Guidelines for Holding Office Hours (By Nelson Padua-Perez)
- A maximum amount of time should be allocated per students while others
are waiting. Ask your supervisor about the specific time.
- Be on time - This is extremely important. Students have a very busy
schedule and we must respect their time. If you can not make your office
hours let your supervisor know.
- You must hold your office hours in the assigned TA room.
- Treat all students with respect. You must keep your opinions about a
student's performance to yourself. For example, if you think a student will
never be able to finish the project, never tell the student about it. If
the student asks a very simple question, never reply "this is so simple you
should know it." This affects students self-esteem. Remember, even if you
are having a bad day, you must be professional and do your job as expected.
- Do not write code for the students. Your job is to guide students and
help them solve a problem, not solving the problem for them. They must
design and write their own code. Help them figure out what could be wrong
with their logic/pseudocode, but avoid writing code for them.
- If a student treats you in a non-professional matter, politely ask the
student to leave and report the situation to your supervisor.
- Make sure you are familiar with the material covered in lecture.
If you have doubts about the class material, contact your supervisor.
- If you see a doubt that is common to many students, report it to your
- Never tell a student whether or not a particular topic is part of
material to be graded (e.g., exams, quizzes, projects). For example, never
tell a student "don't worry about this that will not come up in the ...".
If students inquire about what will come in an exam, quiz, etc., tell them
to read the appropriate announcement or to contact the instructor.
- You must do a legitimate attempt at solving a student's problem. Some TAs
just send students to the instructor without really attempting to solve the
problem at hand.
- Do not provide information about release and/or secret tests.
- Groupies - They are students that live in the TA room. They basically get
their project done by getting a little bit from every TA. Help your instructor
identify these students.