Teaching Requirement

Each graduate student admitted to the PhD program in Bioinformatics and Systems Biology is mandated to serve as a teaching assistant (TA) for at least two quarters.

A typical teaching assistantship is 110 hours/quarter (25% load, 2 units of BNFO 500); however, this varies by class. Students are strongly encouraged to do only 25% teaching assistantships, due to the impact on time available for coursework and research. If you are considering a 50% position, please check if it can be split into two 25% positions. Please submit a petition to the BISB Curriculum Committee for any position with a load above 25%.

Students should enroll in BNFO 500 (Teaching Experience) or an equivalent course code in another department, during each quarter in which they are a teaching assistant. They should also contact the BISB graduate coordinator in advance of each teaching assistantship to complete required paperwork and other administrative arrangements.

Bioinformatics graduate students will also participate in additional TA training provided by the Graduate Division through the Teaching + Learning Commons (TLC).

Students should attend the Teaching + Learning Commons' Fall TA training (scheduled shortly before fall quarter begins) if they will be doing their first TAship any time that school year. Students doing TAships in other departments should check if the other department has a department-specific TA training program.

UCSD requires that all TAs receive training in teaching. Most departments use the Teaching Assistant Development Program at TLC to provide some or all of their training. Typically, training consists of a combination of workshops, observations, and consultations designed to provide an opportunity for graduate students, TAs, and postdocs to explore many of the issues involved in college and university teaching and develop the competencies required of effective college instructors. TLC also offers weekly workshops some quarters. Check the TLC website for further information, particularly these pages: