Teaching Assistants are an essential part of the teaching team in the Department, providing a crucial personal link between the Professor and the students. With the instructor's assistance, Teaching Assistants prepare and lead the labs and/or tutorials, and grade student work. Because of their close contact with the students, Teaching Assistants play an important role in helping students learn the material, and commonly serve as mentors and career advisors. Without Teaching Assistants, the educational experience of our students would not be as rewarding as it is.
To recognize the best of our Teaching Assistants, various individual and corporate donors have created a significant number of Teaching Assistant Awards. These awards, which are given on the basis of nominations by students and faculty, carry no additional monetary value for the student so honoured. However, the funding supplied by the donors to this program, is an essential contribution to the Department's ability to maintain good quality teaching in our laboratories and field schools, and is gratefully acknowledged. However, receipt of one of these awards is recognition of outstanding performance as a Teaching Assistant, and can be used on CVs and applications for scholarships and/or graduate school as an indication of communication and interpersonal skills.
Left: Named TA award recipients Fall 2015
Graduate students who are within terms of support are eligible to serve as Teaching Assistants in introductory and upper-level undergraduate courses, in subject areas in which they have some experience. Senior undergraduate students can also serve as a Teaching Assistant in one or other of our introductory courses. Students who are interested in applying for a Teaching Assistant position should complete a TA.Application.
All Teaching-Assistant appointments are governed by the Collective Agreement between the University and the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC). In addition, Teaching Assistants and the instructor of the course are asked to sign a Teaching Assistant Contract which sets out the expected duties of the position.
W.A. Gorman Teaching Assistant Award
This award in named in honour of long-time faculty member W.A. (Al) Gorman. Dr. Gorman arrived at Queen's in 1955 and taught in the Department for more than 50 years, dedicating himself to undergraduate education. He taught more than 10,000 students throughout his career, all of whom remember him fondly.
Named Teaching Assistant Awards
ARC Resources (for GEOL/E 319 TAs)
Beach Meadows Resources Inc.
Bill Pearson (for GEOL courses)
Bruce Geotechnical Consultants Ltd.
Class of ’04 - Rick Wasfy & Katie Anne MacInnis
Class of ’95
Gord Keep & Katherine Keep
Griff Murphy & Anne Raymond (for GEOL/E 333 TAs)
Klohn Crippen Berger
Roger & Lorna Smith
Thurber Engineering Ltd.
Wayne Foo & Lynne Marshall
The Named TAship program is an essential contribution to the Department's ability to maintain an excellent instructor:student ratio, in order to ensure high quality field and laboratory instruction. Providing funding to the graduate or undergraduate students holding the TAs, these named TAships are awarded on the basis of nominations from the students taking the courses.
Please consider nominating an exceptional TA you know so that their dedication can be recognized formally. Any questions and concerns may be directed to the Department Head, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any student (undergraduate or graduate) who serves as a teaching assistant in a geology course during the academic year (fall or winter term) is eligible to be nominated for one of the Departmental TA Awards. TAs must fulfill the specific criteria found on the nomination form, which includes such qualities as: knowledge of the subject, ability to explain concepts clearly, approachability, enthusiasm for the subject, availability for consultation, etc. We are seeking to reward excellence in teaching rather than simple popularity.
Nominations should be made on the Departmental TA Nomination Form:
TA Nomination Form ( KB)
The student(s) completing the form must provide the information requested on the form. Please submit a clear and detailed description of the TA's performance. The clearer and more persuasive the information given, the better the chance the nominated TA has of winning the award. The signatures of five other students from the course in question, who are in agreement with the TA's nomination, are requested but are not mandatory.
Completed forms should be submitted to the Undergraduate Assistant, Room 240, Bruce Wing). Nominations may be submitted at any time throughout the fall and winter terms, but must be received no later than 3:30 p.m. on the last day of classes (for each term - fall or winter award).
After the nomination period has ended, a committee consisting of the Head, the TA Coordinator, the Miller Club President or delegate, and the Jolliffe Club President or delegate will review the applications and select an awardee. All TAs who have been nominated will be notified that their teaching has been recognized by their students.
Presentation of the Award
The award recipient will be presented with a certificate at an award ceremony to be held early in the week after classes finish in April. A plaque with recipient names will be placed in the Department and on the website.