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ERIC Number: ED430250
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999
Pages: 11
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
First-Year Training for First-Year Composition: TA Training from the Inside.
Borrowman, Shane
Becoming a better teacher through active reflection is at best encouraged in graduate school, however Teaching Assistant (TA) training often focuses so intently on the "how" of teaching writing that it never reaches the "why" of teaching; TAs are left with an eclectic grab-bag of activities that they know "work," although the nature and purpose of that work may be unknown. To encourage and nurture this reflective quality in new teaching assistants, there are steps a program can take. At Eastern Washington University, a smaller university, a program provides a ready-made syllabus (allowing the TAs to focus on teaching) and incorporates reflective writing (reading and writing about the teaching process.) Incorporating the Eastern (small university) model into a much larger setting at the University of Arizona requires some adjustments to the program. A program assigning new TAs with veteran TAs (Teaching Advisors) to monitor and mentor the new TAs is a viable option for a larger university. Teaching Advisors in a larger university setting should encourage new TAs to reflect intelligently on the work they are doing. Small groups of new TAs meeting under a Teaching Advisor can discuss their teaching, and read and discuss articles, exploring the "whys" more than the "hows" of teaching. By providing an advisor and encouraging quality of reflection, a composition program is far more likely to produce great teachers in a subject that is hard to understand. (SC)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A