ERIC Number: ED214170
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Serving Our Teaching Assistants and Our Profession: Teaching Graduate Students to Teach Composition.
Gracie, William J., Jr.
There is a serious lack of interest in and concern for the training of graduate students (TAs) who teach most of the sections of college composition. Setting up a teacher training program in English departments still dominated by literature specialists is not an easy task, but there are some ways to change the negative climate. First, the department as a whole must be made aware of the teaching job market. Second, if TAs are to secure any of the few positions available, their teaching competence must be virtually certified by their departments. Third, the training program should be a course recognized by the university for which a grade is received. Fourth, department chairs and divisional deans should be encouraged to foster research in composition within the department's own courses. Fifth, the department should be urged to invite a guest lecturer in composition to campus at least once a year. Sixth, a department competition should be created with a suitable award for the best graduate student teacher. A TA training course is offered at Miami University of Ohio. The week long workshop progresses from instruction in grammar and language structure, through composition techniques, a counseling session to eliminate the apprehension and fear of failure that new TAs experience, and an opportunity to grade freshman essays. The TAs at Miami University are also assigned to a departmental "mentor" and must attend a course in the historical, theoretical, and pedagogical aspects of rhetoric. (HTH)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (33rd, San Francisco, CA, March 18-20, 1982).