CU Learning Assistant Program

developed by: Valerie Otero and Dick McCray

Level
 
middle schoolhigh schoolintro collegeinter-mediateupper levelgrad school   other


 Intro College Calculus-based
calc based
 Intro College Algebra-based
alg based
 Intro College Conceptual
conceptual

Topics
Mechanics  Electricity / Magnetism  Waves / Optics  Thermal / Statistical  Modern / Quantum +4
Setting
Lecture - Large (30+ students)  Lecture - Small (<30 students)  Recitation/Discussion Session  Lab  Studio


What? A program to recruit science majors to become K-12 science teachers and to improve undergraduate education by implementing large-scale teaching reform. Learning assistants are undergraduates who assist in reformed courses, providing the additional instructors needed for many research-based methods.

Student skills developed

Designed for:
  • Conceptual understanding
  • Metacognition
Can be adapted for:
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Lab skills
  • Making real-world connections
  • Using multiple representations
  • Designing experiments

Instructor effort required

  • Medium

Resources required

  • TAs / LAs

Developer's website: LA Program

The Learning Assistant Alliance website provides resources for implementing an LA Program, including national conferences and regional workshops for training program directors, and course materials for LA pedagogy courses.

You can find video lessons for LA training from Periscope.

RESEARCH VALIDATION
Bronze Validation
This is the third highest level of research validation, corresponding to:
  • at least 1 of the "based on" categories
  • at least 1 of the "demonstrated to improve" categories
  • at least 1 of the "studied using" categories
(Categories shown below)

Research Validation Summary

Based on Research Into:

  • theories of how students learn
  • student ideas about specific topics

Demonstrated to Improve:

  • conceptual understanding
  • problem-solving skills
  • lab skills
  • beliefs and attitudes
  • attendance
  • retention of students
  • success of underrepresented groups
  • performance in subsequent classes

Studied using:

  • cycle of research and redevelopment
  • student interviews
  • classroom observations
  • analysis of written work
  • research at multiple institutions
  • research by multiple groups
  • peer-reviewed publication

Compatible Methods

Related Workshop

CU LA pedagogy course

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