Academic Affairs

Teaching Apprentices

The Academic Deans invite you to apply for a Teaching Apprentice for the fall 2014 semester. The information below describes the program and outlines the process for applying through your Electronic Portfolio for an apprentice.

Please note that the Teaching Apprentice program emphasizes the apprentice’s learning, whereas the Course Assistant program, administered at the departmental level, emphasizes the assistant’s services to the instructor. Apprentices receive academic credit, whereas Course Assistants are paid. These programs have their own requirements and duties, and are not interchangeable. Only those apprenticeships that meet the guidelines of the program, include all four required components described below, and are submitted on time will be approved.

Because we need time to review teaching apprentice requests and may have to ask for clarification or alteration of your plans before we can grant approval, you should submit your application as soon as possible (preferably by May 23, 2014), even if you have not yet identified a student to serve as an apprentice. We will review the request and, if approved, it will be marked “pending” until you enter the name of a student. Once the dean approves a request, the apprentice must still obtain his or her advisor’s approval and accept the assignment. These steps can take several days and must be concluded by the end of drop/add.

The system will close and absolutely no applications for fall teaching apprentices will be accepted after 4 PM on Monday, September 8, 2014.

The Teaching Apprentice Program

The Teaching Apprentice Program offers the student an opportunity to work closely with a faculty mentor to gain a deep understanding of a course’s subject matter and pedagogical challenges that the course and the discipline present. Successful apprenticeships entail a rigorous academic experience, a crucial part of which is the apprentice’s participation in a one-credit tutorial offered by the course instructor that focuses on specific aspects of the course topic and the art and craft of teaching the course.  

Typical Duties of the Apprentice

  • Course Preparation: Apprentices may assist the instructor with selecting and obtaining course materials and with setting up and managing technological aids such as Blackboard.
  • Classroom Activities: Apprentices may conduct review sessions, supplementary discussion sessions, and conversation hours (in the languages). These classroom activities may be optional or mandatory, but they may not substitute for the regularly scheduled class sessions for which the instructor is responsible.  Any Apprentice who conducts conversation or discussion sessions must receive direction and supervision from the faculty member teaching the course.
  • Grading: Apprentices may grade objective exercises ONLY. In no case may they do preliminary grading of papers or examinations or play any role in the assignment of final grades. 

The Teaching Apprentice Application

The Teaching Apprentice application must provide thorough descriptions of:
  1. the academic work to be completed by the apprentice,
  2. the form and content of the teaching apprentice tutorial,
  3. the role of the apprentice in the course,  
  4. the basis on which the instructor will evaluate the academic work of the apprentice.

How to Apply for a Teaching Apprentice 

  • Enter your faculty Electronic Portfolio.
  • Under Courses click on Teaching Apprentice Program. (This link can also be found in your Course Management link)
  • At the top of the Teaching Apprentice System there is a link to add a New Request. Click on this New Request link to obtain a blank Teaching Apprentice request form.
  • Complete the form thoroughly before clicking Submit. Please note that you must complete all fields in order for the form to be submitted successfully. If you have not yet selected a student, indicate TBA for the student’s name. Requests without a specific student listed will remain pending until an appropriate student has been determined. Once an apprentice has been identified, you will need to go back to the system to enter the student’s name.
  • If you are requesting more than one apprentice, separate each student username with a comma.
  • After the application has been submitted, you can view the status of the request by clicking on the Request Status link at the top of the page. This page lists all of the Teaching Apprentice applications received, and indicates whether or not an application has been approved by 1) your dean, 2) the student’s faculty advisor, and 3) the selected apprentice. If your application has not been approved, you can view the comments from the dean by clicking on the View link located in the column next to the Course Title.
  • An advisee of yours may need your approval to serve as another faculty member’s apprentice. If your advisee has been selected and the dean has approved the application, a link will appear on this page so that you can approve your advisee’s participation.
  • Approved tutorials will not appear in course lists until after drop/add.

Department Chairs can view all of the Teaching Apprentice requests for their department by going to Chair Tools and Teaching Apprentice Program. Department administrative assistants can also view all of the requests by going to Management Tools and then to Teaching Apprentice Program. Please forward these instructions on to visitors or new faculty that may not have received this information.

Questions
If you have any questions regarding this program, please contact Lisa Sacks (ext. 3428 or lsacks@wesleyan.edu). 

Policies Governing Teaching Apprentices (approved by the Educational Policy Committee)

  • The Teaching Apprentice Program stresses the learning achieved by the student through the tutorial with the course instructor and through the student’s teaching responsibilities.
  • Students receive one course credit for successfully completing a teaching apprentice tutorial.
  • A student may enroll in only one  Teaching Apprentice Tutorial per semester.
  • Only two credits from Teaching Apprentice tutorials may count toward the total credits required for graduation.
  • During their Wesleyan education, students may take no more than two Teaching Apprentice tutorials for a letter grade.
  • First-year students, visiting international students (VINT) and graduate students are not eligible for this program.
  • Students cannot earn credit for apprenticing in the same course more than once.
  • Students may not serve as Teaching Apprentices for Student Forum courses or for tutorials.
  • A student may not concurrently enroll in a course and serve as a Teaching Apprentice for the course.
  • Teaching Apprentices will be instructed to complete a teaching evaluation for the Teaching Apprentice Tutorial, not for the course for which they are apprenticing.
  • As a guideline, the EPC has endorsed a suggested ratio of no more than one Teaching Apprentice per 20 students in a course. A smaller ratio of Teaching Apprentices to students will be approved if the course instructor presents a compelling pedagogical reason.