Teaching Assistant

An academically qualified and registered graduate student in full-time residence chosen for excellent scholarship and for promise as a teacher, who is assigned to assist in the delivery of instruction under the active supervision of a faculty member. A majority of graduate students who perform instructional functions are assigned to the Teaching Assistant title.

Responsibilities

  • Assist the supervising faculty member by conducting discussion, laboratory or quiz sections that  supplement faculty lectures
  • Grading assignments or examinations
  • May provide input into the development of assignments or exams, and hold office hours

The final responsibility for the content of the course rests with the supervising faculty member. A Teaching Assistant is not independently responsible for the instructional content of a course, selection of assignments, planning, examinations, determination of student grades or decisions on grade appeals; and is not assigned full instructional responsibility for an entire course.

Academic Qualifications for Teaching Assistants

  1. Enrollment Requirement — For new and continuing graduate students:
    • Enrollment in at least 12 units (full time) during the current quarter — ONLY Readers and Tutors can be employed Part-Time (8 units)
    • Combined campus wide employment of no more than 50 percent time (220 hours of assigned workload) or less during any academic quarter.
  1. Grade/GPA Requirement — For continuing graduate students, during each of the three most recent quarters of enrollment:
    • Completion of 8 units or more of upper division or graduate level credit courses.
    • A letter grade of C, S, or above in all courses completed.
    • No more than two incomplete (I) grades except where stricter school policies apply.  In the Henry Samueli School of Engineering, ALL incomplete (I) grades must be cleared prior to Fall quarter.
    • A cumulative GPA of 3.1 or higher for Teaching Assistants (TA)
    • Satisfactory academic progress toward the degree objective
  1. 12 Quarter TA Limit
    Graduate students who have not advanced to candidacy for the doctorate may be appointed as a Teaching Assistant for a maximum of 12 quarters including the full period of the current or proposed appointment. Following advancement to candidacy, a doctoral student is allowed to be appointed to an additional 6 quarters for a total maximum of 18 appointment quarters. An allowable quarter is counted for any quarter in which the student is compensated, at any amount/rate or percent time. Eighteen quarters is the maximum any student may be appointed, irrespective of whether the student has chosen to enroll in more than one graduate program at UC Irvine. As per UC policy, a 19th quarter will not be approved.
  1. English Language Proficiency Requirements
    International and U.S. Permanent Resident graduate students who are not citizens of countries where English is either the primary or dominant language, as approved by the UCI Graduate Council, must pass one of the following English proficiency exams in order to be considered for appointment as a Teaching Assistant:

    • Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-based Test (TOEFL iBT), or
    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS), or
    • UCI Campus SPEAK exam, or
    • UCI Campus TOEP exam

    Achieving a minimum score of 26 in the speaking portion of the TOEFL iBT, OR a score of 8 in the speaking component of the IELTS OR a score of 50 on the SPEAK exam, OR a score of 5 on the TOEP exam satisfies the oral proficiency requirement and may establish eligibility for a Teaching Assistant appointment. Students are responsible for ensuring that the Graduate Division is notified directly of their scores by the testing centers. There is no exception to this requirement.

    The following are exempt from the requirement of taking and passing the English language proficiency exams:

    • Citizens of the United States (regardless of country of origin)
    • Citizens of countries where English is either the primary or dominant language as approved by the UCI Graduate Council. Please contact the Graduate Student Employment Analyst in the Graduate Division for the list of countries that qualify for the exemption.
    • International and permanent resident graduate students whose native language is not English, who have completed all years of their high school education in the United States. They are eligible to request an exemption by submitting a request and official high school transcripts to the Graduate Student Employment Analyst in the Graduate Division. No student is permitted to begin an appointment as a Teaching Assistant until the exemption has been approved in writing.
  1. Doc2A Definition & Guidelines
    By definition, a Doc2A student is enrolled more than 9 quarters past their advancement to candidacy for the Ph.D.  The Doc2A quarter count begins with the quarter immediately following their advancement to candidacy date.  The university does not receive state funding for students who are in Doc2A status nor are they included in official enrollment counts.  Graduate students in Doc2A status may be appointed to GSR/GSAR titles at the hiring department’s discretion, provided they are making satisfactory academic progress; and to ASE titles at the hiring department’s discretion if they are within the 18-quarter service limit for Teaching Assistants and Teaching Associates; meet academic qualifications including enrollment and grade/GPA requirements; and meet English language proficiency requirements for Teaching Assistants and Teaching Associates (for international and U.S. permanent resident students who are not citizens of countries where English is the primary or dominant language).

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