The International Teaching Assistants Program (ITAP) is an orientation and instructional program for prospective International Teaching Assistants (ITAs). The Learning Resources Center, in conjunction with the graduate school departments, conducts ITA evaluations that take place in mid-August and mid-January. Prospective ITAs are assessed for their oral English proficiency and their teaching skills. The ITA evaluation consists of a brief interview, a simulated lesson presentation, a class announcement, and a question-and-answer session.
Some ITAs are recommended or required to take LRC 115 Advanced Diction. During the academic year, LRC 115 is offered during both the fall and spring semesters for ITAs whose English and/or teaching skills need improvement. Some of the skills include the following:
- Language skills: using speaking and listening compensation strategies; improving awareness of American English pronunciation, stress and intonation; and developing active listening skills.
- Teaching skills: participating in and leading small group discussions, improving audience awareness, and handling student questions.
ITAs also become familiar with American cultural and professional customs and the etiquette appropriate for the academic classroom. Students practice teaching by presenting lessons to the class. These lessons are reviewed by peers and the instructor.
Those ITAs who require formal English instruction are referred to the English Language Institute (ELI). While there is a fee for these classes, taking them is recommended for eventually passing the ITA evaluation and improving language skills for success at an American university.
For information about the ITA Program, contact Cassie Bichy.