Role of the Teaching Assistant in College Classes

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1) The role of the Teaching Assistant is to not only aid the director and help facilitate the program, but they also play a major role in helping the students. But more importantly, they play an important role for the students, because as the students face the daunting task of the social action project, they are also dealing with adjusting to being away from home, college-level courses, and finding their place at American University. The TA is someone they know they can go to with questions and concerns, someone who has been through the same experience as them. I personally have dealt with these issues and can provide advice and insight to offer to incoming freshmen. In addition to helping the students with their lives outside of the program, within the program it is the role of the TA to utilize their experience with the program to quietly guide the students in the best direction for their social action projects. They do not lead the group, but rather interject when problems may arise, or offer guidance when asked. It is solely up to the students to successfully prepare and implement the project, yet they cannot navigate the world of working with professionals and writing project proposals without someone helping them along the way. In order to have the most successful project, the TA’s role is to help in any obstacles along the way. In terms of the program as a whole, the TAs represent another facet of what the director of the program does. Professor Marr cannot do all the work herself, and the TA’s are there to help the program run smoothly. This means facilitating small group discussions in class, planning the retreat, and helping to plan class and answer questions the students may feel uncomfortable asking a professor, a... ... middle of paper ... ...e working with these kinds of professionals and developing a project of this size, so I feel some introduction as to how to meet with professionals, what to bring and wear to meetings, and where to look when trying to work with organizations or find a project would be incredibly helpful to the program as a whole and the success of the projects. Instead of failed meetings, guessing as to how to present the program and project, perhaps one lesson plan can include some helpful hints and information as to effective techniques for presenting specific programs. Also, the TA can offer some of this information as the project progresses. I still believe the students should take full control of the projects, as the program allows for now, yet from experience, a bit more guidance and useful information included in the program would allow for more successful projects.
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