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ERIC Number: EJ1201103
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019-Jan
Pages: 10
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0047-231X
Graduate TA Teaching Behaviors Impact Student Achievement in a Research-Based Undergraduate Science Course
Huffmyer, Ariana S.; Lemus, Judith D.
Journal of College Science Teaching, v48 n3 p56-65 Jan 2019
Student experience and achievement in undergraduate science courses is important for degree retention and generating interest in careers in STEM. Graduate student teaching assistants (GTAs) provide a majority of instruction in STEM laboratory courses at universities and play a critical role in the educational experience of students. Many GTAs receive limited pedagogical training, and there is limited understanding on the influence of instructional methods used by GTAs on student academic achievement. This study examines the influence of GTA teaching behaviors on student achievement in a research-based undergraduate science course. Several aspects of GTA teaching behavior significantly influence student scores in homework, quiz, and research project areas. Behaviors including pacing, wait time, and discussion of homework are significant positive predictors of student scores, whereas teaching experience is a negative predictor. The influence of GTA questioning strategy is different for homework and research project areas, underscoring the complex relationship between teaching behaviors and student achievement. Results suggest that universities should provide support for GTAs to gain skills in teaching and pedagogical knowledge prior to instructing science laboratory courses.
National Science Teachers Association. 1840 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201-3000. Tel: 800-722-6782; Fax: 703-243-3924; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A