Graduate College

Teaching and Research Assistant Resources

As a graduate student, it is important that you have the resources and support necessary to thrive in your pre-professional career, including policy and procedural understanding, best practices in classroom management and curricular engagement, and a support community. The Graduate College offers this support through the Teaching Assistant/Associate Development (TAD) program, our TA/RA Policy and Procedures Handbook, the Diary of a New TA support program, and through our library of TA resources and services.

Placeholder for an image

Teaching Assistant Development (TAD) program

The TAD program is required for all new teaching assistants (TAs) and provides new TAs with an orientation to ASU and the TA position. Designed to be completed within the first year of a new TA's assignment, TAD consists of three components: online training modules, TA orientation (required upon TA assignment) and developmental experiences.

For important registration information regarding the TAD program click on the expandable text below.

Training modules

The TA training modules include training required by ASU for all staff and cover various topics that are important for TAs. Information can be found on the TAB Blackboard site*. The training modules should be completed prior to the orientation but must be completed within one month of the start of your appointment.

*The TAD program is administered through Blackboard (ASUrite ID and password required). All ASU TAs should be enrolled in the Teaching Assistant Development (TAD) TRN-TAD-Program Blackboard course. Click here to self-enroll. If you who cannot see the course or have any questions, email for assistance. Include your ASUrite ID in the email.

Orientation sessions

Topics cover tools and resources to help TAs learn about various expectations of them in their new role as well as resources on campus.

First-time TAs must attend a TA Orientation session. Registration is mandatory. New TAs only need to attend one of the TA Orientations sessions. If you miss this orientation, email as soon as possible; you still must complete the other components of the TAD program.

Mark your calendar for:
Friday, January 5, 2018
8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Memorial Union, Ventana A, B


Developmental experiences

TAs are required to complete at least two professional development activities related to their teaching during the first year of their appointment. These developmental experiences can be chosen from the documents, podcasts and videos found in the TAD Blackboard Course*.

*The TAD program is administered through Blackboard (ASUrite ID and password required). All ASU TAs should be enrolled in the Teaching Assistant Development (TAD) TRN-TAD-Program Blackboard course. Click here to self-enroll. If you cannot see the course or have any questions, email for assistance. Include your ASUrite ID in the email.

Program FAQs

For questions specific to the TAD program, download our FAQ sheet or contact us at

Placeholder for an image

TA/RA Policy and Procedure Handbook

As teaching assistants, it is important to understand the expectations, rights and responsibilities of your position as scholar, researcher, instructor and member of the broader academic community. The TA/RA position is an important role both to the ASU community and to the development of your professional identity.

Purpose and use of the handbook

This publication provides an overview of ASU policies and support services pertinent to teaching and research assistants (RAs) and associates. It is designed as a resource for graduate students, their academic units and other appointing units on campus. It includes information related to:

  • conditions of appointment
  • types of appointment (TA/RA)
  • benefits
  • university policies

The teaching and research assistant/associate role is an important one to the ASU community. It provides graduate students with professional development opportunities unique to academia while also supporting the university's teaching, research and service missions.

While many of the general policies and expectations also apply to graduate service assistants and graduate interns, GSAs and interns are not bound by the same eligibility requirements as TAs and RAs and do not receive the same benefits (e.g. tuition remission).

This handbook describes the general roles and responsibilities of TAs and RAs as well as policies regarding their supervision and evaluation. The appointing unit is responsible for notifying each student of additional expections.

Important information

The TA/RA Policy and Procedures Handbook (PDF) includes all information regarding the TA/RA position, including the following:

Types of TA/RA positions. The requirements, duties and benefits of teaching assistantships, teaching associateships, research assistantships, and research associateships vary. To learn more about opportunities in your field, check with your graduate department.

TA/RA vacancy information. Graduate teaching/research assistantship/associateship vacancies are offered through the academic units and departments. Students are encouraged to contact those units where their academic credentials, skills and/or experience may be appropriate for an assistantship or associateship.

TA/RA requirements. Assistants and associates must be enrolled for a minimum of six credit hours each semester (audit hours do not count towards the six hour minimum). Appointments will normally range from ten to twenty hours per week; additional guidelines regarding the maximum number of hours worked can be found here.

Placeholder for an image

Diary of a New TA

Diary of a New TA is a blog-style resource for future and new teaching assistants. Featuring advice by current and past teaching assistants, Diary of a New TA covers a broad array of TA-related issues and offers practical advice on everything from classroom management strategies to student communication and conduct.

Share your story!

The Graduate College invites all new and experienced TAs to share their experiences, advice and encouragement through their own TAing stories. For more information about contributing to Diary of a New TA, click here.