency, you will find a suitable substitute. 

  3. You will return graded homework following the guidelines for the course but no later than five days after the due date if the course does not have a defined guideline.  This gives students the opportunity to see what they have done wrong so they do not repeat the same mistake on the next assignment.  Scores for graded labs must be entered and labs returned by the next lab period. 

  4. You will grade homework/lab legibly so that your students can see which parts were correct and which were incorrect.  Although you do not necessarily need to explain on the homework specifically where a student went wrong, it should be clear on which part(s) the student lost points.  
  5. You will send out weekly Canvas announcements to students letting them know about common mistakes in problem sets.


  6. You will be available for office hours for 1 hour each week and will communicate these hours to the students. 


  7. If you are a TA for the 20 or 40 series courses, you will also staff the Physics Tutoring Center (PTC) at hours decided between you and the other TAs.  All office hours and PTC hours will be posted on Canvas.

What students can expect from You and other TAs:

  1. TAs will staff the tutoring center and/or be present for office hours at the stated times.
  2. Problem set solutions will be posted in a timely fashion after the due date.
  3. Exams will be graded legibly and so that students can see which parts were correct and which were incorrect. (The TA will not necessarily explain on an exam specifically where a student went wrong, but it should be clear which parts let to lost points and which didn't). Exams will be graded consistently across students.