Ready for the Semester? 

Professional Development

Every mechanical engineering TA needs to continually improve, and one way to improve is to continually educate yourself in the art and craft of teaching. For that reason, TAs are required to invest in their professional development by completing several commitments. These commitments are listed below. All are to be submitted via the TA Canvas site before the last day of classes in the semester.

  1. Peer Observation — Will complete and report a peer observation before the last day of classes.
  2. Continuing Education — Will complete and report on one TA continuing education activity before the last day of classes.


Continuing Education
Example Activities:

Attend a workshop
Complete an online tutorial
Take an online course
Read a book on teaching methods
Watch a webinar
Listen to a podcast

Need a Place to Start?
Check out the Center for Educational Innovation. CEI has numerous offerings listed on their website.


Every semester there is a commitment for TAs to be evaluated prior to the last day of classes. The evaluation results will be compiled and placed in your graduate records. All evaluations in ME are done through the Student Services Office. Note that there is more than one type of evaluation and they are not all the same!

Commitment:  Be evaluated by the students of your course. This evaluation should not be confused with the course evaluation, which is separate and relates to the course instructor.



For Fall 2020, all evaluations will be completed online. 

Student Services will announce when evaluations are available.


Current Evaluation Types

1. Evaluation of Teaching Assistants by Students 

TAs for each course are evaluated by their students. The ME Student Services Office will announce when/if hard copies of evaluations become available each semester.

Students enrolled in the course are asked to evaluate the course TA(s) via the departmental form listed below. Please see the Process Flowchart to determine if you are exempt. 

2. Evaluation of TA by course instructor

The instructor for the course evaluates their TAs by completing the form found at the link below.

Policies and Prevention

  • FERPA (tutorial)
  • Mental Health Resources for Students (link)
  • Makeup Work for Legitimate Absences (link)
  • Title IX mandated reporting responsibilities (link)
  • Discrimination, Harassment, Bullying and Other Concerns (link)
  • UMN Policy Library (link)

Additional Resources

  • Canvas Overview Video (link)
  • Center for Educational Innovation (link)
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James Van de Ven
Director of Graduate Studies
ME 307
Not Available
Jennifer Dahal
TA Coordinator
ME 1120