Teaching Assistants

Bastyr University has two teaching assistant (TA) designations. Both types of TAs assist with classroom or lab teaching activities under the supervision of faculty members. The designations and responsibilities for each of the two types of TAs are listed below.

Professional teaching assistants and clinical supervisor assistants

Professional teaching assistants and clinical supervisor assistants (collectively referred to as professional TAs) have earned a degree, graduated and are either licensed in their professions or have demonstrated the required expertise to assist faculty in classes, labs and/or clinical rotations. They are assigned duties commensurate with their levels of expertise in their disciplines. 

Responsibilities for professional TAs may include any of the following:

  • Assist with in-class, -lab and/or clinical rotation skills and techniques training
  • Assist in advanced skills classes or in a class or break-out sessions where professional-level expertise is required to support the faculty member
  • Provide feedback to instructor regarding skills or learning assessment Assists seminar instructor or guest lecturer during an on-site presentation 
  • Grade individual student assignments (excluding final examinations) if Scantron-based
  • Grade non-Scantron-based student assignments only if a rubric is provided by the course’s faculty member
  • Post grades for individual student assignments 
  • Assist in teaching demonstrations, answering questions during class sessions and tutoring students individually or in small group settings (within approved work hours) 

Professional TAs may NOT:

  • Determine student final grades
  • Post final grades for a class
  • Act as an academic advisor to students 

Work study teaching assistants

A work study teaching assistant is a student who is enrolled at the University and hired through the Work Study Office at the request of the program supervisor/coordinator. S/he assists faculty members in course preparation, course-related activities and other clerical duties. Procedures for hiring work study teaching assistants is determined by the Office of Financial Aid.

A work study teaching assistant must:

  • Successfully complete the course or possess equivalent knowledge in the subject matter for which they will become a TA 
  • Complete a confidentiality agreement and all other necessary work study paperwork prior to being hired as a TA
  • Maintain good academic standing 

Responsibilities for work study TAs are limited to the following:

  • Assist faculty member with course preparation such as copying course materials, collating handouts and completing other clerical duties 
  • Assist with labs and techniques classes
  • Correct Scantron-based exams/quizzes/evaluations
  • Correct exams/quizzes/evaluations for which they are provided a rubric or answer key
  • Provide research support
  • Conduct out-of-class course content reviews or study groups only if time spent on those activities does not exceed the total number of hours allocated for the quarter

Work study TAs may NOT

  • Grade exams, quizzes or essays/papers that are not Scantron-based or for which they do not utilize a rubric or answer key
  • Have access to Moodle or attendance records
  • Assess students in lab or technique classes, case studies, or break-out groups

Faculty members must obtain pre-approval from their department chair or designee before hiring any TA. The number of hours a TA may work during the quarter may be limited (i.e., not cover the course’s total number of credit hours). In addition, any hours over the per-credit hourly limit must be approved in advance and in writing by the department chair/or designee. The supervising faculty member is responsible for managing the TA’s time accordingly.

Moodle access for a TA will be determined by the program supervisor/coordinator according to the responsibilities assigned and may not exceed the authorized tasks listed above for each designation. Again, TAs may not post student final grades. In addition, TAs are not given access to e-CAMS, regardless of their designation or assigned responsibilities.

Prior to being given Moodle access, every TA will be required to sign the “Confidentiality of Records Agreement” before a designated department witness, generally the program supervisor/coordinator. Once this document is signed and filed within the department, the program supervisor/coordinator will request a Bastyr email address for the professional TA if she/he does not currently have one to allow Moodle access.

Program supervisors/coordinators are responsible for maintaining current TA lists for their programs and notifying both the e-Learning Specialist in Academic Support Services and the IT Help Desk of changes on a quarterly basis. If a professional TA is expected to return within an acceptable time-frame determined by Human Resources policy, the TA’s logon and email address may remain in place.