University of Vermont

Office of Community-University Partnerships & Service Learning

Bekah Gordon at Shelburne Farms, working as a Service-Learning TA in an Environmental Studies course.

Service-Learning TA Program

Since 2003, CUPS has placed over 175 SL-TAs in service-learning courses at UVM. Students receive training in SL pedagogy, and gain valuable leadership and teaching experience.

What do SL-TA’s do?

SL-TA's assist faculty with the service-learning component of a course, up to 5 hours/week. In this capacity, TAs might help recruit community partners, facilitate & grade reflection, or assist with project management.¬† For international SL courses, TAs will also travel with the students.¬† Most typically, SL-TA’s facilitate discussion and critical reflection, helping students to connect their service or community-engaged work to the learning goals of the course. Students earn academic credit for this service-learning work through enrollment in an independent study (see below), or receive a stipend depending on experience.

What are the program requirements?

SL-TA’s are required to:

  • attend weekly SL-TA training sessions; materials includes SL practice & pedagogy, critical reflection, assessment, cross-cultural understanding, project management, and more.
  • meet with their supervising ¬†faculty & a CUPS staff member, in order to prepare an official job description of their specific TA responsibilities
  • attend 2 additional professional development opportunities during the semester of service
  • provide a photo, bio and student work or other materials from the semester of service
  • serve as the liaison between CUPS and the SL course
Are SL-TAs paid?

CUPS is able to award a small number of stipends for SL-TAs, depending on experience levels. SL-TAs can also receive academic credit by enrolling in an independt study in their home department, the SL course department, or in CDAE. (CUPS helps facilitate that process.)

Receiving credit or a stipend requires SL-TAs to attend weekly training sessions in addition to the work within the course they are TAing.

SL-TAs who have already been through the SL-TA training are eligible for $750 stipends if they choose to work as SL-TAs in subsequent semesters.

What is the application process?

SL-TAs fill out an application, which includes information about service-learning background, reason for seeking the positions, and a resume. Please click here to access the SL-TA application.

Faculty often encourage students to apply who have previously taken their SL course; if the faculty specifically requests that student by name, we will usually accept the student immediately. Please speak with a service-learning faculty member if you are interested in serving as an SL-TA for his/her course!

What is the timeline?

Applicants should fill out the application form and contact Tom Wilson (trwilson@uvm.edu) as soon as possible, in order to set up the program for the fall!

Can I choose which course I TA for?

We sometimes match TAs with Sl courses based on their interests and experience level, but the best way to be an SL-TA in a specific course is to speak with professors about being an SL-TA in their courses.

How can I increase my chances of becoming an SL-TA?

If you are eager to become a TA, there are some ways you can increase your chances of being matched with a course.

  1. Talk with professors of existing SL courses about your interest in advance. Professors may request specific students to serve as TAs.
  2. Fill out the application with as much detail as possible, and respond promptly to any communications from the CUPS Office regarding possible placements.
 

Still have questions?

Please contact Tom Wilson, CUPS Program Coordinator, at (802) 656-3883, or tom.wilson@uvm.edu.

Last modified April 21 2016 11:17 AM