What Are Learning Assistants?
Learning Assistants (LAs) are undergraduates, primarily in mathematics and the sciences, who facilitate learning in interactive classroom environments. The mathematics department provides LA opportunities to undergraduates interested in being part of a collaborative instructional team and sharing their excitement for mathematics. Learning Assistants facilitate in-class small-group activities and host evening problem-solving sessions. The LA program in the Math Department is a part of a larger LA Initiative in Eberly College of Science.
Training to be a Math Learning Assistant:
Math Learning Assistants receive pedagogy training through SC 220: Principles and Strategies for Effective STEM Learning, which meets for a half-semester (first 7-weeks). These positions are unpaid; however, Math LAs receive academic course credit for MATH 497.
You Might Like this Program If you want to...
- Develop your leadership and interpersonal skills.
- Make a difference in the classroom climate and facilitate your peer’s learning
- Develop strong problem-solving skills, comprehension of abstract concepts, and creative thinking ability.
- develop your professional network by having the opportunity to work closely with peers and Math faculty with common interests.
Responsibilities and requirements of a Math LAs:
- complete the course of interest or an equivalent course with a grade of B or higher,
- have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0, or better,
- attend a science pedagogy training course (SC220 - for new LAs only),
- attend and participate in all class sessions they are facilitating,
- meet weekly with the course instructor,
- facilitate group work with students in lectures, recitations, or homework sessions.
For a Learning Assistant, the average hourly commitment can vary between 5 to 8 hours per week depending on their assigned course.
For questions about the Mathematics Learning Assistants Program, email the program coordinators at MathLAProgram@psu.edu.
Apply to be a Math LA:
Access the Math LA application here: Math LA Application.