CIS Introductory TAs @ Penn



Hiring for the Fall 2016 semester is now closed. Please check back in November for Spring 2017 opportunities.

(For TA opportunities in other CIS classes, please consult the CIS TA listings page.)



TA Application Info



The introductory sequence for the UPenn CIS department (CIS 110, CIS 120, CIS 160, and CIS 121) employs over 200 undergraduates each semester to serve as teaching assistants and mentors. Unlike other jobs on campus, our TAs and mentors are at the forefront of our classes. They deliver weekly recitations, grade assignments, hold office hours, and assist the instructor in shaping the class to meet the needs of their students. Most importantly, they act as ambassadors of the CIS department and convey why we all love Computer Science to Penn!

For more information about being a TA for a particular course, please send mail to the current course instructor as listed on the class webpages (CIS 110, CIS 120, CIS 160, and CIS 121). For general information about the intro TA program, contact Arvind Bhusnurmath.

Community

Being an intro TA is more than a job. It is an opportunity to be part of a community of peers that all recognize the importance of Computer Science education to UPenn as well as desire to grow as teachers and leaders in their respective fields. As a TA, you are never alone, whether you are working with your TA partner to prepare a recitation, brainstorming new ways to teach the material with the course staff in your weekly staff meeting, or racking your brain with other TAs trying to solve that one bug in your student's code.

TA Training

We place a large amount of responsibility on the shoulders of the TAs. But we don't let you fend for yourselves out there. Our almost semester-long TA training program is designed to give you the skills necessary to excel as a TA or mentor. In TA training, you'll also get the opportunity to meet with fellow newly-hired TAs and mentors to share your experiences and rapidly acclimate to life as a TA.

Job Descriptions

Are you interested in sharpening your fundamental Computer Science skills? Are you interested in sharpening your teaching skills? Are you interested in sharing your love of Computer Science with your peers? If you answered yes to all three questions, then a job as as TA for the CIS introductory series may be right for you!

Requirements

In particular, you do not need to be a CIS major or necessarily get an A+ in the class (although that certainly helps!). We are primarily interested in hiring people that have a good teaching sense and fundamental Computer Science skills. If you are hired, you'll have plenty of opportunity both in training and in the classroom to become an excellent TA!

Undergraduate TA

Undergraduate TAs are primarily responsible (either solo or in pairs) for a single recitation of students. They are the go-to person for that recitation and their students' first line of defense if they have any questions or concerns about the course.

Responsibilities

Overall, the role of an undergraduate TA takes approximately 8-10 hours a week. The actual load varies on a week-to-week basis depending on what the course demands for that particular week, e.g., ramping up at the beginning of the semester, exam weeks.

Undergraduate Mentor

Undergraduate mentors serve in the computer labs and assist students in completing the weekly homework in each class as well as any other questions they have about the course. Mentors have less responsibilities than TAs but more opportunities to interact with students 1-on-1 in the labs and hone their tutoring skills.

Responsibilities

Overall, the role of an undergraduate mentor takes approximately 6-8 hours a week. The actual load varies on a week-to-week basis depending on what the course demands for that particular week, e.g., ramping up at the beginning of the semester, exam weeks.

TA Resources

Below are links to additional resources for current TAs.