Mark Lyford, Program Director
Aven Nelson Bldg., Room 138
1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie, WY 82071
As a graduate teaching assistant you are an integral member of a team of teachers who are all dedicated to providing biology students with the best educational experience possible. The teaching team comprises the professor/lecturer/instructor, the graduate student, lab coordinators, and curriculum director. Our unified goal is to work together to accomplish our primary mission of providing in-depth, rigorous and dynamic courses in biology. All members of the team are expected to share their knowledge and expectations regularly.
Rachel Jones, Program in Ecology, poses before an original ‘Fish Bowl Biome’ climate lab she developed for LIFE 1020.
During her time as a graduate student, Rachel assisted with LIFE 1010, 1020, and 2023, eventually co-instructing
and instructing her own courses and establishing a robust teaching portfolio as a result of her experiences.
The labs for this and other Life courses are designed and organized to meet the goal of the Life Sciences Program curriculum, which is to expose students to four key areas:
You are expected to attend the lecture section for the labs to which you are assigned to teach. Most students are expected to teach 2 lab sections per semester.
To be an effective instructor, we expect you to:
Your teaching will be evaluated three times this semester. You will be evaluated by your peers (and you will evaluate your peers) around mid-semester. Students will also evaluate you through the University’s online evaluation program, and your lab coordinator will also evaluate you toward the end of the semester. Evaluation of teaching and performance will be based on preparedness and attendance at lab prep meetings, submitting your quiz questions on time, interactions with students, lab teaching performance, attendance at lecture exams and exam grading, and overall attitude. Your lab coordinator’s evaluation will be given to you to review at the end of the semester. After you have reviewed it, a copy will be sent to your major advisor, your department head, and the Life Program Director. These evaluations may then be used in the future to help award teaching assistantships.
Make sure that you are well prepared for each lab, as this will help you feel organized and in control.
Arrive early, set up the room, check supplies and equipment and review your notes.
Graduate students discuss how to best approach teaching in the Life Science laboratories during an introductory
meeting in fall 2013.Teaching assistants in the Life Program attend both a University and Program training
at the start of the academic year. Weekly meetings are held to discuss teaching and learning throughout each semester.
Click here for more information regarding the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
Please visit our Life Science Teaching Community to share teaching materials, ask questions, and post experiences..