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Course Description

Program Overview

The Teaching Assistants Readiness Program (TARP) is an immersive 6-week online program that combines evidenced-based strategies with practical teaching and learning skills. Participants in this program will be part of a cohort that explores current teaching and learning research from a student-centered learning and inclusive teaching practices lens. During four interactive workshops, participants will develop practical teaching skills, identify research-informed strategies to use in their teaching contexts, and connect with peers from multi-disciplinary teaching environments.

Attendance is required at each workshop with participants completing a one-page practical application worksheet after each workshop. The TARP program concludes with each participant submitting a final reflective learning summary.

Please visit the badge webpage for program details and required workshops and topics: (click here)

Please note: Registration will close within 1 week of the course start date. Participants will be contacted with relevant course information via email – as well as enrolled on D2L – once the course begins.


Learning outcomes

Participants will be able to:

  • Identify and choose classroom management strategies that promote positive Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA) and student relationships in various course environments.
  • Evaluate and apply appropriate assessment methods to measure student learning.
  • Analyze and differentiate teaching beliefs critically to understand their importance on one’s own teaching practice.
  • Synthesize and create effective strategies to foster ongoing professional development in teaching and learning.
  • Participate and reflect in a collaborative community for GTAs to promote teaching and learning.

Requirements for Completion

Participants must attend all four workshops listed below. All workshops will be hosted online via Zoom. 

  • Tuesday, January 16, 2024 (10:00 AM -11:00 AM): Classroom Management Strategies for Teaching Assistants
  • Tuesday, January 23, 2024 (10:00 AM -11:00 AM): Student Assessment and Feedback Strategies
  • Tuesday, January 30, 2024 (10:00 AM -11:00 AM): Enhancing TA-Instructor Partnerships
  • Tuesday, February 6, 2024 (10:00 AM -11:00 AM): Professional Development of TAs

Classroom management strategies for TAs

In this workshop, participants will explore classroom management strategies such as planning effective office hours, asking effective questions and responding to student questions, facilitating engaging student discussions in online and in-person learning environments, etc. We will explore these topics under the lens of inclusive teaching practices and universal instructional design.  

Date: Tuesday, January 16th from 10 – 11 a.m.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize strategies that create equitable and inclusive classrooms/labs/tutorial sessions.
  • Use classroom management strategies to promote positive TA-student relationships.
  • Identify strategies to facilitate effective student discussions in different learning environment.

Student assessment and feedback strategies

In this workshop, participants will explore key pedagogical aspects of assessment and grading in student-centered learning environments. We will discuss the importance of formative feedback and summative assessments along with a brief overview of rubrics and their use in grading. Strategies for providing feedback on students’ assignments will be discussed so that participants can provide meaningful and effective feedback to help their students succeed in the course.

Date: Tuesday, January 23 from 10 – 11 a.m.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Discuss the importance and role of formative feedback and summative assessments
  • Select appropriate assessment methods to evaluate student learning;
  • Use an assessment rubric to provide feedback and measure student performance; and
  • Explore methods to provide effective feedback to students.

Enhancing TA-instructor partnerships

Teaching Assistants (TAs) are critical members of the teaching team. They bring to their position a wide variety of experience and backgrounds and contribute in meaningful ways. Creating a climate of mutual respect and reciprocity for each other while working as partners with your instructor can have a positive impact on teaching and learning goals.

Date: Tuesday, January 30 from 10 – 11 a.m.

By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Discuss strategies to develop a positive partnership with your professor
  • Explore effective ways of enhancing communication with your instructor
  • Create a climate of feedback and reciprocity that supports your mental well-being

Professional development of TAs

In this workshop, participants will explore topics related to their professional development as a TA. This workshop will provide them with an opportunity to meaningfully reflect on their TA experiences; discuss their emerging teaching practices; identify teaching-related goals and explore available campus resources to promote further development.  

Date: Tuesday, February 6 from 10 – 11 a.m.

By the end of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize strategies to engage in critical reflection 
  • Discuss their TA experiences with peers and colleagues
  • Explore their emerging teaching practices
  • Develop awareness of campus resources and available programming offered by TI

Participants will also be required to complete three out of four workshop, practical application worksheets.

Lastly, participants will be required to create a final capstone which is a reflective summary of their learnings and experiences from the programme. This can be completed either as a one-page text document (between 150-250 words) or a audio or video recording (between 2-3 minutes).


Registration Information

  • This badge is open and free-of-cost to all current graduate students with the University of Calgary
  • This badge is not accepting the registration of external participants i.e. individuals not affiliated with the University of Calgary

Please note: Registration will close within 1 week of the course start date. Participants will be contacted with relevant course information via email – as well as enrolled on D2L – on the day the badge begins.

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Thank you for your interest...

Unfortunately, this course is not currently open for enrolment.

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