Program to Allow GSIs to Teach Upper-level Courses

The College of Literature, Science, and the Arts is pleased to announce a new program to allow a limited number of Graduate Student Instructors (GSIs) to plan and teach courses above the 200 level. The program will begin September, 2009 for courses taught Fall, 2009 going forward. This program will have an initial assessment at the end of the first year and a more thorough evaluation after three years.

The benefit to graduate students is to allow them to plan courses from start to finish, which will better prepare them as future faculty and give them an advantage on the job market. The benefit to the department is the expansion and flexibility of its curricular offerings, as well as the opportunity to plan for instructor absences. Benefits to undergraduate students can include the cutting-edge knowledge that current doctoral students can bring to the classroom when they are teaching special topics courses in the area of their research.

This is a voluntary program and not a requirement for departments. The program will allow a limited number of graduate students to teach an existing regular or “special topics” course, or develop a course that might fulfill a “special topics” course designation. The basis for selection for potential GSIs is outlined in the Program Description which is linked below. Satisfying the requirements does not guarantee selection for a teaching position.

It is anticipated that upper level instruction will be funded predominately from the appointing unit’s GSI allocation or with funds from the unit’s supplementary instruction budget. However, reallocations within the units existing GSI allocation must not reduce student access to lower level introductory or gateway courses. Teaching replacement funds or incremental funding from the College may also be available, depending on the circumstances of the appointment and the availability of funds.

LSA Undergraduate and Graduate Education will maintain a list of available slots in each unit, as well as keep track of the graduate students who take advantage of the opportunity.

Term III teaching will also fall under this program, and GSIs must fulfill the same requirements for Term III courses.

Deadlines: Requests should be submitted to Undergraduate and Graduate Education using the request form.  Requests should be submitted with enough time for the course to be available for student backpacking.  The following schedule gives general time frames when requests should be submitted to the Dean's Office.  Please allow up to two weeks for a response:

For Fall term courses: Requests should be submitted in August and September.

For Winter, Spring, Spring/Summer, and Summer courses: Requests should be submitted in January and February.

For a more detailed description of the program, please see the links below. You will also find the request form and a timeline for graduate students to help in planning for this opportunity.

Upper-Level Teaching Program Description (PDF)

Request Form—GSIs Teaching Upper-level Course (PDF)

Suggested Student Preparation Timeline for Teaching an Upper-level Course (PDF)

CRLT Seminars for Graduate Students (PDF)

Ten Term Rule

College policy on financial support of graduate students.

Policy for Graduate Students with Non-English Backgrounds Who Seek GSI Positions in the College of LSA (Word file)

LSA support policy for students whose undergraduate degree was not conducted exclusively in English. The policy pertains to the nomination of students to ELI 994.

Tuition-only Fellowships for Students Longer Than 7 Years in Program


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