Structured program for graduate students
Teaching Assistant (Former Employee) – Lexington, KY – June 10, 2014
Organic Chemistry recitation section is one hour before labs, at 1 PM; so I arrive 45 minutes before the students arrive to make sure all materials are laid out. Any reagents that need to be made, I do at that time, or it has already been made at an earlier date, by me, prior to the lab date. All the TAs rotate who teaches the recitation section prior to convening in the lab.
I learned that having a firm structure can make instructing the labs a facile experience. The recitation teaching materials were already created by our lab coordinator. As TAs we just pretty much follow the PowerPoints. The quizzes were created by our lab coordinator also, so our only outside job requirements were to grade the labs and quizzes. There's no need to re-invent the wheel here.
I really enjoyed working with my fellow TAs. They were very thoughtful and gave a rookie like me great advice to instructing the labs.
The hardest part of the job is grading the lab reports. They can be pretty long and overly detail oriented. All the TAs met with our coordinator once a week to go over how the labs would be graded, and I found the meeting necessary to figure out what needs to be spelled out in a lab report.
The most enjoyable part of the job was getting paid. When you are on your feet for four hours, you want the remuneration.
practice organic chemistry!
clean up organic chemistry labs.