TA Orientation FAQ

When is TA Orientation?

Every Fall, before the start of classes, main Fall TA Orientation is held the day after Graduate School Orientation. Dates and registration are available through the Center for Teaching and Learning’s calendar.

Where is TA Orientation?

TA Orientation is always held on campus, but the location may vary. Please see main TA Orientation page for this year’s location.

Who must attend?

To fulfill part of University TA Policy, all new graduate teaching and laboratory assistants with instructional responsibilities during the current academic year must attend TA Orientation. Teaching Assistants and Laboratory Assistants who have not previously attended TA Orientation must also attend.

Who else can attend?

All interested graduate students and postdoctoral scholars are welcome to attend! However, we recommend attending this orientation at the start of a teaching assistantship as policies and procedures may be updated.

Is there more than one TA Orientation?

Apart from the main Fall TA Orientation held the day after Graduate School Orientation. A Makeup Orientation is held about one month into the Fall semester. The Spring Teaching Symposium (first week in February) operates as a Spring Orientation.

Do I need to attend TA Orientation every year I hold a TAship?

No, you only need to attend TAO once during your graduate career at UGA. However, if it has been several years since attending, especially if you have not been engaged in instructional duties, you are encouraged to attend as a refresher as some guidelines may have changed.

What is covered at TA Orientation?

TA Orientation provides an overview of policies and resources relevant to all TAships at UGA. This includes discussions of federal policies such as FERPA, Title IX, and ADA compliance as well as UGA procedures, like the Academic Honesty process. We also explore available resources to help support both TAs and their students, including Student Care and Outreach, Division of Academic Enhancement, Counseling and Psychiatric Services, and International Student Life. Unit specific TAship questions should be discussed with Graduate Coordinators and/or TA supervisors. 

Is there an Orientation for International TAs?

No, there is no separate required orientation for International TAs. There are optional sessions offered during International Student Orientation and as a breakout workshop during the Main Fall TA Orientation. These optional sessions are an opportunity to discuss the English Language Proficiency guidelines in detail, provide an overview of UGA resources available to support international TAs, and hold a question and answer session with current international TAs.

Does my department have a TA Orientation? Does it count for TA Orientation?

Some departments may have additional orientations for their TAs, in addition to the required TA Orientation. Please contact your Graduate Coordinator for more information. Departmental orientations are not recognized equivalents of TA Orientation. After completing TAO attendance survey, the names of all attendees will be sent to their department to confirm TA eligibility.

Is this the same as Graduate Student Orientation?

No. The Graduate School's orientation for new graduate students is separate from TA Orientation and does not replace it. 

How should I dress? What should I bring?

Casual attire is acceptable. You might want to bring a notepad and pen to take notes.

Are there other opportunities at CTL for me to develop my teaching?

Yes! Visit Programming for Graduate Students and Teaching Professional Development for more information about CTL’s offerings for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars including workshops and consulting services.

© University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602