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TA Workshops & Professional Development Programs

Overview of Winter 2021 Workshops (click to jump to section)

To get regular updates about workshops join the #ta-development-program channel in Nectir: ucsb.nectir.io  

Register for Specialty Workshops Here

You will receive an email confirmation with more information

Specialty Workshops

Leading Asynchronous Online Discussions

Designer: Anita Stahl (Feminist Studies)
This workshop is fully asynchronous and can be done anytime. It takes you through tools and techniques for asynchronous discussion sections. The focus is on creating a social learning community for students. No registration required; completion tracked through activities. Follow this link to join the Preparing to Teaching Online GS site, where the workshop is hosted: https://gauchospace.ucsb.edu/courses/mod/hvp/view.php?id=4746180

Teaching Bites with TAPAs (TA Pedagogical Advisors)
Wednesdays at 10am PT

No Registration Required!

Please Join via Zoom link below.

Meeting ID: 840 2593 6819


Themed drop-ins each week will begin with a few simple ideas you can implement in your section. From there, your TAPAs (TA Pedagogical Advisors) will be available to help you troubleshoot classroom challenges, direct you to specific resources, and answer any pressing questions you might have about teaching in general. You might also drop in to share your own teaching success stories, introduce innovative and unique classroom activities, or tap your peers to help iron out details in something you’re thinking about trying!

  • February 17: Refreshing Student (and Self) Engagement

  • February 24th: Success Stories from "Zoom University"

  • March 3rd: What to Do with Student Feedback

  • March 10th: Managing the Home Stretch!


Effective Uses of Nectir for Section

Wed, Jan 6, 2021 11am-Noon

Facilitated by the Nectir team 

This workshop will go over methods to keep your students engaged throughout the quarter, help facilitate study groups, and ultimately provide a safe virtual space for your students to communicate. RSVP and find more workshop information here: https://www.nectir.io/nectir-workshop

Crafting Your Teaching Philosophy Statement

Thurs, Jan 21, 10-11am, 2021

Facilitated by Dr. Lisa Berry

This workshop takes you through a series of exercises to help you reflect on your teaching to develop an outline for your teaching philosophy statement.

Preparing your CCUT Portfolio

Tues, Jan 26, 1-2pm, 2021

(Note CCUT Portfolios are due 3/19/21 for Spring quarter grads)

Facilitated by Dr. Lisa Berry

The session will provide tips on writing the CCUT teaching portfolio, including ways of presenting teaching materials, documenting student ratings, meeting the technology requirement, tone of the portfolio narration, and more. Participants need to have completed at least two of the CCUT requirements.


Embodied Teaching: Feeling and Teaching through Everyday Social Justice Themes


Wednesday, February 03, 11am-12pm PT, 2021

Curious how to teach your sections without disregarding current events? Wondering how to bring your authentic self to your teaching practices and how this creates a better learning environment for your students? In this workshop we will discuss embodied teaching, a type of teaching pedagogy that can include techniques to integrate bodies of knowledge beyond the immediate scope of your lesson plans. 

Beyond the Basics: Advanced Teaching Techniques

Monday, February 8, 3pm-4pm PT, 2021

In this workshop, we will focus on teachers who feel comfortable in the classroom and are looking to take their teaching in new directions. We will discuss evidence-based learning techniques, how to find and utilize a teaching pedagogy that informs and bolsters your teaching, along with some practical classroom advice that could benefit you and your students. 


Teaching from the Trenches

Wednesday, February 10, 11am-12pm PT, 2021

Facilitated by Katie L. Jan

In this workshop, a panel of TAs will share their experiences in the classroom. Topics include: When your authority is challenged; The First Year - Transitioning from student to teacher (but also student); and Time Management.

Getting Feedback throughout your Course

Tuesday, March 2, 1pm-2pm, 2021

Facilitated by Katie L. Jan, TA Pedagogical Advisor

In this workshop, you will learn how to create and administer introductory and midterm surveys that will help you get to know your students, incorporate student feedback, improve your teaching, and prepare for end-of-term ESCIs (UCSB’s student evaluations of teaching).


Interpreting and Analyzing ESCI Scores


Thursday, March 4, 11am-12pm, 2021

In this workshop, you will learn how to interpret statistics from your ESCI (UCSB's student evaluations of teaching) reports, find trends in the data and summary your ESCI data for the academic job market.  Facilitated by Dr. Lisa Berry (Instructional Development).


Register for Specialty Workshops Here

You will receive an email confirmation with more information


Pillars of Teaching Assistantship Workshop Series 

Register for Pillars Workshops Here

We will email you with confirmations and the Zoom workshop link. 

The “Pillars of Teaching Assistantship” workshop series and certificate is designed to provide TAs with a comprehensive, research-based foundation for teaching in the role of TA. TAs will earn a Pillars certificate after completing all six workshops and their brief pre- and post- workshop activities.

Pillar 1: Creating Supportive Learning Environments

Fostering Belonging and Community in the Classroom 

Register to attend either Thursday, January 7, 2021, 3-4pm OR Monday, February 22, 3-4pm, 2021

Come learn about the diversity of UCSB's undergraduate students and how to support them from a perspective of inclusivity.  In this workshop, you will explore communication and classroom strategies that promote community, and reflect on how your life experiences affect your interactions with undergraduates. Facilitated by Dr. Mindy Colin, Instructional Development.

Pillar 2: Engaging Students in their Learning  

2A.  Active learning: What, why and how?

Register to attend either Tuesday, January 12, 11am-12pm OR Wednesday, February 17, 1pm-2pm, 2021
Facilitator: Katie L. Jan,  TA Pedagogical Advisor

Students learn better when they are actively participating in the learning process rather than passively listening. In this workshop, you will differentiate between active learning and passive listening, identify elements that foster active learning, and apply a variety of instructional methods.    

2B.  Creating Engaging Lessons

Register to attend either Thursday, January 14, 11am-12pm OR Friday, February 19, 1pm-2pm, 2021
Facilitator: Katie L. Jan, TA Pedagogical Advisor

Creating lessons is essential, but how can we ensure those lessons are engaging for our students? In this workshop, you will use learning objective taxonomies and a lesson planning framework to design active, student-centered classes.  

Pillar 3: Assessing Student Learning

3A. Effective Questioning and Classroom Assessment Techniques

Register to attend either Tuesday, January 19th, 1pm-2pm PT OR Thursday, February 25th, 12-1pm Facilitator: Eugene Riordan, TA Pedagogical Advisor 

Much of a TA’s role during section is to formulate generative questions, structure activities that check student understanding, and give effective feedback. In this workshop, you will explore several classroom-based assessment and questioning techniques that are based on the principles of giving effective feedback.  

3B.  Designing and Grading Assessments

Register to attend either Monday, January 25, 4pm-5pm PT OR Tuesday, March 02, 1pm-2pm PT 2021

Facilitator: Eugene Riordan, TA Pedagogical Advisor

TAs are responsible for creating, implementing, and evaluating assessments. But what makes a good assessment? How can we use assessment to support learning? And what are some reasonable ways to grade student work? In this workshop, you will use principles from evidence-centered design to make assessments more focused and impactful, and help you with practical grading strategies.  

Pillar 4: TA Professional Growth and Development

Improving Teaching through Feedback and Reflection 

Register to attend either Thurs, Jan. 28, 10-11am OR Tues, March 9, 12-1pm 2021
Facilitated by Dr. Lisa Berry, Instructional Development.

How well are your teaching strategies working?  How can you get useful, real-time feedback on your teaching? How will you respond when students have widely different perceptions of your teaching?  In this workshop, you will evaluate different ways of reflecting on your teaching that help you grow as a TA.

Register for Pillars Workshops Here

You will receive an email confirmation with more information


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consultation contacts

George Michaelsexecutive director2130 Kerr Hall
lisa berrysenior instructional consultant1130 Kerr Hall
mindy colininstructional consultant1130 Kerr Hall
Mary Lou Ramos database and ESCI administrator1130 Kerr Hall
TBD ESCI assistant1124 Kerr Hall


Laurel Shaddixoffice manager 1130 Kerr Hall
faxfax: 805-893-5915