Programs for Graduate Students

The Teaching + Learning Commons offers several programs for UC San Diego graduate students as described below.



Survival Skills for Teaching & Instructional Assistants

Discuss and implement practical tips and strategies to become an effective Teaching or Instructional Assistant. Offered quarterly in eight weekly one-hour experiences.

Tentative Course Outline:

  1. Your Role as Teaching Assistant (TA) or (IA)
  2. Class Culture
  3. Responding to and Creating Questions
  4. Facilitating Discussions and Gathering Feedback
  5. Changing it up: Active Teaching Strategies
  6. Giving Feedback
  7. Practice Session
  8. Review Sessions

Learn more.

Register here.

Introduction to College Teaching

As you look toward future faculty positions, develop your expertise in evidence-based effective teaching practices that support student learning and create a lesson plan for a class in your discipline. This quarter-long course meets for nine weekly two-hour experiences.

By the end of this course, participants will be able to:

  1. Explain and implement evidence-based teaching strategies to create a student-centered, inclusive classroom 
  2. Engage in an active and productive discussion surrounding effective teaching
  3. Develop a lesson plan 
  4. Connect the value of a learning community associated with teaching and learning 
  5. Access and apply resources and support for their continued development as instructors

Learn more.

Register here.

New Instructor of Record Support

English Language Program for International Instructors (ELP-ii)






Stand-Alone Opportunities

Effective Teaching for Diverse Students

Develop as an effective instructor with strategies to create an inclusive classroom. Workshops typically are offered quarterly and may be requested for departments or specific groups on campus (contact Erilynn to inquire).

Workshop: Creating Classroom Culture

Participants will create a draft of their own classroom culture guidelines to include in their syllabus, and then work through challenges they might encounter to those guidelines.

Workshop: Universal Design for Learning

Description under the title: With an introduction to Universal Design for Learning, you will identify specific strategies for making your instructional materials accessible for all learners, by reducing barriers in instruction and providing appropriate accommodations, supports, and challenges.

Workshop: Inclusive Teaching Tools

Inclusivity is more than a buzzword - it is a necessary strategy for any instructor who wants to communicate their material effectively. In this workshop, you will learn about the evidence-based reasons behind the inclusivity push, and then you will brainstorm and consider specific, actionable tools to implement in designing and facilitating your class. This workshop is offered stand-alone and in conjunction with other sessions.

Workshop: Responding to Resistance

Despite our best efforts to design a supportive and inclusive classroom, there might be students whose comments or actions are not conducive to this environment. When do we intervene? How do we respond? Discuss scenarios and consider which tactics might be most effective for you. Next workshop date TBD.

Orientation for New Teaching & Instructional Assistants

At this annual orientation, new Teaching & Instructional Assistants (TIAs) participate in presentations and discussions about how to be a successful TIA, with opportunities to meet and hear from graduate students, faculty and staff from across campus who are ready to support new TIAs as they face the challenges of helping students learn.

Teaching Chats

Informal conversations about issues affecting you as a graduate student or postdoc instructor, occurring regularly at social venues around campus. Learn more here.

Writing about Teaching





Additional Resources

Departmental Faculty Advisors for Teaching & Instructional Assistants

Survival Guide

Addresses common questions about the role of the Instructional Assistant (IA) or Teaching Assistant (TA), teaching strategies, logistics, resources and support for you and your students. Available here.

Teaching Consultations, Observations, and Mid-Quarter Student Feedback

Voluntary, confidential and personalized. Come meet one-on-one with a Graduate Instructional Designer to talk through questions you might have and strategies for success as an Instructional or Teaching Assistant, or Instructor of Record. Request a Teaching Consultation.

There is also the opportunity for a Teaching Observation by a Graduate Instructional Designer, providing a new level of awareness and insight to your teaching (with no judgement!).

Request a Classroom Observation here. 

Mid-Quarter Feedback: Receive timely feedback on students’ perceptions of their learning, with guidance and time to act on the responses. A Graduate Instructional Designer will collect small group feedback from students in the final 10-15 minutes of class, ideally mid-quarter, and provide you with the results: detailed, actionable, and anonymized data. Contact to schedule this service.

Teaching + Learning Commons Brochure for Graduate Students

Download the brochure here.

Please contact us at with questions, requests, or ideas.